International Recipes: Dutch - Speculatius

Prep:  10 min
Chill:  at least 2 hr
Bake:  350° F. for 12 to 15 minutes
Makes:  36  2 1/4-inch square cookies
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon each ground cloves, ginger and nutmeg
1 cup slivered almonds, ground fine in blender or food processor
1 large egg
2 tablespoons milk
3 cups all-purpose flour


Beat butter, sugar and spices in a large bowl with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in almonds, egg and milk. Gradually beat in flour until well blended. Divide dough in half; shape each portion into a 1-inch-thick disk. Wrap and refrigerate until firm enough to roll, at least 2 hours.

Heat oven to 350° F. Have cookie sheets ready. On lightly-floured surface, roll 1 portion dough to 3/8-inch thickness. Lightly dust stamp with flour or cornstarch. Press firmly into dough, lift off, then trim dough from edges of design or cut out with a cookie cutter.* Lightly re-flour stamp before stamping each cookie. Press scraps together, refrigerate and re-use. Gently move cookies to ungreased cookie sheets using a spatula, placing cookies 1 inch apart.

Bake 12 to 15 minutes until cookies look dry and feel firm. Cool on cookie sheet on wire rack 1 to 2 minutes before removing to rack to cool completely.

*Note: The spicy dough can also be rolled out 1/4 inch thick, cut with cookie cutters and baked in a 350 degree oven 8 to 10 minutes. Or you may roll dough into small balls, place on cookie sheet, press with stamp, and adjust baking time accordingly.

From Sharon Reese,
11/19/96 - From Our Best-Ever Christmas Cookies, Woman’s Day Collector’s Cookbook, adapted by Rycraft  for cookie stamps.