Passover Nothings aka Egg Kichel (Cookies)

This is my recipe for Passover cookies. For most, they’re probably known as Kichel or Egg Kichel. Others might know them as Bowtie Cookies. In my hometown (Winnipeg) these are Nothings. Yep. That’s what we’ve always called them. Nothings.

I wish I could tell you why they are called Nothings, but I don’t know the real reason. But I can speculate.. They may be called Nothings because they’re very light and melt in your mouth and are almost like nothing… Another reason may be because they’re made with very simple ingredients.. nothing much.

Whatever you call them, I love them. I bake Nothings all year round and when I was in the kosher catering business, I baked thousands and thousands of them. But the Passover version, in my opinion, is even more delicious than the regular version. They’re lighter and more delicate. Crisp and airy, lightly sweetened and perfect with a cup of tea or coffee.

Note – The directions call for beating the eggs in the mixer for 10 minutes, then 5 minutes after you add the oil and another 5 after you add the sugar. It’s a lot. I know. But I do it. I start the mixer and set the timer and it works. 😉 I’ve seen a number of recipes that result in flat cookies/crackers. That’s not how I want these cookies. They puff up, and you need to bake them long enough and dry them out so they don’t collapse.

Passover Nothings aka Egg Kichel (Cookies)

Light and crisp, Passover Nothings/Kichel melt in your mouth.

These can be kept in the freezer for a few weeks. Pack them carefully in an air-tight container because they’re very delicate. The recipe makes 24-30 cookies.

Ingredients

  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup oil (canola, sunflower, safflower, grape seed, or other light oil)
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar plus more for rolling the dough in
  • 5 oz./ 140 grams cake meal (1 cup)
  • 1 2/3 oz. / 45 grams potato starch (1/4 cup)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. In a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat the eggs on high for 10 minutes.
  3. Add the oil and beat for another 5 minutes.
  4. Add the sugar and beat for another 5 minutes.
  5. Add the cake meal and potato starch and beat for another 2-3 minutes, until the dough is well combined and thickened.
  6. Pour about 1 cup of sugar onto a plate and spread it out into an even layer. Use two spoons or a small ice cream scoop to drop balls of dough onto the sugar. I like to use a 1-ounce (2 Tbsp.) ice cream scoop.
  7. Roll the balls of dough in the sugar, then form the ball into a log, making sure each one is covered in a light layer of sugar. Gently twist the centre of each log, forming a ‘bow-tie’.
  8. Place the Nothings on 2 baking sheets lined with parchment paper. You should leave about 1 inch between each cookie.
  9. Bake for 20 minutes, then turn the trays around, switch the bottom tray with the top tray, and bake another 20 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the Nothings in the oven until cooled. If you’re baking these for the first time, before turning the oven off, check one cookie. First, they should be golden-brown. Next, break one in half. It should be the same colour all the way through the cookie. If it’s much darker in the middle, it’s not baked enough and will collapse when it cools. If the very centre (or just outside a hollow centre) is just slightly darker, they’re done and you can turn the oven off. They’ll continue to bake just a bit and dry out as the oven cools.
  10. Once cooled, gently transfer the Nothings to an air-tight container. They can stay in a container on the counters for a few days, or freeze them for a few weeks.

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