1 cup unsalted butter
1 tbs vegetable shortening (spry)
4 eggs separated (egg whites in one bowl, egg yolks in another bowl)
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
4 tsp baking powder
4 cups soft or all purpose flour (you may need a little more or less)
1 cup sugar
1. Ensure that your butter and eggs are at room temperature. Beat the sugar, butter and spry with an electric mixer. Add the egg yolks one at a time while continuing to mix. Add the vanilla in the butter mixture.
2. Beat the egg whites until they form medium peaks in a separate bowl.
3. Mix the baking powder and flour together.
4. Alternate adding the flour mixture and egg white mixture to the butter mixture. At this stage, use your hand to mix together the ingredients, ensuring that the ingredients are incorporated by folding them into together. Add enough flour (this could be a little less than the 4 cups or a little more) until the dough is manageable.
5. Take little pieces of dough and shape into ropes, as thick as your little finger about 20cm long. Fold it in half and twirl the ends together, creating a twist. Not you can really make any shape that you want – even little round flat cookies. Traditional shapes tend to be an “s-shape”, braids or a twisted shape.
6. Place the cookies on baking paper on a tray. Brush the top with egg wash. Bake for about 25 to 27 minutes, until the cookies are golden brown. Lasts in a cookie jar for about 2 weeks.