Death by chocolate: walnut tarts / Cokoladova sebevrazda: orechove dortickyCzech and Slovak Christmas cookies: Walnut Tarts | Czechmatediary
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Death by chocolate: walnut tarts / Cokoladova sebevrazda: orechove dorticky

I have already revealed the “secret” recipes of Vanilkove Rohlicky and Linecka kolecka. The Christmas cookie journey is far from being over however. Czech Christmas would not be complete if one did not serve Orechove dorticky (Walnut Tarts). Many of you may know them under a completely different name such as “Grandma’s circles” or “Chocolate circles” or some other names that I am not even aware of. As you will see from the recipe bellow, this Christmas dessert truly is a chocolate suicide. But who cares? It’s Christmas – calories don’t count!

CZ: V nedavne minulosti jsem vam jiz predstavila jak recept na vanilkove rohlicky, tak na linecka kolecka; to ale samozrejmne neni zdaleka konec vanocniho cukrovi – spise zacatek! Dnes se podivame na Orechove dotrticky, ktere jsou zname take pod jmeny jako “babiccina kolecka” nebo “cokoladova kolecka” (a vy je mozna znate i pod jinym jmenem!). Na rozdil od mych predeslych receptu, zdanlive nevinne orechove dorticky jsou prakticky cokoladovou sebevrazdou, nebo-li kalorickou bombou. Nastesti jsou ale Vanoce a kalorie se v prosinci nepocitaji…




  • 2 sticks (1 cup) of soft, unsalted butter
  • 2/3 (5 oz) cup of sugar
  • 1 Tsp of grated lemon rind
  • 1 Tbs vanilla extract
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 and 1/4 cups (18 oz) of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup of ground walnuts
  • Optional: 1Tbs of unsweetened cocoa powder (that’s if you like things really chocolaty)


  • 1 stick of unsalted butter (4 oz)
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup of sugar
  • 1 Tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp of unsweetened cocoa powder


  • Ghirardelli dark chocolate bar for baking (4 oz)
  • walnut halves, about 1 cup


  1. In a big bowl, mix in the butter, sugar, lemon grind, vanilla extract, egg yolks and ground walnuts.
  2. Slowly mix in the 1 and 3/4 cups of four.

  3. Work the mixture into a dough and place it in the fridge for about 2 hours (or overnight)
  4. Pull the dough out of the fridge and let it stand in the room temperature for a while until it is workable (about 1 hour)
  5. The hardest part: Roll out the dough onto a floured surface until it is about 1/4 inch thick (coat the pin with flour as well; as you are rolling out the dough, keep sprinkling it with a little bit of flour at the time to prevent sticking)
  6. Use cookie cutters to cut out the various shapes of cookies; keep in mind that the final product is going to be quite filling so the smaller the cookie, the better.
  7. Transfer the cookies on an ungreased baking sheet (use spatula for the transfer if necessary) and bake them for 10 to 12 minutes at 325 degrees F.
  8. Let the cookies cool down.
  9. Meanwhile, make the cookie filling:
    1. In a medium-sized bowl whisk together sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla extract and egg yolks. Add in the butter (room-temperature) and whisk everything together until the mixture appears smooth and creamy.
  10. Spread the cream on top of a cookie and cover it with another cookie to make a cookie sandwich; make sure that the cream layer is thick, about 1/4 of an inch (see image 1 bellow). Also, use a cake tube to layer the filling on the top of a cookie so that the sides don’t get messy. Continue creating cookie sandwiches until there are no more “naked” cookies left
  11. Melt the chocolate bar according to the directions on the bar package
  12. Dip one side of each cookie sandwich into the chocolate
  13. Top each cookie with a walnut half (see image 2 bellow).

spread the chocolate cream on top of a cookie, about 1/4-inch thick

finished Walnut Tart/Orechovy dorticek

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15 comments… add one
  • Keith December 5, 2008, 3:00 am

    I am the the husband of the one called Tanja -Master of the Czechmatediary. I ate those cookies in the picture. I declare -they were fabulous.

  • Bitter Chocolate December 5, 2008, 6:02 pm

    Nejak zahadne jsem sem zabloudila, a i kdyz tyhle dorticky neznam, vypadaji moc mnamkovate πŸ™‚ My zΓ­tra budeme pect pernicky πŸ™‚

  • MichaelM December 16, 2008, 11:14 am

    I believe that I have deciphered the method by which the small steps to bohemian domination will occur. Give us more and more wonderful Czech recipes. We will have the constant desire to make something that is unattainable perfection. Each recipe will have one very small point not listed in detail (oven temp. or time to bake). There will be the assumption that readers know how to bake. Can you tell my ordeal yet? Soon, Czechs will simply walk over the rest of the world as we lay there drooling with anticipation that our 112th try at making proper Christmas cookies actually worked. Very clever of you Czechs. Better by far than our pitiful attempt to rule through the introduction of peanut butter.

  • MichaelM December 16, 2008, 11:18 am

    Actually Tanya, we are halfway through the first batch and they are looking pretty good and, of course, I have nothing to do with the baking. Thanks.

  • Tanja December 16, 2008, 11:41 am

    Hi Michael!

    I hope you have survived the baking process! If not, then everything is going according to my plan: “Small Steps to World Domination”!! Hahaha!!!

    More on a serious note – I did add the baking temperature into the recipe instructions – Thank you for pointing that out for me!!

  • lenka December 5, 2009, 12:44 am

    Thanks Tanya,
    forgot about these. I will definatelly have to make these. We make them a bit different, but I will try your recipe. Definatelly a diet item, right?

  • lenka December 5, 2009, 12:46 am

    woops, sorry Tanja. Did it again (wrote Tanya)

  • Tanja December 5, 2009, 12:51 am

    Me to je uplne jedno, jak mi Lenko rikas :)) Tanja, Tanya, Tana…hlavne ze to neni nejaka nadavka πŸ˜‰

  • Marika December 12, 2009, 10:34 am

    Three sticks of butter, now that’s what I call a true Czech recipe! Can’t wait to try them.
    Thank you for putting the recipes together Tanja.

  • honza December 15, 2009, 9:26 pm

    ale stejne nejlepsi jsou ulecky neboli vosi hnizda to je dobrota

  • Tanja December 15, 2009, 11:09 pm

    Ahoj Honzo, na ty se chystam pristi rok! Nejake rady do budoucnosti co se tyce ulecku???

  • Paula December 13, 2015, 9:18 am

    How do I storage these cookies? Can I just leave them in a cookie jar? or I have to put them in the refrigerator?


  • Tanja December 13, 2015, 4:33 pm

    Hi Paula,

    the best way is to keep them in the fridge in a tin can before you eat them. If you manage to do that they taste beyond heavenly. If you don’t have that self-control (like I don’t) you can store them whichever way or eat them all right away and they taste ‘just’ heavenly. πŸ˜‰

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