DIY Instructions: Baking Vanilla Hearts

You need:

For the dough:

  • 2 1/2 sticks soft butter
  • 5/8 cup granulated sugar
  • Pulp of 1 vanilla pod (scraped out)
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 3/4 cups almonds (ground)
  • 2 5/8 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 pinch of salt


For decorating:

7/8 cup sugar and 2 packets of vanilla sugar for rolling, if the hearts are not decorated
Chocolate icing or sugar icing; for subsequent decorating: chocolate sprinkles, sugar pearls, etc.


Additional items:

  • Baking sheet
  • rolling pin
  • heart-shaped cookie cutter
  • large knife with wide cutting blade/dough spatula /dough scraper for lifting out the vanilla hearts
  • parchment paper
  • pastry brush
     
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Here's how:

Knead the ingredients into a smooth dough and let cool for 1 hour.

Cut the dough in half and place on a floured baking sheet. Also rub the rolling pin with some flour.
 

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Roll the dough to approx. 1/4 inch thick and cut out the hearts with the cookie cutter. Lift off the hearts with a broad knife or a dough scraper and place on the cookie sheet.

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Preheat the oven to 350° F. Bake the vanilla hearts for approx. 10 minutes until golden yellow.

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There are now two options. You can roll the vanilla hearts in a sugar vanilla mixture – which is the classical variation. Or you can decorate them.

For rolling:
Mix 7/8 cup sugar and 2 packets of vanilla sugar and roll the warm cookies in the mixture.

For decorating:
Let the cookies cool well and then decorate them to your heart's content with chocolate, sugar icing, sugar pearls, etc.
 

Anyone who would like to make something else can collect pinecones during a walk and then embellish the dinner table or windowsills with beautiful pinecone Christmas trees. Other found objects can also be used to make crafts, for example branch Christmas trees that are created from branches, beads, and string.