Cardamom,Orange and Chocolate Ribbon Cookies

By • October 24, 2011 • 28 Comments

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Author Notes: Part of my gift box of baked goods is always these ribbon cookies, they are festive looking and delicious. This cookie is divided into four layers, a chocolate layer to which I added toasted walnuts and a vanilla layer with cardamom and orange zest. This recipe, which I have tweaked over the years, came from my mother ,and she got it from Better Homes and Gardens magazine in the 1960's. The original recipe does not contain orange or cardamom; you can omit if you like and just add the vanilla extract and, as the original recipe calls for, rum flavoring. Enjoy!sdebrango

Food52 Review: The combination of spicy cardamom, bright orange, and chocolate complement each other well in this recipe. Adjust the ingredient amounts to your taste, if you prefer a bit more spice, less citrus, more nuts. If you prefer to change up the flavor combination altogether, this dough is the perfect base for any cookie, it's very forgiving and surprisingly easy to work with no matter how much you handle it. And the ribbon effect of the finished cookie is quite fun and will certainly get you thinking about the holidays. Annie "Smalls"

Makes approximately 36 cookies

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup good quality shortening at room temperature (I like Spectrum)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk or half and half
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • Zest of one orange
  • 1/3 cup (1 1/2 ounces) semi-sweet chocolate melted (Use the microwave method -- it's great.)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/2 cup toasted walnuts chopped finely
  1. In mixing bowl beat butter and shortening with an electric mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment for approximately 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking soda, and salt and beat until combined. Beat in the egg, milk, and vanilla. Add flour and mix to combine with spoon. Melt the chocolate in the microwave at 30-second intervals stirring in between. It took me 60 seconds.
  2. Divide dough in half. Knead the melted chocolate and walnuts into half of the dough and then the cardamom and orange zest into the other half. Line a 9- by 5- by 3-inch loaf pan with plastic wrap. Divide chocolate dough in half and press into the bottom of the loaf pan, now divide the vanilla dough in half and press on top of chocolate layer, now another chocolate layer, and finish with the vanilla layer. Cover with the plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375° F.
  3. Remove from refrigerator, invert onto cutting board, and remove plastic wrap. Divide into 3 equal pieces (each is 3 inches) and cut each third into 12 equal pieces that are about 1/4 inch thick. Place on baking sheet with either parchment or silpat and bake for 10 to 12 minutes turning baking sheet around halfway through baking (5 minutes). BE CAREFUL NOT TO OVERBAKE! Remove from oven when edges start to turn a light brown. If you leave them in longer than the prescribed baking time they become overdone and are really crunchy. I took out my batch of cookies at 11 minutes. They were just right. It's almost counterintuitive, but it's important for this recipe to adhere to the bake time.
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Smallerwhitandaxel

almost 2 years ago Whitney GB

These are phenomenal. I made this to the recipe, and they are very tasty. I like that they are not too sweet, while still having a great rich taste. They were pretty easy to make to, but they look fancy. I might up the cardamom the next time I make them.

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almost 2 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much, I just made a batch of the dough yesterday and did the same thing, I upped the cardamom to a heaping 1/4 tsp but even 1/2 tsp would be good I think.

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over 2 years ago ubs2007

Cookies look lovely! I'm not a fan of shortening and was wondering whether I could substitute with butter.

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over 2 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I 'm not a fan of shortening either. Honestly I have never tried it with all butter. I think using butter and no shortening will be fine. Please let me know how it works. All butter in my opinion will make them taste even better. I don't know texture wise what impact it will have but I think it should work. I used spectrum shortening which is not quite as objectionable.

Linda_cooking

over 2 years ago Beautiful, Memorable Food

Lovely!

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over 2 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much!

Hilary_sp1

almost 3 years ago Hilarybee

Can't wait to try these! They look incredible. Orange and Cardamom is my favorite combo!

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thanks so much Hilarybee, its one of my favorite combinations also and the chocolate really seems to bring out both. If you do try them I hope you enjoy!

Food54_profile_pic

almost 3 years ago Ms. T

Congratulations! These look lovely--what a nice flavor combo.

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much Ms. T, I can't wait to try your wonderful brittle.

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almost 3 years ago EmilyC

Congrats on having your recipe tested and photographed by the editors! These cookies look fabulous, and the flavors are right up my alley! Saved!

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much, they are a great cookie. I used the same dough for shaped cookies. Its very versatile.

Gator_cake

almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Just got a chance to sample these, and wanted to say they are delicious. The chocolate and orange flavors are perfectly balanced. The cardamom is subtle. The texture is spot-on for my memory of ribbon cookies. Nicely done, sdebrango!

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much, I am so glad you like them.

Me

almost 3 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

I'd have to omit the nuts, but am thinking they would still be pretty wonderful!! I love chocolate-cardamom-orange combo. One of my favorites!

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Yes I often omit nuts they are just as good. I was just looking at your cardamom orange klueg.... can't spell it but its beautiful and I must try that. You are so right the combination is wonderful.

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I got that mixed up the kugelhopf is thirschfelds. Could have sworn it was your recipe, Anyway it is a great combo,

Me

almost 3 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

No worries! I wish it was mine. I've made it and it's wonderful!

Cakes

almost 3 years ago Bevi

I love the little pieces of zest and nut weaving through the cookies. They sound lovely and I am adding them to my gift boxes!

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you Bevi, they are delicious and you can vary the additions to suite your taste.

Sausage2

almost 3 years ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

Gorgeous! And they sound stupendously delicious too!

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much fiveandspice!

Nog

almost 3 years ago Niknud

They are beautiful (just like hla says). How does one go about ordering one of these gift boxes? :) That might be a fun thing to do - organize a food52 cookie swap! Love cardamom, it's good in sweets and savories.

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I totally love that idea, I told hardlikearmour I would trade a box of my cookies for a box of her delicious caramels. Thank you Niknud and if it could be organized that would be a wonderful idea.

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much! I just love the holidays, baking these cookies is so much fun.

Gator_cake

almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Which reminds me, did you get the message I sent you? If not, please message me so we can exchange addresses!

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

No I did not, I will message you now.

Gator_cake

almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

These are beautiful! The people on the receiving end of your gift boxes are lucky indeed.