Live life with a little spice
Spices make everything taste and smell so good. Use any spice in cooking or baking and you don't need a potpourri at home. Since the time I started cooking and eventually baking, never has gone by a day when I haven't used at least one spice. Whether it's breakfast, lunch or dinner, spices is an integral and inseparable part of my dishes.
When the theme for this month for the Creative Cookie Challenge was declared as Cinnamon, I instantly decided to go with the classic combo: chocolate and cinnamon. I love chocolate and I adore cinnamon. Though I had quite a few options in my mind, I settled down on these pretty looking star shaped, chocolate dipped and cinnamon flavored beauties. Though you can make any shape, with Christmas fast approaching, star shaped ones were the best bet.
Most of the times we just enjoy the fruits of our labor (not that there is anything wrong with it) but what I mean is, we are so unaware of the fact that production of some of the ingredients that we use in cooking is a labor intensive job, cinnamon is one of the best examples. Each stick of cinnamon is manually scraped off from the bark and then layered by hand, so it's like you open up the out most stick a little, then place another inside it and so on until it's all layered up. Imagine doing that all day, every week, throughout the year. Phew!!
Now let's enjoy these star shaped, dipped in dark chocolate (yummm) and spiced with super aromatic cinnamon cookies :D
Recipe Resource: Easy Baking by Linda Collister
Makes about 30 three inches / 7 cms cookies.
180 grams / 6 ounces unsalted butter at room temperature.
90 grams / 3 ounces caster or superfine sugar
230 grams / 8 ounces plain or all purpose flour
a good pinch of salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
40 grams cornflour / 1.5 ounces cornflour
60 grams / 2 ounces dark chocolate for dipping
Line baking sheet(s) with parchment paper.
Using a wooden spoon or an electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Gradually beat in the sugar. When the mixture is pale and fluffy, sift the flour, salt, cinnamon and cornflour into the bowl and mix. Once the mixture comes together, turn it out on a lightly floured work surface and knead lightly and briefly to make a smooth dough. In hot weather or if the dough feels sticky, wrap and chill until firm.
Roll out the dough to about 5 mm thickness and cut out shapes with the cutter. Gently knead the trimmings, then re-roll and cut more stars.
Arrange the stars on the baking sheet(s), spaced slightly apart. Chill for 15 mins. Meanwhile, Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C / 350 degrees F.
Bake the biscuits in for 12 - 15 mins or until firm and barely colored. Place the baking sheets on cooling rack for a couple of minutes. Once the biscuits are firm enough, transfer them to the rack and cool completely.
Once the biscuits are completely cold, melt the chocolate gently in a small heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Stir until smooth, then remove the bowl from the heat. Dip the points of the stars in the melted chocolate, then leave to set on the same parchment paper that you had used for baking. Now eat them :D
Storage Suggestions: When stored in an airtight container, these biscuits will last for up to 3 days. Undecorated ones can be frozen for up to a month.
Are we the only ones who start craving cinnamon when the weather gets colder? We can’t be! And we are talking anything sold under the word cinnamon--cassia, “true Cinnamon”, Ceylon Cinnamon, Vietnamese Cinnamon--if it is sold as cinnamon it is what we want! Check out all of our cinnamon cookies below!
Hint: A lot of them could be used for your holiday cookie table! You can also use us as a great resource for cookie recipes. Be sure to check out our Pinterest Board and our monthly posts (you can find all of them here at The Spiced Life). You will be able to find them the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month! Also, if you are looking for inspiration to get in the kitchen and start baking, check out what all of the hosting bloggers have made:
- Browned Butter Snickerdoodles by Karen's Kitchen Stories
- Cinnamon Chocolate Star Cookies by Baking Yummies
- Cinnamon Crunch Cookies by 2 Cookin' Mamas
- Cinnamon Dusted Orange Icebox Cookies by The Spiced Life
- Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies with White Chocolate Glaze by Our Good Life
- Cinnamon Pecan Elephant Ears by Noshing With The Nolands
- Cinnamon Roll Cookies by A Baker's House
- Cinnamon Sugar Cookies by Magnolia Days
- Cinnamon Waffle Cookies by A Shaggy Dough Story
- Cinnamon Walnut Icebox Cookies by Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks
- Cream Cheese Cinnamon Roll Cookies by Food Lust People Love
- Polvorones by Oven Delights
- Speculoos (Dutch Windmill Cookies) by Upstate Ramblings