Today is Chinese New Year’s Eve, it is the day every Chinese household cook up a storm, starting early in the morning~ in my family back in Malaysia, we will be busy cooking foods to offer to our ancestors in the other world, and this usually happen around lunch time. By the evening, we will be busy making the most important meal of the year– reunion dinner. Family members will always rush home from around the places to join the table. If you are not familiar with Chinese culture, let me tell you: Reunion dinner is a FEAST not to miss!Fish, shellfish, soup, pork, chicken, duck, veggie are usually on the menu. Oh how I wish we could join the dinner with my family on the other side of the planet… I have my feast too spreading out on my dining table here at home, but the feeling is not the same.
Anyhow, back to the cookies. This is another new cookie recipe I tried this year for my Chinese New Year bake, and I don’t really know why it is called German Cookies. Maybe it is similar to one of the Christmas cookies German make for the holiday?… Anyway, one interesting ingredient to this cookies is potato starch, which I believe is the key to these very light, airy and melt-in-your-mouth cookies. Not only is the recipe super easy and fun to make with little kids, the cookie dough freezes well too.
Some people make their version with a marble look(chocolate and original flavor), doggy look (by using some cereal to make doggy face). Others use poppy seeds. This time, I used black sesame seeds so the cookies don’t look so plain and pale, plus I like the nutty flavor of toasted black seeds. Green tea or earl grey will be good choice for a different look and flavor as well.
German Cookies with Black Sesame Seeds 德國酥餅（黑芝麻口味)– makes about 50-60 pieces
2 cups flour
1 1/2 cups potato starch– “Windmill” brand preferred
2 tbsp dry milk powder
2 sticks (4oz each) unsalted butter– soften
3/4 cup powder sugar
2 tbsp black sesame seeds– toasted
- Combine flour, potato starch and milk powder together in a bowl.
- Put butter in a separate bowl. The butter must be very soft but not melted; microwave for a few seconds if needed. Add powder sugar and mix well. Add in sesame seeds to mix well again.
- Sift flour mixture into butter, mix to form a soft dough that is not sticky to the hands. If the dough is too soft, refregerate for 10-15 minutes.
- Take a small piece of dough and roll into a ball of 1-inch size. Repeat until all the dough is used.
- Place each ball one a large baking pan, about 1 inch apart. Press each ball down slowly with a fork to make a pattern. Bake at preheated 325F oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the edge is slightly brown. Cool completely then store in air tight container.
- Freezing cookie dough: roll up dough to a log shape and wrap in parchment paper followed by plastic wrap. Place in air tight bag.
- To toast sesame seeds: toast in dry clean pan on the stove on medium low heat, stirring at all time until the seeds puff up a little and sesame flavor starts to come out. Cool before use.