Maple Walnut Cookies
Makes about 18 cookies
Maple sugar is a finely granulated, slightly powdery sugar; it's usually sold with the other maple products or in the specialty foods section of the supermarket. For cooking, I prefer to use Grade B maple syrup, because it has a stronger maple flavor than other grades.
Cream together until lightly fluffy:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup maple sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup (see note above)
1 large egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Whisk together and add:
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped fine
Stir just until all ingredients are well blended; do not overmix. Chill dough thoroughly at least an hour, before rolling. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll dough out on a lightly floured counter to 1/4 inch thickness and cut with your favorite Ann Clark cookie cutter, then transfer cookies onto cookie sheets that have been lined with parchment paper or silicone liners. Bake 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly colored. Let cookies cool slightly on cookie sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Frost with Maple Icing (recipe below).
Whisk together until smooth:
1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
5 tablespoons maple syrup
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon milk
Working one at a time spoon a generous tablespoon of icing on each cookie and spread to the edges using a small metal spatula or a butter knife. Hold the cookie level and gently shake to smooth out the icing. Set on a wire rack until the icing is dry.