Russian Tea Cakes


Tea Cakes

Tea Cakes

  • 2 cups ( 10 ounces ) all purpose flour
  • 2 cups ( 8 ounces ) walnuts
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 Tablespoons brandy or rum
  • 16 Tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1  1/2 cups powdered sugar




  1. In food processor, pulse 1 cup walnuts, flour and salt until walnuts are coarsely chopped, about 5 pulses. Transfer to a medium bowl.
  2. Process remaining 1 cup walnuts in now empty processor until texture of coarse cornmeal, about 15 seconds.  Add liquor and process until paste forms, about 5 seconds.
  3. Using stand mixer fixed with paddle, beat butter and granulated sugar on medium high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add walnut paste and beat until combined.
  5. Reduce speed to low, slowly adding flour mixture, and mix until just combined.
  6. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator until firm, 1 hour.



Preheat oven to 375

  1. Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower middle positions.
  2. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  3. Working with 1 Tablespoons dough at a time, roll into balls and space them 1 1/2 inches apart on prepared pans.
  4. Bake until edges are lightly browned, 12-14 minutes, switching and rotating sheets halfway through baking.
  5. Let cookies cool on sheets for 10 minutes.
  6. Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely or slide parchment with cookies on them to a flat surface to cool, about 45 minutes.
  7. Place powdered sugar in a shallow dish and toss cooled cookies to coat.


About 4 dozen  cookies

Mom used to make these cookies  for all occasions: Christmas, Easter, graduations… This is my take on these cookies taken from the American Test  Kitchen Cookbook.  These are very light and airy and most of the brandy/rum bakes out of these in the hot oven.  But this  cookie is what I remember from my childhood… a favorite.  These are also called Mexican Wedding Cookies.

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