Creative Christmas Cookie Exchange

Dani is one of those gals who can do anything. But if you ask her what she likes to do most, it’s work out, run, stretch, do crunches and planks, mulch her yard, plant shrubs, and basically do anything that keeps her lean physique on the move. But she obviously has a clever domestic side because for a Christmas cookie exchange she made mini lemon tea breads. What a great idea to add some sweet variety to the cookie offerings…and all decorated up for the occasion! Dani shares her recipe here. Hey…I think I just saw her jog by my house!

Lemon Tea Bread


  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons pure lemon extract (do not use artificial)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons grated fresh lemon peel
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9″ x 5″ loaf pan (or use the Wilton mini six-loaf pan); set aside.

In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar, and lemon extract until fluffy.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating until the mixture “throws ribbons” (translation: is light and feathery).

In a separate bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, and salt.  Pour 1/3 of the flour mixture into the egg mixture, stir, then add 1/3 of the milk.  Stir until blended.  Continue to add the flour/milk mixture alternately until blended.  Do not over mix.

Fold in lemon peel and pecans.  Pour batter into prepared pan.  Bake 1 hour for large loaf pan (about 25-30 min for the mini loaf pan) or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

While the loaf is baking, prepare lemony glaze:  mix together the fresh lemon juice and 1/2 cup sugar, let stand until loaf is baked.  Remove bread from oven and immediately pour the well blended lemony glaze over the top.  Let stand 15 to 20 minutes.  Turn onto rack and let cool.

Dani's lemon tea breads all dressed up for a Christmas cookie exchange.

Dani’s lemon tea bread all dressed up for a Christmas cookie exchange.

To serve, slice into thin pieces; serve with butter.


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