My maternal grandmother, Hattie, was of Swiss heritage. She was a tiny but mighty women, as her and Grandpa raised ten children on an Iowa farm. I have so many special sweet memories of my grandma. I spent a lot of time at her home, often helping in the kitchen. She was a gracious hostess, fixing simple but delicious meals for her many guests. Every Christmas, up until she passed away at an old age, she made several varieties of traditional Swiss cookies. My favorite, were her mailanderli, a lemony buttery sugar cookie. She guarded not only her recipes, but her cookies as well. With that twinkle in her eye, she would pry off the lid of her Christmas tin, and pick out one for each grandchild! Not until I start baking them myself, did I get my fill of mailanderli!
I humbly submit this recipe in memory of my Grandma, Hattie!
Except maybe for the brandy, the ingredients are common to most kitchens…butter, sugar, eggs, lemons, flour and baking powder.
Cream 1 c. butter with 1 1/3 c. sugar. Stir in well beaten eggs and grated zest of 2 lemons.
Add brandy, flour and baking powder to mixture. Mix until well blended. Dough will be very sticky.
Wrap in wax paper and chill overnight. Roll out dough on floured surface to 1/4” thickness. Cut out star shapes. (I only remember star shapes that Grandma used)
Brush each cookie with egg yolk wash. (3 egg yolks mixed with 2 T. water)
Bake at 350 until light brown. (10-12 minutes) Cool on rack. Grandma said these cookies need to be make three weeks before Christmas to have the best flavor. I like these cookies, because they aren’t so sickly sweet, they almost remind me of animal crackers!
1 c. butter
1 1/3 c. sugar
grated zest of 2 lemons
2 T. brandy
5 1/3 c. flour
1 t. baking powder
Cream well, sugar and butter. Stir in well beaten eggs, brandy and lemon zest. Add flour and baking powder. Dough will be very sticky. Wrap in wax paper and chill overnight. Roll out on floured surface to 1/4” thickness. Cut into stars and brush with egg yolk glaze. (3 egg yolks and 2 T. water) Bake at 350 until light brown, 10-12 minutes. Cool on rack.