christmas collection 2012 - walnut kipferl

This recipe comes from an old Maureen Simpson recipe book called Australian Cuisine, which I’ve had for years. Maureen was the Australian House and Garden magazine food editor many years ago and this old cookbook is filled with good old fashioned recipes and some funny things that were probably the height of fashion in the 80’s.  

These cookies are a traditional Austrian Christmas treat and I’ve no idea why it’s taken me so long to get round to making them. I’ve seen similar recipes using ground almonds instead of walnuts and I’m sure that the kipferl would taste equally good made with ground pecans.

They’re really easy to make and I whizzed up the batch of kipferl in my food processor in just a few minutes. I also have some dough in the freezer ready for baking as I’m making little bags of these to give to my friends this year.The first packet has been delivered and eaten and I’m told they were delicious. Having eaten half the batch myself I’m inclined to agree!

Here's the recipe for you.

Walnut Kipferl
from Australian Cuisine by Maureen Simpson printable recipe
125 g (4 oz) butter
1/4 cup caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
100 g walnuts
1 cup plain flour plus 1 extra tablespoon
icing sugar
1 vanilla bean

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.

Put walnuts into a food processor and process until finely chopped. Set to one side. In a small bowl or food processor, cream the butter, caster sugar and vanilla essence until light and fluffy. Add the flour and walnuts and mix to form a dough.

Take small pieces of dough and roll between the palms of your hand to form little rolls tapered at one end. If the mixture is too sticky you may need to add a little extra flour. Place the rolls onto lined trays and form into crescents.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly coloured. Allow to cool for a few minutes before placing on a cooling rack. When the kipferl are cold, place on a sheet of greaseproof paper and lightly dust with icing sugar. Turn over and repeat on the other side. Place the kipferl into a jar with the vanilla bean and seal tightly. Makes about 30.

See you all tomorrow with another recipe from this year's Christmas Collection.

Bye for now,



  1. Hi Jillian, as an Austrian (well half Austrian) there are a couple of extra tricks that will help. First, dust them really thickly with the icing sugar as soon as they are out of the oven and let them cool in the sugar on the tray. That way it really sticks to them. Second you can add vanilla sugar to the icing sugar for an excellent vanilla taste. Finally I make them with ground hazelnuts and they are delicious. But whatever you do, they are a wonderful treat at Christmas.

  2. Thanks for the suggestions Lisa. I made a batch on Sunday using pecans and they were also delicious but a bit more fragile and I broke a few getting them off the tray. I gave little bags of them to my neighbours as Christmas gifts. Hopefully they'll like them as much as I do.



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