Roasted Chestnut & Pecan Snowball Cookies

Another Buttemilk Pantry recipe! Just reminds me of the song Chestnuts roasting in an open fire~
The spices give it a nice hearty warmth, and roll it in powdered sugar for the extra snowy, festive effect. The powdered sugar needs to be coated in two additions, in order for the first layer to be set up slightly, before adding the second layer to ‘stick’. Just like real snow, interestingly!

Roasted Chestnuts and Pecan Snowballs

Makes approximately 23

Roasted Chestnuts and Pecan Snowballs adapted from Buttermilk Pantry

35g pecans (toasted and cooled)
95g roasted chestnuts* (flesh only)
125g unsalted butter (room temperature)
65g icing sugar (sifted) + more to coat
1/2 vanilla bean (or 1/2 tsp vanilla extract)
1/8tsp salt
1/8tsp nutmeg
1/4tsp cinnamon
165g AP flour

*You may roast your own chestnuts fresh or purchase them freshly roasted from a street side vendor

To make cookie dough

Process the toasted pecans into coarse pieces in a food processor. The bigger the pieces, the more crunch you’ll get, but in this case, small bits are preferable. In a food processor, process the chestnuts until you get a flour like consistency.

In a stand mixer bowl, beat the butter and icing sugar on med-high for 4-5mins until its nice and fluffy with the paddle attachment. Lower speed to med-low and add the spices, salt, vanilla extract, chestnuts and pecan and beat until combine. Scrape the bowl and continue to beat for another 30 seconds.

Lower speed to low and add the flour in 2 additions making sure its 80% incorporated before adding the next part.

Scoop the dough into 20g portions and place on a lined baking tray (roughly the amount of a slightly heaping small cookie scoop).

Place in fridge for 2 hours (or overnight) to allow it to firm up enough to make it easy handle.

Baking and assembly of cookies

Preheat oven to 175C.

Roll the divided portions into round balls and place them 2 inches apart as these cookies will spread slightly. Bake for 17 mins and let cool on the baking tray for 3mins.

Whilst waiting, sift 1/2 cup of icing sugar into a bowl. Toss the cookies one at a time into the bowl to coat, then place them back on the (probably still warm) baking tray. You just want a light dusting at this stage.
Let the cookies rest for 5 mins. The icing should have melted slightly from the warmth of the cookies but would have started to set up.

Toss the cookies one at a time in the icing sugar again to layer on the second coating.

Let cool fully on a wire rack. Store in a airtight container for up to 1 week.

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