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Ring In Prosperity With Peppermint Pig Cookies

This bright pink confection symbolizes prosperity and good fortune, and it just wouldn’t be Christmas in Saratoga Springs without a Peppermint Pig. Start a new tradition around your own holiday table when you serve these Peppermint Pig cookies.

The first Peppermint Pig was created in 1880, a decade before candy canes came on the scene, by Jim Mingay, a candy-maker in Saratoga Springs, New York. No one knows for sure why he chose a pig for his design, but in Victorian times the pig symbolized good luck and prosperity.

Traditionally, the Peppermint Pig is made of hard candy, like candy canes. It comes with a little drawstring bag and a tiny hammer. After the holiday dinner the pig is placed inside the bag and everyone at the table takes a wack at the poor little guy as they share the things they’re grateful for that happened during the year. Then, everyone eats a piece of the Peppermint Pig to ensure good luck and good fortune over the next year.

But maybe you don’t want people swinging a hammer at your dining room table, even if it is just a tiny little thing, especially when the table’s set with your grandmother’s best china.

And what if you don’t want to go all the way to Saratoga Springs for a piece of candy? Try these Peppermint Pig Cookies, instead. They’re a much safer alternative that you can make in your own kitchen.

Ingredients 

  • 1 18-oz. package Pillsbury Refrigerated Sugar Cookie Dough
  • (Get a coupon for $1 off Pillsbury Refrigerated Cookie Dough here)
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • Red food coloring
  • Prepared white icing
  • Peppermint M&M’s

Directions 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease cookie sheets.
  • Remove cookie dough from wrapper; place in large bols. Let dough stand at room temperature about 15 minutes.
  • Add flour, peppermint extract and food coloring to dough; use electric mixer at medium speed to blend until dough is evenly colored. Divide dought into 20 equal pieces.
  • For each pig, shape 1 dough piece into 1 (1-inch) ball, 1 (1/2-inch) ball and 2 (1/4-inch) balls. Flatten 1-inch ball to 1/4-inch thick round and place on prepared cookie sheet. Flatten 1/2-inch ball into 1/4-inch thick oval and place on top of dough round for snout. Shape 2 (1/4-inch) balls into triangles, fold over, and place at top of round for ears. Make indentations in snout with wooden skewer for nostrils.
  • Bake 9 to 11 minutes or until set. Remove to wire racks and cool completely.
  • Use white icing and M&M’s to make eyes.

Makes 20 cookies. 3 Books in 1: Silly Snacks, Classroom Treats, Cookie Dough Fun