The following recipes have been extracted from The ScandiKitchen Christmas by Brontë Aurell, published by Ryland Peters & Small.
Pepparkakor - Swedish Ginger Biscuits
550g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of baking soda
11/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon ground
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
a pinch of salt
100g granulated sugar
100g soft dark brown sugar
150g butter, at room temperature
200g golden/corn syrup
150ml double/heavy cream
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the flour, bicarbonate of/baking soda, spices, salt and sugars together. Add the rest of the ingredients, and mix until you have an even dough. Shape it into a log and wrap in clingfilm/plastic wrap. Rest it in the fridge at least overnight before using – try to resist eating the dough while it’s chilling!
Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) Gas 6. Line several baking sheets with baking parchment.
On a floured surface, roll out the dough very thinly (around 2 mm/
1/8 in. thick), and use cookie cutters to cut your desired shapes. Make sure they are thin biscuits. Place them on the lined baking sheets.
Bake in the preheated oven – each batch will take 5–6 minutes, depending on the thickness. The biscuits should be a darker shade of brown without being burnt. Remove from the oven and leave to cool before storing in an airtight container.
If you wish, you can let the kids loose with colourful icing/frosting.
Icing/confectioners’ sugar mixed with beaten egg white and a few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice makes the best decorative icing as it goes hard when it dries.
200g marzipan (63% almond content is the best for these sorts of treats, but you need at least a minimum of 50%)
120 g good-quality white chocolate
100 g desiccated/dried shredded coconut
food-safe silver glitter (optional)
Cut the marzipan into 20 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball, then leave in the fridge so they are cold when you add the chocolate – this allows them to dry quicker.
Temper the white chocolate (see page 61 for instructions – tempering white chocolate can be tricky, but the easiest way is to melt half in a bain-marie, then remove from the heat and stir in the remaining half to cool it down quickly).
Gently insert a cocktail stick/toothpick into a marzipan ball, then dip it in the melted chocolate so that it has a thin covering. Roll the ball in the desiccated/shredded coconut and leave to set on baking parchment. Repeat with the remaining marzipan balls.
Decorate with a little food-safe silver glitter, if you wish.
To flavour the marzipan, add a bit of finely grated orange zest when rolling the marzipan. For an adults-only version, 2 tablespoons
Amaretto works well. For a more decadent version, roll the marzipan around pieces of Viennese nougat.