Rhubarb Celli Ripieni - Old School Jam Cookies from Abruzzo
Serves: about 28 cookies
for the pastry
  • 3⅓ cups all purpose flour
  • ½ cup plus 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup plus 4 tablespoons white wine
  • 2-3 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • pinch of sea salt
for the rhubarb filling and assembly
  • 5 medium stalks of rhubarb - sliced into small pieces
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • splash of vanilla extract or seeds from 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot
  • 1 tablespoon purified water
  • zest from 1 organic orange
  • ½ cup raw walnuts - chopped
  • small walnut pieces, cacao nibs or raisins - for the birds' eyes
  • powdered sugar or more arrowroot powder - for dusting the finished cookies (optional)
to make the pastry
  1. Mix all the pastry ingredients in a bowl until you have a smooth, elastic dough. Make sure not to overwork it. Tightly wrap the dough in plastic and let rest while preparing the rhubarb filling.
to make the rhubarb filling
  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the rhubarb, maple syrup, and vanilla. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Lower the heat to a simmer and let simmer for 10 minutes, until the rhubarb turns into a uniform, jam-like mixture. Turn off the heat.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the arrowroot with 1 tablespoon of water. Add the mixture to the rhubarb and mix it in vigorously, until the rhubarb jam starts to thicken. Let the jam cool completely.
  3. Mix in the orange zest and raw walnuts, and you're ready to assemble your cookies.
to make the cookies
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). Prepare 2 parchment paper-covered baking sheets.
  2. Divide your dough into two halves. Wrap one of the halves tightly with plastic wrap and set aside. On a well-floured surface, roll out the other half of the dough into a sheet about ⅛" in thickness.
  3. Use a round cookie cutter or a glass/bowl about 3½"-4" in diameter to cut out rounds. Reshape the remaining dough and cut out more, until you've used up all the dough. Keep the dough rounds covered with a kitchen towel while you work.
  4. Place about 1 tablespoon of rhubarb jam in the center of a dough round. Fold it in half and pinch together the edges, like a dumpling. Shape one of the dumpling edges into a bird's head with a pinched out beak. Press a walnut piece, cacao nib, or raisin into the head, where the bird's eye would be. Shape the opposite edge of the dumpling into a tail by flattening it. Use kitchen scissors to cut the beak in half, cut some feathers into the tail, as well as cut some wing marks along the bird cookie's body. Refer to the instructional gif above for a visual. Place the cookie on the prepared baking sheet. Continue with the rest of the dough.
  5. Bake the cookies, one tray at a time, for about 30-40 minutes, until lightly golden. Start checking at 20 minutes. Let cool. Dust the cookies with powdered sugar or arrowroot powder, if desired, and serve.
Recipe by Golubka Kitchen at https://golubkakitchen.com/rhubarb-celli-ripieni-old-school-jam-cookies-from-abruzzo/