Langues de Chat are crisp, buttery cookies with an unusual look and name – but with a delicious flavor that is well worth trying. The name translates to “cat tongues” and is a reference to the fact that the long, thin cookies are roughly the same shape as the tongue of a cat. They are always pale in the center with a golden brown, caramelized edge that runs evenly around the outside of the cookie. While some specialty stores carry molds for making this type of cookie, you only need a regular baking sheet and a piping bag to make them easily at home.
The dough for these cookies is a vanilla butter cookie dough made with a fair amount of sugar, which contributes sweetness and aids in getting perfectly browned edges. They use confectioners’ sugar, rather than granulated sugar, so the dough has a very fine texture to it. The dough is thick, but soft, and it is put into a pastry bag fitted with a round tip and piped onto the baking sheet. Piping the cookies – I like to use a 1-cm or 3/8-inch tip, but a bit larger (up to 1/2-inch) is ok, too – ensures that your cookies come out looking straight and even.
I have seen these cookies in a variety of shapes and, while all are long and thin, some are longer than others. I like to make these about 3-inches long, or a little bit less. I find that the proportions of the cookie are nice that way, and it is also easy to control how much the cookies brown. Larger cookies are a little bit more difficult to bake evenly and you want all of these to look identical, if possible.
The cookies will cool quickly and they are ready to eat as soon as they have cooled. They are crisp, with a wonderfully buttery snap to them that makes them surprisingly addictive. If you want to dress them up, drizzle them with a little melted chocolate or dip the ends in chocolate and chopped nuts. Otherwise, simply store them in an airtight container and snack away!
Langues de Chat Cookies
7 tbsp butter, room temperature
3/4 cup + 1 tbsp confectioners’ sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
2 egg whites
1 cup all purpose flour
Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
In a large bowl, beat together butter and confectioners’ sugar until light. Beat in vanilla, salt and egg whites, followed by the flour. Mix until batter is very smooth, then transfer batter to a piping bag fitted with a 1-cm or 3/8-inch round tip.
Pipe the batter onto prepared baking sheet in lines that are 2 1/2 to 3-inches long. Leave at least 1-inch between the cookies to allow for spread.
Bake cookies for 6-7 minutes, or until golden all around the outer edge of the cookie (centers should still be pale). If your oven bakes unevenly, rotate the pan 3/4 of the way though the baking time.
Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool before serving.
Makes about 48.