Jødekager (Danish Jewish Butter Cookies)
Updated: Dec 11, 2019
Makes about 2 dozen
A Jewish cookie, or Jødekager (literally 'Jewish cakes') in Danish, is a popular small and simple cookie sprinkled with a mixture of sugar, cinnamon and chopped almond. Called Jewish cookies because it was sold by Jewish bakeries in the 17th century in Copenhagen. In Denmark, no Christmas cookie plate would be complete without this delicate, buttery cookie.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of kosher salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup plus 1/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
1 egg yolk plus 1 egg white, divided
1-2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup raw almonds, finely chopped
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Using a standing mixer or handheld electric mixer, beat together the butter and 2/3 cup sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolk and continue beating until combined. Add the flour mixture, a little at a time, until incorporated. The dough will look a bit crumbly at this stage. Add 1 tablespoon of milk, beating at a low speed until a firm, pliable dough forms. If the dough still appears dry and isn’t coming together, beat in the second tablespoon of milk. If desired you can store the dough overnight at this point. Gather into a disc and wrap well with plastic wrap before placing in the fridge.
If continuing with the cookies, preheat the oven to 375 and line two large, rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Gather the dough together into a ball. Use a rolling pin to gently roll it out on a floured surface until it is 1/8-in thick. Using a 3-in cookie cutter, stamp out as many rounds as possible and transfer them to the prepared baking sheets. Gather the scraps of dough and repeat the rolling and stamping process up to two more times.
Whisk the remaining egg white with 1 teaspoon of water and lightly brush the tops of each cookie with the egg wash. Mix together the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar and the cinnamon in a small bowl; sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar over the cookies (you will not use all of it), followed by the almonds. Bake until lightly golden, 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then carefully transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.