Friday, December 18, 2015

Christmas 2015 Cookies: Ethnic German

This Summer I began investigating ways to use plums and currants in foods.  This lead me to Eastern European recipes and the plum dumplings of my Bohemian great grandparents.  

Nurnberger Elisenlebkuchen

 The Bohemian cooking overlaps Polish and German cooking.  All 3 have a plum dumpling recipeMore investigation.  I came across a book titled German Baking Today by Dr. Oetker.  The photos were inspiring.  There is a whole chapter on Christmas baking.  How could I let that go un-addressed?  


 A small challenge.  The original book had been translated into English by a Britain.  Ingredients are measured in weight, not the volume common in US recipes.  That did not deter me one bit.  Luckily my daughter came by the day I did most of the baking and helped out, a lot.  

     Spritzgeback (mit Eigelb)

You will note from the photos that I managed to seize the chocolate.  The other thing that cannot be seen in the photos is many of the cookies use nut meal as a primary ingredient.  In US baking, nuts are often used as an addition for texture or interest.  This was a new experience, baking with nut dough.  On the plus side, it can be kneaded and will not get tough.


The bulk of the cookies were baked Thanksgiving weekend and stored in plastic containers on the 3 season porch.  Since then Larry has baked his chex mix and batches of Hershey kiss cookies.  Wednesday night we brought out the spreadsheet, Green Bay Packer bags, labels, re-sale Christmas plates and plastic wrap.  In a few hours all was packaged up with the exception of 3 piles of goodies.  We are 3 bags short.  This weeks trip to Woodmans solved that shortfall.  Everything is ready for Christmas celebrations. 


 If you are a recipient of one of the plates of German Christmas cookies, there is a photo key throughout this blog.  Be aware that my cookies do not bear much resemblance to the professional photos in the book.  I am still trying to figure out how a cookie designed to be made with an impression puffs up so much in the oven.  The impressions just look lumpy.  


My favorite cookie of all the ones I baked does not even warrant a book photo.  Pfefferkuchenplatzchen translate to Ginger Nuts.  Who'd u thunk they are a really good gingerbread man recipe?  


No comments: