Speculoos is a type of spiced shortcrust biscuit, traditionally baked for consumption on or just before St Nicholas’ feast in the Netherlands, Belgium, and around Christmas in Germany.
- 104 grams/3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 74 grams/1/2 cup + 1 1/2 tbsp cake flour
- 74 grams/1/2 cup + 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
- 1.3 grams/1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1.3 grams/1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1.3 grams/3/8 tsp kosher salt
- 74 grams/1/3 cup (lightly packed) dark brown sugar
- 59 grams/1/4 cup + 2 1/4 tsp granulated sugar
- 8 grams/1 1/8 tsp honey (i used wildflower, clover is recommended)
- 177 grams/6.2 oz unsalted butter
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Place the all-purpose flour in a medium bowl and sift in the cake and whole wheat flours. Break up any lumps of flour remaining in the sieve and add them to the bowl. Sift in the baking soda and cinnamon. Add the salt and whisk together.
Combine both sugars in a small bowl and whisk to break up any lumps. Using a fork, stir in the honey.
Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Turn to medium-low speed and cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar mixture and mix for about 2 minutes, until fluffy. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the dry ingredients in 2 additions, mixing on low speed for 15 to 30 seconds after each, or until just combined. Scrape the bottom of the bowl to incorporate any dry ingredients that may have settled there.
Mound the dough on the work surface and, using the heel of your hand or a pastry scraper, push it together into a 4-by-6-inch block. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or, preferably, overnight.
Position the racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat the oven to 325F (standard). Line two sheet pans with Silpats or parchment paper.
Unwrap the dough and place it between two pieces of parchment paper or plastic wrap. With a rolling pin, pound the top of the dough, working from left to right, to begin to flatten it, then turn the dough 90 degrees and repeat. (this will help prevent the dough from cracking as it is rolled.) Roll out to just under 1/8 inch thick. If the dough has softened, slide it (in the parchment) onto the back of a sheet pan and refrigerate until firm enough to cut into cookies.
Using the decorative cutter, cut out the cookies and arrange them onto the prepared sheet pans, leaving about 3/4 inch between them. If necessary, push the trimmings together, refrigerate until firm, and reroll for a total of 8 cookies. If the dough softens, return it to the fridge until the cookies are firm enough to transfer to the sheet pans.
Bake the cookies until golden brown, 13 to 15 minutes, reversing the positions of the pans halfway through baking. Set the pans on a cooling rack and cool for 5 to 10 minutes, then transfer the cookies to the rack to cool completely.