by Heather Harris-Brady
I made these for a different appetizer with wine but they would also make a really nice tea savory. You probably have the ingredients for the wafers in your cupboard, and they go together really quickly – about 15 minutes from start to finish.
I used a goat cheese with honey here, but they are delicious plain as well. Just make sure you store them in an air-tight tin. This recipe is an old favorite of mine from my 1977 edition of The Joy of Cooking – which longtime readers will know is the first cookbook I ever owned, and the start of my cookbook addiction!
Walnut Wafers, Makes about 80 thin wafers
1/2 c. butter
1 c. powdered sugar
1 t. vanilla (you can omit this for a savory)
1-3/4 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 c. milk
1 c. finely chopped walnuts or pecans
Lightly grease two large cookie sheets or jelly-roll pans and put them in the refrigerator to chill. Preheat the oven to 325.
Cream the butter and the sugar together. Add the vanilla if you’re using it, then add the flour alternately in batches with the milk. Beating between each addition.
Take the cookie sheets out the refrigerator and spread them with dough. At first the dough will want to roll around but keep working it. You’ll achieve a zen-like state where it will spread nicely in a most relaxing way. It needs to be THIN. If you can’t see the cookie sheet through it it’s too thick, and thick means chewy, which we don’t want. We want thin and crackly.
Score the dough into squares. Scatter the chopped walnuts or pecans over the dough and press them in slightly. Put the sheets in the oven and bake for 5-7 minutes or until barely brown.
Remove the wafers from the oven and break them apart quickly along the score lines before they cool, while they are still pliable. They will crisp up quickly.
To serve, arrange the wafers on a plate or serving dish. Crumble goat cheese over the top and drizzle with honey. Scatter with thyme leaves.