Mix and knead the flour, ground almonds, sugar and vegan butter into a uniform dough.
Shape the dough into four firm log shapes about 3cm / 1inch wide and refrigerate them for an hour.
Shaping and baking
Before you shape the cookies, preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F) and prepare several baking sheets covered in baking paper or a reusable mat.
Remove the dough from the fridge, and cut the logs into 1 cm thick slices.
Using your hands, roll each piece into a rope with slightly pointed ends. Gently shape it into a crescent, and place it on a lined baking sheet. Repeat the process for the other pieces of dough. You should be able to fit around 16 cookies per tray.If not baking the cookies immediately, place the trays in the fridge to chill.
Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes. You don't want the cookies to turn golden brown. When the tips of the cookies are just starting to brown, that's a sign they are ready.
Let the cookies cool down on the tray and firm up for 5-10 minutes, then carefully toss and dip each cookie in icing sugar, or powdered homemade vanilla sugar, for a generous coating.
For shaping, check out the step by step pictures in the post above!
Serving and storage
This makes around 4 trays or 60 cookies. If you want more or less, just use the adjustable slider in the servings to calculate the recipe for you. Store in airtight tins or containers. They're nice fresh, but they will store for a couple of weeks which makes them great for gift giving. You can add an extra dusting of sugar just before serving to make them extra pretty.
Weigh for best results - Just a bit too much fat can make the cookies difficult to shape and become flat and fragile. For baking recipes like this we recommend using a digital scales as weighing is much more precise than using volumes.
Chill the dough - This makes the dough easier to shape and reduces spreading out during baking. If you have more cookies shaped than you can bake at a time, chill them again until you bake them.
Get the baking time right - Your oven and the size and thickness of your Vanillekipferl will have an effect. Look for the telltale sign - the tips of the Kipferl starting to brown - to know when they are ready to come out! A preheated oven is essential, too.
Let them cool down just enough before tossing them in icing sugar. They should have firmed up enough so you can handle them without breaking, but still warm enough so that the icing sugar will stick to them. Five to ten minutes is just right.
To make your own vanilla sugar
Place a vanilla pod in a large jar, fill it up with granulated sugar, and leave it closed for a few days. For extra flavour you can split the bean and scrape out the seeds.You can use homemade vanilla sugar in place of some of the sugar in the dough, or grind it to a powder in a food processor to use as the coating for the cookies.
Instead of ground almonds, you can also use ground walnuts. Just pulse them in a food processor until fine. As an alternative to the sugar coating, you can dip the ends in dark melted chocolate.