Perfect for a festive sweet treat or a lovely edible Christmas gift these spiced star cookies can be kept in an airtight container for up to two weeks.

Makes 20

Ready in 1 hour, plus chilling and cooling

2 medium egg whites

175g icing sugar

250g finely ground roasted hazelnuts

50g mixed peel, finely chopped

1 tbsp ground cinnamon

1 Using an electric handheld mixer, whisk the egg whites in a clean, grease-free bowl until holding stiff peaks. Stir in the icing sugar until thoroughly combined then continue to whisk until thick and glossy.

2 Remove 40g of this mixture and set aside. Fold the hazelnuts, mixed peel and cinnamon into the remaining mixture to make a very stiff dough. Chill in the fridge for 1 hour.

3 Preheat the oven to 140C, 120C fan, gas mark 1. Line 2 baking sheets with baking paper. Roll the dough out on a surface heavily dusted with icing sugar to a 1cm thickness.

4 Using a 5cm star-shaped cookie cutter stamp out about 20 stars, re-rolling the dough as needed until it is all used up. Place the stars on the baking sheet, well-spaced apart. Spread a little of the reserved egg white and icing sugar mixture on top of each star.

5 Bake for 25 minutes or until the cookies are still white and crisp on top but slightly soft underneath. Turn off the oven, open the oven door and leave the cookies to dry out for 15 minutes then transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely.



Dust the cookie cutter with icing sugar frequently to prevent the mixture sticking.

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