Zaletti – Italian Cornmeal Cookies
These small cookies are a delightful afternoon snack and pair well with coffee or tea. The cornmeal adds a slightly grittier texture than pure flour, making them an interesting change of pace from all-flour cookies.
Cook time: 15min
¾ cup currants, dried
¼ cup boiling water
3 tablespoons grappa or brandy
1 ¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup polenta, instant or fine
½ cup sugar, granulated, plus more for garnish
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
½ cup (4-ounces) butter, unsalted, melted and cooled
1 lemon zest, finely grated
2 baking sheets lined with parchment
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Place the currants in a small heatproof bowl. Pour the boiling water and grappa over them, and stir to combine. Set aside for currants to plump and cool.
- Combine the flour, polenta, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a mixing bowl. Beat on low speed of an electric mixer for 30 seconds to combine.
- Whisk together the egg and egg yolk in a medium bowl.
- Add the cooled melted butter and lemon zest. Whisk to combine
- Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and beat on medium speed for 1 minute.
- Add the currants and their liquid. Beat on medium speed for about 30 seconds.
- Remove the dough from the bowl.
- Flatten it into a disk, wrap it in plastic, and chill for 1 hour.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper (or spray with cooking spray).
- Scoop 1 tablespoon of dough and shape each into a small log about 1½ inches long.
- Press the log down to flatten it and pinch the ends together to form a diamond shape.
- Place the diamonds on the baking sheets, spaced 1 inch apart. Sprinkle the tops of the cookies lightly with granulated sugar.
- Bake the cookies for 15 minutes, or until they are lightly golden brown around the edges.
- Cool on a wire rack.
- The cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 week.