When I made this recipe the sun had been gone for far too long and I was really starting to crave autumn flavours. As I’m writing this up now we’re having the first warm day in weeks – who knows, maybe we’re in the middle of a heatwave by the time you’re reading this! But one thing is certain, there’s never a bad time for a soft spice cookie.
Spice cookies are one of my favourite things to eat, the flavour is so warm and moreish, and they always have a super soft texture (think gingerbread). I’ve had such a craving for cardamom and honey lately, they’re both beautiful and strong flavours that pair together so perfectly.
This recipe is basically like gingerbread’s older, cooler sibling. It’s the classic spice cookie you know and love, just with a slightly more grown up flavour profile.
I was inspired by a recipe from Fine Cooking, but of course I just had to change a few things up to make it exactly what I was craving. The addition of the salted honey icing really helps to balance the sweetness in this recipe, although one of the things I actually love about these cookies is that they’re not overly sweet.
One thing I will say about this recipe is that it makes so. many. cookies. I’m talking over 40, it’s kind of insane. The recipe does call for you to split the batch in half, so you can always freeze one half for up to 3 months and have cookies anytime you choose with less of the work!
Alternatively, these actually last a really long time in a biscuit tin and just get softer and more delicious with time, so it’s totally up to you whether you make them all at once and feast on cookies, or save half the dough for cookies at a later date. Anyways, less chatting, more baking!
What you’ll need (makes around 42 cookies):
For the cookies:
- 384g plain flour
- 1 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 128g unsalted butter
- 96g granulated sugar
- 32g honey
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
For the icing:
- 60g icing sugar
- 2 tbsp milk
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1/4 tsp salt
- whole nutmeg (optional)
- flaky sea salt (optional)
How to make:
- In a medium mixing bowl, add the flour, cardamom, salt and bicarb and whisk until well combined.
- In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the honey, egg and vanilla paste and beat for a further minute until fully combined.
- Begin adding the dry mixture to the wet a little at a time, folding together with a rubber spatula until just combined. Repeat until all of the dry mixture has been used and a dough has formed.
- Split the dough in half and wrap in clingfilm, shaping into a round and flat disc. Refrigerate until firm for about 1-1/2 hours, or, if you’re in a hurry, freeze for about 20 minutes. If you only want to use half the mixture then at this point you can leave one half of the dough in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- Preheat the oven to 170ºC, and line a few baking trays with baking paper.
- Once chilled, remove one of the doughs from the fridge/freezer and transfer to a well-floured work surface (this dough is prone to stick, so prepare to use a lot of flour). Flour a rolling pin and, working one at a time, roll the dough out to about 1/4-1/8″ thick for super soft cookies (go thinner for crunchier cookies).
- Using a well-floured, 3″ round cookie cutter (or whatever shape and size your little heart desires), cut out the cookies and transfer to the baking sheets. Repeat, rerolling the dough until it’s all used. If using both halves of the dough, you’ll probably need to bake these in batches, so bake the first lot whilst you roll out the second dough.
- Bake the cookies for 9-11 minutes, rotating halfway through for even browning. Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool for 10 minutes.
- Whilst the cookies are cooling, prepare the icing. In a small bowl, whisk together the icing sugar, milk, honey, vanilla and salt, adding more icing sugar or milk to reach your desired thickness. You want it to be thin enough to drizzle but thick enough to hold its shape.
- Once cooled, drizzle the icing over the cookies in any kind of design you like. Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg and a sprinkle of sea salt, if desired.
These cookies may just be my new favourite, and you can bet I’ll be making them all through autumn and winter. The cardamom brings such a unique flavour, it’s warm and spicy but with a hint of citrus that really lifts everything, and the floral sweetness of the honey pairs perfectly. I promise these will go down a treat with everyone you know.
I hope you guys enjoyed this post, let me know if you try out this recipe and what you think of it! See you next time,