Cinnamon-Swirl Cookies

cinnamon swirl cookies
Make these. You won't be disappointed -- as long as you like cinnamon and brown sugar. They satisfy any cinnamon bun cravings you might have, but because they're so much smaller, you needn't feel any guilt about eating a whole handful!

Even though these cookies looked picture perfect in the February issue of Martha Stewart Living, I had no doubt that I could make them as well. I think a lot of people look at Martha's recipes and think they will be unattainable, but that's so not true. Rolling out the dough is the most difficult part, and then rolling up the filling inside requires a little patience, but that's the worst of it.

Cinnamon-Swirl Cookies (from Martha Stewart Living, February 2009)


For the dough
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest (left this out)
2 large eggs

For the filling
2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup light-brown sugar
1/2 cup dark-brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted (1 1/2 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Make the dough: Sift flour, salt, and baking soda into a large bowl. Beat butter, sugar, and orange zest with a mixer on medium speed until smooth, about 3 minutes.

Beat in eggs. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture gradually, and beat until just combined. Divide dough in half, wrap each half in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour (or overnight).

Turn half the dough onto floured parchment. Roll into a 10-by-12-inch rectangle, then trim edges straight. Repeat with remaining half of dough. Transfer rectangles on parchment to a baking sheet, and refrigerate until firm but pliable, about 10 minutes.

Make the filling: Mix all the ingredients in a small bowl until well combined.

Crumble mixture evenly over rectangles.

Starting on a long side, roll 1 rectangle into a log, and wrap it in the parchment. Repeat with remaining rectangle.

Refrigerate logs for 1 hour (or overnight).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut each log crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices.

Transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets, and bake until edges are golden brown, about 19 minutes.

Let cool on sheets on wire racks. Cookies will keep, covered, for up to 3 days.

Note: It helps to keep turning the log as you are slicing the cookies so you don't end up with one flat side. Then you'll want to carefully transfer the cookies to the backing sheet so the filling doesn't fall out! Watch the time carefully. My first batch came out a little crunchy. After that, I shortened the baking time because I prefer chewy cookies.