This is a classic butter cookie that can take on other ingredients, like jam or chocolate, making it that easy base recipe to work with
3 ½ dozen cookies
3 sticks unsalted butter, soft
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ cup powdered sugar, plus additional for coating
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons brandy
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
About 45 whole cloves
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Make the batter: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine the butter and salt and whip until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the sugar, egg, brandy, and vanilla and beat until all of the ingredients are integrated. With the mixer on low speed, gradually add sifted flour to the butter mixture. Using a rubber spatula, remove the dough and transfer it onto a piece of wax paper or parchment. Refrigerate for about 45 minutes before rolling.
3. After the dough has cooled, pinch off small pieces and roll them into about 1-inch balls. Place them in a single layer with space in between each, on a greased baking sheet. Repeat the process until all of the cookie dough has been rolled. Place a clove in the center of each cookie. Alternatively, shape the ball into half moons with a clove in the center of each.
4. Place the sheets in the oven and bake until the cookies are just slightly brown, about 15 minutes. Allow them to cool thoroughly, and then roll them in powdered sugar.