cinnamon twisties

a number of years ago, i worked with a woman who didn’t consider herself a good baker, but time and again she would bring baked goods in to the office, and they were always very tasty. she had come from a long line of ‘home bakers’ and she’d inherited a number of their recipes, which she was happy to share with me! this flaky cinnamon cookie has always been one of my favorites! the cream cheese in the dough helps make this a flaky, not-too-sweet cookie, and the combination of cinnamon and ground walnuts add both texture and flavor to these twisted cookies! they are perfect with a cup of coffee, and they are light enough so you can eat a few without feeling too full!

cinnamon twisties
1 8 oz. package of cream cheese (full-fat. do not use low fat or fat free – it will change the texture of the cookie)
1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup walnuts
1 cup baker’s sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 large egg, beaten

1. beat cream cheese and butter until light and creamy (this should take approximately 3 minutes)
2. add 1/2 the flour, beating until well-blended. add the remaining flour, using a spatula or spoon to mix. be careful not to overmix.
3. lay plastic wrap flat on your table — dust with a bit of flour and then press dough into a 9-10 inch square. wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 3 hours (i have often made this the day before and refrigerated the dough overnight.)
when you are ready to bake…
4. using your food processor, process walnuts with 1/2 cup baker’s sugar until walnuts are finely ground. in a small bowl, blend the walnut mixture with the cinnamon and the remaining baker’s sugar.
5. preheat the oven to 400 degrees. line baking sheets with parchment paper.
6. lightly beat egg to use as egg wash on rolled dough.
7. on a lightly floured board, roll out dough to create a 12 x 11 rectangle. lightly brush the dough with your egg wash. press the walnut/sugar/cinnamon mixture into the dough, completely covering the surface. flip over your dough onto the lightly floured board, and repeat with egg wash and walnut/sugar/cinnamon mixture.
8. using a rotary cutter or pizza cutter, cut the rectangle into three strips lengthwise. then cut crosswise into 1/2 strips.
9. pick up with small spatula, twist each piece twice and place on prepared baking sheet.
10. bake approximately 15 minutes, until cookies are lightly browned. remove from oven.
11. let cookies cool on baking sheet for 1-2 minutes, then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.
yield:approximately 70 cookies.

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