These cookies are a German recipe from my grandma. She made them for my dad when he was little. I'm sure there are many variations of this recipe, but this was hers.
There is yeast in this recipe. A cookie recipe. Weird.
Weird, but wonderful.
This also happens to be a recipe that I've made twice before. Each time I make it, I swear that I'll never make it again. The dough gets sticky and starts splitting because you are rolling vanilla sugar between each layer. It comes apart and you get frustrated and throw your hands up.
Forget about trying to cut it and twist it while it gets all sticky and you're peeling it from the counter.
So, each time I think I can do it. This year, I did it. I did it smart.
You start with yeast and warm water and sugar. Just like bread. Let it sit and foam up a few minutes.
This needs to refridgerate for a couple of hours. I did overnight.
It will smell like heaven in your kitchen.
You only use half the dough at a time, so this is one half. You roll it out some. Ten you sprinkle it heavily with about 1/4 of the sugar.
Gently press the sugar into the dough and roll it out to 8x16.
Then pop this back in the fridge for 10 minutes and do the other half. Make sure to flour between the batches. Keep your work space nice and cold and floured. Flour your rolling pin if it gets sticky, move your 'envelope' and reflour under it incase it got sticky.
Ok, so you do this to each half 3 times total. You turn the 'envelope' the other direction, roll out some, add sugar, press it in and roll it to 8x16, then fold it and refridgerate again. The last time the dough was harder to roll out. I had to press it down and not let it slide around. The sugar layers threaten to slide.
Then roll out again, to 8x16. I used a pizza cutter instead of a knife. No sliding! And no melting, cause it was nice and cold. Cut to 1x4 slices.
Make 2 twists in each cookie. Place on a greased cookie sheet.
Bake for 15 minutes. They do spread out in the oven, the sugar caramelizes and hardens.
The cookies are still somewhat soft, with crunchy sugar edges.
Smells amazing. If you try these, please let me know. Also, be patient. Take your time, refridgerate between layers and don't rush it. They're worth the wait.
I actually may not wait another 3 years to make them again...
1 package yeast (2 1/4 tsp) with 1/4 cup warm water and 1 Tablespoon sugar
3 1/2 cups flour 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 cup margarine (2 sticks) cut together pea sized
Beat 2 eggs, add to flour with 1/2 cup milk and 1 teaspoon vanilla
Mix all together and chill 2 hours or overnight.
Combine 1 1/2 cup sugar with 2 teaspoons vanilla in separate bowl.
Roll out half the chilled dough on floured, cold surface or back of a floured cookie sheet.
Roll it out to 8x16 inches, sprinkle with 1/4 cup sugar mixture, press down, fold in 3 layers like an envelope. Refridgerate for 10 min or more, re-spread your flour out and repeat 2 more times, rolling to 8x16 and 1/4 cup sugar each time. Do the same with the other half of the dough, or work on one half, then the other if you have 2 sheets and the fridge space. After the 3 rollings and flourings, roll back out to 8x16 and cut in 1x4 inch strips with pizza cutter. Twist each strip 2 times and place on greased baking sheet. Bake 350 for 15 minutes. Remove from tray almost immediately onto waxed paper.
Also, for a quick update on our bathroom renovation: