This little cookie is quite a surprise. It’s a mix between a sweet pastry and a shortbread. There’s a lot of flavor in a little bite and a fine complexity that is derived in the rolled version. As the cookies bake, the butter, sugar, cinnamon and maple syrup meld together magically creating a golden crisp exterior. It’s a bit of a lengthy process as there are two resting periods before the dough can be baked. If you are in a hurry, you can opt for the simpler method of rolling balls instead of making the jelly roll style cookies. The results are both really good, though the rolled version creates tasty layers of delicious goodness. The wonderful aroma of warm spices fill the air as these delights bake. You will be sure to have lots of fans when you serve these cookies. Try them sometime when you’re looking for something out of the ordinary.
Cinnamon Maple Cookies
Makes approximately 40 cookies
8 oz butter, cold
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 cups all purpose flour
¼ cup cold maple syrup
3 tbsp ice water
¼ cup sugar
4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice or grated nutmeg (optional)
¼ cup maple syrup for basting
Place the flour, sugar and cold butter pieces into a bowl. Mix with a hand mixer until it becomes a crumbled mixture with a few pea sized balls.
Add the chilled maple syrup, 3 tbsp water and vanilla extract and combine to quickly form a dough. Do not overwork the dough or it will create a hard dough.
Make 2 dough disks. Wrap each in plastic wrap and chill for a few hours.
Add the sugar, cinnamon and allspice in a small bowl and combine.
Prepare a work surface with a good amount of flour. Roll a rectangle of roughly 10” x12”.
Sprinkle half of the sugar cinnamon mixture over the top and leave a slight 1/8″ on each end. Roll up tightly, starting on the smaller side. On the final roll, dab the pastry with a bit of water to seal.
Wrap rolls in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour. This step is to make the roll easier to slice.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Using a sharp knife, cut the cookies into ¼” slices and place on an ungreased cookie pan. Work quickly as the pastry will be less manageable the longer it stays out at room temperature.
Baste with maple syrup and sprinkle some cinnamon sugar over each cookie.
Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately lift each cookie with a spatula and allow to cool on a rack.
Note: An easier way to make these cookies is to form small balls of dough around ¾” in diameter after allowing the dough to rest. Roll each ball into the sugar cinnamon mixture and place on a baking sheet 1” apart. Flatten slightly to form a 1 1/2” cookie.
Baste with maple syrup and then sprinkle each cookie with a bit of remaining sugar mix.
Bake 20 minutes in a preheated 325 degree oven.
Remove cookies immediately and place on a cooling rack.
The simple rounds are in the foreground with the rolled cookies in the background.