cinnamon stars

Yet another family favorite recipe, from Chef Ricky’s great grandmother — cinnamon stars, aka “zimsterne.” These cookies are a classic holiday treat, generally served at the meal following Yom Kippur. I did not know this as a child, as I do not have a Jewish background…just that my mother made these awesome cookies for Christmas. This is a take on her grandmother’s favorite recipe.

Cinnamon Stars AKA "Zimsterne"


Cookie Dough

  • 1/2 lb about 2 cups Powdered Sugar
  • 2 Egg Whites
  • 1/2 lb about 3 cups Almond Meal/Flour
  • 2 heaping Tbsp Cinnamon
  • Pinch Kosher Salt


  • 2 Egg Whites
  • 5 Tbsp Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar


  1. Combine cinnamon & ground almonds (you can get creative and add some other holiday flavors like nutmeg & cloves as well).
  2. Beat egg whites & a pinch of salt until very foamy. Slowly add in powdered sugar and continue to beat on high until stiff peaks form. Fold in cinnamon/almond combo until well combined. The mixture will be thick, and not as fluffy and a meringue - but keep beating on high and it will form stiff peaks.
  3. Turn out onto board generously dusted with powdered sugar, generously dust top of dough with more powdered sugar. Roll out to about 1/4 inch thick. Cut with a cookie cutter dusted in powdered sugar (traditionally uses a star).
  4. Prepare the topping: Beat the egg whites & cream of tartar until foamy. Then gradually add the granulated sugar until stiff peaks form.
  5. Pipe a dollop of topping on center of each cookie.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees F for 12-15 minutes on top rack of oven. They will be puffy and the topping will be golden brown.

Recipe Notes

Yield: approximately 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

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