Cinnamon Stars [Zimtsterne]

Cinnamon is a common theme among these Christmas cookies. And just as well as its probably our favourite spice. Hell, is there anyone who doesn’t like cinnamon? But these next cookies don’t just have cinnamon, they are all about the cinnamon.

Zimtsterne are a German cookie and very popular around Christmas time. Traditionally served by German Jews at the meal after Yom Kippur, the star shape of the cookies represent the nightfall that signifies the end of the fast. It can vary in ingredients but these are cinnamon stars at their most basic. 4 ingredients, minimal prep and did I mention you don’t even have to decorate them? Yeah, that icing goes on before the biscuits even bake.

With so few ingredients it’s important to use them fresh and treat them well, because you’ll know.

The recipe starts off by whisking the icing sugar into the egg whites. You’ll end up with a thickened paste that’s similar in consistency to a flood royal icing. 

You’ll save a little of the icing, but for the rest it gets mixed into the dry ingredients to make the dough.

Then its time to carefully roll out the dough. 

On top of the dough you’ll spread out the remaining icing and just… leave it. Couldn’t be simpler, right? The icing needs to crust over a little before we cut it out so take some time to yourself to settle down with a cuppa and put your feet up. You’ve earned it.

With a star shape cutter you’ll cut out lots of little stars all already iced for you.

A short stint in the oven and these cinnamon-filled babies are all yours.

These cookies are very reminiscent of macarons. They’re crisp, yet slightly chewy with that familiar taste of almond, but then packed with a good hit of cinnamon. They’re also naturally gluten free so a treat that can be a real help when you need to cater for it.

Cinnamon Stars (Zimtsterne)

  • Servings: 30
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Reminiscent of a macaron, these crispy and chewy cookies bring a wonderful burst of cinnamon flavour.

The cookies can be stored for 2 weeks in an airtight container, or frozen for up to 6 months. Stored cookies will get chewier as they age.

Ingredients

• 2 egg whites
• 280g icing sugar
• 145g ground almonds
• 1 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, lightly whisk the egg whites. Whisk in the icing sugar a little at a time to form a paste/icing.
  2. Reserve 100g of the icing.
  3. With the remaining icing, fold in the almond and cinnamon until just combined. If the mixture is too dry you may add 1tsp of water, but don’t be to rash about adding it. Often the warmth of your hands will soften the dough as you bring it together.
  4. Sprinkle a little icing sugar on your work surface; roll the dough out to 4mm in thickness. Ensure you dough is free to move from the surface of your counter as you’ll need the cookies to lift free when you cut them later. Spread the reserved icing over the dough. Leave to rest for 30 minutes, or until the icing has crusted over.
  5. Preheat oven to 150°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper
  6. Using a small star-shaped cookie cutter, cut the dough out and transfer to the baking tray. You can dust the cutter with icing sugar if you’re having trouble with sticking. I found it was just as easy to push the dough out through the top of the cutter so as not to disturb the icing.
  7. Bake for 10 minutes, or until cookies are firm. You can rotate the tray 5 minutes in if you’re having issues with browning too much on one side. Allow the cookies to completely cool on the tray.

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3 thoughts on “Cinnamon Stars [Zimtsterne]

  1. Loved these! Always love sweets with cinnamon in them, but these were quite unique. Not sure if it was a good or bad thing that they were so small. I think it did stop me from eating too much at once. 🙂

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