I still remember the first time I made these remarkable cookies. I was in my late 20's. My father had taken the Summer to go to Montana and find where he was born. He had given us a address to write letters to him, so, I not only wrote letters, I sent him cookies. This cookie was the one he talked about the most. He described his first bite like this, " ahhhh, this is nice- then, without warning his entire mouth was on fire!" However, he couldn't stop, he told me, "these cookies are addictive"!
The original recipe came from a Finnish woman, Ellen Bradley, in the early 70's. She made them with one pepper, white and called it Swedish pepparkakor. Her daughter Susan, later made it with three peppers, black, pink and white. Susan became a cooking, baking instructor and author. I had the privilege of taking part of my certificate series classes from Susan in the early 80's. The pepper cookie is part of their family holiday tradition, and still is to this day.
I tweaked the recipe and cut the pepper in half the first time I made them this time. I suggest you follow my recipe the first time, but, feel free to increase at anytime.
I used an electric pepper mill and a hand grind pepper mill, both work well.
Five Pepper Cookies
1 c. unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 egg, beaten
2 T dark corn syrup
1 orange juiced and all the zest, chopped
3 3/4 c. flour
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. ground cardamom
1 tsp. freshly ground white pepper
2 tsp. five pepper blend
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. course salt
In a mixer, cream the butter and sugar thoroughly. Add the egg and beat until fluffy. Add the corn syrup, orange juice, and orange zest. Blend well.
Sift the flour together with all of the spices, the baking soda and the salt. Add this mixture gradually to the cookie batter and blend to incorporate. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate over night or longer. Do not eliminate or rush the refrigeration; it is very important to the taste.
Roll the dough out between two pieces of plastic wrap. Remove top plastic and cut into shapes with cookie cutters. Arrange on a cookie sheet lined with a silpat of lightly greased. Bake at 375 F for 8-10 minutes. Really watch them, they color and burn easily.
Cool on wire rack. Once cool, these cookies keep perfectly well for 2-3 weeks in an air tight tin or jar. They may also be frozen for up to 2 months, with no ill effects.
This delicious cookie pairs perfectly with a Pumpkin Creme Brulee or a Salted Caramel Creme Brulee which I will feature next week!
More Halloween ideas-
These are all found on this link- Fast and Easy Halloween Treats for the kids!
These fun Halloween cut out cookies can be found on this link-Amy's Halloween Cut Out Cookies!
These fun ideas and recipes can be found on these links-
Penuche frosted Pumpkin cookies!
Stuffed Pumpkin Peppers
Apple Cider Donuts
There are many more ideas for Halloween decorating,food, parties, adult and doggie costumes on "Sew whats cooking with Joan", just click on the Master Recipe Link at the top of the page! And don't forget the Haunted House, which is made with Super Sticky Royal Icing!