Austrian Vanilla Crescents (Vanillekipferl)
Prep 40min (+ 30min cooling time)Bake 25-30minMakes about 24
Originating in Vienna in Austria these vanilla sugar-coated biscuits are always made in a ‘kipfler’ or horse-shoe shape. Traditionally made at Christmas, they’re also popular in many other eastern European countries, including Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania and the Czech Republic. These buttery almond biscuits make a wonderful gift.
185g unsalted butter
60g (½ cup) icing sugar mixture, plus 60g (½ cup) extra to coat
1 teaspoon natural vanilla essence or extract
2 egg yolks
225g (1½ cups) plain flour
50g (½ cup) almond meal
1 vanilla bean
- Preheat oven to 160°C. Line two large oven trays with non-stick baking paper.
- Use an electric mixer to beat the butter, icing sugar mixture and vanilla essence or extract until pale and creamy. Add the egg yolks and beat until well combined.
- Combine the flour and almond meal, add to the butter mixture and beat on lowest possible speed until just combined.
- Shape level tablespoonfuls of the mixture into small logs about 6cm long and then taper the ends and shape into a crescent shape. Place on the lined trays about 2cm apart. Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until pale golden and cooked through.
- Meanwhile, halve the vanilla bean lengthways, use a small sharp knife to scrape the seeds out and add to the extra icing sugar mixture in a medium bowl. Use your fingertips to rub the vanilla seeds through the icing sugar evenly.
- When the biscuits are cooked, remove from the oven and then toss while still warm, one at a time, through the vanilla icing sugar to coat (see Baker’s tips). Cool completely on a wire rack.
- These biscuits will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.
- Reserve any remaining vanilla sugar and use to sprinkle over the biscuits before serving if you wish.
This recipe is from Anneka's SBS Food online column, Bakeproof: Traditional Christmas Baking.
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Photography by Alan Benson.