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dm1One of the best parts of Christmas is the goodies! All the confectionery, multi-colored, seasonal delights that are shared in carefully wrapped tins and jars of all shapes and sizes are part of what makes this a time to look forward to! I love classic fudge, sugar cookies, chocolate chip cookies, pies and cakes. But, let’s dial the sugar back a notch and put the spotlight on a recipe that is just as good for breakfast as it is for dessert!

dm4I discovered these date moons last year as part of my quest for a final addition to an array of holiday goodies. Unbeknownst to me, these became the hit! Before I knew it, these were the first item gone from my Santa themed tin cans that were so merrily passed around!

dm5The filling is very jammy, so this fulfills the pastry craving that we all have now and again. This was inspired by a Swedish favorite during this time of year that is often more requested than the richer desserts. But have no fear, if you desire, sprinkle with powdered sugar at the end to  still get that sweetness on top!

Date Moons
From Southern Living

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped dates
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1 teaspoon grated orange rind
1/2 cup powdered sugar

For the dough:

Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add flour and salt, and beat until blended.

Form the dough into a ball; cover with wax paper, and chill for 1 hour.

For the filling:

Cook dates, sugar, and 1/4 cup water in a saucepan over medium heat 3 to 5 minutes or until thickened. Remove mixture from heat and stir in nuts  and orange rind. Set aside to cool.

Preparing to bake:

Divide dough in half and roll out on a lightly floured surface, rolling to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut dough with a 2 1/2-inch round cutter (I used a small wine glass which worked wonders!), and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Spoon 1/2 teaspoon date mixture in center of each cookie. Repeat until all half moons are happily filled with this gooey-ooey date mixture.

Fold dough over filling, pressing edges with tines of a fork to seal.

Bake at 375° for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

(Please note that for the dough, Pillsbury pie crust works just as well too!)

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