Walnut Meringue Crescent Cookies Easy Recipe
Walnut meringue crescent moon cookies were always the best delight mom baked for holidays. It is a dessert easy to make but so flavourful, with a tender base, a jam layer and creamy, nutty top – precisely what we loved to munch on often in-between meal times.
We would sneak in the pantry where mom kept the massive trays will all the goodies she’d baked for Christmas or Easter (of which the fluffy cozonac was always the centrepiece!) and pinch moon cookies from the beautiful stack so that she would not see (so we thought!) how many were missing by the big day!
It was not long until I started making them with my younger sister and repeated the recipe mainly around Christmas time.
This year, I had the precious helping hand of Santa’s little helper contributing to baking mom’s traditional walnut and meringue crescent moon cookies, and the fun we had in the kitchen was delightful!
Of course, witty Santa’s helper (England born and bred) reading an old recipe handwritten in Romanian was hilarious. Still, I was there to provide the correct translation, and we did not use any alien ingredients on this occasion!
What was incredibly touching to see was how the little helper managed perfectly well with very little intervention on my part. I watched and reminisced how I did the same, around the same age, if not older, in mom’s kitchen back home in Romania.
I am glad to write this and forever remember the generation switch moment as it happened, keeping an old tradition and using the same old (and a tad grease-stained in places) recipe book that mom took the time and patience to write.
It feels emotional now that I’m writing down the recipe. But when we baked the walnut meringue crescent moons, it was fun and pure joy to see how different ingredients transform when mixed and create a delightful dessert.
We agreed on something we both have a passion for – baking is biochemistry, and the kitchen is the lab!
Mom used whatever ingredients she could buy during a difficult time, when communist rule meant restrictions of all sorts, including food.
Today, I am trying to educate my kid to understand the difference the temperature brings to various ingredients and how to use healthier versions and combine them in a way that keeps the flavour but reduces the harm to our body. Mom’s recipe mentioned margarine; we use organic coconut oil or organic butter.
For a self-proclaimed future scientist, I am delighted to see how such a young person understands what excessive refining does to sugar and why that is harmful to our health or how the human’s digestive system does not have the right enzyme to process cow milk and how healthier substitutes not only help personal health but have a role in the massive chain reaction that affects the environment.
Back to our fun baking for a couple of hours, it was the best time spent away from the computer, and I can’t wait until next time it happens again!
The cookies came out perfectly, and we did a lot of bowl-licking in the process and cooky testing to check that the final product passes the approval of the otherwise fussy quality control bakers and eaters in the family!
Miraculously, the cookies kept disappearing from the platter just as I remember it happened when I was a child! But I rest assured the little helper can bake just fine anytime, not just for holidays, while I watch and enjoy a delightful walnut merengue crescent moon cookie when ready with my cappuccino. Perhaps it will be way more than one, in the end, because they are addictively scrumptious!
Ingredients for walnut meringue crescent moon cookies
For the base
Plain white flour
Any jam goes, but a slightly sour one will enhance the flavours. I prefer reduced sugar, spicy strawberry jam. A jar is enough for this recipe.
For the meringue
Preparation method for walnut meringue crescent moon cookies
Add the coconut oil at room temperature, a pinch of salt, orange zest, and coconut sugar in a large mixing bowl. Use a handheld mixer and the dough hooks to mix at a low speed.
Add the egg yolks one by one and continue mixing.
Sieve the flour and baking powder over and mix until it incorporates nicely.
If the dough becomes too firm, add a spoon or two of milk and mix.
Move the dough into a lined baking tray and level it by pressing gently with your wet hands.
Spread the jam over and level it nicely with a spatula.
Before starting, preheat the oven to 180°C (356°F) and line the baking tray with a silicone sheet or baking parchment.
We followed mom’s method for the meringue and made the French version. Because we baked the walnut meringue crescent cookies already assembled, the meringue did not need beforehand cooking.
Mix the egg whites with a pinch of salt at high speed until stiff. Use a grinder to finely grind the coconut sugar (until you obtain a powdered, lighter brown icing sugar). Add it gradually to the eggs and mix at a low speed.
Grind the walnuts (not too long; they need to remain flakey) and add them to the batter. Fold gently with a spatula until incorporated.
Pour the meringue over the jam and level it without pressing too much.
Bake for 40 minutes and check the top is not charring.
When ready and you have checked the walnut meringue and base are cooked throughout, let it cool slightly.
Use a medium-size drinking glass to cut the crescent moon shapes while still warm.
Enjoy the cute and tasty walnut meringue crescent cookies with a festive hot chocolate or a nice cappuccino!
Walnut Meringue Crescent Cookies
- 200 g organic coconut oil
- 5 egg yolks organic, medium
- 400 g plain flour organic, white
- 1 tsp baking powder flat
- 80 g coconut sugar organic
- 1 organic orange zest
- 1 pinch salt sea/rock
Organic strawberry jam
- 5 egg whites
- 120 g ground coconut sugar organic
- 150 g ground walnuts organic
- 1 pinch salt sea/rock
- 1 tbsp rum essence
To make the dough
- Add the coconut oil at room temperature, a pinch of salt, orange zest, and coconut sugar in a large mixing bowl. Use a handheld mixer and the dough hooks to mix at a low speed.
- Add the egg yolks one by one and continue mixing.
- Sieve the flour and baking powder over and mix until it incorporates nicely.
- If the dough becomes too firm, add a spoon or two of milk and mix. Optionally, chill the dough for half an hour.
- Move the dough into a lined baking tray and level it by pressing gently with your wet hands.
- Spread the jam over and level it nicely with a spatula.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (356°F) and line the baking tray with a silicone sheet or baking parchment.
- Batter the egg whites with a pinch of salt at high speed until stiff. Use a grinder to finely grind the coconut sugar (until you obtain a powdered, lighter brown icing sugar). Add it gradually to the eggs and mix at a low speed.
- Grind the walnuts (not too long; they need to remain flakey) and add them to the batter. Fold gently with a spatula until incorporated. Add the rum essence.
- Pour the meringue over the jam and level it without using too much pressure.
- Bake for 40 minutes and check the top is not charring.
- When the baking time is up, use a toothpick to check that the walnut meringue and base are cooked thoroughly.
- Keeping the parchment/silicone sheet, move the cake from the tray to a cooling rack. Allow it to cool slightly.
- Move from the cooling rack to the tabletop and use a medium drinking glass to cut the crescent moon shapes while the cake is still warm.