Paprenjaci – Croatian Spice Cookies are heavily spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and black pepper. They make the perfect edible holiday gift.
One of the most wonderful gifts that blogging brings is meeting new friends both virtually and in person. One of those friends is Usha who had it not been for blogging, we most likely would not have ever met despite us living in the same city. Now, I have a friend to go shopping with for backgrounds or visits to Chinatown for food supplies. These activities are always more fun when done with someone, rather than alone.
One thing I greatly admire about her is her skill at taking photos. So I was thrilled when she agreed to help me learn my new camera at the time. I went to her apartment armed with these cookies to photograph for this post.
It was a great opportunity to learn some new photography skills and what’s better than sharing delicious cookies with friends!!!
C is for Croatia…
Paprenjaci are traditional Croatian cookies dating back to the 16th century. Nowadays they are most often made around Christmas.
In Croatia, they are made using wooden molds with imprints from nature like fruits and flowers on to rectangle shaped cookies. The wooden molds here are very expensive so the best alternative I found were moon cake presses so that I could at least get a nice imprint on the cookies.
Looking for some other cookies to give as edible holiday gifts – Try some of my other Cookie Recipes
- Chinese Walnut Cookies
- Classic Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- Almond Shortbread
- Coconut Shortbread
- Orange Nutmeg Cookies
- Lavender Rose Brown Sugar Cookies
- Uppakra – Swedish Potato Cookies
- Fiorentini – Gluten Free Chocolate Cookies
- Sandbakkels – Norwegian Cookie Cups
- Ghoriba – Moroccan Almond Cookies
- Oatmeal Coconut Cookies
- Pumpkin Hamentaschen
- Almond Spritz
IN THE MAKING – HOW TO MAKE PAPRENJACI
Enjoy with a cup of coffee, tea or milk.
In addition to the cookies I brought for photographing, I also packed some in a gift package for Usha and the next day she took some additional photos and sent me.
|Photographer: Usha of My Spicy Kitchen|
I liked these cookies a lot and my Mom who I shared them with was an instant fan. However, the spices used are the same in a Caribbean dessert we have called pone, which often also includes black pepper so we are used to the flavor profile. When Usha tried them, at first she thought the variety of spices were too intense, but then the more she ate them, she liked them better and at the end, she told me she couldn’t stop eating them they were so good! If you are not used to so many spices, it might take a little bit to get used to them, but I think you will enjoy them in the end.
Paprenjaci – Croatian Spice Cookies
- 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 3/4 cup butter 1 1/2 sticks, softened
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 egg
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 1/2 cups walnut meal
- 1 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/ 4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- In a bowl, combine flour, walnut meal, salt and spices.
- In a small bowl, combine egg and egg yolks and beat well.
- In a large bowl, combine sugar and butter. Mix until light and creamy.
- Add eggs and honey and mix well.
- Add dry ingredients in two parts, mixing well. Wrap in plastic wrap.
- Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 375 F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and spray with non stick spray.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to about 1/4" thick. Using wooden stamp or moon cake stamp, stamp imprint next to each other on dough.
- Using a sharp knife, cut out each cookie and place on prepared cookie sheet.
- Bake for 15 minutes.
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