Prep 1 hr
Cook 2 hrs
The holiday season at DH's Grandparents' house in Chicago was always filled with interesting sweets shared by friends and neighbors from various European heritages. I found this treasure in DH's Grandmother's recipe box. She clipped it from the "Reader's Exchange" of the Chicago Daily News (which published its last edition in 1978). It was submitted by a Mrs. Mikosz and I've shared it here with her careful instructions. There was no yield included so I guessed. Please let me know how many you end up with. (Baking and chilling time are estimated too.)
- 1⁄2 lb butter
- 1⁄2 lb cream cheese
- 2 1⁄2 cups cake flour
- 1⁄2 lb walnuts, ground
- 1⁄2 cup sugar
- milk, or (for moistening)
- egg white, beaten (for moistening )
- confectioners' sugar (for rolling and for dusting)
- Cream together thoroughly the butter and cream cheese.
- Blend in the flour.
- If mixture is sticky add a little more flour until the dough is easy to handle.
- Divide dough into four equal balls; flatten, then wrap each in waxed paper and chill thoroughly.
- To make filling, mix together walnuts and sugar, adding enough milk or beaten egg white to make a paste-like mixture.
- One at a time, roll out each chilled piece of dough (use confectioner's sugar for rolling as you would use flour in making pastry), until a little thinner than pie dough.
- Cut into 2-inch squares.
- Put 1/2 teaspoon filling in the middle of each square.
- Roll up. Seal ends. (Mrs. Mikosz does not say if you are to roll them end-to-end like a log or corner-to-corner. I remember seeing many corner-to-corner cookies so will try both and see how they turn out - please let me know what you do too).
- With a fork, dipped in confectioner's sugar, shape into cresents.
- Bake in a preheated 375F oven, on ungreased cookie sheets, for 20 minutes, or until golden. (dharmabean shared that 15 minutes was enough in her oven - see her review).
- Cool on rack.
- Sift confectioner's sugar over the tops.
These are delicious and the directions were so much clearer than in the old slovak-american cookbook that I used last time!
Cooking them for 20 minutes on the top rack of the oven made the bottoms quite dark. I am cooking them for closer to 15minutes and they are perfect. I was able to get 4 1/2 dozen cookies out of one batch.
I did not make the nut filling. I bought a jar of apricot filling to use b/c that is what my husband's grandmother always used. And I also folded the two corners in and not like a log (I've never seen it done that way before). I do have problems with the corners unsticking while baking, even if I use the water to glue them. If anybody has any advice for that please share!
We've had the discussion about how to shape these for years. I was taught to roll them like a jelly roll, but hen mine always came out looking like dead baby seals. Recently we had a very ethnic cookie sale in our very Eastern European town(home to Pierogifest), and a friend made 1200 in two hours (with about 5 helpers) by using the 2 inch square with corners folded. Her secret for speed was to shape the dough into something resembling a long stick of butter, then chilling thoroughly, and cutting about 1/2 inch potions and rolling each. In my family's tradition, grated orange peel, or a touch of cinnamon is added to the nut filling.