Celebrate ‘National Wine Day’ With Themed-Cookies

FARGO – That sound you’re hearing today is the sound of wine lovers everywhere celebrating the glory of their favorite beverage. Maybe they’re toasting one another or maybe just saying “ahhhh” as they sip their favorite Pinot Grigio or Merlot.

Today – May 25th – is National Wine Day. What a glorious time to be alive. This, of course, is not to be confused with its sister holiday, “National Drink Wine Day” on Feb. 18. Are people just making up these holidays as an excuse to have a glass of wine with lunch? Who am I to judge?

I like wine, but I wouldn’t say I’m a wine connoisseur. I’ll have a glass or two of white wine, but honestly a lot of wine gives me headaches. You know what doesn’t give me a headache? Cookies. So I figured – rather than try to pretend I’m a wine expert – I would offer up a couple of ways to celebrate National Wine Day by baking a couple of different kinds of cookies – one that contains wine, the other that just looks like it should.

The first is a Chilean recipe for wine cookies from blogger Pilar Hernandez. The cookies contain about a ½ cup of white wine and very little butter and sugar. The cookies are dusted in sugar but are still not very sweet. In fact, I would almost recommend these heated with a little butter to be served alongside a cup of coffee for breakfast. I only tasted the slightest of wine flavors in the cookie (I used a Riesling). It was crispy and had an almost biscotti-like texture.

The second recipe is actually just a sugar cookie decorated to look like a wine glass –  it doesn’t contain wine. I found a wine glass-shaped cookie cutter on Amazon for $4 and while I made homemade sugar cookie dough, I don’t see why you couldn’t use the store bought tube kind. The “wine” in the glass is made with royal icing mixed with food coloring to look like either red or white wine. I tried to make cute little wine charms, but admittedly I struggled with that.

But how cute would it be to make these for a bridal shower and put everyone’s name on a wine charm on the cookie? I wish you well with that. I tried to embellish these glasses more, but then I decided I’d rather relax and have a glass of wine.  

Chilean Wine Cookies

Serves: 28 to 30 cookies
Ingredients:
3 1/2 to 4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup powdered sugar
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
1/2 cup white wine
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Directions:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, sift together 3 1/2 cups flour, powdered sugar and imperial powders. Add salt and stir to mix. In a bowl, mix the oil, wine, vanilla, 1 egg and 1 egg yolk; stir to mix (5 seconds). Save the egg white for painting the  cookies. Pour the oil mixture over the sifted dry ingredients and stir with a spoon initially, then use your hands. Knead until dough is formed. If you need to add more flour, add 1/4 cup more each time. Roll half of the dough on the floured counter and give it a rectangular shape; cut as shown in the picture. Make strips 10 inches long approximately ¾ an inch wide. Pinch 3 strips together and braid. Repeat with remaining dough. Paint the braids with egg white and sprinkle with sugar.

Place on baking sheet covered with parchment paper and bake for 20 to 22 minutes until golden. Cool on a rack and store in airtight tin for up to 1 week.
Recipe courtesy of enmicocinahoy.com.

Wine Glass Cookies
Serves: 24
Ingredients:
6 tablespoons soft, unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla or almond extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Cream the butter and sugar together until pale, then beat in the egg and vanilla or almond. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the butter and eggs, and mix gently. If you think the finished mixture is too sticky to be rolled out, add more flour but do so sparingly as too much will make the dough tough. Form into a fat disk, wrap in plastic wrap and let rest in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

Sprinkle a suitable surface with flour, place disk of dough on it and sprinkle a little more flour on top of that. Then roll it out to a thickness of about ¼ inch. Cut into shapes, dipping the cutter into flour as you go. Place the cookies a little apart on two parchment- or silpat-lined baking sheets. Bake for 8 to 12 minutes. Remove the cookies with a flat, preferably flexible, spatula to a wire rack. Let cool while you make the glossy royal icing.

Glossy Royal Icing
Ingredients:
1/4 cup warm water
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
3 cups confectioners’ sugar, or more as needed
Directions:
Stir warm water, corn syrup and almond extract together in a small bowl until corn syrup and extract have dissolved. Place confectioners’ sugar into a separate bowl and add liquid ingredients. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed until royal icing is smooth. Set aside about ½ cup of icing to use for lining the wine glasses. Add food coloring to the rest until you reach a red or white wine color. Carefully, pipe onto cookies.

Cut Out Cookie recipe altered from Nigella Lawson/FoodNetwork.com
Glossy Royal Icing recipe altered from Bevangelista/All recipes.com