19 February 2008

My Newest Favorite Cookie Ever -- Speculaas



Oh, these are buttery, spicy, crunchy, nutty cookies that greatly surpass the crisp, windmill-shaped cookies known as Speculaas. They are what I've been searching for all my life in a cookie. They'd also be ideal for ice cream sandwiches.

I started making a film of how to make these prior to my surgery, but it appears that I left out a few steps, so I'll just have to write it for you here for the moment. John has something up his sleeve regarding the little cooking videos, so I'm going to keep those to a minimum for a bit.

In the meantime, I invite you to try making these incredible cookies. They are truly some of the best I've ever tasted, if I do say so myself. ;D

Speculaas (adapted from the King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion)

Ingredients:

1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
3/4 cup agave nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground mace or nutmeg (I used freshly grated nutmeg)
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup coconut flour, sifted
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup toasted almonds, finely ground
1 teaspoon baking powder (I always sift mine)
2 to 4 tablespoons milk

Directions:

1. Cream together the butter, agave, vanilla, spices and salt.
2. Stir in the remaining ingredients, reserving the milk to use as a way to smooth out the dough if it is too dry.
3. Make the dough into a flat disk, wrap it in plastic and chill for at least 1 hour.
4. While you preheat the oven to 300 degrees F, take the dough out of the fridge. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
5. Flour your rolling surface and your rolling pin well. Keep a little (a tablespoon's worth) pile of flour to the side to dip your cookie cutters in before you use them.
6. Roll out the dough to 1/4 in. thick and start cutting your shapes. Get as much as you can out of the dough because it will get tougher with each roll out. I used the little flower shapes shown in the photo, and it made about 4 dozen of them.
7. Bake the cookies for about 10 minutes, then turn the pans and bake them again for 8-10 minutes, until they are medium brown, but not too dark.
8. Let cool completely. They should really snap when you break them!
9. Enjoy!

2 comments:

Ricki said...

Deb, these sound wonderful! I love the combination of spices. And I think they'd be eminently adaptable to spelt/vegan versions, too!

Deb Schiff said...

Thanks, Ricki!

Yes, I imagine these would be very good in spelt or even brown rice flour/coconut combinations. You can't even taste the coconut at all. I was thinking that the next time I make these, I'm going to add some 5-spice powder as well for even more of a kick.