Recipe courtesy of Beatrice Ojakangas
I like to make these spicy peppernuts in quantity so that I can serve them in baskets — like you would salted nuts or candy. They add a[ wonderful spicy aroma to the air. This is based on a recipe I received many years ago from a Danish friend. Although the mere idea of baking hundreds of nut-sized cookies sounds like an enormous amount of work, I've simplified the procedure.]
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup light or dark brown sugar, packed
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup ground toasted filberts or almonds
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground cardamom
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. In the large bowl, cream the butter with the sugar using an electric mixer. Add the egg and ground nuts. In another bowl, mix the flour with the baking powder, soda, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, allspice and nutmeg. Blend the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture until a stiff dough forms. Shape the dough into a ball. (At this point, you can wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate it to develop the flavor, for up to a week). Cut off a portion of the dough at a time and roll between your hands and a lightly floured work surface to make slim, ropes about 1/2-inch thick. Place 4 or 5 ropes on an ungreased cookie sheet. Cut ropes into 1/2-inch pieces using a sharp, small knife. Separate the pieces. Bake for 8 minutes or until the cookies are lightly browned and dry. Remove from the oven; cool on the baking sheet.
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