I know I wrote about baking yesterday, but as it is the weekend, thought you might have time to try some of the cookies so far and even time for a third?
The Norwegians love to entertain during the daytime and most will have a large centre coffee table, large enough to set a 'proper' place setting for kafe og kake, the Norwegian equivalent of Afternoon tea. Many afternoons of my childhood were spent at my grandparents house in Norway, whilst they entertained their friends for kafe og kake. My Bestemor, (Grandmother, but I shorted it to Mor, which actually means mother!) loved to entertain and was always thinking about the next edible feast she could spring on people. She also collected tea services, not intentionally though, but she just seemed to have so many. On her passing away, all her children and grandchildren had an entire tea service each from her collection, which of course, we all treasure. I have a problem with crockery and maybe it is Mor's fault! I just love it and keep buying more... Kafe and kake make me feel good and my memories are warm.
Vaniljekranser (Vanilla wreaths)
These are piped cookies and so bring a welcomed different look to the seven cookies of Christmas.
|Make sure the dough is not |
too soft for piping
250g plain flour
175g soft butter
1/2 - 1 vanilla pod seeds
2 egg yolks
50g ground almonds
Piping bag and star nozzle
- Rub butter and flour together
- Scrape out the vanilla pod seeds and add them along with sugar, egg yolks and almonds into the flour mixture.
- Work the dough with your hands until it is smooth
- If the butter was at the correct temperature, you can begin piping immediately. If however, it is too soft and pliable, put it in the fridge to rest for a bit.
- Pipe the mixture onto baking sheets lined with greaseproof paper. Cut off the piped mixture after 6-7 cm and form it into a circle. the star nozzle should create a textured edge to the dough, see photograph. I manage to fit about 9 onto my baking sheet.
- Put cookies in the pre heated oven for approx 8-10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and place on cooling rack.
You will see from the photograph that I do not use a piping bag but a metal one with a turning handle to squeeze the mixture through the hole, there are four different nozzles, very similar to piping. This is a must have tool in the Norwegian kitchen and one that is used for the traditional celebration cake called Kransekake, more on this in a later post.
These cookies are great at anytime, but also make a fantastic evening nibble with milk for children!
Enjoy your week end everybody!
The three cookies made so far, from left to right:
Hasselnott meringues, Vaniljekranser, Pepperkake