by David Leite
Makes about twenty 2 1/2-inch cookies
These Chinese five-spice cookies are basically a sugar cookie with the addition of sweet Chinese spice powder, which can include ground star anise, cinnamon, ginger, fennel seeds, Szechuan peppercorns, and cloves. The cookies are the perfect accompaniment to tea. Because of their snappy, crisp texture, they can handle lots of dunking.
Notes: You can make your own super fine sugar by buzzing 1/2 cup granulated sugar in a food processor for one minute.To keep these Chinese five-spice cookies fresh, place them in an airtight container. They should last a week.—David Leite
1 1/4 cups unsifted all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons Chinese five-spice powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup superfine sugar (see Notes)
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
1 large egg, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Dump the flour, Chinese five-spice powder, and salt in a small bowl and whisk thoroughly. Set aside.
2. Using a hand mixer, cream the sugar and butter in a large bowl until well combined. Add the egg and vanilla extract and mix until fluffy, about 1 minute.
3. Add the flour-spice mixture and stir on low until just incorporated. Form the dough into a disk, wrap it in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
4. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F (190°C). On a piece of plastic wrap, roll the dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Slide the wrap and the dough onto a baking sheet and place the whole concoction in the freezer for 5 minutes until firm.
5. Remove the sheet and quickly cut out the spice cookies with a 2 1/2-inch round cookie or biscuit cutter, space them 1/2-inch apart on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and baked or until edges are golden brown, about 12 to 15 minutes. Immediately transfer the spice cookies to a wire rack to cool.
Recipe © 2003 David Leite. All rights reserved.