Croissant Suzette Pudding

I work at one of Copenhagen’s most famous pâtisseries where we produce hundreds of cakes and danishes every day. Most days we make (way) too much just to make the selection seem more appetizing with the overflow of beautiful sweets, even though we know that we won’t even sell half of it. This gives us an abundance of cakes, pastries and danishes every single night that hasn’t been sold and which can’t be sold the next day. Luckily, we are allowed to bring home as much as we can carry, which is absolutely amazing – free cake is my kind of cake. But it is also a great burden. Almost every single night I stock up on all kinds of cakes and danishes, even though I most definitely won’t eat most of them. I hate food wastage and it almost drives me to tears to see all of that perfectly good food go down the bin. And that’s where it will end up: if we don’t bring it home with us, we’ll leave it to the rats (okay, to the garbage bin – you get the idea).

But I have come to an impasse. My freezer is filled to the brim with all of the cakes that can be frozen, which is all of them, and I know that I won’t get to eat them as I have grown a custom to the cakes from the shop, so now they’re not as appetizing as they used to be. I look at them all day, every day, and I eat them several times a week. At some point I had to hit the wall where I couldn’t find as much pleasure in the them as I used to.

Croissant Suzette Pudding | Scandilicious Kitchen

Croissant Suzette Pudding | Scandilicious Kitchen

So, I had to come up with a solution! For even though the cakes had driven me to the verge of insanity (seriously, I hoard those cakes, it’s not healthy) there were still the problem of the food being wasted. That won’t happen on my watch! So last week I brought home 20 or so plain croissants with the goal of not letting them go to waste. My solution: a bread and butter pudding made with croissants! I thought that I had hit gold, but it turns out that it was already a thing. Oh well, it was still one hell of an idea!

Off to Pinterest I went, where I quickly found a recipe. Caramel and bourbon sounded heavenly, but I had to give it a tweak or three – I can’t help it. Following a recipe just doesn’t come natural to me. So I chose to grate in some orange zest to balance out the overall heaviness of the dessert and swap the bourbon for dark rum. To really live up to the ‘suzette’ part of the recipe you’d have to use grand marnier, which I believe would lift the dish to a whole other level. I just didn’t have any on hand, so I had to use dark rum, which was a great substitute. I also threw in some vanilla – the salt of the sweet kitchen. It just doesn’t feel right to make a cake or pudding without vanilla. And the result was amazing! You won’t believe how delicious this pudding is! Seriously, you don’t get it: It was so good! I dreamt about it the following night, it was that good. Go home Tom Hiddleston, this is the new naughty fantasy of the ladies (well, of every living, breathing thing, really). It serves four-six people, but my mum and I ate the whole thing just the two of us – in one go. The stomach aches were real, but it was so worth it!

I highly recommend that you go and make this right now. And then again tomorrow. I thoroughly regretted that I’d used all of the other croissants to eat with my orange and ginger marmalade so I couldn’t make it again and again and again. Well, fortunately I can bring home a huge bag of croissants again tomorrow. Yes!

Kisses!

Croissant Suzette Pudding | Scandilicious Kitchen

Croissant Suzette Pudding

Serves 4-6 people (or 2 very hungry ladies)
Adapted from Nigella Lawson

For this recipe I totally agree with Nigella that you should use cream and full fat milk, since the pudding is already on the not-particularly-healthy side. But if you do want to you could just use regular milk (or even soy milk – actually, I think that would be delicious!) in place of both the full fat and the cream.
And if you do not like alcohol, just leave it out. I personally think that it makes the whole dish, but I won’t be eating yours, now will I?  You could just drizzle on some caramel sauce to make up for the missing spark, if you’d like.
I drizzled my ovenproof dish with sugar to get a nice caramel bottom on my pudding, which is a nice tough if you can take another element of sweetness.


4 stale croissants
200 g sugar
4 tbsp. water
250 ml cream
250 ml full fat milk
Zest of 1 orange
4-6 tbsp. dark rum or grand marnier
4 organic eggs
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350ºF.

Rip up the croissants into a ovenproof dish with the capacity of about 1 litre. (If desired, butter the dish and drizzle with a layer of sugar to give the pudding a nice sticky caramel bottom.)

Swirl the sugar and water in a big saucepan and put it over a medium to high heat. Let it bubble away until it reaches a dark amber color – the darker the color, the richer a taste of caramel you will get. Don’t stir the sugar while it bubbles as this will make it crystalize.

Turn down the heat and pour in the cream while whisking. It will splutter quite a bit, but just for a bit. Pour in the milk and dark rum/grand marnier as well. Don’t worry if lumps of toffee forms: just keep on stirring until they dissolve.

In a heatproof bowl beat together the eggs, orange zest and vanilla. Slowly pour the caramel milk over the eggs while whisking.

Pour the custard over the croissants and let it steep for 5-10 minutes for the croissants to soak up the custard. Drizzle the top with a pinch of sugar before putting it into the preheated oven. Bake for 20 minutes until crispy on top and no liquid oozes out when lightly pressed. If the top gets too dark before the middle has cooked all the way through, just cover the top with tinfoil until finished.

Eat it straight out of the dish with a big spoon (recommended), or serve it with vanilla ice cream, crème anglaise, caramel sauce, or a lovely orange jam. Maybe even just a dollop of crème fraîche to balance out the sweetness. Or pour over even more dark rum/grand marnier and set fire to it! That would be awesome!

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Orange and ginger marmalade with almonds (small batch)

Orange and ginger marmalade with almonds (small batch) | Scandilicious Kitchen

Did you know that making marmalade is a very (very) extensive thing to do? I think that I did, but I hadn’t really thought about it, you know? I had gotten this idea about making orange marmalade while watching one of my countless cooking shows and couldn’t really shake it, now that it had gotten to my head. So, cumbersome or not, I simply had to make orange marmalade.

That’s one of my most common mistakes. I don’t really think my recipe ideas through before its too late. This time around I had bought all of my ingredients for making my marmalade – I had even gone to the trouble of buying some new and very handsome marmalade jars for this very purpose. But it wasn’t until I sat down by the computer to research marmalade making that I realized that it takes a great deal of effort to make marmalade.

I made this stunt last year as well. I had decided that I wanted to make my own marshmallows. Easy breezy, would any skilled food blogger say. But the thing is that I didn’t have a stand mixer (*screaming in the distance*). And as you might know, this is a very essential piece of equipment when making marshmallows. So there I was, already halfway through melting the sugar and mixing the gelatin, slowly realizing that this would make a much greater amount of marshmallow than I had previously anticipated. For what I hadn’t really thought about was how fluffy (and sticky!) this stuff would get. I started mixing in the sugar with my – not very large – hand-held mixer and the mixture just kept on expanding and expanding, and before I could even think about stopping, the entire bottom of my mixer had been emerged in extremely sticky marshmallow. Yeah, not the best idea I have ever had, but I managed to get them thoroughly whipped and transferred to a tin – and they turned out pretty damn good, after all!

But, it turned out that making marmalade wasn’t that difficult after all! After doing some extensive research (I thought that my head would explode from all of the information) I just jumped right into it -and when I first got the whole process going, I found out that the hardest part was all of the waiting. The process itself wasn’t really a big deal. So I had made such a great fuss over nothing! Same thing I did the first time I made caramels – which turned out to be incredibly easy.

The thing about recipes involving a great deal of sugar is, that people ofter over-complicate things. There are so many different opinions on how to do things. It is hard to work with sugar, yes, but if you’ve got a basic knowledge of how sugar works, it’s really not that hard to figure out. My experience tells me that whenever I do thorough research on a recipe I tend to over think it and end up worrying about it way too much, and in the end I learn that it was super simple and nothing to fret. So, for all of you out there who’s too afraid to jump into marmalade making, let this be a sign: it really is very, very simple! Trust me, I’ve definitely done my research. So much that this recipe is one hundred percent my own!

On another note, did you know that almost all recipes for orange marmalade makes like a billion pints? Who even needs 13 jars of marmalade? I will never get a use of this much marmalade, ever. Maybe if I started handing it out to all of the costumers I might get rid of half, but it is just a ridiculous amount. In my household we are but two people and neither of us really get that many guests or attend that many house parties (as this would make a sweet ass hostess gift), so I think that it would be a shame to waste half of our pantry space on orange marmalade, when I would rather use it for my 10 different kinds of flour (a very important part of any pantry stock).

So this recipe is for a charming little batch of orange marmalade. Nothing that will make the children cry at night because mommy had to use the pantry for marmalade, so there wasn’t really room for dinner supplies. You won’t even have to worry about the tedious sanitizing process (ugh) because this batch will be gone long before the idea of it turning bad will have even occurred to you.

With that said, all that is left to do is for you to get into the kitchen to make this way easy marmalade for a few special someones or just you. You can definitely eat the whole thing, I believe in you!

Kisses!

Orange and ginger marmalade with almonds (small batch) | Scandilicious Kitchen

Orange and ginger marmalade with almonds

Makes: Two jars of 1/2 l

The amount of ingredients in this recipe is very much up to you. I used what I had, which were 4 medium-sized oranges, but you could easily halve, double or increase tenfold, that’s all up to you. Just remember the golden rule of marmalade making: 1:1:1. One part fruit to one part water, and when it has boiled use the same amount of sugar as you have fruit/water. If the fruit has a lot of pectin in it (which oranges have) you could even reduce the sugar a bit. My marmalade turned out pretty sweet, so I should probably have reduced the sugar by maybe 2 dl. I would also recommend swapping one of the oranges for a lemon, both for more tang, but also for the extra pectin so you can reduce the sugar.

In this recipe I’m also using the pith of the orange to get good use of as much of their pectin as possible. The pith is famous for its bitter taste which is not what we want in a marmalade, but don’t fret, you won’t even taste it.


3 dl orange peel, sliced (3-4 oranges)
6 dl orange flesh (3-4 oranges)
9 dl water
9 dl sugar
2 dl orange pith
1,5 dl juice of a ginger/grated ginger
Two handfuls or blanched, slivered almonds

Scrub the oranges under water, even if they are organic (which I recommend that they are). Using a vegetable peeler or sharp knife, remove the peel from the oranges. Be careful not to get too much pith with the peel. Scrape off any pith and save it in a bowl. Cut the peel into thin slices. Mine were very thin (1mm), but if you like it a bit chunkier that’s up to you. Measure them out and put them in a big pot with the same amount of water as there is peel. Set them over a low heat, covered.

Peel the rest of the pith from the oranges and save it. Cut the oranges in halves and then in fine slices. Measure the orange flesh and plop it on top of the peel. Measure the same amount of water as there was orange flesh and add it to the pot. Take the pith that you put aside and put it in a muslin bag. I did not have one on hand, so I just used a couple of disposable tea filters. Plop them into the pot. Let everything boil away, covered, until the peel is so soft that you can squish it between two fingers – this can take anywhere from 45 minutes to 2 hours, depending on your oranges.

While the oranges are boiling you can prepare your almonds and ginger. For the almonds I made the slivers myself, but you can buy them pre-slivered. To make them yourself you just have to boil the almonds in a pot of hot water until the skin comes loose. Then you can just pop them out of the skin and cut them into pretty slivers.

For the ginger: Peel the ginger with a spoon and grate it into a bowl. Take the gratings and squeeze them as much as you can into another bowl. Measure the juice. I like a kick from my ginger, but if that’s not really your thing, I would recommend just using 1 dl, instead of 1,5.

When the orange peel is soft, remove the pith bags and add the ginger. Measure the mix into a larger pot and add the same amount of sugar as there is orange mixture. Heat it over a medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. Grab your sugar thermometer and whack the heat up to full. It will begin to boil vigorously. Boil it, stirring, until it reaches 220 degrees F (104,5 degrees C). Turn off the heat and add the almonds. Let it stand in the pot for 10-15 minutes to set a little, so the almonds and orange peel won’t float to the top in the jars.

Transfer the marmalade to two 1/2 l jars. You could sterilize the jars and seal them properly if you wish. I didn’t as I know everything will be gone before it turns bad and I find the job of sterilizing and sealing very tedious.

I enjoyed this marmalade on top of a toasted croissant with a nice amount of brie. The strong taste of the ginger and the sweetness of the oranges perfectly matches the rich flavor of the brie, and on top of a croissant it is simply divine.

Orange and ginger marmalade with almonds (small batch) | Scandilicious Kitchen

Pizza with ramps, potatoes and portobello (vegetarian)

Pizza with ramsons, potatoes and portobello | Scandilicious Kitchen

’Tis the season to be jolly! For what herb is in season right now? Ramps! (All of the exclamation marks!)

Give me an R! (“Rrrr!”)

Give me an A! (“Aaaa!”)

Give me an M! (“Uh…”)

Give me an P! (“You seriously gonna do this whole thing?”)

Okay, okay, not going that far. But I am just so excited! This is one of my favorite things in the entire world and they’re only in season for like a month and a half. Ugh! I could swear! So at the moment I am eating ramps for breakfast, brunch, elevenses, lunch, tea, supper and dinner. You don’t like ramps? Too bad, because they’ll be in your scones, and your oatmeal, and your goulash, and smoothie, and ice cream! Oh boy, ramp ice cream… Should I do it? Could it work?!

I don’t know how it works outside of Denmark but here ramsons get on the shelves start-april and then people (read: me) go crazy and elbow each other for what seems like a blink of an eye to get to the precious nectar that is garlic leaves, and then they’re gone. It’s kinda like with lumpfish caviar. You only just get the idea to make ice cream out of it (please don’t) and then it’s gone before you even get to the store.

Don’t even get me started on strawberries!

Pizza with ramsons, potatoes and portobello | Scandilicious KitchenSo, to get something done about my mountains of ramps – you may call me a hoarder – I decided to sprinkle them on top of my favorite pizza: potato pizza. I usually make it very plane with potatoes, garlic oil, salt and onion seeds, but I decided to this time swap the garlic with ramps. And if you’ve said A you must say B. So I kept on building. Scallions, sweet potatoes, portobello mushrooms, gouda, parmesan – now we’re talking! And it tastes like heaven! It gives you that intense garlic flavor but without the bad breath. Double win!

Pizza with ramsons, potatoes and portobello | Scandilicious Kitchen

I also made the dough myself – because duh (because dough! ha! no?). I think that store bought pizza dough tastes like yeasted cardboard and my ramps deserves better than that! So dive into the cupboard to get the strong flour, roll up your sleeves and get kneading. It will take you no more than 20 minutes, not counting the resting time. No excuses, it’s seriously too easy. And if you have a stand mixer you don’t even have to get your hands dirty!

I hope that ramps are available where ever you live so you can get to enjoy this pizza, and probably an upcoming pesto, as much as I did. It is delicious and perfect, simple as that.

Kisses!

Pizza with ramsons, potatoes and portobello | Scandilicious Kitchen

Pizza with ramps, potatoes and portobello

For the dough (adapted from Jamie Oliver):

500 g strong flour
3,5 dl lukewarm water
1 sachet of dried yeast (mine was 11 g)
1 tsp. salt
0,5 tsp. sugar
3 tbsp. olive oil

For the topping:

1,5 russet potato (the big ones)
1 small sweet potato
2 scallions
2 portobello mushrooms
A big handful of ramp leaves
A good grating of parmesan
A small handful of grated gouda
Salt
Black pepper
Olive oil

The dough

In a bowl, mix the flour, sugar and water. Make sure that the water isn’t too hot, or else it will kill the yeast. You can test it by letting the tap run over your wrist: if you don’t feel the temperature of the water much, then it should be good. Set aside for 5 minutes for the yeast to activate.

In a big bowl, mix the flour and salt. Stir in the yeasted water and oil with a fork. When the dough is too tough to stir, transfer it to a floured surface and knead for 5-10 minutes. It should be a bit sticky, but not so much that you can’t handle it. You know that it’s ready when you can press a mark into it and it springs back into shape. Put it back into the big bowl and cover it with a damp cloth. Leave it to rest for a good hour. It should double in size. (You could also wrap it in cling film and leave it in the fridge over night – then it’s ready to go in a jiffy the next day!)

When doubled, transfer it back onto the floured surface and knock the air out of it. Roll it into a pizza with a rolling pin and transfer it onto a baking tray.

The topping

Set the oven to 250 degrees celsius.

Peel the potatoes (both white and sweet) and cut them into very thin slices, with either your sharpest knife or a using a mandoline. Cut the mushrooms into halves and slice them into thin slices as well. Same thing goes for the scallions.

Sprinkle the gouda over the pizza – it should feel like it’s way too little. Spread the white potatoes over it. Let them overlap as they will shrink and curl up in the oven. They should cover the entire pizza. On top of the potatoes spread the sweet potatoes.

Fry the mushrooms in a frying pan over high heat until golden. Put in the scallions for the last 20-30 seconds of the frying. Disperse the mix over the potato layer. Sprinkle the veggies with a gentle pinch of salt and black pepper. Drizzle with olive oil.

Turn the oven down to 200 degrees. Put in the pizza and bake for 15-25 minutes, or until the edges are golden.

While the pizza is baking, roughly chop the ramps. When the pizza comes out of the oven, immediately grate a good amount of parmesan on top of it. Drizzle the ramps on top of the pizza and give it a little extra salt (trust me). An extra pinch of olive oil will definitely not hurt the final product.

And there you have it! Fresh and filling. Enjoy!

Seriously easy lemon curd

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1lille

Coming back to work after five days off is hard, you guys.

On the third day Jesus rose from the dead. Pretty cool move. You know what I did on the third day back at work? Dropped an entire bloody cake on the floor. That’s £65 worth of cake squashed beyond recognition. Needless to say that it wasn’t the best possible thing to do in front of a crowd of costumers. But hey, my colleagues got a laugh! – all day long! Good thing that something good came of it.

So, that happened.

I also ran out of Suits. I feel like i just started watching it yesterday! What have I done to deserve this? Gimme more Harvey or I’ll drop an entire freaking cake on you. This week, man, I tell you…

Thus, on the last day before my weekend I decided to drop by Reinh van Hauen to get a shitload of scones to lift my spirits a little. I did not feel like coming back to work had been the best game plan, so I needed some cheering up. Guess when the bakery closed? An hour before I got off of work. Just my luck. So there I was, utterly exhausted, with no scones to brighten the evening.

What I am trying to say is that today I was a wreck. I could do nothing but eat the rest of my Easter chocolates and watch cooking programs.
But the blog must go on! My solution was to make one of the easiest things I know: lemon curd. This stuff takes less time to make than vanilla muffins, and that says something! Lemons, eggs, sugar, butter – slam, bam, lemon jam (curd, yeah, but what’s the fun in that?)!

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The weather, on the other hand, was in a very good mood today, so that left me with some pretty overexposed photos. Yet I’ve come this far and I won’t have the sun (of all things) stop me from achieving a magnificent blog entry.

So there you have it! A tangy and beautifully smooth lemon curd, just like we all love it!

Kisses!

5lille

Lemon curd

Makes about 2,5 dl of curd

3 organic egg yolks
1 organic egg
180 g sugar
1,5 dl lemon juice (about 4-5 lemons)
Zest of 2 lemons (optional)
55 g cold butter, cut into cubes

In a saucepan combine the egg yolks, eggs, sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest. You could swap the whole egg for just another yolk if you’re afraid of curdling (the egg whites cook at a lower temperature which will make the curd curdle more easily).

Cook the mixture over low to medium heat, stirring constantly, until it’s thick and can coat the back of a wooden spoon, 10-15 minutes, depending on the heat.

Take the curd off the heat and stir in the butter, one cube at a time, until combined.

If the curd have curdled after all, just run it through your food processor or strain it through a fine sieve, and you should be all good.

Let the curd cool completely. Store in an airtight jar in the fridge for up to… well, until it tastes funny. I’ve never had it for this long, to be honest. Serve on bread, scones, pavlovas, pies, or whatever makes your tummy go all happy.

Not-Christmas honey cookies

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Honey2Boy, do I love Easter! Having five days off in a row to me is like winning the lottery. This only happens if I have to stay home sick or the shop is closed for said many days (which is never) or the Queen demands every Danish citizen to take a bunch of days off or something. I had so much time on my hands to do the things that I don’t have the time for in my every day schedule (take a bunch of recipe-snaps for later use, make a bread that takes days to prove, organize the kitchen)… and I would have done that, I swear. I was so ready when the days off approached… But then they were here! And they hit me like a shockwave and knocked me right down onto the couch, which is where I’ve been spending every single one of them. And I’m still sitting there.

Pros about being trapped on your couch: Binge-watching Suits (more like binge-gaping at Harvey); binge-watching the Sorted Food channel; binge-reading my new favorite blog (Molly, let’s run away together!); binge-eating donuts. Okay, we might have to discuss that last one. It seemed like a pro at first, but oh God, I won’t even get into how many donuts I’ve shoved in my mouth. It’s definitely more than two. Definitely. And you will never find out about the Oreo’s… or the cake… or the kringle… or the After Eight… Let’s just say that its a good thing that I’m going back to my running-back-and-forth-job tomorrow. Phew.

Getting to the cons of being stuck on the couch for the past five days. As you might have noticed, not a single recipe has gone up on the blog – and there isn’t one in my drafts, either. Whoops. Five days do fly by when you’re busy doing nothing (which is my favorite activity in the whole wide world, so I won’t be stopped when I have the chance to do 120 hours of it). Luckily for my poor body, I ran out of donuts, which led me to get my po-po off of that damn couch and get some baking done. I’d found this recipe during one of my Pinterest binges and thought that I’d give it a go yesterday. Halfway through, though, I found out that the dough had to rest over night. Ugh! This, ladies and gentlemen, is why you always read the entire recipe before you get your hands dirty. So no cookies for me until today.

I found the dough to be very uncooperative so I took some liberties and changed a whole bunch of things. I can’t help it. Recipes are for the weak! … or something. So these cookies are more like little glazed cakes. Very yummy, but I would recommend doubling the amount of spices and maybe adding a bit more honey. Other than that, I am very happy to yet again have a full cookie jar! Until the mice (better known as my Mum) comes sneaking.

I hope that you will enjoy my adaption of this family recipe (and my very artsy-fartsy photos… I don’t know what I wanted to achieve) and I’d love to hear if you made it, and maybe what liberties you took with the recipe! Now I’ll get back onto the couch (yush!) with a handful of honey goodness and an episode of Downton Abbey. Ah.

Kisses!

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Not-Christmas honey cookies

Recipe adapted from Pastry Affair
Yields about 37 cookies

1,2 dl honey
1,2 dl brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
0,5 tsp. ground cloves
0,5 tsp. ground ginger
0,5 tsp. ground black pepper
55 g butter
0,3 dl black coffee
1 egg
0,8 dl sour cream
0,5 tsp. baking powder
7 dl flour

200 g powdered sugar
Water

In a small saucepan melt the honey and sugar over medium heat. When melted, mix in the spices, butter and coffee. Let cool. Whisk in the egg and sour cream. Sift in the flour and baking powder and stir until the dough begins to come together. Knead the dough until smooth and form it into a disc. Wrap in in cling film and let in rest in the fridge over night.

Preheat your oven to 175 degrees celcius.

Take the dough out of the fridge and put it on a floured surface. Roll it out until 3-5 mm thick. Cut out rounds of your liking (I had a wine glass at hand, so that determined the size of mine). Put them on a baking tray – they won’t spread, so there is room for quite a lot at a time. Bake them for 10-14 minutes, depending on size, until risen and slightly golden. Let them cool completely.

Make the glaze by mixing the powdered sugar with a drop of water, until a very thick consistency. Using the back of a spoon, spread the top of the cookies with the glaze. Let the glaze cool, or shove them in your gob straight away!

Fedtebrød (Danish coconut shortbread)

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Let me introduce you to my favorite cookie of all time: Fedtebrød. Though the name does very little to sell the cookie (it literally translates to ‘grease bread’) I can assure you that it is nothing less than amazing. Danes have a knack for baking cookies and with this one they hid the nail on the head. It is the perfect combination of both flakey, chewy and tart – all in one cookie!

In my family we bake these a lot (as in all the time), ‘cause they literally take no time at all to make. From the time you take out the flour till you’ve cut them out, no more than half an hour will have past. It’s like magic! The only catch is that there is only one way to eat them: You eat one. Then you eat another one. And another one. And then you just keep on going until the tin is empty. You can keep them for a little over a week, but why should you?

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2lille

I got this recipe from every Dane’s favorite cookbook: Frøken Jensens Kogebog (Miss Jensen’s Cookbook). You will find this book on the shelf in every household in Denmark, no exceptions. It is the perfect basic-recipe cookbook and contains every basic recipe that you will ever need. I religiously use it every time I bake classic Danish cookies ‘cause you simply won’t find recipes, though they might be very modest, that can beat these.

But since it is a very Danish recipe, it also calls for a very Scandinavian ingredient: Ammonium bicarbonate. I have never seen this in any English recipes and therefore assume that it is not easily obtained outside of Scandinavia. You could use bicarbonate of soda instead – it pretty much does the same job. The advantage of ammonium bicarbonate is that it leaves no aftertaste in the cookies what so ever (it will, though, in moist cakes, so don’t try to use it for those). But if you do find it and decide to give it a go, don’t be alarmed when you open the oven door and is met by a very unpleasant smell, it is just the ammonia reacting. The smell will be foul but the cookie will be delicious. Trust me on this one.

Another thing worth mentioning is the glaze. This can raise the roofs of the small Danish homes: ‘Cause should it be made from lemon or rum? We all have fond memories of these cookies and if you remember them with lemon glaze, there is no way that they will ever be real fedtebrød with rum glaze. My mom and grandmother has always made them with lemon glaze, so in my opinion that is the only way. Who would ever in their right mind make these with a rum glaze? Crazy people, that’s who!

So on that note there should be only one thing left to mention: Eggless dough! Enjoy!

Kisses!

1lille

3lille

Fedtebrød (Danish coconut shortbread)

200 g butter, room temperature
100 g sugar
250 g flour
100 g desiccated coconut
1/2 tsp. ammonium bicabonate

250 g powdered sugar
Juice of 1-1,5 lemons or a little rum

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius.

Mix the flour, desiccated coconut and ammonium bicarbonate (which can be replaced by baking soda) in a large bowl. Rub in the butter and sugar and knead until the dough is smooth and binds together. It will act like a shortcrust pastry dough (it will be very dry and crumbly), so just be patient and keep kneading until it behaves.

Divide the dough into three and roll them out into sausages the length of your baking tray. Put them on the lined baking tray and flatten them out into rectangles at about 0.5-1 cm in thickness. Keep some space between them as they will spread a little.

Put them in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes. Take them out when they are lightly golden. If they turn too dark you won’t be able to cut them.

While the cookies are baking make the glaze by mixing the powdered sugar and lemon juice/rum until a thick consistency.

Take the cookies out of the oven and immediately spread the icing sugar over the middle of the rectangles while they’re still hot. I did it very rustic (because loads of glaze is the right amount of glaze), but you could just keep to the inner 2-3 cm of the rectangle. Then with a sharp knife cut the them into 2 cm thick slices crosswise. Keep a damp cloth in arm’s reach and wipe the knife every so often, so you don’t mess up the glaze too much.

Let the cookies cool completely and store them in an airtight container for about a week or so, or eat them warm and gooey right away with a hot cup of tea.

Review: What Would Mary Berry Do? by Claire Sandy

I read this book like Hazel in ‘The Fault in Our Stars‘ fell in love: slowly, and then all at once. If truth be told, it took me a little over a month just to read the first half of this book. But then a few days ago I picked it up and I didn’t put it down until I’d read 200 pages. Sometimes you just have to experience a book in one fell swoop.

2 - What Would Mary Berry Do? review | Smiles, monsters & magic

You won’t ever guess why I picked up this book! As they say, you should never judge a book by its cover… and that is exactly what I did. How mouthwatering does that dripping pile of goodness look? Slurp! I am unable to resist books with food and dessert as the main theme (‘Chocolat’ by Joanne Harris, anyone?), so of course this one drew me to it like a cat’s claws are drawn to new stockings. It was like meeting my soulmate, only in this case my soulmate was a book cover. A damn delicious book cover!

What Would Mary Berry Do

Following the refreshingly honest Marie Dunwoody and her family, What Would Mary Berry Do? is an authentic and amusing story about family, friendship and burned bundt cakes. As things goes, baking is not on Marie’s repertoire, but after failing miserably to produce a showstopper for the school fete she decides to embrace baking and everything that comes with it. With Mary Berry’s Baking Bible by her side, Marie takes on the daunting new world that is baking. Kept to the fire by her imagined nemesis, Lucy, and her always stunning baked goods, Marie is determined to master the art of producing a showstopper; a task that isn’t as easy as it might seem.

Life isn’t as easy as many Hollywood movies might cause you to think; life will throw you lemons when you have your arms filled with heavy grocery bags. As perfectly portrayed by the ups and downs of the Dunwoody’s, this book is a delight to read if you just need a casual every day life novel. It never gets too dark or tragic, but is kept in a very light and enjoyable tone.

I loved the many personalities of this book. There are so many characters to love: the very much (if not too much) herself, Aileen, dental assistant; the mischievous, sneaky, and quite genius twins, Iris and Rose; the ever so lovely Lucy across the street. I especially liked Lucy’s storyline, which gives the book that little drama that one might long for a bit.

If I had to put my finger on one thing that this book was missing, it would be more cakes. In over 400 pages, I would have enjoyed more time with Marie in the kitchen, and less in the dental clinic. But taking everything into account, it was an amusing and quite sincere story and I would definitely recommend it as a light summer’s read.

So, this was my first ever book review. Phew, harder to write than you would think! Did I do it justice? Did it even make sense? Was there an important review-detail that I totally missed? Don’t hesitate to let me know! I am new in this blogger-world so every little response helps me a long way!

Kisses!

Tart biscotti with almonds, hazelnuts and sesame

It’s happening! I’ve created something and it is going online! This is one small step for mankind but one huge leap for this little human.

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I’ve been home from work for the last three days, sick, so I’ve had a lot of time on my hands. Recently I have been mildly (ha, yeah right) obsessed with Sorted Food on YouTube and gotten my deep-rooted food obsession to grow yet again. So after watching a billion food-related videos (what else is there to do when trapped on the sofa?) I headed over to Pinterest, and there I stumbled upon the most luscious picture of a stack of biscotti. I. Love. Biscotti. And the great thing about biscotti is that they keep for so long! So I decided to bake a bunch, even though I had no appetite what so ever.

It was a struggle, I must admit. Making a dough that needs just the tiniest bit of arm’s strength while sick is not the best idea I’ve had. But I felt restless and something needed to happen. So bish bosh bash, I threw together a half-improvised biscotti dough – and it actually turned out alright!

I did all of this yesterday, so today my body is a little more cooperative and my appetite is back! But the restlessness is still there and that’s how I ended up making my first official blog post – yay for me! The pictures are, in my opinion, definitely not Pinterest-worthy – if even blog-worthy – but they’re there and it’s a start! I don’t really know anything about photography or lighting, so the quality is very much still in the baby stage. Bare with me here, though, ‘cause I definitely plan on improving quite a lot. I think that food photography is very fascinating, but the thing I don’t get is how people make it look so effortless. I tried placing a piece of parchment paper underneath the biscotti (crooked, even – oh, fancy) and spread some almonds and hazelnuts around, but it just ended up looking like I tried too hard. Oh well! Next time will be better!

I actually wrote several entries before going with this one, where I explained how much of a perfectionist I am and how much out of my comfort zone this post is (with the bad pictures and second language English). But I have decided that it is okay to start out with blurry, bland pictures and an unfocused ramble, ‘cause this is my space and these are my rules.

I am planning on getting this blog to a whole other level, but things takes time and a blog isn’t perfect from post one.

So, from me to you, here is my first official post with my first official recipe! How can you go wrong with biscotti? Maybe the pictures failed, maybe the ramble failed, but the biscotti will never fail!

Kisses!

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Tart biscotti with almonds, hazelnuts and sesame

5 dl (2 cups) flour
1,8 dl (3/4 cup) sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
Zest of 2 lemons
1 thumb sized piece of ginger, grated
1/4 tsp. vanilla powder
A pinch of salt
3 large eggs
A handful of almonds
A handful of hazelnuts
A small handful of sesame seeds

Preheat oven to 175 degrees celcius (350 degrees fahrenheit).

In a large bowl, whisk together all of the dry ingredients plus the lemon and ginger. Fold in the nuts and seeds. Crack in the eggs and get your hands dirty. The dough will appear very dry, but it will come together when kneaded – just like a shortcrust pastry dough.

Divide the now smooth dough into two and roll the pieces into logs, about 6,5 cm (3 inches) wide, 2,5 cm (1 inch) high. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake for approx. 30 minutes, or until the logs are firm to the touch and puffed up. The top might crack, don’t worry about that. Transfer them to a wire rack and let them cool.

When the logs have cooled, cut them into 1 cm (1/2 inch) thick slices crosswise. Best to use a bread knife for this bit. Spread the cookies on the baking sheet and bake them, yet again, for 20 minutes, flipping them halfway through the bake.

Since the cookies are twice baked (as the name indicates) they can be stores for weeks and weeks, so they’re a perfect snack to have lying around.

They’re best served dunked into coffee. So, enjoy!

The dreaded first post

I dream of running a blog. It has been a dream of mine since I can remember. I have tried and tried (and tried) to get one up and running, but every time, after just a couple of half-hearted posts, it has withered and died. And this hasn’t just happened once or twice, it has happened maybe twelve (or twenty) times – I have honestly lost track of count.

But this time, pugs and princesses, I will concur! I will get this blog to the point where you think “Damn, this is some next level shit!” and it will be glorious.

It might not happen over night. No, it most definitely won’t happen over night. I, as you might have figured out from all of the dead blogs, am very good at getting really hooked on something, and then forgetting all about it after a short while. Whether it be a blog, a hobby, a crush, or something entirely different. I am not very consistent – at all. (How’s that for a good basis for a blog?)

So on that note, let’s see where this brings me. First of all I need to get my camera up and running. As I see it, a blog is only as good as its pictures – and this blog doesn’t even have a single personal picture yet! Boo. And I already have three or four lists packed with ideas for posts – both funny, serious and yummy ones.

So it is safe to say that the only thing holding me back is myself! Let’s call this posts a personal motivator, ’cause I need a place to rant – even if nobody is listening.

I hope to see you (and myself) very soon on this same spot! It will be a wild (and mildly bewildering) journey, and it’s gonna be b-e-a-utiful!

Kisses!