Especially now that I am rapidly approaching the 3/4-century mark, I am accepting that there are easier ways of doing things than the ways I've been using for ages. Something that I've figured out this week has cut a couple of hours off of the time it takes me to make Mushkatzoni cookies. In case anyone is interested in following my (lazy) example, I'll describe what I did.
The instructions given in the posting (link, above) include, "Form [the "dough" *] into logs (I use a small cookie dough scoop and keep my hands damp to minimize the amount of mixture that clings to my hands. Place on a greased cooking sheet (or use cooking parchment), and flatten, slightly." Note that each cookie is hand-formed, separately. By the time I get through hand-forming 96 cookies (I habitually make double batches because I have no small mixing bowl for my mixer), my back is giving me fits. As I am just getting over a weeks-long battle with sciatica, I don't need more problems with my back. BUT...we must have our cookies!
For the 96 cookies (plus or minus) that I baked, yesterday, I lined a jelly-roll pan with waxed paper, plopped the "dough" onto the paper, smooshed the "dough" out with my hands, put another sheet of waxed paper on top, and rolled the "dough" out to completely fill the bottom of the pan. Next, I up-ended the jelly-roll pan onto the counter, placed the now-upper layer of waxed paper under the now-lower layer (to provide a double layer of waxed paper under the "dough"), and proceeded to cut the "dough" into strips in one direction and cross-cut those strips to provide the desired cookie size (see photo, below).
This (below) is what the cookies look like on the parchment-covered cookie sheet (baking sheet to you real cooks) before baking...
and (below) after.
The cookies look a little different than when hand-formed; but, my back thanks me! A note on cutting: I used the edge of an old single-layered cookie sheet to cut with. (Most of my pans are double-layered with air core.) Very quick cutting since the sheet was a bit longer than the length of the jelly-roll pan (and thus of the "dough").
* "dough" is in quotes because I associate the word with flour and there is no flour in these cookies - well...except for within the bread crumbs!
The Rest of the Story:
The first ingredient in these cookies is egg white - 4 egg whites for 96 cookies. I make a practice of cooking the yolks and placing them, on a fallen tree trunk out by the creek, for the critters to chow down on. Usually, I microwave the yolks in a special little egg poaching contraption, being careful to puncture each yolk in a couple of places to lessen the explosions. Yesterday, I decided to place the yolks in a 1/2-pint, wide-mouthed jar to save room in the dishwasher. Unfortunately, I failed to poke holes in the yolks. You can predict the mess that I made - especially when I tell you that the lid was just a plastic, un-grooved lid that sat atop the jar. When it "blew!" I was just starting to mix the sugar into the egg whites. I kept the mixer going and kept working with the cookies - only stopping to clean up the mess when the cookies went into the oven to bake.
The photo doesn't really make the mess look as bad as it looked in person; but, cleanup was relatively easy because 1) most of the yolks were completely cooked before they hit whatever surface got in the way of their flight, and 2) the microwave is relatively small so that I could tip it back to more easily clean its ceiling (and the turntable comes out for cleaning).