What makes these cookies so special is the memories it brings of my grandmother, Mama Sabe. Every Christmas my sisters and I would look forward for the box to arrive. The box from Spain. Mama Sabe and Papi Tian would send us this magical cardboard box filled with gifts and dolloped with love. It contained homemade clothes that my Abuela would sew for us, pencil kits and thin rectangular packages of polvorones.
Oh how we adored opening the packages of polvorones to find individually wrapped, almond crumb cookies. We would squish them to keep them in one piece trying to avoid the inevitable crumbs lodged in the carpet. Of course there were always fights as to who would get the last polvoron. It usually went to my dad and our sights were then set on the new box that would arrive in the coming year. I can’t wait for that day in Heaven when I can sit with Mama Sabe once again. Isn’t it funny how a simple cookie could mean so much.
Traditional Spanish Christmas Cookies – Polvorones
Makes about 14 cookies
This recipe is also a part of Oprah.com featured Holiday blogger recipes! I have been invited to be a featured Holiday blogger over at Oprah.com. Stop on by and check out my profile
- 1/2 lb of unbleached white flour
- 4 oz pork lard, preferably from a family farmer
- 3 oz organic powdered sugar
- 2 oz ground toasted almonds
- 1 tbls cinnamon
- pinch of salt
- Heat oven to 300 F. Put unbleached white flour in a bowl or pizza stone and toast in the oven for 15 minutes. Do not let it brown.
- Toast the almonds in the oven for 15 minutes and grind to a powder in a food processor or blender.
- In a large bowl add the flour. Make a hole and add the lard, powdered sugar, ground almonds, cinnamon and salt.
- Incorporate with your hands until it forms a smooth dough that can be rolled. If the dough is too sticky, add some additional flour.
- Turn the dough onto a floured surface. Roll out to a 1″ thickness.
- You can either cut the dough into sliced squares or use a cookie cutter to cut out your cookies.
- Place onto a pizza stone or baking pan.
- Bake for 25 – 30 minutes.
- Once it’s done baking, let them cool completely before moving as they will crumble especially when hot.
- Finish by sprinkling powdered sugar on each cookie and wrapping individually in wax paper.