Sweet • Sour • Savory

Food blog on scandinavian style food done right.

Cake

Mrs. Hobbs's Italian Rosemary Cookies

Cake, Christmas, Cookies, HolidayTove Balle-PedersenComment
Italian Rosemary Cookies

Italian Rosemary Cookies

These cookies are to die for!!!

How my friend and the whole world kept this recipe away from me, for so many years, it’s beyond my understanding.

If you only are baking one cookie this year, make it this one!

Makes 60-70.

Ingredients:

  • 250 g butter, salted and room temperature

  • 400 g sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 30 g raw pistachios, finely chopped

  • 10 g (3 tablespoons) fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped

  • 450 g all-purpose flour

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 3 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1 orange, the zest

Directions:

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. add 1 egg at a time, making sure it’s fully incorporated, befor adding the next. Mix in orange zest, rosemary, and pistachios. Sift flour, sant and baking powder and incorporate it in the dough.

Divide the dough into 3 pieces. Roll each part into a log (2 inch in diameter), wrap in Glad wrap, shape the log into a square, by pressing the log onto the kitchen counter. Refrigerate overnight. Try to make a smooth surface to get an even look on the finished cookies. Well, the dough were very soft, so I didn’t get the smooth surface on my logs. 🙃

Cut the logs into thin cookies and put them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spacing about 1-inch apart. Bake until golden around the edges, about 5-7 minutes at 350°F. Cool cookies on the pan on wire racks. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Enjoy!

Amaretto Eton Mess

Cake, Desserts, HolidayTove Balle-Pedersen2 Comments
Amaretto Eton Mess

Amaretto Eton Mess

This dessert is a mild twist on an English classic, originating from the Eton College's annual cricket game against the pupils of Harrow School. But this is a pavlova dressing up as a layer cake. 

A great easy to make dessert, perfect for the summer parties.

Serves 6-8.

Ingredients:

Meringue:

  • 6 egg whites

  • 300 g sugar

  • 1½ teaspoon lemon juice

  • 50-75 g almond slivers

Filling:

  • 500 ml heavy whipping cream

  • 500 g fresh strawberries, rinsed and sliced.

  • 50 ml Ameretto (Italian almond liqueur)

  • 1 tablespoon confectionary (powdered) sugar

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 250*F (120℃).

Draw 3 x 9-inch (23 cm) circles about 2-inch (5 cm) apart on a parchment paper, and turn the parchment paper upside down, so you don't get any pencil on the meringues.

In the bowl for the stand mixer, beat egg whites until stiff peaks. Add the sugar gradually, a couple tablespoons at a time, while still beating the egg whites. The egg whites/meringue will become thick and glossy. Gently fold in lemon juice.

Spoon the meringue inside the drawn circles on the parchment paper. Spread the meringue working from the center towards the edge. Sprinkle with the almond slivers

Bake the meringues for about 60 minutes. Then turn off the oven, and leave the meringues in the oven for another 30-45 minutes, until the oven is cooled. I became a little impatient, so I pulled the meringues out before they were cooled completely, and that is why the meringue traced a bit.

Fold in half the confectionary sugar in the sliced strawberries, set aside.

Whip the cream until medium stiff peaks. Gently fold in some confectionary sugar and amaretto. 

Place the least pretty meringue on a cake stand, and spread ⅓ of the cream topping it with some strawberries. Repeat layering the rest of the meringues, cream, and fruit. Finishing the top layer with a few whole strawberries.

Enjoy!

Romsnegle - Rum Rolls

Bread, Breakfast, Brunch, Cake, Holiday, techniqueTove Balle-PedersenComment
Romsnegle - Rum Rolls

Romsnegle - Rum Rolls

Romsnegle is a stable at a Danish baker's shop, much like the regular danish (spandauer). This is much like a cinnamon roll made with puff pastry dough and with another filling and icing. Same, - but totally different. This sweet filling pairs so well with the (imitation) rum icing. Ohh so yummy.

Making these rolls with puff pastry makes for a flakier and softer roll. Of cause this is a time consuming bake. But well worth the effort.

The Danish pastry is a laminated yeast dough much like the French croissant. There are many ways to make this lamination. The amount of layers are different from country to country and from baker to baker. You get the flaky layers by folding sheets of dough with butter. 

One of the more important things in puff pastry is the butter. You want to use a european style butter. The European butter contains less liquid and more milk fats than American butter. Most people opt for unsalted butter, but I always use salted butter in my baking.

There are different kinds of folding/turning when it comes to pastry and croissant dough:

Letter fold or Single turn: Dough folded in thirds, like you would do a letter going into an envelope. (I did this for this recipe.)

1. Turn: makes 3 layers of butter

2. Turn: makes 9 layers of butter

3. Turn: makes 27 layers of butter.

Book fold or double turn: Dough folded to the middle and folded again on the middle like a book. This makes 4 layers per fold or turn as they are called.

1. Turn: makes 4 layers of butter

2. Turn: makes 16 layers of butter

3. Turn: makes 64 layers of butter

Some people claim that any more layers than 3 turns using a letter fold, will make the dough like a brioche instead of providing the flaky layers. The 3 turns makes 27 layers. You can mix the folding methods to get the amount of layer you want.

 

Makes 20.

Ingredients:

Dough:

  • 375 g all-purpose flour

  • 200 ml milk

  • 25 g live yeast or 2 teaspoons dry yeast

  • 45 g sugar

  • 50 g butter, salted and soft

  • 1 egg

Butter block:

  • 350 g butter, cold (use a European style butter, it contains less water, than the American butter)

  • all-purpose flour for dusting

Remonce:

  • 100 g butter, salted and soft

  • 100 g sugar

  • 70 g marzipan

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

Icing:

  • 1 egg white (pasteurized)

  • Confectionery (powdered) sugar

  • 1-2 teaspoon imitation rum

multicolored sprinkles

Directions:

Dough:

Heat the milk to lukewarm (99℉/37℃). Dissolve the yeast in the warm milk. Add the sugar. If using dry yeast, let the yeast wake up for about 5-10 minutes, until creating a foam on top. Incorporate the egg.

Mix in half of the flour, forming a sticky dough. Mix in the softened butter. Finally mix in the rest of the flour and knead the dough until you have at shiny, slightly sticky and elastic dough, for about 3-5 minutes.

Place the dough on a very lightly floured surface. Using a bench scraper and one hand, work the dough into a round. The tension will build as the dough achieves to the surface as you rotate it.

Place the dough back in the bowl and let it rise until doubled in size, for about 60 minutes.

Butter block: 

Place the cold butter on a well floured surface. With your palms press the butter a little flat. Using a rolling pin pound on the butter to flatten it. Fold the butter into its self, and keep pounding and folding until the butter has the same consistency as the dough. You want to end up with a 15x15 cm / 6x6 inch square of soft but still cold butter. If the butter is too warm or too hard, it will be hard to roll it out in the dough, and it might make holes in the dough, instead of the lamination.

Laminating

Laminating

Laminating:

Place dough  on a lightly floured surface, roll 4 wings out from the center, leaving a center (15x15 cm / 6x6 inch), the same size as the butter block.

Place the butter block over the center, fold the wings over the butter, making sure not getting too much flour in between the layers. Turn the dough over, so the seams are facing down.

Roll the dough to a rectangle, 3 times as long as the hight. Keep it lightly floured so the dough do not stick to the surface. Make sure to roll the dough with straight edges. This will ease the folding.

Making a fold.

Making a fold.

1. Turn: Fold the rectangle in thirds, like a letter. Now you have 3 layers of butter. Place the dough in the freezer for about 20 minutes to cool the butter again.

Repeat this 2 times, making 3 turns and ending up with 27 layers of butter. Let the dough rest on the kitchen counter for 10-20 minutes. (If your kitchen is warm, do the resting in the refrigerator.)

Now the dough is ready to use as a puff pastry for sweet or savory dishes.

If you want to make sweet pastries, you want to make the 3. Turn on a surface sprinkled with about 100 g granulated sugar, and sprinkle another 100 g granulated sugar on top. This will make the dough sweeter and more crispy.

Remonce: 

Mix the all the ingredients so you end up with a soft fluffy mixture. You want to have a soft mixture, so you won't rip the dough, while spreading the remonce. The added flour will prevent the filling to ooze out of the rolls while baking.

Making the rolls.

Making the rolls.

Making the rolls:

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and roll it to a large rectangle (16x16 inches/40x40 cm).

Spread the filling in a thin layer onto the dough, leaving a thin edge closest to your self, without filling.

Line 2-3 bakings sheets with parchment paper.

Roll the dough into a large log. Cut the log into 20 slices. When you place the slices on the prepared baking sheets, tuck the lose ends under the roll, and give the roll a little press.  Leave a good spacing between them, so they can spread out without "growing" together. Cover the rolls with a tea towel to rise for about 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 355℉ (180℃).

Bake the rolls for 14-16 minutes until deep golden brown.

Let the rolls cool completely, before icing.

Enjoy!

Tips:

The unbaked pastry can be frozen just, after shaping, individually, and can be baked straight out of the freezer, just add about 5 more minutes to the baking time.

Fastelavnsboller with Berries

Breakfast, Brunch, Cake, HolidayTove Balle-PedersenComment
Fastelavnsboller with Berries

Fastelavnsboller with Berries

This is yet another take on the traditional fastelavnsbolle, a sweet cake like roll. Here with cream cheese and mixed berries. Fastelavnsbolle takes different shapes and forms. Some fastelavnsboller are plain like fastelavnsboller, some are filled with cream and custard like Marieboller - Fastelavnsboller or Fastelavnsboller - Choux Pastry

Fastelavn is a similar tradition as the American Halloween if you use a piñata in the form of  barrel.  Children get dressed up, and go a kinda trick and treating in the early afternoon. Well, they ask for money instead of candy, but it's only the young kid doing this. You can read more about the Danish fastelavns traditions here

Makes about 10.

Ingredients:

Dough:

  • 250 ml lukewarm milk
  • 2 teaspoons dry yeast
  • 85 g sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ cardamom 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 450 g all-purpose flour 
  • 75 g butter, salted and room temperature
  • 50 g cream cheese

Cream cheese filling:

  • 75 g cream cheese
  • 50 g sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch 

Berries:

  • 225 g mixed berries (only the smaller berries)
  • 50 g sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch 

 

  • egg wash

Directions:

Dissolve the yeast in the milk. Add the rest of the ingredients, and knead the dough for about 5 minutes. Let the dough rise covered for about an hour, until doubled in size.

Mix the filling and the berries in each their own bowl.

Preheat the oven to boil 435℉ (225℃).

Turn the dough on to a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into 9-10 balls, I use a scale to get them to be the same size. (Just a tiny bit OCD😉). Let the balls rise for 15-20 minutes.

Make a silver dollar sized dent in each ball, making sure not to poke holes all the way through. brush the edges with egg wash. Spoon a small tablespoon fill-in in the holes, topping with the mixed berries.

Bake the fastelavnsboller for 12-15 minutes until golden brown. Let the fastelavnsboller cool on a wire rack before serving.

Enjoy!

Danish Shortbread Sticks

Cake, Cookies, Holiday, ChristmasTove Balle-PedersenComment
Danish-Shortbread-Sticks.JPG

December 3th

This is a take on the traditional Danish Shortbread or Finskbrød as they are called. I really like the addition of the lemon zest, and the more modern look. Normally Danes do not like changes to their traditional food and cookies. 'It has to be exactly like my mom made it' - but some changes are for the better, like this one.

Inspired by a Blomsterberg recipe.

Makes 30.

Ingredients:

Dough:

  • 200 g butter, salted, room temperature  
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • 60 confectionary (powdered) sugar
  • 1 lemon, the zest of
  • 275 g all-purpose flour

Topping:

  • 1 egg, 
  • coarse raw cane sugar 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375℉ (190℃)

Mix all the ingredients until it forms a dough, be careful not to overwork the dough. Wrap the dough in plastic film, and let it rest for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a 6 x 12-inch (15 x 30 cm) rectangle. Transfer the cookies to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, set aside. Beat the egg, and brush a thin even layer on the dough. Sprinkle with a good amount of raw cane sugar. Gently press the sugar into the dough with the rolling pin. Put the dough into the refrigerator to chill for about 10 minutes. Cut the dough in half so you now have 2 squares 6x6-inches (15x15 cm) each. Cut each square in 14-15 long thin logs, 

Bake for 7-10 minutes, until light golden brown. Let the cookies cool on a wire rack. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Enjoy!