Bake This: Shortcrust Crescent Cookies with Turkish Delight

May 2024

article & photos by Renata Haidle

Every Mother’s Day, my children and I have a sweet little exchange: they buy me flowers, and I bake them goodies. It’s one of my ways to express love and gratitude for the precious gift of being their mother. It might be because that was my own mother’s love language. Mom and I spent countless hours in her tiny kitchen, where she was doing most of the work, while I was more of a chatty cheerleader and, at times, clumsy assistant.  

These crescent cookies were a favorite then and still are today. I prefer them rolled with Turkish delight, but they can be filled with chocolate, jam, hazelnut paste, or walnuts. 

Full disclosure: the recipe is easy but a bit time-consuming. Elena Hert of European Baked Delights, a small home business in Billings, made a batch for me to photograph before this issue went to print. And I'm happy to report that they tasted just like the crescent cookies of my childhood.  

  • 2 egg yolks 
  • 1 Cup powdered sugar 
  • 1 Cup cold butter cut into small cubes 
  • 2 Cups all-purpose flour 
  • ¼ teaspoon salt 
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla 
  • ½ pound Turkish Delight cut into thin strips 
  • 1 Cup powdered sugar for decorating
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. 
  2. In a large bowl, combine the butter and 1 Cup powdered sugar, using a pastry cutter or a fork.  
  3. Add the egg yolks one at a time and mix until incorporated.  
  4. Add the flour, salt, and vanilla and combine into a coarse dough. Do not overwork it.  
  5. Gather the dough and form a disk. Cover it in plastic wrap and place it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. 
  6. Remove the dough from the fridge and place it on a work surface lightly sprinkled with flour. Let it rest for 15-20 minutes until it becomes pliable enough to work with.  
  7. Roll the dough into a large square, no thicker than a quarter of an inch.  
  8. With a pizza cutter, slice the dough into equal triangles, about 4 inches tall each.  
  9. Place a piece of Turkish delight at the base of each triangle and roll towards the top, forming a small crescent shape.  
  10. Place the crescent cookies on a baking tray covered with parchment paper and bake at 350 F for 15 minutes.  
  11. Remove the cookies from the oven and let them cool on the tray. They will be very tender, so do not try to move them while they are hot.  
  12. Spread the remaining powdered sugar on a large dinner plate. Give the barely warm crescent cookies a quick roll in powdered sugar, and they are ready to serve. 

Originally printed in the May 2024 issue of Simply Local Magazine

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