Egg kichel, or egg cookies (“eier kichelach” in Yiddish), are practically weightless cookies so they’re sometimes called “nothings”. But, don’t be fooled by their modest name. Egg kichel are a cross between croissants, flaky pie crusts, and sugar cookies. When you look at the ingredients, they don’t sound like anything special: eggs, sugar, salt, oil, flour, and baking powder. They also aren’t the prettiest things (although you cookie decorators could surely jazz them up). However, when they came out of the oven, my grandmother said they were the best thing that I have ever made for her. If you’ve got a Jewish grandparent, neighbor, or friend, skip the chocolate gelt (coins) and bring them these sweet nothings for Chanukah. You will have done your mitzvah (good deed) for the day.
Egg Kichel Recipe
This egg kichel recipe is a very slightly modified version of the recipe found on Is That My Bureka? (I found that I needed to add significantly more flour to the recipe to get it to achieve the correct texture). It is prepared in a food processor, has more oven temperature changes than I have ever seen in a recipe, and it works like magic.
Egg Kichel for Chanukah
- 3 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup canola oil or other vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- coarse decorating sugar
- Preheat the oven to 400 F.
- Process the eggs and the sugar in the food processor for one minute.
- Add the salt and oil and process until combined.
- In a small bowl, mix the flour and baking powder.
- Add the flour and baking powder to the food processor in three additions, processing after each addition until fully combined. After the last addition, process until the dough is thick and very sticky.
- Take balls of super sticky dough and roll the dough in coarse sugar. (I used tablespoon-sized balls of dough for my cookies. This produced really large cookies. If you prefer smaller ones, use just a teaspoon of dough. The cookies rise quite a bit.) Once rolled in sugar, the dough will no longer be sticky and you can form it into a bow-tie by flattening it and giving it one twist in the middle.
- Place bow-ties onto a parchment- or silpat-lined cookie sheet. Leave a little space between cookies for them to grow.
- Bake for eight minutes.
- Reduce heat to 300 F and bake for another 12 minutes.
- Reduce heat to 170 F and bake for another 20 minutes.
- Turn off heat and leave in the warm oven for another 10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and try to not eat them all before you let anyone else try them.