These cookies are the baked goods version of, “What, this old thing?” They’re good. They’re simple to make. You look good in them. I’m not totally sure about that last one, but one recipe yields so many cookies, you might be able to make a dress or something out of them. And if you did, yes – you’d look delicious.
Buttery, nutty, crispy, sweet. They’re so thin and easy to eat (accidental rhyme – keeping it)…in just a couple of bites. This is the kind of cookie that makes you say, “Just one more,” again and again and again and again. There have been times when I’ve been in a bakery and I see someone order a whole boxful of different cookies, or enough of the same cookie that they ask for a certain number of pounds. Well these are the kinds of cookies that go in that box. You’d find them at the bakery and order a few dozen for your dinner party dessert plate or for someone’s birthday, or even just for yourself because it was a rough day, and you feed your feelings like I do.
I found them in the cookbook Fika: The Art of the Swedish Coffee Break. When I first got this book, I was surprised by how many ways there are to use hazelnuts and cardamom seeds that I’d been in the dark about for so long. I had no idea they were so prevalent in Swedish baking. Really, I didn’t know anything about Swedish baking, or about fika.
To paraphrase the authors, fika is the tradition of taking a break, slowing down and spending time together, likely over coffee and something sweet. Fika is more the slow down while the coffee and the baked goods are the super helpful props. Here in the USA, the antithesis of fika is alive and well with our grab and go culture. We have coffee drive-thrus. I remember the first time I saw one of those. I thought it was nuts! I told some co-workers about it and they were like, “Yeah. Those are the best!” But I still like a sit down with my coffee, and if I can get it, some good conversation. If any of that sounds good to you, these cookies are for you.
Hasselnötsflarn – Hazelnut crisps
From Fika: The Art of the Swedish Coffee Break by Anna Brones and Johanna Kindvall
makes about 40 cookies
1/4 cup (2 ounces, 57 grams) unsalted butter (I always use salted – works for me)
3/4 cup (3.75 ounces, 106 grams) raw hazelnuts (I used roasted, unsalted)
1/2 cup (3.5 ounces, 99 grams) natural cane sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Preheat your oven to 350° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Melt the butter and then set aside while you assemble the rest of the ingredients.
Grind the hazelnuts in a food processor until medium ground.
In a medium bowl, whisk the egg until frothy. Next, mix in the sugar and vanilla, followed by the melted butter until all of it is fully combined. Finally, add the hazelnuts and stir to combine.
Spoon 1-teaspoon sized drops of batter onto the baking sheet leaving about 2 inches between cookies. I was able to fit 15 cookies on a sheet.
Bake for 8-10 minutes until dark golden brown around the edges. 10 minutes worked for me. Any less and they lost their crisp while stored. Ovens vary, though, and that might not be the case for you. You can experiment with the timing. When I first made these, I baked them for 8, 9, and then 10 minutes before figuring out what I liked.
Store in an airtight container to keep these cookies crisp.