This recipe is similar to the Christmas tea cookies rolled into powdered sugar that are called by some Mexican Wedding Cakes, Russian Tea Cookies, etc. But the stand-apart quality of these cookies lies in an unusual baking method that imparts a burnt sugar flavor to the cookies and makes them divinely crunchy! I make them mostly during the Christmas season although my very finicky 18 year old could eat them all year round. Each bite is so DELICIOUS in a buttery, crunchy, candy-licious way. Watch out for the powdered sugar that may fall all over you. O) —Regine
Melt butter in microwave. Let cool for 10 minutes. In a
separate bowl, add the flour, 1 cup of the confectioner’s sugar,
cinnamon powder. Add butter and vanilla extract, and mix by hand or with a stand mixer (using flat paddle) making sure all ingredients are well incorporated into resulting dough.
Scoop dough into a tablespoon, leveling it off with a knife or hands, and roll into balls. Will make about 32 cookies. Place on ungreased baking sheet(s) about 1 inch apart. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or place in freezer for 10 minutes. I use a huge baking sheet that takes all 32 cookies.
Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 320 degrees, timing oven for 40 minutes. After the first 20 minutes of baking the cookies at 320 degrees, remove baking sheet(s) from the oven and, using gloves or a combination of a spoon and your own hands (if you can stand the heat), carefully turn the cookies over, and bake them for an additional 20 minutes. It’s OK if 1 or 2 minutes have gone by while the cookies are outside being turned over.
This baking method is the secret behind the crunchiness and taste of the cookies, which entails baking the cookies until both sides are brownish, yet “not burned”. Cool cookies for about 30 minutes.
Place the remaining 2 cups of confectioner’s sugar into a bowl. Roll the cookies one at a time into the sugar mixture until well coated.
The flavor is more intense if you wait until the cookies have cooled completely. They are great at tea time and holidays.