Posts Tagged ‘kieflies’

Macaroons: A Great Sidekick for Kieflies

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013 2 comments

Macaroons: A Great Sidekick for Kieflies

Every year when I make the required Kieflies for Christmas, I face the issue of leftover filling. Not sure of the origins of this 35 year old recipe, but it was created with too much filling for the amount of dough that is made. So I usually end up freezing the filling and then making another 1/2 batch of dough later in the month. On occasion, I have also made nut rolls with the extra filling. This year I decided to make the extra half batch of dough right up front, which left me with a new problem: six egg whites with no purpose. Since everyone in my family loves macaroons, I used the extra six egg whites to create a my own macaroon recipe as follows. Rave reviews followed and the new tradition has now been established. Plus there are more kieflies to share with friends and neighbors.

Here is the link to the Kieflie recipe:

Karin’s Macaroons

6 egg whites, beaten until whites are stiff with 1 teaspoon vanilla
1 package Baker’s Sweetened Coconut
4 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup sugar

1 cup Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips

Heat oven to 325°F

To the beaten egg whites, add the coconut, flour and sugar, folding in each of these ingredients until well blended.
Drop by tablespoonful onto parchment paper. Makes 30-36 cookies.
Bake 20 min. or until edges are golden brown. Remove from baking sheets to wire racks; cool.

Melt the chocolate chips on 50% power in the microwave for 90 seconds, stir, repeat.

Dip or spoon chocolate onto the tops of the macaroons.

Making cookies is always a team sport, so invite friends to join you.

Patty helps with the rolling and filling of the Kieflies

Patty helps with the rolling and filling of the Kieflies

The finished product:  Perfect Kieflies

The finished product: Perfect Kieflies


Nut Rolls: One for You and Several for Gifts

Thursday, December 20th, 2012 No comments
Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve in 1/2 inch slices.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve in 1/2 inch slices.




If you want to serve a great treat with your Christmas morning coffee, prepare a few nut rolls and even give some away as holiday gifts.  Our Christmas is not complete without a few of these “old country” sweet breads.  Nut rolls are sweet, but not too sweet….they fall into the “kieflie” world of must-have Christmas delicacies.  My mother was noted for her yeast-dough baking and this is one of the many Christmas breads that was a staple in her holiday preparations for over 50 years. This recipe will make four nut rolls, so wrap a few up in saran wrap and tie a red ribbon around them – your friends will be delighted to receive this gift from your kitchen.






Nut Rolls

4 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 lb. unsalted butter
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup warm milk
1 oz. cake yeast (use fresh yeast if you can find it.  If not, this is equal to 2 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast)
3 egg yolks, beaten

Sift flour, add sugar and salt.  Cut in butter.  (I do this in the food processor).
Add yeast to cup of warm milk.  Stir until dissolved.  Add egg yolks.  Combine with dry mixture.
Place in plastic bag and refrigerate overnight.

Separate dough into 4 parts.
Roll out 1/4 inch thick, spread 1 cup filling across dough, but not too close to the edges.  Roll like a jelly roll and let rise 1 hour on prepared cookie sheet or parchment paper.

Roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness, spread 1 cup filling over dough

Roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness, spread 1 cup filling over dough

Roll like jelly roll and let rise 1 hour on prepared cookie sheet or parchment paper

Roll like jelly roll and let rise 1 hour on prepared cookie sheet or parchment paper

Brush with egg white before baking.

Bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes until nicely browned.

Bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes until nicely browned.

Filling (Make at same time you make the dough and stir the next day before using)
3 beaten egg whites
1 pound shelled walnuts, finely chopped in food processor
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup milk

Fold nuts into beaten egg whites. Fold in powdered sugar and slowly add milk. Mix thoroughly.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve in 1/2 inch slices.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve in 1/2 inch slices.


Building Traditions: The Gingerbread Village

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011 No comments

My family is all about traditions. Christmas must include Kieflies!
Christmas must also include the same ornaments that we have used for 40 years, the same stockings (received upon the birth of the children), the same small repertoire of Christmas Eve dinners, followed by one of the more elegant choices for Christmas Day dinner. And, Christmas must include Gingerbread houses. This year, our first year as grandparents, included our new granddaughter Kaya Marie in the building event. I got to hold her while her mother, Maria, constructed and decorated. We also had the pleasure of hosting friends with their children in the construction zone. Some beautiful masterpieces resulted. Baking cookies or making gingerbread houses with your children are two wonderful ways to experience “team cooking” and learning the joy of spending time together in the kitchen. On my facebook page, I received two comments from friends/relatives who still remembered the gingerbread houses we made with them 40 years ago. Lifetime memories.

Following is the story from one of our guests, Eric Karpinski, who brought his wife and two lovely children to participate in the event.
The Transforming Power of Savoring by Eric Karpinski

Earlier this week, I took Becca and the kids to a gingerbread house making party with my friend Karin Eastham. Karin, a former biotech colleague of mine, has been pursuing her passions by publishing a cookbook around team cooking. The book is awesome and her blog shares a ton of great recipes and ideas about how to throw a fun cooking party or team building activity in the kitchen.As we settled into assembling the houses, I noticed I was feeling off. I’d had a run-run-run day getting ready for Christmas festivities which had left me feeling a little anxious and cranky. I broughtthat energy with me to Karin’s. Are the kids being polite enough? Did Becca really want to bring the family all the way up here instead of having a quiet afternoon at home? What do these biotechcolleagues REALLY think about my leaving the industry to be a coach? I could feel the negative energy of these questions — the judging and worrying — start to take hold and make me more anxious.

Then I noticed what I was doing. That I was taking what could be an amazing experience and tainting it with gratuitous negativity. Yuck! So I decided it was a great time to turn on my savoring tools. Iconsciously slowed down with a couple deep breaths and became aware of my senses. This helped me notice all the subtle positive things that were happening. How my 9 year-old’s tongue stuck out a little when she was concentrating on her masterpiece. How my 7 year-old was designing his house to maximize how much candy he could fit on it. How proud I felt as my wife talked about her leadership roles at work. How yummy the peppermint bark tasted. How much fun it was to meet some new and interesting people. Savoring brought me out of my worrying loops and into the wonderfulexperience we were having as a family.

Then I focused on building up the experience in my mind and sharing what I was feeling. I expressed my appreciation of Karin for hosting and doing the baking ahead of time. I shared my own memories ofmaking gingerbread houses as a kid at my aunt’s house. I talked about how Piper, the two year old with us, was an perfect stand-in for Cindy Lou Who, with her big blue eyes and brilliant smile. All of this helped increase the joy I was feeling and encouraged the others to share similar stories.

While I’d arrived grumpy and tired, I left Karin’s house energized and happy. Savoring had helped me not only salvage a bad day, but imprint some great memories that I will hold onto for a long time.

Check out Eric’s advice for how to really “savor” the holidays:




Kieflies: The Only Must Have Christmas Cookie

Sunday, December 12th, 2010 9 comments

Our family has been making Kieflies for at least 30 years.  Kieflies are eastern European Christmas cookies that are so delicate and delicious that if we were to make only one cookie each year, this would be the chosen cookie.

Kieflies are a bit more time consuming than your average cookie as they take two days to prepare.  You actually make the dough and roll into dough balls the first day and refrigerate the dough balls overnight.  You also make the filling on Day 1.  The second day, you roll the dough into very flat circles in powder sugar, put a teaspoon of filling on one side of the cookie and toll them up, make a crescent and bake.  The recipe follows:

The Dough

1 lb. butter

12 egg yolks

1 cup sour cream

6 cups flour

Butter should be at room temperature.  Cut into flour, beat yolks and add sour cream; blend egg and cream into flour mixture.  Form into balls the size of melon balls.  Let stand covered in refrigerator overnight.

Roll out each ball in powder sugar with heavy rolling pin until very thin, about 3 inch circles.  Put one teaspoon of filling on one side and roll up, forming a crescent.  Place on baking pan lined with parchment paper. Bake at 325° for 15 min.


12 egg whites, room temperature

2 lbs. walnuts, ground fine

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 lb. powder sugar

Beat egg whites until stiff, fold in sugar, nuts and vanilla, one at a time.  Stir and refrigerate until ready to fill cookies.