Productive Procrastination: VanilleKipferln

I'll Do That Later - 6N Undeclared
Posted on: November 25, 2017

Welcome to another edition of “What are you cooking?” “Just some procrastination,” Holiday Edition. Ah yes, it’s time to over-saturate your life with pressure to feel Jolly and Happy and Merry and all sorts of other B.S. while forcing you to spend way too much money convincing the people around you that you truly care for them, just open the present, goddamnit! Although my house still hasn’t taken down its Halloween decorations yet and I’m still eating the pumpkin seeds I made when we carved the jack-o-lantern, today we’ll be making a holiday cookie that I promise you will want to spend more time making in the future. Heck, you can even give these away to friends and family for gifts this year when you’ve procrastinated on buying presents again, and you’ll save way more money! And if you don’t like these cookies you can stuff it; this is my grandmother’s recipe, so you can GTFO and disrespect someone else’s gran, thanks.

Vanille Kipferln are a traditional Austrian Christmas cookie made with love, butter and some nuts (I hope you’re not allergic or vegan). I started out by requesting the recipe from my mother who had to take a dusty book off a shelf and snap a photo for me. Since I am a fantastic person, I have converted all the dumb measurement amounts to units I hope you will be able to measure in your own kitchen. Or at school, wherever you happen to enjoy baking. For all I know you carry an Easy-Bake Oven to uni with you during exams, I don’t judge.

What you will need:

Almost 1 cup of cold butter (7/8 cups) so that’s equivalent to about 1 ¾ sticks of butter if you buy them that way, 2 cups regular white flour, 1 cup almond flour*, 1 tbsp vanilla extract**, ¼ cup sugar, 1 egg yolk. You will also need icing sugar to top them with.

*Almond flour is legitimately just crushed almonds that you can buy pre-crushed. You can also crush them yourself with a food processor or blender (probably). If you don’t like almond or you’re allergic, try walnuts instead; I never have but I read somewhere that this is an acceptable substitution. No other substitutions will be accepted at this time.

**Technically you’re supposed to use vanilla sugar, but this stuff is not only difficult to find in Canada, it’s also expensive and I don’t think anyone out there is going to purchase it.

Step 1: Cut the butter into the white flour until you have a mixture similar to breadcrumbs. Do not start this process with warm butter because you will end up with a warm mess and a weird not-crumb-like consistency. I like to use knives to cut the butter into the flour at first and when the pieces are small enough use my hands to rub the butter into smaller and smaller pieces in the flour.

Step 2: Separate the yolk from the white. Crack the egg over a small bowl or plate and move the yolk back and forth between shell halves until there is just the one yolk left. If you crack the yolk this process will not be possible so be careful. Make yourself an egg-white omelette with the leftover white and/or broken yolks from when you messed up. Put the yolk in a dish and whisk lightly.

Step 3: Mix all dry ingredients in with the butter-flour combo then knead with the yolk and vanilla into a dough. Try not to over-work the dough. It needs a break too man!

Step 4: Split the dough into four parts and roll into inch-thick sausages. Wrap in saran and put them in the fridge for about 30 min. While the dough cools off, take some time to chill.

Step 5: Remove the first dough roll from the fridge and chop into “dollars” about 1 cm thick. Before you’re covered in butter, preheat the oven to 375°F and take out two cookie sheets.

Step 6: Work the dough! Now, the dough is going to be cold so you’re going to need to play with it a bit in your hands. Roll it around until it’s a ball and then carefully create a crescent shape. If there are cracks in the dough keep working it until more of the butter has melted the dough together. These cookies are fragile enough you don’t want to be baking them with cracks! Setting your cookies up for failure would basically be pulling a Barby, and no one wants that.

Step 7: Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, until the tips of the crescents are a bit golden, be careful not to cook much longer than 12 min because you don’t want the butter to start burning!

Step 8: Remove from the oven and immediately after transferring to a plate to cool, sprinkle them with icing sugar. When the cookies are cool to the touch, put in a container and sprinkle with more icing sugar. CONSUME COOKIES, or share with friends, your choice! Happy holidays!