Recipe: English Muffins

Source: This is based on another recipe – but as with any other recipe on this blog, I edited a bit. The original recipe can be found right here.

I found this one while looking for a simple muffin recipe, and one must admit that this must fulfill that demand – even to an extend that I didn’t expect. But since I don’t like raisins other ways than how they come in the package, that was a no-go, and since I had no lemon, so was that. But although the muffins are great without, a dash of lemon might dress it well.

Another perk is that these muffins freeze well.

Yield: 9 muffins.

Ingredients
150 g butter
150 g sugar
150 g flour
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder

To-do
Let the butter soften – this makes it easier to work with.
Preheat the oven to 200º C (390º F).
Mix butter and sugar.
Mix in the eggs.
Mix flour and baking powder – and mix it in with the rest.
Divide between nine muffin tins/moulds.
Bake for 15 minutes or until golden and unwobbly.

Enjoy with your afternoon/evening tea/coffee – eg. a good Earl Grey.

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Recipe: Vanilla cookies, v2

These are the cookies I brought for the rocktour with Brorson’s Church. I discovered too late that I used 350 g of butter instead of the 375 the original recipe called for – but it worked out perfectly in the end.

Vanilla wreaths/cookies can turn out to the dry side (as small cookies usually do) – but to me, there’s not much in the world of cookies that can’t be cured by being dipped in a cuppa tea or coffee (or whatever wonderful, drinkable liquid you’ve got in front of you).

The original recipe calls for hazelnuts or almonds – but since there was some experimenting with it even back then, I think it’s safe to make your own special tune and sing your own special song when it comes to kernels. (Edit: Experiment with the kernels of sunflower seeds turned out successfully).

Ingredients
550 g flour
350 g butter
250 g cashew nuts
160 g light cane sugar
3 teaspoons (-ish) vanilla sugar
1 egg

To-do

  • Blend the cashews – whether they should be chunky or fine is up to you.
  • Mix the flour, blended almonds, cane sugar, and vanilla sugar.
  • Fold in the egg as well as possible – you can rub it in if you find it necessary, but be warned that it doesn’t assemble all of the dry goods.
  • Rub in the butter (by now it should start sticking).
  • To make the cookies, take a piece of dough, roll it into a ball with a diameter of 1-1½ cm, and press it flat.
  • To make the wreaths, you can either use a mincer or roll it into small sausages and shape the wreaths from that.
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 200º C (390º F) for 10-11 minutes.
  • Let them cool. Keep in airtight container (say, recycle an old ice cream container or somesuch).

The dough freezes well – so you can make “sausages”/“salamis” (app. 10 cm/4 inches in diameter) of leftover dough and freeze them. When you need more cookies, defrost a “salami” in the fridge overnight, cut it in slices (4-5 mm/one-fifth of an inch thick), and bake them according to the instructions above. If you are making the dough a day in advance, skip the freezing step, just pop it into the fridge.
Just remember that it’s easier to cut the dough straight from the fridge since the significant amount of butter in the dough does have a tendency to be a wee bit too far on the soft side if it isn’t cooled down first.

Enjoy!

Recipe: Vanilla cookies

This is really a recipe for vanilla wreaths (or garlands, as the original recipe calls them). The original recipe is on a print from a homepage I can’t find any longer (www.danish-deli-food.com; the print is from 2005) – so unfortunately I can’t legally proof anything on this; but yes, I made changes on this one, too, and wrote this recipe in my own words.

I think I have a general problem with vanilla wreaths – they crumble the very instant they enter my mouth. Of course, most cookies have a tendency to do so, but this is really… Well. And it doesn’t matter how good they are otherwise. So next time I make a batch, I may just add an extra egg or extra butter or something like that.

Or I’ll just have to keep dipping them in my Christmas tea.

Anyway – they were a success with my family, so here is the recipe I used:

Vanilla cookies
You can use other kinds of nuts – the original recipe calls for hazelnuts, but suggested almonds.
The original recipe says that the dough freezes well (I still have the leftover dough in my freezer).

Ingredients
550 g flour
375 g butter
250 g almonds
160 g cane sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla sugar
1 egg

To-do

  • Blend the almonds as finely as possible.
  • Mix the flour, blended almonds, cane sugar, and vanilla sugar.
  • Fold in the egg as well as possible – you can rub it in if you find it necessary, but be warned that it doesn’t assemble all the dry goods.
  • Rub in the butter (by now it should start sticking).
  • To make the cookies, take a piece of dough, roll it into a ball with a diameter of 1-1½ cm, and press it flat.
  • To make the wreaths, you can either use a mincer or roll it into small sausages and shape the wreaths from that.
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 200º C (390º F) for 10-11 minutes.
  • Let them cool. Keep in airtight container.

Enjoy!

Recipe: That Ham!

This is something that I pull out for special occations – like holidays or special dinners where a roast is absolutely necessary. Like the family julefrokost. Although it’s a bit odd, cooked in cola and all, everybody love it and ask for it, and have been doing so since the first time I cooked it.

It used to be my mother cooking the ham back in the days, but she cooked it in some way that made the entire house stink. When I then found a special (or should we continue with calling it odd?) recipe I wanted to try a few years back, I took my chance to suggest that I cooked the ham that year. And I’ve been cooking the ham for the annual family julefrokost ever since.

Now, it’s no big secret that I got the recipe from Nigella Lawson. Then it’s said. But I *did* make some adjustments.

I know Nigella has talked of making soup from the cooking liquid – now I can’t remember which one, but I will post it if I find it.

Now, here’s what happened this year:

Colaham
Although I think I got all the good tips on timing worked into this recipe, I think it’s a good idea to read Nigella’s recipe, too, as I may not get all of the goodies on cooking and roasting into my version of the recipe.

Ingredients
1 678 g gammon (US: ham)
1 1½ liter bottle of Coca-Cola
1 onion, peeled and cut in halves

For the glazing
1 tablespoon organic dijon mustard
1 tablespoon organic maple syrup
1 small handful (or 1 unit) of cloves.

For the leftover Coke
A large glass.
A slice of lemon.
Ice cubes if desired.

To-do

  • Put your gammon into a pot, fat side down (if possible). Add the onion and cover ham and onion in Coca-Cola. Cook for 45 min. (add 15 min. if the gammon comes straight from the fridge).
  • Put possible ice cubes into the large glass, pour the rest of the Coke over the ice/into the glass, squeeze lemon juice into it, and enjoy while cooking.
  • Mix mustard and syrup in a small bowl.
  • Preheat oven to 240º C.
  • When the gammon has been cooked (and is now officially a ham, I suppose), take it out of the liquid and put it on a chopping board.
  • Slice off the fat, leaving a thin layer, score the thin layer with a sharp knife to make fairly large diamond shapes, and stud each diamond with a clove.
  • Place the ham in a roasting pan. Cover the “diamonds” with glaze, and pour the rest of the graze over the rest of the ham.
  • Put it in the oven – the original recipe says it should be there for 10 minutes, but my nose could tell me different before the 10 minutes had gone, so keep an eye (and nose!) on it. Take it out (before it burns!) and let it rest.

Enjoy!

The Ham, Christmas 2009 The Ham, Christmas 2009

Recipes: Emergency Christmas Teas

I’ve been at home for my family’s annual julefrokost (litterally: Christmas lunch; usually also describes a Christmas party at firms/companies/places of work or other organisations keeping adults busy, it’s a Christmas celebration, but not celebrating Christmas (Eve, Night, or Day(s)) itself. It’s one of the Danish oddities – like hygge).

I knew that my parents (who are the hosts of the family julefrokost) had some Christmas tea (because I bought it for them – they’re not as Christmassy as I am), although it’s not of my favorite teahouse – but my emergency Christmas teahouse. So since I (still?!) have some of my favorite Christmas tea left, I thought I’d bring it – but when I got there, I realized I had forgotten the tea at my place. And when I checked, there was only enough for a pot and a half of Christmas tea…

Luckily, we only needed one pot. When I wanted to make tea today, I luckily saw alternatives of keeping up the Christmas spirit while looking over the shelves of tea and spices.

Note #1
If you’re REALLY lazy, Chai is a really good alternative to Christmas tea (my best suggestions being Yogi Black Chai and Pukka Herbal Spiced Chai (since the last suggestion is herbal, even Latter-Day Saints can drink it!). If your local supermarket doesn’t carry it, ask for it at your local health food shop. Follow instructions on package.

Note #2
1 unit = 1 cakespoon -or- 1 heaped teaspoon -or- 1 teabag.
1:1 means one unit of one tea, one unit of another and usually goes with one (1) liter of water. If you need more or less, just multiply it with liters of water.

Recipe 1
While there was about a cakespoon left of Christmas tea (the teapot in question takes two), I was happy to discover a box of Yogi Black Chai with one remaining teabag in it – and mixing them was a success!

Ingredients
Water
1:1 Fredsted Julethe and Yogi Black Chai
Possibly milk/cream & sugar/honey to taste.

To-do
Boil water.
Scald pot/cup.
Put tea in pot/cup – if necessary, put loose tea in teabag or somesuch.
Pour boiling water over tea.
Leave it to steep for 7-8 minutes.

Recipe 2
Now, after having used the last Christmas tea, I was about to take the Christmas spirit down a notch – but then remembered one of the two most dominating ingredients of my favorite Christmas tea: Cloves (the second being orange peel). And then I took some cloves and let them steep with the tea.

Ingredients
2 units of your favorite tea (in my case: Queen’s Blend from A. C. Perch’s Thehandel)
1 small unit of cloves
Possibly milk/cream & sugar/honey to taste.

To-do
Boil water.
Scald pot/cup.
Put tea in pot/cup – if necessary, put loose tea in teabag or somesuch.
Pour boiling water over tea.
Leave it to steep for how long your favorite tea requires (Queen’s Blend requires 7 minutes).

Enjoy!