Cardamom has been used in Christmas baking in Germany since the middle ages. It was an important medicinal herb and was used to help the stomach and was often chewed to hide alcohol breath after drinking. These cardamom cookies have a distinct floral-perfume and are a bit salty, which pairs well with the chocolate couverture decoration.
Makes about 6 dozen cookies.
- 12 T. butter (175 grams)
- 1/2 c. + 1 T. sugar (85 grams)
- 1 T. vanilla sugar (or 1 package, or 1 tsp. vanilla extract)
- 2 tsp. rum (or water or brandy)
- 2 c. flour
- 3/4 tsp. ground cardamom
- 3/4 tsp. baking powder (either German or American double acting)
- 1 pinch salt
- 4 oz. chocolate couverture or coating (100 grams)
Beat butter and sugars well. Mix in rum and vanilla extract, if using.
Sift or mix flour with cardamom, baking powder and salt and mix it into the creamed butter to make a stiff dough.
Form this dough into two or three rolls, 1 inch in diameter.
Wrap the rolls in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 2 or more hours.
Heat oven to 390°F.
Remove roll of dough from the refrigerator and place it on a cutting board.
Slice the dough 1/4 inch thick and place the cookies on a cookie sheet.
Use a fork to create a crosshatch pattern on the cookies, flattening them somewhat.
Bake for 12-15 minutes or until set and starting to brown slightly.
Remove cookies to rack to cool.
Melt chocolate couverture according to package directions. Dip cookies half way in melted chocolate, place on wax paper and allow to harden.
These cookies can be eaten right away or keep cookies in a sealed tin in a cool spot for up to several weeks.