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Dutch Speculaas

These Dutch spice cookies taste similar to the windmill cookies we enjoy in the United States. In Holland, it's tradition to mold the dough into the shape of St. Nicholas and serve the baked cookies on Sinterklaas (St. Nicholas Day). —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
  • Total Time
    Prep: 40 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min./batch
  • Makes
    about 2-1/2 dozen


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange zest
  • 3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup finely ground almonds
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom


  • In a large bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, molasses and orange zest. Combine the flour, ground almonds, cinnamon, baking powder, nutmeg, cloves, pepper, ginger and cardamom. Gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or until easy to handle.
  • Preheat oven to 350°. On a parchment paper-lined surface, roll a small amount of dough to 1/8-in. thickness. Use a floured cookie stamp to press design into dough, then cut with floured 3-in. cookie cutters, leaving 1 in. between cookies. Remove excess dough and reroll scraps, if desired.
  • Transfer parchment paper with dough to cookie sheet. If dough has warmed, place baking sheet in refrigerator until it firms up, about 10-15 minutes. Bake at 350° until edges are lightly browned, 8-10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
To Make Ahead: Dough can be made 2 days in advance. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before rolling out. Cookies can be baked 1 week ahead of time and stored in an airtight container at room temperature or frozen for up to 1 month.
Nutrition Facts
1 cookie: 151 calories, 7g fat (4g saturated fat), 30mg cholesterol, 65mg sodium, 19g carbohydrate (8g sugars, 1g fiber), 2g protein.
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  • imhs1975
    Dec 11, 2016

    Haven't made these yet, wondering if they taste like windmill cookies!

  • sgwing
    Oct 20, 2016

    For those looking for the template, look under Directions #1. Where it says "Trace template", hover over the word "template" and you'll see it's underlined. Click on the word to get a picture of the template.I haven't made these yet, but they look delicious! Think I'll make them for the holidays.

  • MsSherm
    Dec 6, 2012

    As usual, TOH does not provide all the information, like on the first day of the cookie countdown, they did not provide the cookie disappointing!

  • Bleugerman
    Dec 4, 2012

    These are wonderful. And, you don't need a template. You can use cookie cutters. The template was only for the design pictured anyway. These have a wonderful flavor. I will definetley be making these for Christmas giving.

  • libby007
    Dec 3, 2012

    Will not make do not know how to get template.

  • Takoyaki
    Dec 3, 2012

    "Template on page XX"??