I love making Christmas cookies that I bring home when visiting my family, sharing it with my friends, colleagues and my partner’s family. It may not seem so though on the blog yet as there is only one recipe so far which is the one for chocolate coconut prunes filled with marzipan (btw very delicious, have you tried them yet?). This year I thought it’s again about time to share more of my favorite Chrismas cookies recipes with you and so here come my hazelnut vanilla crescent cookies with praliné! These are one of the most traditional Czech Christmas cookies, I just added some hazelnut praliné instead of the full dosage of butter and sugar. I always make them using the hazelnuts (not walnuts) as this is how my beloved grandma did them.
December is one of my favorite months of the whole year. I really do enjoy the Christmas atmosphere that is present especially here in the city of Brussels or in Prague where we usually spend the holidays. My ideal period of Advent shall be filled with coziness, go to bed early with a nice book, drink hot tea while watching some nice fairytales or movies under the blanket, making the Christmas wreath (one on the door and one to put on the table with candles), bake all sorts of Christmas cookies I still feel like trying, check out the Christmas markets around and get the perfect presents for all the people I love…
But the reality is slightly different. There is a lot going on usually because I work full time and I do some courses too, then there are some events, parties and friend gatherings in December, packing for holidays in my home country and then consequently spending some days also with Steven’s family. I drink tea not under a blanket but behind my work desk, and I half watch movies while making the Christmas cookies. I am usually happy that I can visit one or two Christmas markets which are like half of the list I make each year. 😀 And then there is the hunting for Christmas gifts! This is a chapter on its own because and don’t get me wrong – I’d love to search for gifts if I had hours just to hang around in shops and markets. But I don’t. Therefore, I need to invent in advance what I’m gonna get for everybody which is sometimes complicated, especially if I live far away from my family. I always tell myself that next year, I’m gonna put all my ideas during the year on the list but I usually forget to put any of these down and then I forget. I only remember these ideas once gift unpacking is over. 😀
So I really don’t know how shall I manage everything once I’ll have a family… 😀 This will be a challenge I guess. But one thing is for sure, I will not stop making Christmas cookies! 😀 How do you enjoy the Advent? Do you prefer to take it slowly or you also end up being busy every year?
Here is my recipe for hazelnut vanilla crescent cookies with praliné and I hope you will enjoy them! If you give them a try, please do let me know how did they turn out, rate the recipe or share it further!
280 g all-purpose flour
50 g powder sugar
120 g ground hazelnuts
170 g softened butter, cut into cubes
1 egg yolk
50 g chocolate with praliné filling or a good quality praliné spread
200 g powder sugar
16 g vanilla sugar
All the ingredients must be at room temperature. If you are using chocolate with praliné filling, let it first melt in a baine-marie and allow to cool down. Grease the baking sheet(s) ( you will need two of them or do the work in two batches).
Toss the flour with powder sugar and ground hazelnuts, add softened butter, praliné, and the egg yolk. Work out a dough and make a ball, wrap it in a plastic wrap and store overnight in a refrigerator.
The day after, take out the dough from the refrigerator and once ready to be worked out, cut off small pieces of the dough, shape them into crescents and place them on a baking sheet greased previously. Bake in a preheated oven to 150°C for about 10-15 minutes. Allow to cool down a bit for about 5 minutes.
In the meantime, combine the powder sugar with vanilla sugar and coat each still warm crescent with the mixture. Store in an airtight container in a cool place. These hazelnut vanilla crescent cookies will keep for several weeks.