Cinnamon Stars: Re-revisited (again)



So, it isn't like we needed more cookies just before New Year, but for Science, it was necessary to make a control batch of these using the more traditional ground almonds rather than the ground Hazelnut variety of Cinnamon Stars I made last week. I had also found that the chocolate variation was too chocolatey and needed to be toned down a little, so I wanted to try them out with only a dash of cacao instead of a full third of the powdered sugar being replaced by cacao. I was a numpty and sent the hazelnuts back to my house before making this batch at my parent's so both the standard and the chocolate variety were made using almonds this time around. I had a bit of an oven problem, so they came out softer than usual, but this was a hit with the family. I also increased the cinnamon content in both varieties, which was also a popular move.


Ingredients:

For the plain ones:

3 egg whites

a pinch of salt

1 1/2 c powdered sugar

3 c ground almonds

3 tbsp cinnamon

2 tsp kirsch



For the chocolate ones:

3 egg whites

a pinch of salt

1 1/2 c powdered sugar

2 tbsp cacao

3 c ground almonds

3 tbsp cinnamon

2 tsp kirsch


2 tbsp sugar for rolling

Optional: 1 tbsp flaked almonds, toasted


1) Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt to form stiff peaks (check out my beautiful, stiff, hand-whipped peaks!). Fold in the powdered sugar and set aside 2 tbsp for the icing. If using, fold in cacao at this point.


2) Mix in the nuts, cinnamon and kirsch to form a stiff dough. Roll out 1 cm thick on a sugared surface and cut out shapes.


3) Lay out on a cookie sheet (preferably greased or with a silicone sheet) and ice with a little dollop of the icing. If using, add a few flaked almonds on top of the icing at this point.


4) (Optional: Allow to rest for 5 hours or overnight. I skipped this step this time) Bake at 240°C for 4 minutes.



The consensus, seeing as these were the control batch to the experimental hazelnut cookies from earlier in the week, was that both types of nut work. If you prefer almonds generally, then you likely prefer the classic variety of these cookies (which I will continue to call Cinnamon Stars even though all of these were circular). If you prefer hazelnuts generally, you will probably prefer the hazelnut variety. Just swap out the nuts in a 1:1 ratio.


The increased cinnamon was a hit, and I think I've hit on the right proportion of cacao. These were now cinnamon cookies, with almond and a little chocolate, rather than chocolate cookies with some nuts and a little cinnamon. If you want chocolate cookies, check out the classic Basler Christmas Cookie recipe instead (which I like as well), or the orange variation that I tweaked this year. For this type though, I am delighted with these ones. The flaked almonds were an idea of my dad's as we had some left over from the Chicken Tagine the day before.


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