You can't have Christmas without these traditional Polish kifli (kiflies). These Eastern European walnut cookies are delicate, buttery, and perfect for any time of year. But if you're looking for an easy and melt-in-your-mouth dessert to celebrate holidays, this recipe is exactly what you need!
Prepare dry ingredients: Using a food processor or a pastry blender, blend the butter into the flour, creating a coarse, crumb-like consistency.
Prepare wet ingredients: Mix the egg yolks and sour cream in a large bowl.
Make the Dough: Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture. Blend and knead lightly until the consistency is like a pie dough. Shape into small, walnut-sized balls, cover, and refrigerate for at least an hour.
Meanwhile, beat the egg whites until fluffy. Add ⅓ of the sugar at a time and beat until well blended and the mixture is stiff.
Gently fold in the ground nuts.
Coat the dough balls: Whisk together two tablespoons of all-purpose flour and two tablespoons of sugar in a medium bowl. Take half of the dough balls out of the refrigerator and roll them into the flour/sugar mixture. Keep the rest chilled.
Roll the dough:Roll the balls out on a small amount of flour/sugar mixture into a thin circle.
Fill the dough: Place a heaping teaspoon of filling on each dough circle and roll it up into a crescent shape. Pinch the ends tightly - place seam-side down on a parchment paper-lined or greased cookie sheet.
Repeat the above steps with the rest of the dough and filling.
Bake the cookies: Bake kiflies in an oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 to 15 minutes. Cool slightly.
Coat the cookies: Roll the warm cookies in a bowl of confectioners' (powdered) sugar.
Add a teaspoon of rum, vanilla extract, cinnamon, or lemon zest to the filling if you prefer.
Roll the dough into walnut-size or smaller. You can also tear the dough into 24 equal-size pieces and then roll it into balls.
Make sure to roll your dough very thin, or it will puff up and crack.
Some filling might come out. No worries, there will still be enough left in the cookies.
For nut allergies, replace the walnut with almonds or use your favorite jam or pastry fruit filling.
Bake the cookies on two large cookie sheets on a convection setting or bake in batches.
This recipe can be easily doubled or tripled.
You will have leftover filling. You can try to cut the filling in two-thirds or half. I always use the excess filling to make meringues. See the recipe in the FAQs section of the post above.
For more helpful tips, see the post above.
Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary significantly based on the products used.
Storage:Store the kiflies in a cool place in an airtight container for up to seven days.Freeze baked and cooled cookies but not covered in sugar. Remove from the freezer, lay them on the counter for 2 hours to thaw, and then dust with powdered sugar if desired.Notes:If you're returning for this recipe, you will notice that I have cut the ingredients in half, but you can easily multiply them per your needs. I changed the refrigeration of the dough from overnight to one hour. I find that it works out better, and it's quicker. But, if you need to, you can still make it ahead.I also tested using regular sugar instead of powder in the filling and haven't noticed a big difference. The original filling with powdered sugar was a bit runny, but it could be that I didn't beat it long enough. So, you can use either.