Belgian cookie, offered on airlines, sold in France branded Lu Bastogne, etc.
|1½ cups (7½ ounces)||all-purpose flour|
|5 tsp||ground cinnamon|
|1 tsp||ground cardamom|
|¼ tsp||ground cloves|
|¼ tsp||baking soda|
|¼ tsp||baking powder|
|¾ cup (6 ounces)||turbinado sugar|
|8 tbsp||unsalted butter, cut into ½" pieces and chilled|
For the proper flavor, we strongly recommend using turbinado sugar (commonly sold as Sugar in the Raw). If you can’t find it, use ¾ cup white, granulated sugar plus 2 tbsp (6 ounces) of packed light brown sugar and skip the sugar grinding in step 2. In step 3, use a rolling pin and a combination of rolling and a smearing motion to form a rectangle. If the dough spreads beyond the rectangle, trim it and use the scraps to fill in the corners; then, replace the parchment and continue to roll. Do not use cookie molds or an embossed rolling pin for the speculoos; they will not hold decorations.
Whisk flour, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, baking soda, baking powder and salt together in bowl. Using pencil and ruler, draw 10" by 12" rectangle in center of each of 2 large sheets of parchment paper, crisscrossing lines at corners. (Use criss-crosses to help line up top and bottom sheets as dough is rolled.)
Add sugar to food processor. Add butter and process until uniform mass forms and no large pieces of butter are visible, about 30 seconds, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Add egg and process until smooth and paste-like, about 10 seconds, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Add flour mixture and process until no dry flour remains but mixture remains crumbly, about 30 seconds, scraping down sides of bowl as needed.
Transfer dough to bowl and knead gently with spatula until uniform and smooth, about 10 seconds. Place 1 piece of parchment on counter with pencil side facing down (you should be able to see rectangle through paper). Place dough in center of marked rectangle and press into 6" by 9" rectangle. Place second sheet of parchment over dough, with pencil side facing up, so dough is in center of marked rectangle. Using pencil marks as guide, use rolling pin and bench scraper to shape dough into 10" by 12" rectangle of even ⅜" thickness. Transfer dough with parchment to rimmed baking sheet. Refrigerate until dough is firm, at least 1½ hours (or freeze for 30 minutes). (Rolled dough can be wrapped in plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 5 days.)
Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower‑middle positions and heat oven to 300 degrees. Line 2 rimless baking sheets with parchment. Transfer chilled dough to counter. Gently peel off top layer of parchment from dough. Using fluted pastry wheel (or sharp knife or pizza cutter) and ruler, trim off rounded edges of dough that extend over marked edges of 10" by 12" rectangle. Cut dough lengthwise into 8 equal strips about 1¼" wide. Cut each strip crosswise into 4 equal pieces about 3" long. Transfer cookies to prepared sheets, spacing them at least ½" apart. Bake until cookies are lightly and evenly browned, 30 to 32 minutes, switching and rotating sheets halfway through baking. Let cookies cool completely on sheets, about 20 minutes. (Cookies can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 weeks.)