Zimtsterne or”Cinnamon Stars” are one of the most traditional German Christmas cookies. These delicious cookies are made from egg whites, almonds, sugar and cinnamon. Living in Germany, we always had them on our cookie platter ( you can buy them everywhere) together with some other treats that I will hopefully bake soon. Since moving to the US more than 10 years ago, I didn’t have them for a long time. This was one of the cookies I was really looking forward to bake, when I started this Adventskalender… And it was sooooooo worth it.
It was like Christmas in my mouth… When I tasted the finished, but still oven warm cookie, I was flooded with Christmas memories from when I was a child. I will definitely make them again, even though they are a little bit more difficult than the average sugar cookie.
Since I used an old German recipe, I will post the measurements in grams and convert it in pounds rather than using cups. Next time I will make the cookies, I will make some notes and update this recipe. If you want to experience an authentic German cookie (that tastes really different), this cookie is for you. Like I already mentioned, this cookie is extremely popular. Therefore it has its own cookie cutter. I didn’t find anything similar in the United States, but here is a link with pictures on how this cookie cutter looks.
I do not own this cookie cutter, a regular star cutter is working just fine. (as smaller as better)
417 gr/ 1 pound powdered sugar ( it converts to a little less, but to make it easier, we are using this measurement)
582 gr/20.5 ounces almonds, finely ground
335 gr/ 12 ounces egg whites
20 gr/ 3 -4 tablespoons cinnamon
For the glaze/icing:
265 gr/ 1/2 pound powdered sugar
135 gr/5 ounces egg whites
In an electric mixer beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar and beat until stiff and glossy, about 10 minutes. Carefully fold in the almonds, cinnamon and lemon zest to keep the mixture light and fluffy. Let it rest in the refrigerator overnight.
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place a large piece of parchment paper on a flat surface and sprinkle with additional confectioners’ sugar or ground almonds. Place the nut mixture on the sugar, lightly sprinkle with more confectioners’ sugar, top with a second piece of waxed paper, and roll out 1/4 inch thick. Remove the top piece of waxed paper. Using a cookie cutter dipped in water, cut into star shapes. Place on the prepared baking sheet.
To make the frosting, beat the egg whites together with the confectioners sugar until stiff and glossy and spread it on the stars. With the special cookie cutter, you could cut cookie and frosting at the same time (and would get straight lines)
Bake until set, 10 to 12 minutes.