Today's cookies are in honor of "Sant Jordi"'s legend. Just in case you are not familiar with it, the legend tells that Sant Jordi (Saint George) was a valiant knight that ended the life of an evil dragon, saving a princess from being devoured and a whole kingdom. It is said that, from the blood that burst from the mortal wound, a rose bush with red roses sprouted.
Aside from the legends, Sant Jordi's Day is one of my favourite days in Barcelona. If you ever have the oportunity to visit this city on April 23rd, you will know what I mean. Tradition dictates that men give a rose to women and they gift them with a book in return. Nowadays, of course, everybody gets a book and April 23rd is the day of lovers and books in Catalunya.
The main streets in the city are full of rose vendors and the bookstores sell their books in the street.
Today's recipe celebrates this day, with Sant Jordi and the dragon cookies and a rose cake.
One little thing: these cookies are quite strong, they are made of really dark chocolate and their taste is strong even with the sugar icing. I took the recipe from
and they are perfect to cut because they hold the shape perfectly.
Dark chocolate cookies
- 120g butter (cubed, cold)
- 1 Tbs light olive oil
- 100g granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 large egg
- 30g cornstarch
- 60g unsweetened cocoa
- 150g flour
- Cookie cutters
- Cookie sheets or baking paper
- 200g confectioners' sugar
- 2 ½ Tbs water
- 1 Tbs meringue powder
- Food coloring
- Beat butter, oil, sugar, vanilla and salt until the mix is soft and creamy. Do not over beat because it may incorporate air to the mix and the cookies would spread when baking.
- Add egg and mix until incorporated.
- Add cornstarch, flour and cocoa and beat until well blended.
- Heat the oven at 190ºC (375ºF).
- Extend the dough between two baking papers and roll out to a thickness of half a centimeter.
There are stores that sell some kind of circles for you to put in the rolling pin in order to have an even thickness of the dough when rolling it. I came up with a little trick to use instead of those: take two pairs of chopsticks and tape them like this:
Then you put it in each side of the dough like in the following photo:
- Cut the cookies and place on the baking paper lined oven tray.
(I used sticks because I wanted to assemble the cookies on a cake but it is not necessary)
- Bake for 9-12 minutes (depending on the size of the cookies). The edges of the cookies will be harder while the center will be slightly softer.
- After baking, let them sit for 10 minutes and transfer into a rack to cool down. Wait until they are completely cooled down before icing.
- Sift confectioners' sugar in a bowl with the meringue powder. Add water one tablespoon at a time in order to control the thickness of the icing. Remember that we will need a thicker icing to border and the little details whilst, in order to flood the cookies it needs to be more fluid. Add the food coloring as desired.
- Decorate cookies.
Trace the border of the cookie with the tip of the bottle or pastry bag without actually touching the cookie. Let it dry completely before flooding the center of the cookie.
In order to draw the details, the icing needs to be thicker (like the one used in the borders).
And here's Sant Jordi after slaying the dragon!
My friend Judith Chamizo on her blog,
had a different approach and, frankly, I like it.Visit her blog to see her wonderful artwork!
To download the pdf with the recipe,
I hope you like it!