This is my favorite Christmas cookie and it is naturally gluten free and just brings so many memories back to me. Not so much that we baked them as kids more like I loved and love eating them.
- 3 large egg whites
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 3 1/4 cup non-blanched almond meal or hazelnut meal
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 packet Vanillezucker is the original recipe, I use 1. 5 teaspoons of monk fruit sugar instead, it is a natural sugar which doesn’t affect your blood sugar negatively.
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F (do not turn on the fan, it can cause the egg white topping to brown before the cookies are done). Place the rack on the bottom rung of the oven.
Beat the egg whites in a medium-sized bowl until soft peaks form (be careful not to over-beat the egg whites or the frosting/glaze won’t turn out right). Sift the powdered sugar and stir it into the egg whites until combined. Reserve 2 generous, heaping tablespoons of the egg white mixture for the glaze.
Add the nuts, cinnamon, powdered monk fruit sugar and salt and beat until the dough comes together in a fairly stiff but pliable mass. If it’s too soft to work with, add a few more ground nuts and powdered sugar. (If the dough is too sticky, add a little more nut flour.)
Press/roll the dough onto a non-stick surface sprinkled with powdered sugar to a thickness of about 1/3 inch. Use a 3-inch star cookie cutter to cut out the cookies and transfer them to a lined or non-stick cookie sheet. Form the scraps of dough into a ball, roll it out again and cut cookies out of the remaining dough.
Use a toothpick or small brush to brush on a thin layer of the reserved egg white mixture all the way to the edges of the cookies. (*SEE NOTE)
Place the sheet on the bottom rack of the oven. Bake the Zimtsterne for about 30 minutes or until set. Then open the oven door just a crack and let the cookies sit for another 10-15 minutes to further dry out. Then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
The cookies can be stored in a dry, airtight container in a cool place for at least 2 weeks.
Most commonly the egg glaze is brushed on the cookies before baking. However, if your glaze tends to turn yellow during baking you can bake the cookie first without the glaze, remove the cookies from the oven about 5 minutes early, then brush on the egg glaze, and bake for another 5 minutes until the glaze is set.