Husars Shakos

Husars ShakosMy daughter is crazy about these cookies. Admittedly, so am I. Hiding them in a cookie tin is a must, because I have not an ounce worth of resistance when I see these amazing cookies. Now, if you aren’t allergic to nut, eggs, and dairy, or gluten, these are your thing. Unless you don’t like the taste of hazelnuts. In that case move on. For those of you who love hazelnuts, this will be your new favorite cookie. The jam should have a bit of a tart bite to it, so use red-currant jelly, or a tart cherry jelly on top. I do not recall where I found this recipe, but I have used it and adapted it for almost two decades now.

Husars Shakos

1 1/2 cups unbleached white flour
1 1/3 tsp. baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla essence
1 large egg
1/2 cup butter
1 cup roasted, ground hazelnuts (let me know if you need instructions for that)
1/2 cup warmed up jelly (warm up when you are ready to shape and bake the cookies)

This recipe works best if made the day before you plan to bake.

Using the standmixer method.
Using the paddle attachment cream butter and sugar together. Add the egg and the vanilla essence, continue creaming. Mix the salt and baking powder with the flour and add to the butter mixture. You may need to switch the paddle attachment for the dough hook. When the flour has incorporated, add the ground nuts.  Stir to incorporate thoroughly.

Form the dough into two rolls and wrap in cling-wrap. Chill overnight.

Using your hands:

Place flour, nuts, baking powder, salt on clean counter. Make a ‘well’ in the middle, break the egg into that well, and add the vanilla. Dot the exterior of the well with pats of butter. Start from the outside and knead everything into a smooth dough. Form the dough into two rolls and wrap in cling-wrap. Chill overnight.

On baking day.

Heat oven to 375 degrees F.  Divide dough into walnut size pieces. When I weigh them, they usually clock in around 22 grams. Shape each piece into a slightly flattened ball and make a deep divot in the center. Place the dough pieces approximately 2 inches apart on a lined cookie sheet and fill the divot with some of the jelly.

Now where is the trick. Before popping these cookies into the oven, let them sit for a minimum of 10 minutes in a cool/cold place. They keep their shape much better that way. I have made the mistake of baking them right away, and they tend to melt into a blob. What’s worse, the jelly divot falls apart, spilling the easily burnt jelly all over the pan. By letting them cool down, the butter in the dough solidifies again, maintaining a defined shape.

Bake until they are a golden brown. I usually set a timer for about 10 minutes, and after that keep a close eye on them until they are done. These keep really well for at least a week in a cool place.

2 responses to “Husars Shakos

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