Berliner Kranz Cookies
Berliner Kranz Cookies which translates into “Berlin Wreaths” are Norwegian Christmas Cookies, that are traditionally made into wreath shapes and decorated with some little bit of red and green sugars.
These cookies are delicate with a wonderful texture. They’re rich and complex in flavor. And I remember them very fondly from my childhood when my mom used to make them. After eating them, my husband thought they tasted a bit like pancakes, which he loves! They’re like eating a memory for me.
This recipe for Berliner Kranz Cookies was given to me by my mom, and it came from her sister’s sister in law, or my cousin’s aunt. What is that, my second aunt once removed in law? I don’t think there’s a real title for that. But, whatever her title, her cookie recipe is so yummy!
A blogger friend of mine and I were talking the other day about how recipes used to be lacking detail. And, that’s the case for this recipe. I think it’s because in order to share the recipe, ladies had to write them by hand onto little recipe cards (not much room there). So, many of the details were left out. Now-a-days we just hit the print button. Which makes me laugh about all these people you see lately complaining about how bloggers write too much before the recipe. Geez, at least all you have to do is hit print now, you don’t have to copy the whole recipe by hand onto a little 3×5 card.
Anyway, sorry I digressed. I’ve tried to keep the recipe as close to the way it was originally written, so make sure you read over my notes about the recipe.
Berliner Kranz Cookies Notes:
I like to make cookies by hand using a sturdy fork. Almost all cookie recipes can be made using the sturdy fork method, by using a hand-held electric mixer, or by using a stand mixer. It’s your choice, and like I said, almost any cookie recipe can be made using any of the three, so I don’t specify any particular method in the recipe.
For the hard-boiled eggs, this is how I boil my eggs. Just make sure you don’t overcook the eggs so there’s no grey ring around the egg yolk. You want the color to be bright and yellow.
4 cups sifted flour means that you sift the flour first, then measure it (alternatively, if a recipe said, “4 cups flour, sifted”, this would mean to sift after measuring it). I think sifting flour is a bit old-fashioned, as most recipes don’t require it any longer. And, in fact, many flours are already sifted. But, sifting the flour means you are incorporating air into it, ensuring less flour in the measuring cup, and a better textured cookie. I like to sift onto a piece of parchment paper, then measure it from there. Make sure you scoop the sifted flour lightly into the measuring cup, then level it off with the back of a knife.
If you have someone in your house (like I do), who doesn’t like almond extract, feel free to use all vanilla extract, so 1 ½ teaspoons total vanilla extract for this recipe. My husband doesn’t care for the flavor of almond extract so I leave it out of most recipes now.
Lightly flour your hands when working the dough into ropes, as the dough can get sticky, and this will help it release from your hands.
Let’s see, I think that’s it. These cookies sound a little fussy to make, but they are really delicious. And, they don’t take that much extra time, especially if you think about how you’re making a traditional family cookie!
Berliner Kranz Cookies Recipe:
Berliner Kranz Cookies
Berliner Kranz Cookies are Norweigan Christmas Cookies which translate into “Berlin Wreaths”. They are traditionally made into wreath shapes and decorated with some little bit of red and green sugars.
- 4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 4 hard-boiled eggs
- 4 uncooked raw egg yolks
- ½ cup light cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- 1 uncooked raw egg white, lightly beaten
- Red and green sugar
- Sift flour and salt together into a medium bowl, and set aside.
- In a large bowl, cream together (mix well) the softened butter and the sugar, until it’s lightened in color and fluffy. Place a fine mesh sieve over the creamed butter and sugar, and mash the hard cooked egg yolks through the sieve. Mix the sieved egg yolks and the raw egg yolks into the butter and sugar mixture. Beat until light and fluffy. Add the flour & salt to the creamed mixture alternately with cream, beating well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla and almond extracts. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours or until easy to handle.
- Preheat oven to 375° F. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out into pencil like strips, or ropes, and shape into wreaths or rings. Brush the cross over space with the beaten egg white, and sprinkle with colored sugar. Bake on greased cookie sheets, or cookie sheets lined with parchment paper or silicon mats, at 375° for 6 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool.