Chocolate-Spice Cookies (Basler Brunsli)

Recipe by Saturn
READY IN: 29mins


  • 1 14
    cups blanched whole almonds (about 7 ounces)
  • 1 12
  • 3 12
    tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 12
    teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 18
    teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3
    ounces bittersweet chocolate (NOT unsweetened) or 3 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped fairly fine
  • 14
    teaspoon almond extract (generous)
  • 2
    large egg whites
  • 2 -5
    tablespoons confectioners' sugar, for rolling out cookies


  • Heat oven to 325°F.
  • Line several baking sheets with aluminum foil.
  • In a food processor, process the almonds and 1 cup powdered sugar until the almonds are powder-fine but not oily; stop the processor and scrape down the sides several times.
  • Add the cocoa powder, cinnamon, cloves, and chocolate; continue processing until the chocolate is finely ground.
  • Add the remaining 1/2 cup powdered sugar, the almond extract, and egg whites; process until the mixture is blended and just forms a mass.
  • Set the dough aside for 5 to 10 minutes to stiffen slightly.
  • Generously dust a work surface with powdered sugar. If the dough seems too soft to roll out easily, dust it with more sugar and knead until the consistency is manageable, but avoid adding any more sugar than absolutely necessary.
  • Roll out the dough to 1/4-inch thickness, lifting it with a spatula frequently and re-dusting the surface and rolling pin with powdered sugar to prevent sticking.
  • Cut out the cookies using a 2 1/4-inch heart-shaped (or similar) cutter.
  • Use a spatula to transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets, about 1 inch apart.
  • Bake the cookies for 9 to 12 minutes or until almost firm on top and slightly puffy.
  • Let them stand on the foil lined baking sheets until completely cooled. Peel from the foil.
  • Store airtight for 3 to 4 days. Freeze, airtight, for longer storage.