Razzle Dazzle Recipes * Christmas Cookies Recipes
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Swiss Chocolate Rings Cookie Recipe

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted after measuring
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 vanilla bean, split, or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg white
Sugar-based chocolate glaze for cookies (recipe follows)
1 ounce (about 1/4 cup) sliced almonds, toasted and chopped

Set racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 375 F.

Combine the flour and cocoa powder in a small bowl; stir well to mix.

In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and sugar. Use the point of a paring knife to remove the black seeds from the inside of the piece of vanilla bean and add them to the bowl. (If using vanilla extract, add it now.) Beat on medium speed until soft and light, about 5 minutes. Beat in the egg white and continue beating until smooth.

Lower the speed and add the flour mixture. Beat only until smooth. Remove the bowl from the mixer and finish mixing the dough with a large rubber spatula.

Using a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain tube (Ateco #806), pipe the dough into 2-1/2- to 3-inch-diameter circles on the prepared pans. Keep the tube close to the pan so that you pipe a flat circle as opposed to a cylindrical one. Leave about an inch around the cookies in all directions.

Bake the cookies for about 15 to 20 minutes, until they are firm and dull in appearance. Slice the papers from the pans onto racks.

After the cookies have cooled completely, use a paper cone, a squeeze bottle, or the snipped corner of a nonpleated plastic bag to streak them with the glaze. Sprinkle sparingly with the almonds quickly, while the glaze is still wet.

Store the cooled cookies between sheets of parchment or wax paper in a tin or plastic container with a tight-fitting cover.

Makes about 35 cookies.

Chocolate Glaze
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1 cup sugar
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

Make this glaze shortly before decorating cookies, because it hardens and sets quickly.

Combine the water, corn syrup and sugar in medium saucepan over low heat and bring to a boil, stirring often to dissolve the sugar crystals.. When syrup has come to a boil, let boil 15 seconds.

Remove pan from heat, and add all the chocolate. Make sure chocolate is submerged, then set aside pan for two minutes.

Carefully whisk glaze until smooth (too much whisking will add bubbles). Use immediately to decorate cookies.

Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

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