Saturday, January 25, 2014

Recipe: Dahlia butter cookies (Kuih Semperit) (CNY)

With my two good kitchen assistants, we've been baking CNY cookies almost every weekend. Last weekend, we made both pineapple nastar rolls as well as these Dahlia cookies, sometimes also known as cherry cookies or simply butter cookies. I chose this cookie because I like the pretty dahlia flower shape. In Malay, this cookie is called kuih semperit.

Dahlia cookies, aka kuih semperit

In order to make this cookie, you have to buy a plastic piping nozzle (it will be usually be labelled kuih semperit on the packaging). To make this, simply mix all the ingredients into a smooth dough and put into the piping nozzle and pipe out these flowers. As they say, practice makes perfect and after a few tries, we piped out nicely-shaped dainty little flowers. It is then decorated with cherries to resemble a flower.  I did not use food coloring, hence my flowers are a pale yellow post-baking. 

Pipe them straight on the baking tray

These cookies taste better once it is cooled completely, and left for at least 12 hours. They are buttery, with a distinctive taste from the rose essence. Baby C also likes it cos it's pretty, and she helped me style the cookies for this post. :) Right after our photoshoot, she popped about 8 of these cookies into her mouth and said "YUMMY"!

A short video on how to pipe these dahlia cookies

Dahlia butter cookies (Kuih semperit)
Recipe by Baby Sumo, adapted from Joyce
Preparation time: 40 minutes
Cooking time: 22-24 mins
Makes 90

125g butter, softened at room temperature
70g icing sugar
170g plain flour
20g custard flour
60g cornflour
1 egg yolk
1/4 tsp rose essence (or vanilla extract)
1 tsp broken cherries

1. Preheat oven to 150°C (no fan). Sift the plain flour, custard flour and cornflour in a large bowl. Line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper.

2. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and icing sugar for about 5 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add in egg yolk, and rose essence (or vanilla), and mix until combined.

3. Add in the flour (from Step 1) and mix until you get a soft dough. Turn off the machine.

4. Using the piping nozzle, pipe out the dough on to the tray. See video for instructions - pipe the dough out then twist to "cut".

5. Decorate with a piece of cherry in the centre. Press lightly.

Ready for the oven

6. Bake in preheated oven for 22-24 minutes, the cookies should not be browned when it's done. Cool in pan for 2-3 minutes, remove cookies and cool completely on wire rack. Store in airtight container.

I am submitting this post to the Bake-Along event #57: CNY cookies hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours,lena of Frozen Wings and Zoe of Bake for Happy Kids. You can link your post at one of the hosts page.

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  1. Such pretty cookies..always love to see your kids participate in the cooking/baking. Hopefully my daughter will join me someday soon.

  2. I don't think I've ever tried rose flavoured cookies so these sound intriguing! :D

  3. So cantik looking cookies , love the idea of rose essence in these lovely cookies . Well done to both mini chefs ! ;)

  4. Very pretty, your little chefs are doing a really great job!

  5. this would be another major hit for my family for CNY! they're coming up to KL on wednesday, and i hope they bring butter cookies too! lovely pics of the cookies and your ever-wonderful assistants! :D

  6. I love these - used to enjoy the ones made by a late aunt of mine. She was very rough/coarse and would pump hard so her dahlias were huge!!! I liked that! Big is beautiful! LOL!!!

  7. Yen, these cookies are so pretty! I'll have to KIV for next CNY. No time for cookies this year :(

  8. So pretty! I did try these too but without little helpers so not so great looking lol! Taste wise, I still prefer the german butter cookies.

  9. Hi Yen,
    Your kids are very good at piping! Baking talents runs in the family! :)
    My cookies are all gone, might be baking some tomorrow, not sure yet, as I am rather tired from all the baking lately! Otherwise I'll give grab a jar from my sister!

  10. Hi Yen,

    I have bookmarked Joyce's recipe too but running out of time to do anymore CNY baking. Love to try this recipe next year... Hopefully, my assistant will be as capable as yours :D


  11. wow, your daughter helped you to style the cookies? tell her that i find the styling is very nice, clever girl! :) btw, the colour of the cookies seems alright to me

  12. hihi,wow baby girl can baked the cookies so deliciously.I think I should try too :p.
    Btw,may i know how to control the heat so it would not turn out burning at the bottom?or any suggestion type of oven to use? thank you very much.

    1. Hi Ann, for this bake you need to use 150C (no fan) setting. I am using a built-in oven and I usually bake cookies on the 2nd level (from bottom). The cooking time is a guideline as each oven is different, so keep an eye so that the cookies will not overbrown too much. Once you are familiar with your oven, baking will get a lot easier! Good luck and happy baking!

  13. can i know what is the egg yolk use for?

    1. is it use to give the yellowish colour of the cookies?


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