Melting Moments Cookie Recipe
I had eaten similar cookies before but wanted to create my own version with a hint of Indian flavor. So after a lot of trials & quite a few errors, I have my own recipe of this very tasty bite size treat! This recipe yields about 6 dozen cookies which sounds like a lot, but do remember – these are small bite size cookies & nobody can eat just one! Plus, it always nice to share ☺.
Although Melting Moments cookies are usually made around the holidays, I enjoy them throughout the year. They are just perfect as an afternoon snack along with a steaming cup of hot Indian tea.
MELTING MOMENTS COOKIES
1¼ cups cake flour
¼ cup cornstarch
½ cup rice flour
pinch of salt
2 sticks (16 tbsp) unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces & softened
3 tbsp heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract (or almond extract)
2/3 cup Confectioners’ sugar
½ tsp cardamom powder
pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Over a large mixing bowl, sift the cake flour together with the cornstarch, rice flour & salt. Mix well & set aside until needed.
In a smaller mixing bowl, combine about 4 tbsp of the butter along with the cream & microwave for just 30 seconds until the butter has melted. Lightly whisk together, let cool slightly & then stir in the vanilla along with the Confectioners’ sugar, cardamom powder & ground nutmeg. Now gradually add in the remaining butter (12 tbsp) a little at a time & whisk together vigorously until completely smooth & creamy.
Now gradually add the butter/sugar mixture (wet ingredients) to the cake flour mixture (dry ingredients) & mix together until well combined into a soft, smooth dough. This dough is super soft (almost like a thick batter) due to the high butter content (but remember, you are making 70+ cookies!).
There are a few different ways to actually make the cookies: I like to divide the dough into 2 equal parts & make 3 different varieties ☺.
1). Fill a large pastry bag fitted with a ½” star nozzle tip (this will result in small bite size cookies). Pipe the cookies into mini rosettes (about 1” apart) onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper. I got about 24-25 cookies per baking sheet depending upon the size of the cookies (& the baking sheet). Then refrigerate the baking sheets for 30 minutes. Next, heat the oven to 300 degrees F. Bake the cookies on the center & lower racks of your oven for 18-20 minutes or until just ever so lightly brown. Don’t forget to switch & rotate the baking sheets about halfway through baking for more even baking. Let cool for about 15-20 minutes before removing the cookies.
2). Another way to make these cookies is to take the dough & loosely form it into a log shape (about 12” length & 1” width) on a piece of parchment paper using the parchment paper itself to help you form the log. Now roll up the dough very tightly in the parchment paper & refrigerate the dough for about 30 minutes.
[The chilled dough log can also be wrapped tightly in plastic wrap & then wrapped again in aluminum foil if you wish to freeze the dough for later use].
Once the dough has been chilled in the refrigerator, it will be firm & much easier to work with now. On a work surface, gently roll the parchment filled dough log back & forth a few times (so it is completely round & has no flattened surfaces from sitting in the refrigerator). Carefully, remove the parchment paper & cut the dough log into ¼” thick rounds. Place the dough rounds (about 1” apart) onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper. I get about 24-25 cookies per baking sheet depending upon the size of the cookies (& the baking sheet). Then refrigerate the baking sheets for 30 minutes. Next, heat the oven to 300 degrees F. Bake the cookies on the center & lower racks of your oven for about 18-20 minutes or until just ever so lightly brown. Don’t forget to switch & rotate the baking sheets about halfway through baking for more even baking. Let cool for about 15-20 minutes before removing the cookies.
3). To make Thumbprint Jam Cookies: follow the directions in step #2. But once the dough rounds have been placed on the baking sheet, let the baking sheets sit out at room temperature for about 8-10 minutes or until the cookies have just slightly softened. Then using a small ¼ tsp scoop measuring spoon (dipped in a little water) make small round divots in the center of each cookie. Then refrigerate the baking sheets for 30 minutes. Next, heat the oven to 300 degrees F. Bake the cookies on the center & lower racks of your oven for just 18 minutes or until just ever so lightly brown. Don’t forget to switch & rotate the baking sheets about halfway through baking for more even baking. Now while the cookies are still warm & soft, use the ¼ tsp scoop measuring spoon to gently reinforce the hollowed out centers of each cookie. Now fill each center with your favorite variety of seedless jam. An easy way to do this is to fill a small plastic Ziploc bag with the jam & squeeze it into one corner. Then carefully snip off a small edge of the corner & voila – you have a piping bag for your jam. Then return the baking sheets back to the oven for 2 more minutes. Let cool for about 15-20 minutes before removing the cookies.
Store the cooled cookies in an airtight container when completely cooled.
If you like, you could also fill the thumbprint cookies with melted chocolate (either milk chocolate, dark chocolate or even white chocolate) in place of the jam.
Mexican Wedding Cookies are very similar with only a few minor changes to the recipe: use 1 cup of cake flour & ½ cup of finely ground toasted nuts (such as walnuts, almonds, pecans, cashews … or a combination of nuts. Do not add rice flour or cornstarch to this recipe. Also, when grinding the nuts into a fine powder – use short pulses in your food processor (otherwise you will end up with nut butter instead ☺).
For another Indian twist, add 1 tsp of chai masala or even badam milk powder (Indian spiced almond milk powder) instead.
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