These melt-in-the-mouth German cookies are a must try this Christmas!
- 500 grams 1 lb 2 oz plain flour, sifted
- 125 gram 4-1/2 oz almond flour (ground almonds)
- 380 grams 13 oz unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 250 grams 9 oz caster sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- 2 egg yolks if required
- 100 grams 3-1/2 oz dark or milk chocolate, roughly chopped
- a piping bag with a large star nozzle * see notes
Preheat oven to 180 C and line 2-3 large baking sheets with baking parchment. Keep aside.
In a mixing bowl, place the butter and beat it with an electric whisk/hand mixer till fluffy. Add the sugar, vanilla and salt and mix till everything is well incorporated.
Add the flour in parts and stir in. Add the almond flour and knead the mixture into a soft dough. The dough should be soft enough to be squirted out of the piping bag, so adjust the consistency of the mixture by adding an egg yolk at a time. Test the consistency by placing a little dough into the piping bag and squirting out a little. The squirting should be effortless in order to get reasonably large cookies without breaking off the dough (which will happen if your dough is too dry)
Transfer the prepared mixture into the piping bag fitted with the star nozzle and pipe the mixture into 3 inch lengths onto the baking sheet.
Bake for 12 minutes or till light golden. Remove and allow to cool for 5 mins on the baking sheets before transferring onto a wire rack/cooling rack till they firm up completely.
You can transfer them into an airtight container right away or glaze them with the melted chocolate, cool again till the chocolate hardens and then transfer into a box.
To glaze with the melted chocolate, melt the chocolate in a bowl placed over simmering water or in a microwave in 30 second intervals and dip the cookies halfway into the melted chocolate. Cool completely till the chocolate hardens and store in an airtight box.
If you don't have a star nozzle just use a regular round shaped nozzle to squirt out the cookies. If you don't have a piping bag just place the cookie dough in one corner of a clean zip lock or food grade plastic bag and snip off the end with a pair of scissors. You can widen the size by cutting a bigger hole once you have piped out a cookie or two. 2. It is important that you get the right consistency of the dough. If it is too soft you won't be able to get proper shapes and if too dry, the dough will break while shaping and also result in dry, crumbly cookies. If the dough is too soft, chill it in the fridge for about 15 minutes so that the butter in the dough hardens up a bit. Loosen up the dough with the egg yolk if you find it too dry. 3. If you will be using the same cookie sheet (baking tray) between batches make sure they have been cooled down to room temperature or else while you pipe the cookie shapes onto them, the butter will begin to melt and the cookies will lose shape. Between batches, lightly rinse the baking sheets and wipe dry or chill them in the fridge before using them again.