It’s that time of year again. Narrowing down the Christmas cookie list!
I am always way too optimistic with the number of new recipes I’ll be able to test. I always run out of time before I get to them all. Oh well, I’m a perpetual optimist
One of my favorites cookie/desert cookbooks is the Joy of Cooking All About Cookies cookbook. There aren’t any recipes in here that you can’t find in the Joy of Cooking, but a good 75% of those in this supplement have big glossy pictures. Always helpful in finding a new recipe. (I also have the All About Vegetarian, which is another good resource when you want to have a good look at what you’re about to make.)
I wasn’t quite positive how these would turn out – they have only 5 ingredients. They were a big hit though, especially with Hermit. I thought they tasted similar to Russian Teacakes – which have walnuts chunks and are rolled in powdered sugar after baking – and are some of my favorite holiday cookies.
The only nuts I bake with are almonds, and only those which haven’t come in contact with other peanuts/tree nuts. Hermit’s niece is highly allergic to peanuts and it wouldn’t do to risk accidentally contaminating something. Thankfully, with a little creativity, I’ve found many cookies which don’t call for nuts. Last year, I actually made Peanut Blossoms with Soy butter instead of peanut butter. They turned out pretty well. I’d like to try this with an almond butter as well.
I love how soft-crunchy these were. I might try making smaller – i.e. not crescent shaped – round cookies from this recipe to see how they turn out. I love a bite-sized cookie.
Viennese CrescentsPrintable Recipe
- 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup ground blanched almonds* (or ground walnuts)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup powdered sugar, for dusting
1. Place a rack in the upper 1/3 of the oven and preheat to 350°. Grease cookie sheet or line with parchment paper and set aside.
2. In the bowl of a stand-mixer, beat butter until pale and creamy. Sift powdered sugar over the top and beat until well combined.
3. Stir in vanilla extract and ground almonds. Gradually – gently – incorporate flour until all combined.
4. Remove bowl from mixer stand. If necessary, knead dough slightly until well blended.
5. Pull off chunks about 2 tsp. in size and roll gently into a compact ball. I have a (very handy) 2 tsp.-sized cookie scoop that works great.
6. Shape ball into a log and then curve slightly into a crescent shape. Place on prepared pans, 1 1/4 inches apart.
7. Bake one sheet at a time, about 10-12 minutes, flipping the cookie sheet halfway through baking. Take the cookies out when they’re very slightly browned. They taste better when they’re lighter in color.
8. Let the cookies rest on the cookie sheet until slightly firm. Remove to racks to cool.
9. Sift/dust powdered sugar over cookies while still slightly warm. Once cooled, store in an airtight container.