Samstag, 1. Dezember 2012

Christmas cookies

Yes, it is the season. Today I made the first batches. This year I started with new recipes. I will make the family recipes too, but it is always more interesting to try new ones.
I made date rolls, stollen cookies and a recipe I found today on the Guardian which I am so not going to make again - look at the picture: the dark cookies with the wave pattern: chestnut chocolate cookie

 date rolls, stollen cookies, chestnutchocolate-cookies

I don't know what went wrong, but they did not stay in shape. The taste is nice but not as nice as expected while using such expensive ingredients as "creme de marron". It is a waste of the marrons.

But I am totally fine with the date rolls (a recipe I developed on my own) and the stollen cookies. Petra published this recipe in her Blog but I made a big change: instead of Quark I used Tofu and it worked out and it worked out very good! As you may know, Stollen is a very important christmas cake in Germany, no christmas without Stollen and the stollen cookies are nice little somethings very Stollen alike (from the taste and some of the ingredients).

For the date rolls

200 g pitted dried dates
100 g walnuts, lightly toasted
1 teaspoon 4-Spice (quatre èspice)
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon rose water
1 tablespoon starch

Chop dates and walnuts, heat up honey in a pot over medium low heat, add the chopped dates and walnuts, rose water, spice and stir until hot. Blend with an immersion blender until smooth, add the starch and incorporate. Set aside and let cool down.

 For cookie roll dough:
200 g flour
100 g butter
2 tablespoons sugar
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small pinch salt

40 g melted butter

Chop cold butter and knead into the flour, sugar while adding the egg yolk and olive oil until the dough forms. Let rest in the fridge about 30 minutes.

Divide the dough into 3 parts. Form 3 long rolls (20 cm) from the date mix (after cooling it is easy to handle).
Roll each dough part in a flat layer and wrap 1 date roll into it (think sushi roll: use a sheet of clingfilm, roll the dough into a rectangle, set the date roll along one long side and roll the roll with the help of the clingfilm).  Baste the rolls with melted butter, pinch the surface with a fork for a few times, bake at 180 degree celsius for 15-20 minutes until the cookie dough turns golden. Let cool down and slice with a sharp knife into pieces (thickness of a finger).

For the Stollen cookies:

300 g flour
150 g firm tofu
75 g Sultanas
75 g dried Cranberries
2 tablespoons rum
2 tablespoons orange juice (1/2 organic orange)
orange zestes (1 organic orange)
100 g butter, soft, at room temperature
75 g brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground dried ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 tablespoon chopped almonds
1 tablespoon chopped pistachios

2 tablespoons butter and Icing sugar

First I blended the tofu into a smooth cream. I  roughly chopped the rather big sultanas and cranberries and put them together with the rum and orange juice in a bowl which I put into the microwave for 2 minutes.

I sieved the flour with the baking powder and mixed the other ingredients quickly in, using a wooden spoon,  just until the dough roughly formed. I rolled the dough rather thick on a floured baking board and cut the layer into cubes.
The rolls were baked for 15 minutes at 200 degree Celsius until nicely golden. Afterwards I basted the cubes with melted butter and powdered them with icing sugar.

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