Friday, December 24, 2010

Cardamom Cookies and Merry Christmas!

I got up just now and realized, it's the 24th already... I haven't really had time to get into a christmas mood yet. It's definitely time to relax for a few days now. I'm going home to mum's and I'm really looking forward to seeing my family!

I leave you with my favourite photo of my cookie session and a recipe for cardamom cookies. Merry christmas to all of you!

Cardamom Cookies

(Original recipe in German:

100g butter, soft
50g brown sugar
1 big egg yolk
1 tablespoon cardamom powder
1 tablespoon cinnamon powder
180g flour

Preheat oven to 180°C. Line your baking trays with parchment paper.

With a hand mixer, beat butter, sugar, egg yolk, cardamom and cinnamon until you got a smooth batter. Add flour and quickly combine to a dough (my dough was so dry that I had to save it from falling apart with a little egg white).Put your dough into the refridgerator or out on your balcony for about half an hour.

Roll the dough out (about 5mm thick) and cut out cookies. Place them on your baking trays and bake for about 20 minutes (Watch them carefully during the last 5 minutes! I think I gave them a little less than 20 minutes). Then, take out of the oven and let cool on a rack.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Orange Crescents

There are certain aromas that are automatically connected with christmas... For me, next to the smell of my mum's gingerbread, it's the taste of oranges.

Here comes my favourite this year: Orangenkipferl. They are the fruity variant of the Vanillekipferl.

(Source: al dente, 13.12.2010)

250g flour
100g finely ground almonds
75g icing sugar
1 sachet of vanilla sugar
2 pinches of salt
1 orange, only grated zest
200g butter, in pieces, cold

Preheat oven to 200°C and line your baking trays with parchment paper.

Mix all the ingredients until and including orange zest in a bowl. Add butter and, with your hands, rub until you get a crumbly mixture. Then, quickly put together to a dough (in case your dough is too dry, add an egg white - I had to do that). Flatten the dough little and, covered with cling film, put in the refridgerator for about 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, take the dough out, cut into equal pieces and form equal rolls from it. Cut these into smaller or bigger pieces, depending on how big you want the cookies to be. Bend the rolls into crescents and place on your baking tray and put them in your refridgerator or out on your balcony again for about 15 minutes.

Bake for about 10 minutes (they should not turn brown!). When you take them out of the oven, dredge in icing sugar while still hot, but do that carefully, otherwise the crescents will fall apart! Let cool on a rack.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Chocolate and Hazelnut Sablé Rolls

I did it! There actually are three filled cookie jars on my balcony. What joy an afternoon of baking can bring :-)

Here comes a cookie recipe that would also be suitable for any other occasion than christmas, I think. These cookies are actually not that difficult to make and they look cute, an eye-catcher in your cookie box :-)

(Source: Betty Bossi - Backen in der Weihnachtszeit)

175g butter
75g sugar
1 teapoon vanilla sugar
1 pinch of salt
1 tablespoon milk
250g flour

for the filling:
100g ground hazelnuts
2 tablespoons chocolate powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1dl cream

Preheat oven to 200°C.

Beat butter in a bowl until smooth. Add sugar, vanilla sugar, salt and milk and beat until well combined. Add flour and form a dough. Cover with cling film and put in your refridgerator or outside in the cold for about 30 minutes.

For the filling just combine ground hazelnuts, chocolate powder, sugar and cream in a little bowl and set aside.

After 30 minutes, roll out your dough so you get a rectangle that is about 4mm thick (The recipe says that you should half your dough and roll out two rectangles of about 18x25 cm... I managed one with this amount of dough... anyway... :-) not a master with cookie doughs...). With a spoon, disperse the filling on the dough, leave an edge of about 1cm on one long side. From the other side, form a roll with your dough, wrap in cling film and put in the refridgerator for 30 minutes (or in the freezer for about 15 mins).

With a sharp knife, cut the roll into cookies (about 4mm thick) and place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.

Bake for about 10 minutes. Place on a cooling rack and let cool completely.

These cookies keep in an airtight container for about 3 weeks.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Cookie Time... finally!

I have to make a confession... I haven't baked any christmas cookies yet... I know it's shameful but I really didn't find time to do it and I decided that baking is no fun when I have to do it under stress. Besides, my wrist still tends to hurt when I overdo it and my final paper really has to have priority at the moment...

But this weekend, with my final Russian exam behind me, I actually feel like I might turn on my oven again :-) I spent some time with my beloved cookbooks yesterday evening and I saw some tempting recipes... I mean, Christmas without baking... come on!

Meanwhile, I decided that I am going to provide you with a fabulous recipe for cookies that I have baked in a past year... I like the addition of the lime zest, it gives these cookies an extra something. And I was very pleased with the decoration, don't they look gorgeous?!

White Chocolate-Nougat-Cookies:
(Source: Betty Bossi - Backen in der Weihnachtszeit)

150g butter
100g sugar
1 pinch of salt
1 egg
100g white chocolate with nougat (z.B. Toblerone), in pieces
boiling water
zest of 1 lime
325g flour

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line your baking trays with parchment paper.

Beat butter in a bowl until soft and smooth. Fold in sugar, salt and the egg.

Put chocolate in another bowl and pour boiling water over it (the recipe doesn't actually say, how much water. Just cover the chocolate completely). Let stand for a minute or so, then pour the water and beat the chocolate until smooth. Add to your butter-sugar-mix.

Add lime zest and then the flour. Flatten the dough a little, then cover with cling film and put in the refridgerator or outside on the balcony in the cold for about 30 minutes.

Sprinkle a working surface with flour and roll the dough out in portions (about 4 mm thick). Cut out shapes of your choice and place on your baking trays. Put out in the cold again for about 10 minutes, then bake for about 8 minutes. Take out of the oven, slide the parchment paper with the cookies off the tray and let cool completely.

For the decoration, I used a packet of white chocolate-glazing which I heated in a hot water bath until really smooth and then poured over the cookies. Then, I sprinkled them with silver sugar pearls.

These cookies keep in an airtight container for about 3 weeks.

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