These cookies are always on the baking list at Beth’s annual Christmas cookie party. Cream cheese and almond flavoring in the dough make these nut-covered cookies extra special. And for the “icing on the cake,” you fill the “thumbprints” with the icing
In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the shortening, cream cheese, and sugar until smooth. Add the egg and almond extract. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt, and stir into the shortening mixture. When thoroughly mixed, chill the dough in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Shape the dough into 1½-inch balls, roll the balls in the chopped pecans, and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until lightly browned. Remove the baked cookies from the oven while still warm, and use your finger or a wooden spoon handle to make a “thumbprint” in the center of each cookie. Fill the indentation with the icing. Transfer the cookies to wire racks for cooling.
Fill these cookies with your favorite jelly or jam for a different flavor. Ask your children to make the actual “thumbprints” in the cookies.