Monday, December 21, 2009

Day 4 - Cinnamon Twists

12 Days of Cookies - Day 4
This is another of my all time favorites and a staple on the Christmas tray. My mom always took the leftover pie crust and made us cinnamon twists out of it by rolling the dough and then sprinkling with a mixture of cinnamon and sugar. She'd give them a twist or two before baking. This cookie uses the same technique and reminds me of those highly anticipated little treats.

It's a tender, not too sweet cream cheese dough that's brushed with an egg wash, then embedded with cinnamon, sugar and finely shopped walnuts...delish!...especially with a fresh, steaming cup of coffee or tea...or a cold glass of milk...or all by themselves!! :-)

Cinnamon Twists
1 pkg. (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1 c. butter, softened

2-1/2 c. all purpose flour

3/4 cup walnuts

1 c. sugar

2 t. ground cinnamon

1 large egg, beaten

In large bowl, with mixer at low speed, beat cream cheese and butter until blended. Scrape bowl.

Increase speed to high; beat until light and creamy, about 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low, gradually add 1 c. flour and mix until blended. Mix or stir in remaining 1-1/2 c. flour until smooth.

On lightly floured sheet of plastic wrap, pat dough into a 9" x 9" square. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 hurs or until dough is firm enough to roll.

Fit food processor with knife blade. Finely grind walnuts with 1/4 c. sugar. In small bowl, stir cinnamon and remaining 3/4 c. sugar into walnut mixture until well blended; set aside.

Preheat overn to 400 degrees. On lightly floured sheet of waxed paper, place dough square. Cover with another sheet of waxed paper. Roll with rolling pin into 11" x 11" square. With pastry brush, brush some beaten eggover the top of the dough, making sure to coat the edges. Sprinkle with 1/2 of the walnut mixture. Gently press the mixture into the dough.

Carefully invert the dough onto another sheet of lightly floured waxed paper, nut side down. Brush with beaten egg; sprinkle with remaining walnut mixture and gently press nut mixture into dough.

Cut dough lengthwise into three 3-1/2" pieces (I keep a plastic ruler in my kitchen tool drawer just for baking), then cut the pieces crosswise into (66) 3-1/2" x 1/2" strips in all.

Twist each strip twice then place about 1" apart on parchment or Silpat lined cookie sheets. Bake twists 15-17 minutes or until lightly browned. Gently loosen twists (if using Silpat liners, they will lift right up). Cool on wire racks. Makes 5-1/2 dozen.


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Sabrina Jackson said...

Charlene, girl, I am telling you, you are getting me in trouble here ;D. These sound and look so delicious!!! I love anyhting with nuts, so this one will have to go on my absolute must try list. Thanks so much for sharing all of your tried and true recipes with us. You are just the BESTEST!!! Hugs and blessings, Sabrina

Shauna K said...

ooooh YUM! i know another pastry i'm sending over to DH ;)

Mary Beth said...

Looks and sounds absolutely delicious! Can't wait to try these!

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