Sorry, this entry is only available in Italian.
There are things that are born almost by chancem but then take a life on their own… this is the case with this Advent period. I was looking back to my baking during the last weeks and I suddenly realized that I have taken up this trend of baking traditional cookies/cakes from all over the world.. well, Europe maily I must say, but it’s not over yet!
Today’s recipe is Vanillekipferl from Austria.
They’re really good and easy to make, and they’re the perfect matcj for a steamy, creamy cup of chocolate.
You just need:
200 gr plain flour
100 gr sugar
70 gr grain hazelnuts (or almonds)
120 gr butter
1/2 vanilla bean (or vanilla aroma if you can’t find the bean)
icing sugar to dust on top
Put in a bowl the flour with the sugar and the cold butter cut into pieces. Then add the egg, the vanilla, the grain hazelnuts and start kneading with your hands. When the dough is well mixed and smooth you can start taking some bits from it, mould it with your hands forming a little cylinder and then put it onto a baking tray covered with greaseproof paper shaping it like a small croissant.
Then bake at 180 degrees for 20 minutes. Once they’ve cooled down, sprinkle with icing sugar and taste!
Stollen (Christstollen or Weihnachtsstollen, as it is also known), is a typical German tart which is prepared during the Christmas time.
As it always happens anywhere, every family think they solely possess the real recipe for the tart, so there’s no argument here I confess: I used one out of the hundreds or thousands of recipes you may find literally anywhere. The easiest one, probably.
The tart was created back in the second half of the fifteenth century in Dresden and for sure one of the features is that it has a cylinder of marzipan in the middle. I did not have it so I did not put it into the tart, but you may if you like it.
Please be a bit patient because the tart must rise a little. But the result is surprising, one you must try! I usually try to substitute butter with oil, but this time I left the butter in it because its taste is part of the round a sweet taste of the tart.
The ingredients are:
450 gr flour
130 ml milk
150 gr butter
110 gr sugar
60 gr almonds
100 gr raisins
50 gr candied orange zest
50 gr icing sugar
16 gr baking powder
2 tsp rhum
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
Soak the raisins in the rhum, the water and a tbs of sugar.
In a bowl mix the flour, the sugar and the baking powder and then add the milk little by little at room temperature. Then add the egg and then the butter (softened), and then add almonds (slightly toast them before in a non-stick pan), the raisins (squeeze them of the liquids), the zest and the ginger.
Put the dough on a tray dusted with flour, and knead the dough for some minutes until the components are all incorporated.
Shape it into a small loaf, and put it to raise in the oven covered with film and a cloth and leave it there for one hour at least.
After this time, take it out, knead it again in a circular form at least 2 centimetres thick, and then fold the dough in three (at this point put the marzipan in the centre if you wish). Put it onto the baking tray covered with greaseproof paper and put it again into the oven for another hour to let it raise again. Take it out and let it rest.
Then preheat the oven at 170 degrees and bake the dole for about 40 minutes. As you take it out of the oven, brush it with some melted butter (when the tart is still hot) and then dust it with icing sugar.
Let it cool down before tasting.
Some say that you should let it ripen (yes!) two or three days before eating it. The flavours of raisins, zests and almonds should then soak perfectly. I confess I ate it the following day and it is delicious just as well.