Thursday, January 8, 2009

C is for cookie,

and cookie is for you, darling reader!

Our friend Rachel is a whiz in the kitchen. At the most recent girl free-for-all (which included white wine and a screening of Step Up, starring the embarrassingly hot Channing Tatum - and by embarrassingly I mean that I am embarrassed for finding him so attractive), Rachel whipped up a varied assortment of baked goods - but it was these crispy, sugar-kissed, light-as-air "c cookies" that stole my heart. They are an OG confection - Rachel's mom got the recipe out of an 1970s issue of Woman's Day - and, like all good cookies, they are de-lish-us without taking themselves too seriously. (I mean, they're in the shape of the letter C! How self-referentially post-modern is that?) The recipe is below, complete with notes.

C Cookies (Hazelnut Crescents)

Makes 8 dozen

1 C softened butter
1 C sugar
1 C hazelnuts, finely ground
2 C flour
¼ tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
powdered sugar

Cream butter and sugar. Add nuts, flour, salt and vanilla. Work with fingers as with pie crust. (My mom mixes first with mixer and finishes with hands. I've never read this part of the recipe until now and have only made mine by mixing with a blender.) If mix doesn't hold together, add ice water by the tablespoon.

Using a tsp of dough, shape like crescents. (This is a pain. Must roll between palms so it forms long, thin, cylinder shape.) Bake at 300 degrees for 20-25 minutes (though if you start to smell them, check, mine have been ready in as little as 15 minutes) or unti faintly brown. Cool.

Dust with sifted powdered sugar like early morning snow.

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