Grandma Annie's Chocolate Chip Mandel Bread

Mandel bread is a traditional twice-baked Jewish cookie similar to biscotti.

Servings: 32 cookies
Cook Time: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off with back edge of knife
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled (or 1 cup vegetable oil)
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans, walnuts or slivered almonds (optional)

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon and the nutmeg.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the melted butter, 1 cup of the sugar, the vanilla extract and almond extract. Beat on medium speed until combined. Add the eggs and continue beating on medium speed until thickened and pale yellow, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until just incorporated, then mix in the chocolate chips and nuts (if using). Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to chill until firm, 1 to 2 hours.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F and set two oven racks in the centermost positions. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Lightly dust a clean work surface with flour and shape the dough into 2 logs about 2 inches wide, 13 inches long, and 1 inch tall. Place the logs on the prepared baking sheets. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until lightly golden, rotating the pans from top to bottom and front to back midway through. Remove the pans from the oven and place on cooling racks. Let the baked logs cool for 15 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 250°F.
  4. In a small bowl, mix together the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon.
  5. Once the logs have cooled, cut them diagonally into 3/4-inch-thick slices (I do this directly on the baking sheets, but you can transfer the logs to a cutting board, if you'd like). Flip the cookies onto their sides, and then sprinkle half of the cinnamon-sugar over top. Flip the cookies over and repeat with the remaining cinnamon-sugar. Place the pan back in the oven (be sure the temperature has reached 250°F) and bake until golden and crisp, 40 to 45 minutes. Let the mandel bread cool on the baking sheets on the cooling racks, then store in airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks. (Note: the cookies will get crunchier as they cool.)
  6. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The dough can be frozen for up to 3 months: Shape the dough into logs, wrap each securely in plastic wrap, and place them in a sealable bag. When ready to bake, remove the logs from the freezer, thaw the dough until pliable, and then proceed with recipe. To freeze after baking: After the cookies are completely cooled, double-wrap them securely with aluminum foil or plastic freezer wrap. Thaw overnight on the countertop before serving.

Nutrition Information

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  • Serving size: 1 cookie
  • Calories: 169
  • Fat: 10 g
  • Saturated fat: 5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 20 g
  • Sugar: 10 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 2 g
  • Sodium: 90 mg
  • Cholesterol: 33 mg