Those biscuits can obviously be found in Spain, but also in the Philippines and South Texas where they are strangely called “Mexican Wedding Cookies” but the strange thing is that in Mexico, these shortbread cookies are not served at weddings but for Christmas!
Recipe of Polvorones
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Rest time: 6 hours
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Ingredients (25 polvorones)
1 ⅔ cups flour
2 sticks butter, softened (or lard)
1 ½ icing sugar
½ cup almond flour
½ cup chopped almonds, lightly toasted
2 cinnamon sticks
½ cup water
1 teaspoon anise liqueur or vanilla extract
Icing sugar for decoration
Boil the water and steep cinnamon sticks for 30 minutes.
The day before, or the morning of if you make polvorones in the afternoon, sift the flour and almond flour in a baking sheet and toast gently while stirring often, in an oven preheated at 250 F for 30 minutes. The result should be light brown.
Add the icing sugar and crushed almonds to the flour and almond flour and stir well.
In a mixer bowl, whip butter (or lard) until frothy.
Stir in the mixture of sugar, flour and almonds and mix.
Add the cinnamon-infused water.
Form a dough and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and bring to room temperature.
There are two options to shape the polvorones:
Flour the work surface, roll out the dough with a rolling pin to a thickness of ¾ inch and cut out small circles of 1 inch diameter with a cookie cutter. Place on a parchment paper.
Flour a work surface and form a cylinder of 1 inch diameter. Cut ¾ inch wide sections and lay flat on a parchment paper. If dough is too soft, put the cylinder in the freezer for about 30 minutes in order to facilitate cutting.
Preheat oven to 480 F for 15 minutes.
Then lower the temperature to 350 F and bake for 10-15 minutes.
Allow to cool before handling. Polvorones are very brittle.
Dust with icing sugar.