Finnish Teaspoon Cookies

Have you ever made a cookie recipe expecting one thing and end up getting something completely different? That was the case with these cookies. While deciding what to make for Sunday Sweets I was torn between doing something familiar and doing something new. I’m glad I stepped out and went with the unknown. The result was a soft, tender browned butter cookie sandwiched between jam or ganache.

Pepperidge Farms Milano cookies have nothing on Finnish Teaspoon Cookies.

So lets talk about this cookie a little. It starts with a basic dough that is enhanced by browning butter, something the Scandinavians have been doing for many years. Then there is the sugar, lots of it. And vanilla. Creaming ensues, as does slowly adding in the flour mixture.

But we aren’t done yet. I find it interesting that the recipe then calls for just one egg yolk to be mixed in at this point. Normally, the eggs are added after the butter and sugar are creamed together. I want to say that there is a scientific reason as to why you would add just the yolk at this stage in the game. I’m sure it affects the consistency and texture of the cookie. I just can’t actually back that up.

The challenging part of this recipe is the actual shaping of the cookie. While it isn’t anything difficult, it is time consuming and requires some attention to detail. See, you want a very thin and small cookie, hence the “teaspoon” in the name. Just to be super clear, do not use an actual teaspoon measuring spoon. But a small spoon which usually is about the amount of one measured teaspoon.

The first technique I tried was loading the spoon with some dough and then pressing it against the side of the bowl as I pulled it up. While it worked, I wasn’t getting right shape for the cookies. After trying various techniques, this is what I came up with:

  1. Press some dough into the spoon.
  2. Then with a paring knife, run it around the edge of the spoon cutting off the excess dough.
  3. Next, take the knife and cut along the top of the spoon to remove the excess dough on top.
  4. Now take the spoon in one hand and cup the cookie dough that is still in the spoon with the other hand, rotate in opposite direction, gently unmolding the cookie from the spoon.
  5. See pictures below

I promise this technique is a ton easier then it seems. It results in the two things you are going for: first is the right thickness and secondly is that it creates a lovely almond shape to the cookie. This cookie isn’t flat but has a slight arch over the top.

Now, if you like, you can try rolling out the dough to get a nice thin cookie. I didn’t do this but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. You could also try forming a small amount of dough into a ball and then smashing it with the bottom of a cup.

You will end up shaping what feels like a ton of cookies. While I didn’t count, I would say that four dozen feels about right. But if you take your time and bake them in batches you will be done before you know it. Remember, these are sandwich cookies, two individual cookie result in one final cookie.

Now here is the secret to these cookies. They are magnificent right out of the oven and same day. But to get that soft, tender, melt in your mouth effect? Once they have cooled put them in an airtight container and let them sit for two days. You heard me, no cookies for two days!

So lets talk fillings. Traditionally these are filled with strawberry jam.

These little cookies are sweet which needs to be taken into consideration when selecting a filling. Traditionally these are filled with strawberry jam. I tested a few with some strawberry freezer jam and found the match to be too incredibly sweet. So I suggest using a jam that has a lower sugar content (not necessarily sugar free) and flavors that aren’t so overpowering. I ended up buying a blackberry fruit spread that had a significantly less sugar in it than regular strawberry jam. Sugar aside, I think you can use just about any flavor of jam for this.

The other filling I did was ganache, my personal favorite. Using a bittersweet chocolate really helped balance the sweetness from the cookies. I highly recommend.

The cookies are also great without any filling. When I plated these I ended up doing a middle row of individual cookies so people would have a non-filled option. Devoured. There wasn’t any left over to come home with. I think that makes it a pretty successful cookie.

This cookie isn’t your run of the mill cookie. It is a true treat. A soft, sender, browned butter cookie sandwiched between jam or ganache. This right here is why I love butter and sugar.


Finnish Teaspoon Cookies

Adapted from: The Great Scandinavian Baking Book

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 egg yolk

Filling

Jam of your choice and/or ganache

Ganache

  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3oz dark chocolate, chopped

Heat the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. As butter heats it will start to foam. At this point it will start changing colors. From white, to a light yellow, to a golden tan, to dark brown. Swirl occasionally. Keep an eye on the butter when it starts changing colors as it can change quick. Cook the butter till it is a deep golden color. Remove from heat and pour into a large bowl. Let cool for 10 minutes on the counter

Meanwhile, pre-heat oven 325 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Whisk together the flour and baking soda in a medium sized bowl.

Now that the butter has cooled a bit, mix in the sugar and vanilla. Cream well.

Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in thirds. Mixing well between each third. The dough will become crumbly but still cohesive once all the flour has been added.

Gently break the egg yolk and add to the cookie dough. Blend in and knead till smooth.

Forming the cookies:

  1. Press some dough into the spoon.
  2. Then with a paring knife, run it around the edge of the spoon cutting off the excess dough.
  3. Next, take the knife and cut along the top of the spoon to remove the excess dough on top.
  4. Now take the spoon in one hand and cup the cookie dough that is still in the spoon with the other hand, rotate in opposite direction, gently unmolding the cookie from the spoon.
  5. See pictures above & repeat

Place shaped cookies on baking sheets. You can probably get 16 on one pan as these don’t spread out much. Bake both pans of cookie at the same time for 6-8 minutes. Till just before they start browning.

Slide the cookies off the pan with the parchment onto wire cooling racks and let cool. Repeat process till all cookies have been formed and baked.

Once cool, put cookies in an airtight container and let sit for 2 days.

To make the ganache:
Heat cream over medium heat in a small saucepan till it comes to a boil. Once it boils pull off the heat and add chocolate. Stir till the chocolate is melted and glossy.

Filling the cookies:
Spread approximately ½ – 1 teaspoon of filling to the bottom side of one cookie. Top with another cookie.

A few notes:

  • Individual cookies can be frozen and filled as needed.
  • Cookies are best filled the day they will be eaten.
  • The ganache filled cookies keep for several days in an airtight container.
  • The jam filled cookies, however, only keep for about one day. The jam will become absorbed into the cookie and become extremely soft and mushy.

Makes around 4 dozen cookies

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Dana says:

    Wow, those look delicious! I’m not sure it’s something I could accomplish with two kids running around, but maybe someday… ;o) Thanks for sharing your technique!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s