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Oktoberfest cookies rich with German flair

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White Beer Cookies

24 ounces Belgian white beer

5 tablespoons honey

3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature1

1/4 cups powdered sugar

1 large egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

zest of one orange

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, reduce beer and honey, skimming occasionally, until you have about 1/3 cup of liquid or when it begins aggressively foaming. Let cool to room temperature.

Meanwhile, cream the butter and sugar together. Mix in the egg. Then add the vanilla, orange zest, and beer reduction and blend again.

Mix the flour and baking soda together then slowly add to the batter.

Scoop mounds of cookies onto an aluminum cookie sheet lined with parchment. Make sure you do not overcrowd the cookies; you should be able to fit about 12 cookies on a half sheet pan.

Bake for 15-20 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the cookie sheet until they are cool enough (about 10 minutes) to transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

For the icing

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup powdered sugar

1 tablespoon orange juice

1 tablespoon whole milk

zest of one orange

Whisk the vanilla and the sugar together in a medium bowl. In another bowl, mix the orange juice and milk together. Add milk and orange juice mixture to sugar. Stir in orange zest.

Drizzle icing on each cool cookie and spread it over the top.

Adapted from “White Beer Cookies,” Ultimate Recipe Showdown, FoodNetwork.com

Updated: October 26, 2013 6:10AM



You can’t hold an Oktoberfest celebration without beer. Technically, you can, but if you’re going to be traditional, it’s just not right to bend the beer rule.

The open air beer tents, the smell of sausage tinging the atmosphere, chipper oom-pah music and the clanking of frothy Pilsners in boot-shaped steins dictate a successful Oktoberfest. To mess with a beer-free zone is borderline dangerous — a food faux pas, if you will.

An oddity arises from the fact that there aren’t many beer-inspired Oktoberfest recipes — at least ones that make the cut for traditional Oktoberfest celebrations. For beer guzzlers, this probably isn’t a problem. Liquid form is good enough. But for non-beer drinkers, finding a way to celebrate formally could be a tough dilemma to tackle.

White beer cookies strike high in autumnal taste. Orange, vanilla and tones of honey flavor these buttery cookies, while a full 24-ounces of a crisp Belgian white beer offers a mild, yet flattering, depth to the batter.

For those looking for the density, the heaviness of other beer-inspired recipes like chili or beer-braised bratwursts, it’s not there. However, it is this airiness that makes this otherwise sweet sugar cookie a contender on the menu for an Oktoberfest celebration.

It isn’t heavy enough to draw away attention from weisswurst, sauerkraut or spaetzle; but its dessert-like characteristics, portability, German influence, and shelf-life that can withstand cooler biergarten temperatures make it a must-have on any Oktoberfest menu.

A simple sugar cookie recipe, these chewy treats can be adapted to fit the supplies of your cupboard. While a crisp, white beer is ideal to enhance the citrusy flavors, another seasonal beer or ale will offer its own unique take on the recipe. Substitute in a pumpkin ale or another craft beer sitting in the fridge to play around with the flavors. Or enjoy it as is.

Sweet and satisfying, the flavor is decidedly autumn and will make any Oktoberfest celebration worthwhile.



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