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Cookies without Nuts
Tarallucci Cinnamon Cookies (with butter, sugar, honey, flavored with cinnamon)
Originated from: Italy
Occasion: Special times
Contributed by: Mary Melfi

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Tarallucci Cookie Dough, Version II (Makes anywhere from 10 to 18 cookies, depending on their size)

1 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter (melted)
1 egg
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For brushing

1 egg mixed with 1 tablespoon of water
Sugar for sprinkling
Sprinkles (optional)


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Mix flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon, baking powder together.

Melt butter. Cool.

With an electric mixer, beat egg, honey and vanilla extract together.

Mix the dry ingredients with the liquids and work into a fine cookie dough (Will look like a crumble mixture, rather than a cake batter).

Divide the dough into two parts.

Shape the portions into balls and wrap in plastic wrap.

Place in the fridge and let it rest for 10 minutes.

On a floured wooden board roll out a portion of the dough (about half) and using cookie cutters cut out desired shapes.

Continue until all the dough is processed, making sure to make use of whatever scraps of dough are broken off by re-shaping it, and rolling it out etc.

Place the cookies on a greased [aluminum] cookie sheet (or on one which is lined with a silicon baking mat).

Brush the cookies with the beaten egg and water mixture.

Sprinkle a bit of sugar over them OR add some multi-colored sprinkles (Please note that sprinkles start to melt after they have been in the oven for over 10 minutes, so if the cookies are in the oven too long, the sprinkles will melt and ruin the look of the cookies).

Bake in a 325 degrees F oven on the upper middle rack for about 10 minutes.

Turn off the oven and let the cookies stay in the oven for about 2 to 4 minutes, depending on whether or not they look "done" (The size of the cookies as well as the "real" temperature in the oven will determine the amount of time needed to cook them).

Remove from oven and let them cool before removing them from the cookie sheet.

Serve at room temperature.


I suspect the word, tarallucci, like the word, "pasticc,'" used in pre-World War II Molise, is a generic term for cookie -- any kind of cookie. On the web many different kinds of cookie pop up as "tarallucci" some of which aren't even cookies, but taralli [For a recipe see "Taralli"]. So obviously, the word describes a wide range of sweets. That said, it's possible that in some areas of Italy, the word, "tarallucci," might actually refer to a specific cookie. Nothing is what one expects in Italy -- every region and every little province in it has its own style of cooking and has its own language to describe it. So unless you have a talent for languages, and plan on being multi-lingual, just accept the fact that there are a number of cookies that go by the same name. That way if you meet an Italian who is from a different region than you are, you will not start to argue on who has the keys to the Heritage Kingdom. The Heritage Kingdom has a lot of doors, and a lot of keys. So, it might be easy to get in or then it might not be all that easy (It all depends....) Anyway, this particular recipe for "tarallucci (Version II)" is rather easy to do. One of the tricks to achieve success I was told by my daughter-in-law (a professional cook) is not to over-cook the dough. Over-cooking hardens the dough. In any case, if the cookies turn out O.K. kids will love them, especially if they are shaped to look like animals. Photo: by the contributor.

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