Delicate and elegant rolled cookies fit for special occasions and holidays.
Pirouettes are rolled wafer cookies, the rolled aspect conjuring the act of a ballerina spinning elegantly on one foot. Sometimes called cigar cookies, they can be filled with a pastry cream, dipped in chocolate (pictured), or simply left hollow. They are delectable on their own, but they instantly upgrade any scoop of ice cream or cup of hot cocoa. Truth be told, they are somewhat laborious to make, which makes them the perfect cookie for special occasions. Each buttery, crispy bite of these wafer-thin treats is sure to delight and impress!
Equipment: dry and wet measuring cups; measuring spoons; large and small mixing bowls; hand or standing mixer, rubber spatula; parchment paper or silicone baking liner; sheet pan; offset spatula; wooden spoon; cooling rack
Cookie Dough Ingredients: 1 cup all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons cornstarch
4 egg whites
1 cup confectioner's sugar
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
chocolate melting wafers
crushed candy canes
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a sheet pan with a silicone baking liner or parchment paper and set aside.
2. Combine the flour and cornstarch in a small bowl and set aside.
3. In a large mixing bowl or standing mixer, beat the egg whites until foamy and fluffy, approximately 2 minutes. Slowly add the sugar, and beat until glossy and soft peaks form. Add the melted butter and then the vanilla. Mix until combined.
4. Carefully stir in the flour mixture until a smooth, lump-free batter forms.
ILOC tip: this is not a forgiving cookie batter, which means that it is essential to make a smooth batter and then to spread it as thin and even as possible in order to make delicate and well-formed pirouettes.
5. Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of batter on the baking sheet. Spread into a 4- to 5-inch circle using an offset spatula, making the surface of the circle as thin and smooth as possible. Repeat until there are 4-6 circles on the sheet pan, but no more.
ILOC tip: do not make more than 4-6 pirouettes per batch, as they can be rolled only when hot and pliable. If you make too many cookies per batch, they will not be easy to shape and will crack.
6. Bake at 350°F for 6-8 minutes, until the edges are golden brown.
7. Remove from the sheet pan from the oven and immediately and carefully lift a cookie using a metal spatula. Wrap the cookie around the handle of a wooden spoon and roll to form the pirouette. Slide the formed cookie off the spoon. Working quickly, repeat with the remaining cookies before repeating step 5 and making another batch.
ILOC tip: if the cookies cool before you can roll them with ease, return the sheet pan to the hot oven for 30 seconds to make them pliable.
8. Once completely cool, the cookies may be dipped in chocolate and sprinkled with candies or nuts, or filled with a pastry cream.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week if dipped in chocolate, or up to three days in the refrigerator if filled with pastry cream.
Makes approximately 18 cookies.