Mandel bread. Mandelbrodt. Jewscotti.
The recipe we use at Fine Bagels is the oldest family recipe we have. It goes back at least a hundred years and is credited to Gertrude Cooper Klemens, our great-grandmother. Mandel means almond in Yiddish and German and so no big surprise that the most traditional version of this sliced cookie has chopped almonds. We add sultanas but you can mixed anything into a mandel bread batter…cranberries, chocolate, pistacios, prunes, dates, hazelnuts…rainbow sprinkles?
It starts with a very sticky egg and oil batter. Honestly, we hate to make mandel bread because the bowl is such a pain to wash. We’re almost not sure why the family bothered to make it a century ago. They didn’t have a KitchenAid.
There are as many different recipes for mandel bread as there are Jewish grandmothers. If you feel so compelled, Bubbie Ruth and Grandma Annie are less secretive or at least better at sharing than our Nana Klemens.