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Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe You Need In Your Life

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Prepare for wide eyes and beaming smiles when it’s time for dessert with our crescent cookies recipe (cornulețe), and get ready to add a generous sprinkle of crescent moon-shaped magic to the dinner table.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies with powdered sugar served on a blue plate.

Cornulețe Crescent Cookies Recipe

Decadent to behold, crescent cookies are a real joy to serve up to family and dinner guests at celebrations, holidays, and gatherings.

Not only does their beautiful shape make for a centerpiece and talking point on the dinner table, but that combination of the rich, sweet filling and crumbly, buttery pastry is also so divine that you’ll find it hard not to go in for another cookie (and another)!

Cornulete Crescent Cookies with powdered sugar.

What are Cornulețe (Crescent Cookies)?

A beloved dessert of both Romanian cuisine and Moldovan cuisine, cornulețe are (as the English name suggests) crescent-shaped pastries, made from dough and, once filled, rolled length-ways to create a crescent shape, before being baked.

Our recipe uses sweet apricot jam, dried apricots, and walnuts for the filling. However, there are a wide range of fillings you can use, including various fruit jams, Turkish delight, dried fruits, and/or various nuts, so if you’re feeling adventurous, feel free to get creative with the filling.

These finger-sized pastries are traditionally often prepared for holidays, but we believe the fact they’re so soft and delicious is reason enough to make them at any time of the year!

Ingredients

To make cornulețe (crescent cookies), you’ll first need to assemble the following ingredients:

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe (ingredients on a wooden board).

Ingredients

  • Flour – 500 grams (450 grams (1lb) to go in the dough and 50 grams (6 tbsp) for prepping the dough)
  • Butter – 200 grams (7 oz)
  • Egg Yolks – 3 egg yolks
  • Sour Cream – 150 grams (5.2oz)
  • Baking Powder – 1 tsp
  • Lemon Peel – 1 tbsp
  • Salt – 1/2 tsp
  • Powdered Sugar – 130 grams (80 grams (~ 10 tbsp) for decorating and 50 grams (~ 6.5 tbsp) for the dough)
  • Walnuts – 80 grams (2.8oz)
  • Apricot Jam – 80 grams (2.8oz)
  • Dried Apricots – 80 grams (2.8oz)

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1 – Dice the cold butter in small cubes and add it to a bowl with the 3 egg yolks, salt, lemon peel, 50 grams ( ~6.5 tbsp) of powdered sugar, baking powder, and sour cream. Then, mix everything together.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (mixing the egg yolks, butter, salt, lemon peel, baking powder, sugar, and sour cream).

Step 2 – Add the 450 grams (1 lb) of sifted flour gradually and knead (first with a wooden spoon and then with your hands).

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (adding flour to the previous mixture).

Step 3 – Knead for about 10 minutes until the dough is elastic and doesn’t stick to the hands.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (kneaded dough).

Step 4 – Place the dough on a plate and cover the dough with cling film or plastic wrap, and transfer it to the fridge for about 30 minutes.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (kneaded dough covered with cling film and going into the fridge).

Step 5 – While the dough is chilling in the fridge, we’ll prepare the filling. Crush the walnuts (as shown below). Then, dice the dried apricots. Finally, mix the walnuts, diced dried apricots, and apricot jam to make your filling.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (crushed walnuts).

Step 6 – After the dough has rested in the fridge for 30 minutes, take it out and cut it into 4 equal parts, then roll them into round balls.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (cold dough separated into 4 balls).

Step 7 – Now, using a rolling pin, roll each ball into a very thin layer (of about 2-3 mm) and a diameter of 30-32 cm (about 12 inches). Make sure to dust the surface with flour before rolling so the dough doesn’t stick.

Cut each layer into 16 parts (as shown below). At the base of each part, place about a teaspoon of filling and then roll each part (as shown below). Finally, place each rolled pastry (or crescent) on a baking sheet (lined with baking paper).

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (rolling the dough,cutting into 16 pieces, and rolling the crescent cookies with the filling).

Step 8 – Preheat the oven to 170°C (340°F) for 15-17 minutes until they’re baked and have a color similar to as shown below.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (cookies out of the oven).

Step 9 – Immediately take each crescent cookie from the baking tray and roll them through the powdered sugar.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Step by Step (rolling the cornulete in the powdered sugar).

Step 10 – Finally, assemble your crescent cookies in a bowl or on a plate, ready to be served. We opted to stack our cookies on a plate, as shown below.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies served on a blue plate.

This is such a beautiful dessert, and the powdered sugar really ties into the Christmas theme. Those crescent rolls, delicately browned, and speckled with white powdered sugar are practically mesmerizing to lay eyes on.

Cornulete Crescent Cookies ready to be eaten.

When you bite through the buttery soft and crumbly pastry, your tastebuds are treated to a sweet, tart, and moist apricot jam and walnut filling, or whatever filling you decide to make instead.

Kids and adults alike will fall in love with this Romanian and Moldovan favorite, and you’ll be amazed at how quickly that pile of crescent pastries will go down, no matter how many you make!

Cornulete Crescent Cookies

Cornulete Crescent Cookies Recipe Card

Cornulete Crescent Cookies

Cornulete Crescent Cookies
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • Flour – 500 grams (450 grams (1lb) to go in the dough and 50 grams (6 tbsp) for prepping the dough)
  • Butter – 200 grams (7 oz)
  • Egg Yolks – 3 egg yolks
  • Sour Cream – 150 grams (5.2oz)
  • Baking Powder – 1 tsp
  • Lemon Peel – 1 tbsp
  • Salt – 1/2 tsp
  • Powdered Sugar – 130 grams (80 grams (~ 10tbsp) for decorating and 50 grams (~ 7tbsp) for the dough)
  • Walnuts – 80 grams (2.8oz)
  • Apricot Jam – 80 grams (2.8oz)
  • Dried Apricots – 80 grams (2.8oz)

Instructions

  1. Dice the cold butter in small cubes and add it to a bowl with the 3 egg yolks, salt, lemon peel, 50 grams ( ~7 tbsp) of powdered sugar, baking powder, and sour cream. Then, mix everything together.
  2. Add the 450 grams (1 lb) of sifted flour gradually and knead (first with a wooden spoon and then with your hands).
  3. Knead for about 10 minutes until the dough is elastic and doesn’t stick to the hands.
  4. Place the dough on a plate and cover the dough with cling film or plastic wrap, and transfer it to the fridge for about 30 minutes.
  5. While the dough is chilling in the fridge, we’ll prepare the filling. Crush the walnuts. Then, dice the dried apricots. Finally, mix the walnuts, diced dried apricots, and apricot jam to make your filling.
  6. After the dough has rested in the fridge for 30 minutes, take it out and cut it into 4 equal parts, then roll them into round balls.
  7. Now, using a rolling pin, roll each ball into a very thin layer (of about 2-3 mm) and a diameter of 30-32 cm (about 12 inches). Make sure to dust the surface with flour as needed so the dough doesn't stick. Cut each layer into 16 parts (as shown below). At the base of each part, place about a teaspoon of filling and then roll each part (as shown below). Finally, place each rolled pastry (or crescent) on a baking sheet (lined with baking paper).
  8. Preheat the oven to 170°C (340°F) for 15-17 minutes until they’re baked and have a color similar to as shown below.
  9. Immediately take each crescent cookie from the baking tray and roll them through the powdered sugar.
  10. Finally, assemble your crescent cookies in a bowl or on a plate, ready to be served. We opted to stack our cookies on a plate, as shown below.

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Contributor: Efimia is a home chef and retired teacher, who has been feeding her beloved family and friends with traditional Moldovan, Romanian, and Eastern European dishes for the best part of four decades.

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