“Christmas Cookie Recipe & a Story” Link Up

Today we are gathering around the table and want to invite you to LINK UP your favorite Christmas Cookie Recipe and Story. Share a little snippet of your favorite Christmas memory…maybe one from your childhood or a story through the eyes of your children. We will keep the cocoa hot and a chair is saved for you.

It was a simple, humble package, but obviously wrapped with care. Every bit of it’s surface was covered with Christmas paper. The hand that wrapped it, had not spared any expense on covering the paper with tape either. The corners were not even and where they were stubbornly protruding, tape was there to do the work. The ribbon was lovingly added with extra flourishes of curly red tendrils. The package was placed under the tree days before Christmas. When my mom asked me who the package was from and who it was for, I responded, “I wrapped it for baby Jesus.”

On Christmas morning, I let my mom unwrap the gift for baby Jesus’ birthday. She carefully undid what my hands so carefully had swaddled. When the gift revealed itself, she looked at me quizzically and said, “Kristin, why did you give baby Jesus band-aids?”

“It’s for the cuts in his hands and feet.”

The wonder that children bring to the Christmas season will never grow old…their joy in simple gift giving and the twinkle in their eyes when they see brightly colored packages sitting under the tree.

Dulche de Leche, Bacon, Coconut and Chocolate Chip Magic Bars 

You read that right…BACON with chocolate chips AND coconut! These bars are an excellent gift to give. The mix of sweet and salty, the ever so slight bite of bacon, will leave your friends and family wanting more!

Bacon, chocolate, coconut magic bars

Bacon, chocolate, coconut magic bars

Dulce de Leche Recipe borrowed from Alton Brown


  • 1 quart whole milk
  • 12 ounces sugar, approximately 1 1/2 cups
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Combine the milk, sugar, vanilla bean and seeds in a large, 4-quart saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Once the sugar has dissolved, add the baking soda and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to low and cook uncovered at a bare simmer. Stir occasionally, but do not re-incorporate the foam that appears on the top of the mixture. Continue to cook for 1 hour. Remove the vanilla bean after 1 hour and continue to cook until the mixture is a dark caramel color and has reduced to about 1 cup, approximately 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer. Store in the refrigerator in a sealed container for up to a month.

Dulce de Leche, Bacon, Coconut and Chocolate Chip Magic Bars borrowed from Grace Parisi compliments of Food and Wine


  1. 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
  2. 1/4 cup sugar
  3. 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
  4. 1 large egg yolk
  5. 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  6. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  7. 4 ounces bacon, finely diced
  8. 3 cups sweetened shredded coconut (6 1/2 ounces)
  9. 12 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
  10. 1/2 cup salted roasted almonds, chopped
  11. One 16-ounce jar dulce de leche
  12. One 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Line a 9-by-13-inch metal baking pan with parchment paper, leaving up to 1 inch of overhang. Spray the paper with vegetable oil spray.
  2. In a medium saucepan, cook the butter over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and browned, about 4 minutes. Scrape the butter into a large bowl and freeze just until solid, about 15 minutes.
  3. Using a handheld electric mixer, beat the sugar, vanilla seeds and egg yolk into the butter at medium speed until blended. Add the flour and salt and beat until moistened crumbs form. Press the crumbs into the prepared baking pan and bake in the lower third of the oven for about 25 minutes, until the crust is set and lightly browned.
  4. Meanwhile, wipe out the bowl used to make the crust. In a medium skillet, cook the bacon over moderately high heat until browned and crisp, about 5 minutes. Drain the bacon on paper towels and let cool. In the bowl, toss the coconut with the chocolate chips, almonds and bacon.
  5. In another bowl, whisk the dulce de leche with the condensed milk; pour two-thirds of it in the crust. Lightly press the coconut-bacon mixture over the dulce de leche. Drizzle the remaining dulce de leche mixture on top.
  6. Bake the bars for 35 to 40 minutes, until lightly browned on top. Transfer the pan to a rack and let the bars cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour. Carefully remove the bars from the pan and peel off the paper. Cut into bars and serve.

Make Ahead

The bars can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days or refrigerated for up to 1 week.

We’ve had many guests over the year pull up a chair to our table and share their own favorite Christmas stories and cookie recipes, visit HERE to see more!

Christmas Cookie Recipe & Story