• Bruni

Cinnamon Cookies


Our favourite family recipe for cinnamon filled cookies. What you get here is thin cookie filled with sweet, fragrant cinnamon which is accompanied by hints of caramel flavour. In terms of texture this cookie snaps like a biscuit but is not hard, it melts in the mouth giving sugary cinnamon flavour with caramel notes.


Cookies from this recipe hold clean edges and shape while baking which makes them ideal for cut out or stamp cookies. Added bonus - cookies stay fresh for up to 3 weeks if stored in airtight container.



All in all - addictive little cinnamon cookie. Great to complement coffee or tea - quite hard to stop on 1 only!



Preparation is quick and easy. You will first sift cinnamon, baking soda and flour. Then you will incorporate cold butter until crumbly texture is formed. You will then prepare thin caramel. Sugar needs to be melted on low-medium heat (10-12 minutes). Watch closely not to burn sugar - scrape sides of the pot frequently and stir every so often. Then you will take the pot off the heat and add some milk stirring vigorously. Once caramel stops bubbling you will dilute it with two tablespoons of cold water to form thin caramel sauce. You will pour this mixture lukewarm into sifted flour and form the cookie dough. The dough will be fairly wet but will form ok (few moves with spatula or by hand). Have a look at the pictures - you can easily press hole right through the cookie dough. Don’t worry though, the cookie dough will set when refrigerated. Cooling here is needed for: a) cookie dough to set (so that it’s not packed with unnecessary flour) b) cinnamon and caramel to infuse the dough with flavour and aroma.



After 12 hours in the fridge you are ready to roll (you can refrigerate for up to 3 days). You will be cutting 2cm thick slices and rolling into 2mm thin circle (or any other shape) on the parchment paper. Best trick here is to roll first on one piece of parchment paper and then top up with another one and roll in-between two pieces of parchment paper. This way you don’t need to add any unneeded flour (too much flour = hard cookies). You can transfer cookies quite dense onto the baking tray - cookies from this recipe rise only slightly.



Cinnamon Cookies


Yield: 45 small cookies or 24 large

Time: 20 minutes prep + 12 hours cooling + 7-10 minutes baking

Tin: large baking tray and cookie cutters


Ingredients:

- 2 cups* (300g) all-purpose flour + 1- 2 Tablespoons (for kneading)

- 1 teaspoon baking soda

- 2 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

- 1/2 teaspoon salt

- 175g unsalted butter, cold and diced

- 1 cup (200g) light brown sugar

- 2 Tablespoons full-fat milk

- 2 Tablespoons water

*cup=250ml cup


Method:


1. Prepare dry ingredients: Sift flour with baking soda, cinnamon and salt.


2. Incorporate butter: Using pastry cutter, food processor (few pulses only), fork or by hands incorporate cold butter into dry ingredients (from Step 1) until crumbly texture is formed. Set aside.


3. Prepare wet ingredients: Transfer sugar to small pot with heavy bottom and on low-medium heat cook until sugar is fully melted (10-15 minutes), stir occasionally and scrap sides of the pot to avoid burning. Once sugar is fully melted cook on low heat for another 1 to 2 minutes stirring occasionally. Then take off the heat and add 2 Tablespoons milk - the mixture will go bubbly (similar to when caramel is prepared) so stir vigorously for 10-15 seconds. Then add 2 Tablespoons cold water. The mixture is to resemble very thin and runny caramel. Set aside (you will be using lukewarm).


4. Combine and form the dough: Pour lukewarm thin caramel into crumbly mixture (from Step 2) and using spatula or by hand form the dough (few quick moves, don’t overwork the dough). The dough will be fairly moist - you can add 1-2 Tablespoons of flour (1 at a time) to bring the dough together. The cookie should be moist and will set overnight so don’t add more than 1-2 Tablespoons. Wrap in a cling film and refrigerate for 12 hours.


5. Shape cookies: Once ready to bake preheat oven to 170C (or 160C if using fan assisted oven). Line baking tray with parchment paper or silicon baking mat. Cut 2 cm thick slices of dough and roll out into 2-3mm thin circle. You may opt to roll the cookie dough in-between sheets of parchment paper for best result. Cut cookies. If you are using cookie cutters with engraved shapes - sprinkle some flour on the cookie or on your cookie cutter. Transfer cookies onto the baking tray.


6. Bake at 170C for 7- 8 minutes (small, thin cookies) or 8-10 minutes (larger cookies). Once baked leave on the tray for 10 minutes then transfer to the cooling rack to cool completely.




Hints:


1. Caramel - you want golden brown colour here. Get pot with heavy bottom and silver/white colour so that you can better monitor sugar changing colour. Scrape sides of the pot every so often and stir to avoid burning.


2. Bake time - watch bake time not to go above suggested time. Cookies from this recipe quickly go brown/black and bitter (anything above 10 minutes bake time = wasted batch).


3. Storage - you can store cookie dough in the fridge for up to 3 days. Baked cookies keep fresh for up to 3 weeks. Keep in cool and dry place in airtight container. You can freeze cookie dough or cut out cookies (unbaked) for up to 3 months. Thaw cookie dough in the fridge before rolling out. Frozen cookies can be baked without thawing - bake at 170C for 10 minutes (you may add 1 or 2 minutes depending on the cookie size).



Jazz up:


1. Spices - this cookie is ideal for all spice lovers. You can add cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, nutmeg, allspice, ground black or white pepper. Our two suggestions:


a) Leave cinnamon as in the recipe, add 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom (or grind seeds from 2 pods together with small amount of flour), 1/4 teaspoon allspice, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/8 teaspoon cloves. Add all the spices together with cinnamon (in Step 1).


b) This cookie can be also transformed into cinnamon/ginger cookie - leave cinnamon as is, add 1 teaspoon ground ginger and 1/8 teaspoon ground black (or white) pepper.


2. Sugar - you can use caster sugar in this recipe too. However, you get best flavour when using light brown (Muscovado especially), dark brown sugar or toasted sugar.


3. Sugar cookies - we all know white sugar cookies, loaded with icing and fancy decorations. If you want to change cookie taste - this recipe will give you clean cookie edges, shapes which hold the structure and texture in place when baked. Ideal to transform into spiced, decorative sugar cookie.


4. Caramel - what makes this cookie different from other cookies is the caramel flavour. In this recipe we make the caramel thin enough so that it does not overpower cinnamon flavour. You can play around with stronger caramel flavour - add 2 Tablespoons of double cream instead of milk and just enough water for the mixture to form the dough (1-2 Tablespoons).


5. Butter - we have tested these cookies with salted butter. The taste is great. However, we found that cookies are not holding shape as great as when baked on unsalted butter so if you are planning to use this dough for decorative cookies or stamp cookies use unsalted butter.





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