Thursday, December 9, 2010

Christmas Cookie Time: Almond Spice Wafers

I tried these cookies, from Martha Stewart, last year because their picture looked irresistible. They have a delicate, almost melt in your mouth flavor, and remind me of the incredibly thin, crispy ginger cookies you can buy at ikea, but jazzed up with nuts (call me lame but I am a sucker for all things ikea).

Again, I only have pictures of the rejects (when baking 13 types of christmas cookies one forgets about the important things, like saving some for your "beauty shots").

Cookie Baker's Tip: slicing the dough while still somewhat frozen helps you get ultra thin slices.

Almond Spice Wafers
from Martha Stewart's Cookies

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups packed dark-brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 cup sliced blanched almonds

Line 2 mini loaf pans with plastic wrap.

Whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Beat butter and sugar with a mixer on medium speed for 4 minutes. Reduce speed to low. Add eggs and spices. Beat in flour mixture in 3 additions.

Press cookie dough into pans, and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Freeze for 1 1/2 hours (or up to 1 month).Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove dough from 1 pan. Let soften slightly. Cut eight 1/8-inch-thick slices with a sharp knife. Cover remaining dough, and freeze in pan until ready to slice and bake.

Place slices 1 1/2 inches apart on a cookie sheet lined with a nonstick baking mat. Top each with 2 to 3 almond slices. Freeze until firm, 5 minutes. Bake until dark golden brown, 10 minutes. Let cool on sheet on a wire rack. Repeat.

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