December 31, 2013

Liquorice marzipan cake (kransekage)

As you probably already know, if you are a regular reader of my blog, I am a HUGE fan of liquorice, so when I saw, that two new marzipan products with liquorice taste (LAKRIDS liquorice marzipan costing 50 DKK/200 g =  25 DKK/100 g & Odense Marcipan liquorice marzipan costing between 15-25 DKK/150 g = 10-16.67 DKK/100 g) was launched in connection with the Christmas season of 2013, I knew at once, that, I needed to test out these new marzipans in my little kitchen.

The taste of the LAKRIDS marzipan is more rich and rounded in it´s flavour combined with a more rough texture with bigger almonds pieces inside. The liquorice marzipan from Odense is more smooth in texture, while the taste still dominated by liquorice is less rich in flavour. However, comparing the prices between these two marzipans, the version from Odense Marcipan is much more affordable to use for coming kitchen work.

I also located this specific recipe on liquorice marzipan cake in commercial leaflet called Golden Christmas by LAKRIDS.

The flavour combination of lemon and liquorice is always great. Serving these liquorice marzipan cakes as part of the traditional New Year´s celebration will NOt fit perfect, as the taste os liquorice is too dominating for a normal glass of champagne in my opinion. However, they would be perfect served together with liquorice ice cream

Liquorice marzipan cake a la LAKRIDS:
  • 200 g liquorice marzipan
  • ½ teaspoon grated zest of (organic) lemon
  • 75 g icing sugar
  • 16 g egg white
  1. Start by heating the (conventional) oven to 180'C.
  2. Knead the marzipan, lemon zest, icing sugar and egg white together.
  3. Roll the marzipan cake mass in one long roll, which is cut into piece of 5-8 mm.
  4. Shape the marzipan cake mass into a round shape.
  5. Place the marzipan cake mass on a baking tray covered with baking paper.
  6. Bake the marzipan cake in the oven at 180'C in the upper part of the oven for 8-10 minutes.
  7. Cool down the marzipan cakes, before placing them in airtight container.

December 30, 2013

Suggestions on marzipan cake for the upcoming New Year 2014

We has just managed to get Christmas out off the door (still lacking to celebrate Twelfth Night, which is not NOT very big here in Denmark), before the next important event is lining up in form of New Year celebration.

To mark the change from an old used year of 2013 with no more days left moving into 2014 with 365 brand new days full of opportunities requires, that we drink champagne/sparkling wine/bobbles served together with cakes made of marzipan, at least here in Denmark.

If you would like to bake your very own marzipan cakes, I will already now share all my entire collection of various suggestions on marzipan cake (known as kransekage in Denmark), which I have created during the "life time" of Kitchen of Kiki in this blog post. It will leave you time to go shopping for the needed ingredients as well as baking them for New Year's Eve tomorrow.

I find, that the major advantages of making your own marzipan cake is, that you are in control of the overall  sweetness in the final cake, so you can make the cake more or less sweet according to your sweetness preference, instead for "just living with" the sweetness in the cakes, which you buy, which I find to be too sweet !!!

Final important remark: remember to serve the marzipan cake with a sweet type of champagne or sparkling wine, as the combination of sweet marzipan cake and dry sparkling wine is a taste killer.

If you would like to have  more softness in your marzipan cake, you should freeze them after baking. The only drawback is, that freezing reduce the overall flavour profile of the cake.

The "classic" type of marzipan cake is the white version of these zebra marzipan cake. The white version is made from plain marzipan, while the dark version is made from marzipan containing cocoa.

Another good tasting marzipan cake could be these marzipan orange cakes or with an extra little twist in of orange flower as here marzipan orange cakes with orange flower. A third suggestion giving similar looking cakes are marzipan cakes with clementine and Cointreau.

Another excellent taste twist on "kransekage" is pomegranate marzipan cake combining the freshness of pomegranate with the sweetness of marzipan.

As a colourful farewell to 2013 these baked marzipan confect are an option. The only drawback is, that the forest fruit marzipan (purple looking marzipan) is loosing colour during the baking !!! However, you do not need to worry about this topic, as Odense Marcipan has withdrawn this specific marzipan product from their product range.

I will not be making any of the above mentioned suggestion for New Year's Eve, as I will trying out a new recipe to mark the transition into 2014.

December 29, 2013

Christmas lunch 2013 for "The Wonderful Women"

The annual Christmas lunch for "The Wonderful Women" took place yesterday afternoon. However, the year we decided to break with the tradition within both the food and entertainment area !!! Instead of the usual cheese tapas we agreed as a group to try a new "menu" in form of smørrebrød (open Danish sandwiches) from restaurant Remouladen (awarded the best Danish lunch restaurant of 2012), where I also got the food from for my birthday lunch this spring.

As each piece of smørrebrød is relative big, I decided, that two persons easily could share one piece and thereby get the option of tasting various types of smørrebrød. I had ordered the following pieces of smørrebrød:
  • Herring from Christiansø served with onions, capers and raw egg yolk (you are asked, when ordering this specific piece of smørrebrød, if you prefer a raw or pasteurised egg yolk, which I find to be very good service)
  • Eggs and shrimps
  • Fried filet of plaice with remoulade
  • Roast beef
  • The Vet´s midnight snack = liver paté, salted saveloy, jelly and onions.
  • Rib roast with red cabbage
  • Sausage of rolled meat with onions
  • Chicken salad with bacon

All the pieces of smørrebrød are very nicely decorates with plenty of green stuff such flat-leaf parsley and watercress and chives. And the taste is just excellent. The fried filet of plaice is actually pan-fried instead of being fried in boiling oil like fries.

As tradition dictates we started the Christmas lunch with a bobbling cocktail, where I will share the specific recipe on later stage such as in the new year.

After the eating of the smørrebrød we got a nice cheese board with some great tasting cheeses of mostly Danish cheeses.

In breaking with tradition on the entertainment side we this year decided to play package game (pakkeleg in Danish), where each person as minimum had brought minimum two gifts. And these gift can be every thing incl. leftovers from Christmas. So where were gifts of an empty Christmas beer bottle, final portion of Christmas tea, leftovers Christmas butter cookies, the ingredients for red cabbage salad or ris a la mande incl the almond gift for this very specific Christmas dessert. We did not play this package game with dice, but a bunch of cards telling how the gift should be moving around on the table. It was great fun :-)

After all the excitement of the package game it was time for the final food point on the menu: Christmas dessert plate made from Christmas ice creammince pies and Lønnestræde´s plum in spiced red wine year 2013, uuhhmmm :-)

My fantastic girl friends brought me some very nice hostess gifts in form of  red colourful bouquet of flower very Christmas style, Christmas tea, flower shaped pasta, sea salted almonds and two holders for tea lights. Thank you soo much for all your nice gift :-)

As usual all these amazing girl friends are invited again for Christmas lunch next year in 2014 :-) And the missing fifth girl friend made her appearance this year after her long travel around the world, which prevented her from taking part last year.

After all "The Wonderful Women" had left the building/house, Hannibal the Cat decided, that he needed to relax after all this female entertainment/noise, so he took a nap on the dining table :-)

December 28, 2013

Feed-back on Christmas Calendar 2013

Typical Danish Winter weather
I do not know about you, but I have been having a lot of fun making my very own Christmas Calendar here in 2013 just like the ones on TV ! For me it is a way for keeping my mood up during a long, dark, gray and rainy Winter season, as it keep me busy inside of hiding under my duvet like a little sleepy brown bear !!!

So I have baking cookies and cakes and making sweets, which I have been using for advent gifts for my mother, serving at glögg evening for good girl friends and finally eating during Christmas.

Reviewing your visits to my Christmas Calendar 2013, I have made a TOP 5 over the most popular Christmas Calendar Doors according to your preference:
  1. Christmas ice cream - day 22
  2. Cookies with cranberry and white chocolate - day 5
  3. Liquorice almonds with in lemon flavoured white chocolate - day 9
  4. Sesame caramels - day 12
  5. Christmas jam 2013 - day 15
So based on these most popular post I will conclude, that you here in 2013 like ice cream, cookies (perhaps served together), almonds sweets, caramels and jam instead of the usual sweets made from marzipan, which is not so typical among us Danes.

However, just as interesting is, that the following post from from the old Christmas Calendar of 2011 still are capable to remaining between the 10 most popular blog post ever,  so they are true evergreens !!
I will already now commit myself to be the creation process of a new Christmas Calendar for 2014. Actually I am already playing around with some ideas for this 2014 version. However, if you have an idea, please feel to leave a comment. You are also more than welcome to share your opinion on Christmas Calender 2013 at the same time.
I think, that I as many other bloggers appreciate your comments, as we when know, that someone actually is reading our blogs !! So do not be shy, but make my day by leaving a comment :-)

December 27, 2013

Glögg evening for women of Vejle 2013

Having created yet another annual Christmas Calendar version 2013, I was having a little kitchen full of wonderful Christman treats every where filling up a single airtigth storage container of my kitchen, so I called in some help in form of "helping mouth" to remove this excess of calories from my kitchen.

So some very good girl friends from the local area were summoned to my kitchen a few evenings before Christmas Eve filling out my kitchen living area, sitting on every single available chair and filling my house with plenty of good talks and great laugther, while they did their best to eat my of my kitchen !!!!
Besides from bringing me some much needed help I got these wonderful Christmas related hostess gifts, which are adding an extra decorative element to my home during the festitive season.

December 24, 2013

Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 24 - Wishing you a merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

I wish you a merry Christmas during your visit in my little kitchen :-) I hope you will enjoy your stay here, being either a short browse or a long stay.

Today is the last blog post in the Christmas Calendar 2013, which I have spend many enjoyable hours making in my little kitchen. I hope you have enjoy spending your time reading the daily blog post during this month of Christmas.

Thank your for dropping by and have wonderful Christmas together with your family :-)

December 23, 2013

Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 23 - Marzipan "potatoes" with liquorice twist

I located this recipe on marzipan "potatoes"s with liquorice in a Christmas recipe collection for the weekly Danish magazine Femina issue 46/2013, and I knew at once, that I need to make these marzipan "potatoes" as they have this twist of liquorice, which I have a serious addiction to.

I am also finding these marzipan "potatoes" to be something special compared to the more classic version of marzipan "potatoes", as the raw liquorice powder is both giving a black colour to the marzipan as well as changing the taste completely to liquorice. Also the use of English liquorice powder in the cocoa coating is giving strength to the liquorice. I really like the liquorice taste strength, but I am also a "hard core" liquorice eater, so I need to issue a general warning to my good friends in Horsens: be careful, if I serve these liquorice marzipan "potatoes" to you, do only eat ½ "potato" !!!

These "potatoes" is containing another dangerous food item: liquorice which can give you too a high blood pressure. In the "original" version I used cinnamon, which can damage your liver !!! So be careful out there :-)

Marzipan "potatoes" with liquorice twist:
  • 100 g marzipan
  • 1 teaspoon raw liquorice powder
  • 10 g cocoa powder
  • 15 g English liquorice powder
  1. Knead the raw liquorice powder into the marzipan.
  2. Divide the marzipan into small lumps, which you roll by hand into ball shape.
  3. Mix cocoa powder and English liquorice powder together in a deep dish.
  4. Add the marzipan balls to the powder mix, roll them around until they are completely covered by the cocoa-liquorice powder mix. I use a teaspoon for this part of the process, so I do not end with cocoa everywhere.
  5. Place the cocoa-liquorice coated marzipan ball in an air tight storage container.

December 22, 2013

Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 22 - Apple & Mincemeat Puffs

I have located this specific recipe on Apple & Mincemeat Puff in the monthly magazine Country Living issue October 2013. I made three changes to the recipe, besides from the making the serving size smaller, so instead of 4 servings, you are getting 6 servings. First change is, that I used a clemintine instead of lemon, as I had no lemon in kitchen, when I was cooking these puffs. Second changes was, that I used less of the ready-to-use puff dough, as the roll is very thinly rolled here in Denmark. And third and final change, that I used mu own home-made cinnamon sugar instead of mixing sugar and cinnamon together specifically for these puffs.

This Christmas treat is very, very easy to make as you working to ready-to-use ingredients to make this home-made treat. However, here a few days before Christmas we can all need an easy fix, if we are having guests coming around to say Merry Christmas.

Apple & Mincemeat Puffs a la Country Living: - 6/8 servings

  • 270 g puff pastry - ready-to-use
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon sugar
  • ½ organic clemtine - zest and juice
  • 1 apple - peeled, cored and cut into chunks
  • 120 g mincemeat
  1. Mix the apple and mincemeat together in a mixing bowl.
  2. Roll the puff pastry out and out into 6 equal squares. The height of ouff pastry is 3-4 mms.
  3. Place a spoonful of the filling mixture into the centre of each square.
  4. Damp the corners of the puff pastry with the egg glaze and bring them together, pinching the edges tightly to seal.
  5. Place a baking tray covered with baking paper.
  6. Place cold for 30 minutes.
  7. Brush with the remaining egg glaze.
  8. Heat the oven (conventional) to 200'C.
  9. Bake the puffs in the middle of the oven at 200'C for 15-20 minutes, until they are well risen and golden brown.
  10. Serve warm.

    December 21, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 21 - Christmas ice cream

    I decided to make a combination  of these recipes on ultra indulgent vanilla ice cream and mulled white wine  into a Christmas ice cream.

    As I found the original recipe to be over indulgent due to the combination of 15% fat, high level of milk solids non fat and addition of artisan-style ice cream stabiliser, the fat content can easily be reduced from 15% fat to 3.5% using whole-fat milk instead of dairy whipping cream (which will also be good for your overall calorie intake during the Christmas season).

    I was a bit uncertain on how long, I should infuse the milk ice liquid with the spices. Based on good discussion of this very specific issue with a work colleague with a background as chef, the common agreement was to infuse the milk with the spices, starting with 1 hour and taste it, before taking the decision about removal of the spices. I should not infuse for night-over, which was my initial thought, in order to avoid a too dominating flavour. This spice discussion was almost getting me "thrown out" of the lab at work, as I was talking too much according to the lab manager !!! Based on regular tasting, I decided to let the spices infuce the ice cream mix for 4 hour, before they were removed.

    This blog post has been submitted for the Blogging Challenge "Cooking with Herbs & Christmas spices " December 2013 
    Cooking with Herbs

    Christmas ice cream "artisan style": 4-6 servings
    • 627 g whole-fat milk, 3-3.5% fat
    • 39 g skimmed milk powder 
    • 96 g sugar
    • 32 g glucose syrup as powder
    • 6 g ice cream stabiliser
    • 1 cinnamon stick
    • 3 cardamon seeds 
    • 2 all spices seeds
    • ½ dried ginger
    • 1 star anise
    • 4 cloves
    1. Pour the milk into a small cooking pot.
    2. Dry-mix the skimmed milk powder, sucrose, glucose syrup powder and ice cream stabiliser together. 
    3. Whip the milk, as the dry-mix is added into the milk. 
    4. Place all the spices in a paper tea bag, which is closed with a knot, before adding it into the milk.
    5. Heat the ice cream mix over low-medium heat until hot, but not boiling.
    6. Cool down the ice cream mix in the refrigerator, let the spice bag infuse the ice cream mix for 1-4 hour, before removing it. 
    7. Let the mix stand for minimum 4 hours or night over. 
    8. Whip the ice cream mix. 
    9. Pour into your ice cream machine and freeze it into ice cream, which takes 30-40 minutes.
    10. Store the ice cream in the freezer.

    December 20, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 20 - Pink glögg (mulled wine) with pomegranate juice

    Today it is Friday and for many Danes it is the last working day, before the Christmas vacation start :-) And I hear many people say, that they really forward to some days off from work. Perhaps is it related to the fact, that the entire month of December has been one long gray month of darkness with very little sunshine during the short days of 7 hours of day light.

    Well, I think we should celebrate the begin of Christmas vacation with making some glögg :-) I have taken "seriously" inspiration for this pink glögg (mulled wine) with pomegranate juice from a recipe collection coming together with the weekly magazine "Alf for Damerne" issue 46/2013. I really like the idea of making glögg on rose wine instead of either white wine (mulled white wine) or red wine. It is sort of the usual compromise, which my good friend and I am doing, when we are out eating. She likes red wine and I like white wine, so we always goes for rose wine as the compromise !!!

    I was serving this glögg on  for a bounce of friends coming around for a Christmas get-together, and as the majority had to drive back by car, I decided to only to use wine as the alcohol provider (removing any addition of aquavita, cognac, sherry or port wine), so all the drivers could enjoy a glass of glögg without worrying about loosing their driving licence !!

    The use of fresh pomegranate kernels is using a nice fresh flavour boost into the spiced rose wine.

    November 29 2014, this recipe was used for the blog challenge "Cooking with herbs" having focus on Sugar and spice.

    Pink glögg with pomegranate juice: - 10-12 servings
    • 100 ml pomegranate juice
    • 200 ml water
    • 4 star anise
    • 2 fresh gingers - peeled
    • 6 cardamon seeds
    • 2 organic orange - only the zest
    • 2 l rose wine
    • 50 g dried cranberries
    • 100 g sultana raisins
    • 100 ml pomegranate juice
    • 1 pomegranate - all the kernels
    • sugar
    1. Start by soaking the cranberries and raisins in pomegranate juice (100 ml) night over.
    2. Heat up the other part of pomegranate juice (100 ml) with water, star anise, fresh ginger, cardamon seeds and orange zest in a large cooking pot.
    3. Let it boil lightly for 10 minutes.
    4. Remove this juice-spice liquid for the heat and let it infuse for 30 minutes.
    5. Add the rose wine, soaked dried fruits with pomegranate juice as well as pomegranate kernels into the juice-spice liquid.
    6. Heat up this glögg to below the boiling point. If it boil the alcohol will disappear.
    7. Sweetened the glögg with sugar, before serving it hot.

    December 19, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 19 - Stollen with marzipan and cranberries

    I am dreading to publish this post on Stollen with marzipan and cranberries, if I should have some fanatic German stollen fans !!! Marzipan in Stollen is OK, BUT cranberries !!!! I will have to see, if I become "persona non grata" in Germany due to the use of cranberries with the very famous German Christmas cake.

    I have located this specific recipe in the wonderful baking book "Seasonal Baking" by Fiona Carirns.
    I made three changes. The first change is on the ingredient side, where I replaced amaretto with cherry liqueur with Christmas spices. The second change was not adding the glazing of butter and amaretto baking the baking process, as I think it is giving a messy surface of the cake. The third change is on the equipment side, where I baked the cake in an original stollen form, so the shape of the cake is correct from a German view point.

    Stollen cake with marzipan and cranberry a la "Seasonal Baking":

    • 150 g dried cranberries
    • 100 ml cherry liqueur with Christmas spice
    • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
    • ½ teaspoon cardamon
    • 1 organic orange - zest of 1 orange and juice of ½ orange
    • 120 g soft butter
    • 120 g sugar
    • 200 g sour cream - 38% fat
    • 350 g spelt flour
    • 2 teaspoon baking powder
    • pinch of salt
    • 2 eggs - lightly beaten
    • 100 almond flour
    • 200 g marzipan

    1. Place the cranberries, cherry liqueur, nutmeg, cardamon, orange zest and orange juice in a small mixing bowl cool and leave it for minimum 4 hours or night over.
    2. Heat the oven (conventional) to 190'C.
    3. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together.
    4. Ground the almonds (with peel) into the flour.
    5. Whip the butter and sugar into a light creamy mass in a tabletop mixer, whip for 5 minutes on speed 6.
    6. Add the sour cream and whip again.
    7. Continue to whisk, slowly adding the eggs with 1 table spoon of the flour blend (to prevent curdling).
    8. Continue to whisk, as the flour blend, almond flour and soaked cranberries incl all the liquid is added into the cake dough.
    9. Grease the stollen form with butter.
    10. Fill half the cake dough into the stollen form.
    11. Roll the marzipan into one long log, being 3-4 cm shorter than the stollen form.
    12. Place the marzipan log into the dough, pressing it slightly down into the cake dough.
    13. Pour the remaining cake dough into the stollen form, so the marzipan log is covered by cake dough.
    14. Cover a baking tray with baking paper. Place the baking tray on top of the stollen form and turn everything up side down, so the stollen dough is covered by the stollen form, when it is baked in the oven.
    15. Place the stollen in the oven in the middle and let it bake for 50-55 minutes.
    16. After 35-40 minutes baking remove the stollen form. 
    17. Let the cake cool down after baking.
    18. Store the cake in an airtight container.

    December 18, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 18 - German-style Lebkuchen

    Lebkuchen is one of my favourite Christmas cakes, so when I can find a new recipe on lebkuchen to bake in my little kitchen it is like a little wonder !!! Some time ago I located this specific recipe in the weekly German magazine Horzu (issue 49/2012), which I am testing out here in this blog post. Another very good recipe on lebkuchen is this one.

    The wonderful thing about this specific recipe is, that it does NOT contain any milk or flour, so it could be an option for you to make, if you are allergy towards milk and/or gluten. You will need to check the ingredients inside the oblates to be absolute sure, if you are allergy. You could also decided not to the oblate as part of the cookies. Many people, which are served these lebkuchen always ask, if they are supposed to eat the oblate.

    Lebkuchen a la Horzu: - 30 cakes

    • 2 eggs
    • 150 g sugar
    • 1 pinch of salt
    • 50 g sucat - cut into smaller pieces
    • 50 g lemon candied peel - cut into smaller pieces
    • 200 almond - blended into flour
    • 100 g hazelnuts - blended into flour
    • 1 tablespoon of Lebkuchen spice
    • 1 pinch of baking powder
    • oblates
    • 125 icing sugar - optional
    • 3 tablespoon of lemon juice - optional
    1. Start by blending the almonds and hazelnuts (with peel) into flour.
    2. Mix the eggs, sugar and salt together on a kitchen mixer.
    3. Add the nut flour, candied lemon lemon, sucat, Lebkuchen spice, baking powder into this mix. Mix everything well together.
    4. Let the lebkuchen dough rest in the refrigerator night over.
    5. Heat up the oven (conventional) to 160'C.
    6. Take a spoon full of the dough and place it on the oblate. As the dough is not floating so much during baking, you can fill the entire oblate with dough.
    7. Bake the lebkuchen at 160'C in the upper part of the oven for 15-20 minutes.
    8. Let the lebkuchen cool down.
    9. Mix the icing sugar and lemon juice together as glazing for the lebkuchen. However, this is optional in my opinion.
    10. Store them in an air tight container.

    December 17, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 17 - "Snow balls" with Limoncello

    If it can not snow outside for Christmas, this Christmas candy can bring some snow for your inside decoration of your home for Christmas !!!

    If I have found: the original recipe here. And I will the twist of adding a Summer twist in form of Limoncello into such a traditional Christmas candy as "Snow balls", it is a merge of Summer and Winter !!!

    "Snow balls" with Limoncello a la Louisa Lorang:

    • 200 g marzipan
    • 1 teaspoon organic lemon zest
    • 2 tablespoons limoncello
    • 3 tablespoons icing sugar
    • 150 g white chocolate
    • coconut flakes
    1. Knead the marzipan together with the lemon zest, limoncello and icing sugar.
    2. Form this marzipan mass into round ball with the size of a hazel nut.
    3. Let these marzipan balls cool down in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
    4. Melt the white chocolate - I would use my microwave own for this purpose.
    5. Coat the marzipan balls with white chocolate.
    6. Roll the chocolate coated marzipan balls in the coconut flakes.
    7. Let the chocolate coating dry, this takes for hours !!!!
    8. Place the "snow balls" in an air tight container and store them in the refrigerator, as long as they can last in your kitchen, before someone eats them :-)

    December 16, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 16 - Liquorice almonds

    These liquorice almonds is based on this recipe from - lakridsmandler, and I have no changes at all. I like to try out the originale recipe, before I decided, if a twist or two could make some interesting changes.

    Perhaps you could sprinkle them with English liquorice powder, if you would like even more liquorice taste ?

    Liquorice almonds a la Lakrids:
    Ready, steady, cook
    • 100 g almonds
    • 85 g sugar
    • 50 g water
    • 1 teaspoon raw liquorice powder
    • 1 tablespoon sweet liquorice powder
    1. Place all the ingredients in a pan.
    2. Heat the mixture up over high heat, while stirring well.
    3. First the mixture is very active with plenty of boiling spots.
    4. Once the mixture is thickened (until it no longer flows our acrosse the pan).
    5. Pour the almonds on a piece of baking paper, distribute the almonds evenly.
    6. After 5 minutes cooling time you can split the almonds, which are sticking to each other.
    7. After final cool down, store the almonds in an air thight container.
      First part of cooking

    At end of cooking

    December 15, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 15 - Christmas Jam 2013

    As usual no Christmas without making my very own Christmas jam using Danish blackberries (from an work ex-colleague´s garden and freezer), vanilla and cognac. I really appreciate, that I can "order" ready-to-use blackberries from my ex-colleagues freezer for use in my cooking pot :-) Do you have the same kind of wonderful colleagues at work ? It is a privilege to have such working colleagues as well former colleagues  :-)

    As usual I fill my different types of home-made jams into small glasses, as they serves as an excellent gifts to friends and some wonderful colleagues. I know from myself, how I like to receive a glass of home-made as an eatable gift. It gives a wonderful warming sensation to your heart, when you receive such a home-made gift, as you know some one has spend some of their time making this gift to you.

    This year I have made a little twist to the method of jam making using a tip from another work colleague. The tip is sugar the sugar into caramel before adding the fruit.
    Making the caramel was easy, but when you add in the fruit, I was standing where looking into something, which look like a major disaster !!!! The water from the fruit turned the entire cooking pot into an active volcano with boiling water everywhere. And all the caramel pieces are like solid rocks. And you are left with the feeling of failieur !!!! Who wants to eat jam with HUGE caramel lumps with the size of a stone ??? Well, as the jam slowly is brought back to the boiling point again, the caramel lumps are melting and the jam look normal again :-)

    I am submitting this recipe on Christmas Jam in the wonderful monthly blogging event called "Tea Time Treats" being managed  Karen from Lavender and Lovage and Kate from What Kate Baked. And for December Kate has selected festive foodie gifts as the theme for the month of Christmas, where small as well big presents plays an important part.

    Christmas Jam 2013:

    • 1800 g (Danish) blackberries - defrosted
    • 1000 g sugar
    • 1 vanilla pod
    • 10 cl cognac
    • 22 g gelling powder (citrus pectin) dry-mixed with 60 g sugar to easy the dispersion
    1. Start by adding the sugar into the cooking pot over medium heat. Turn the sugar into a caramel mass, while you keep stirring in it.
    2. Add the blackberries into the caramel mass. It will look strange.
    3. Add the vanilla corn as well as vanilla pod (cut into smaller pieces). I never remove the vanilla pod from my jam.
    4. As the jam gets hot again, add in the pectin (dry-mixed sugar), while you stir the jam very well to avoid lump formation.
    5. Bring the fruit to the boiling point and let it boil for 2 minutes
    6. Remove the jam from the heat and add in the cognac to the jam.
    7. Prepare the jam glasses by filling them with boiling water. I do not use any preservatives in my home-made jam, so this is important to increase shelf-life of your jam. Another thing you can do is to store the jam cold afterwards. As the jam is made from 2 parts of fruit and 1 part of sugar, the sugar content is not high enough to preserve the jam.
    8. Fill the glass with jam and close the glass.
    9. Store the jam cold.

    December 14, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 14 - Marzipan bread with citrus twist

    I have created this flavour combination on my own. I wanted to several things, which could give a citrus twist to the usual marzipan bread, which you make for Christmas, with various alcohol additions followed by a chocolate coating.

    As I really like sucat, I decided that sucat should be "colour thing" in the marzipan bread. Sucat is also used for many other Christmas foods. The other two citrus thing turned out to be limoncello and orange flower water, as the last thing is another item on my "like list" to use in my kitchen. I did my best to control myself, so I only added ½ teaspoon of the orange flower water, as the flavour can be very over whelming !!!

    Marzipan bread with citrus twist:

    • 50 g sucat
    • 3 tablespoons limoncello
    • 1 teaspoon orange flower water
    • 2-3 tablespoon icing sugar
    • 200 g marzipan
    • 100-150 g dark chocolate
    1. Start by letting the sucat pieces soak in the limoncello night over in the refrigerator.
    2. Knead the limoncello soaked sucat, orange flower water, marzipan and icing sugar. I use icing sugar to absorb the surplus liquid, so the marzipan mass becomes more dry in it.
    3. Make small marzipan breads of this mass.
    4. Melt the dark chocolate, I use the micro wave oven for this purpose.
    5. Coat the marzipan breads in the melted chocolate.
    6. Place the chocolate coated marzipan bread on a sheet of baking paper, while the coating dries, and this always several hours.
    7. Store the marzipan breads in an air tight container.

    December 13, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 13 - Lucia buns

    Today it is Lucia Day, which is celebrate both in Denmark and Sweden with a blond girl in front walking around with burning candles on their head followed by the rest of the singers in burning candles in the hand.

    The Danish Lucia song by Alex Garff:

    Nu bæres lyset frem                       - Now worn light up
    stolt på din krone.                          - proud of your crown.
    Rundt om i hus og hjem                  - Around the house and home
    sangen skal tone.                            - the song should sound.
    Nu på Lucia-dag                            - Now on Lucia Day
    hilser vort vennelag                         - welcome to our friends
    Santa Lucia, Santa Lucia.               - Santa Lucia, Santa Lucia

    Her ved vor ønskefest                    -  Here at our desire celebration
    sangen skal klinge.                          - the song to fade.
    Gaver til hver en gæst                     - Gifts for every guest
    glad vil du bringe.                           - glad you bring.
    Skænk os af lykkens væld              - Grant us the happiness wealth
    lige til livets kvæld                          - right to life eve
    Santa Lucia, Santa Lucia.               - Santa Lucia, Santa Lucia.

    Again I will be celebrating the Lucia Day not by singing, but by baking another version Anne's food ´s Lucia buns, which I also did last year in form of saffron buns a la Anne´s Food

    I made two modifications to the original recipe. The first modification was replacement of fromage frais with Greek yogurt (10% fat version). The reason for this modification is, that I did not to buy 500 g fromage frais only needing 100 for these buns, and fromage frais is not something, which I normally use in my kitchen. However, full-fat Greek yogurt I really to eat with rhubarb compote and muesli, so here any leftovers is not problematic for me to use.

    The second modification was replacement of almond paste (50% almonds and 50% sugar) with marzipan, where I use a product with 63% almonds.

    Lucia buns a la Anne´s Food: - 22 buns
    Dough 1:
    • 25 g butter
    • 250 g milk
    • 25 g yeast
    • ½ teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • ½ tablespoon sugar
    • 350 g wheat flour
    Dough 2:
    • 0,75 g saffron
    • 65 g butter - soft
    • 50 g light sugar syrup
    • 50 g sugar
    • ½ egg
    • 100 g Greek yogurt/fromage frais
    • 300 g wheat flour
    • 125 g marzipan
    • 25 g almonds - finely chopped
    • 50 g butter - soft
    • 50 g sugar
    • ½ egg beaten with a few drops of water
    Dough 1:
    1. Melt the butter and add the milk into the butter, heat this mix until it is lukewarm.
    2. Crumble the yeast into the mixing bowl. 
    3. Add the liquid to the yeast and stir until dissolved. I used my KitchenAid for the entire mixing process.
    4. Add the dry ingredients (salt, baking powder, sugar and flour), knead on speed 2 for 5 minutes.
    5. Use the mixing bowl for the raising the dough in, covering the bowl.
    6. Let the dough raise for 1 hour.
    Dough 2:
    1. Mix the saffron, butter, syrup, sugar, egg and Greek yogurt together.
    2. Add this mix into dough 1, mixing on low speed (xx).
    3. Add the remaining flour, and knead the entire dough for 5 minutes on speed 1.
    1. Mix the ingredients for the filling into a rough, but homogeneous mass.
    Lucia buns:
    1. Divide the dough into a weight of 55 g.
    2. Flatten the dough and put a teaspoon full of filling on the dough.
    3. Shape the dough around the filling, again into the shape of a ball, firmly sealed.
    4. Place the bun with the seam-side in a paper muffin cup.
    5. Let the bun raise for 45 minutes.
    6. Glaze the buns with beaten egg.
    7. Heat the oven (conventional) to 225'C.
    8. Bake the buns for 10 minutes in the upper part of the oven, until they are golden, but not brown in colour.

    December 12, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 12 - Sesame caramel

    I have recently been contacted through my blog, if I wanted to receive some of Dansukker´s products from time to time. And I have accepted to do, that I frequently on my own buy the product of Dansukker as well test out many of the various Dansukker´s recipes, which I when share with you visiting me in my virtual kitchen.

    Some days ago I received a bottle of glucose syrup together with various recipes contain this specific product. Glucose syrup is commonly used in both ice cream and in candy. In ice cream glucose syrup is delaying/preventing the formation of ice crystals and in caramels glucose syrup is preventing a grainy texture.

    I decided to test this recipe on Dansukker´s sesambrud, which actually does not contain any glucose syrup, but it is caramel type of candy, I decided to add in some glucose syrup to get the benefit of avoiding graininess in these caramels.

    And when I also liked the idea of sesame seeds in candy. This also allowed me to use some sesame seeds, which had been staring at me from the kitchen table  for the last two months !!!

    Sesame caramel a la Dansukker: - 30-40 pieces

    • 130 g sesame seeds
    • 100 g dairy whipping cream, 35-38% fat
    • 150 g light sugar syrup
    • 130 g sugar
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla sugar
    • 2 tablespoon glucose syrup
    1. Start by roasting the sesame seeds on  a dry frying pan, until they become more dark in the colour. 
    2. Place the rest of ingredients in a larger bowl with lid, which can be heated up in the microwave oven.
    3. Stir the mass into a homogeneous mass.
    4. Heat the mass in a microwave oven at 750 W for 6 minutes.
    5. Take the bowl out and stir the mass well together.
    6. Heat the mass again at 750 W for 2 minutes.
    7. Take the bowl out and stir in the sesame seeds.
    8. Pour the mass into small candy forms.
    9. Lets the sesame caramel cool down, before they are stored in an air tight container.

    December 11, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 11 - Christmas marzipan cake

    New Year is just around the corner, and here the tradtion is to celebrate the New Year with champagne and marzipan cakes (in Danish = kransekage like the white version of these zebra marzipan cake).

    Well, as I got tried of the overwhelming sweetness in the Christmas candy: dates with marzipan stuffing, I decided to use the rest of the marzipan stuffing to make a Christmas version of marzipan cake.

    It is actually a great taste combination, which can be used for both Christmas as well as New Year :-)

    Christmas marzipan cake:
    • 75 g walnuts
    • 300 g marzipan
    • 2 organic mandarins - zest and juice
    • 4-6 tablespoons icing sugar
    1. Roast the walnuts at 180'C for 8-10 minutes.
    2. Remove the skin of the walnuts by rubbing them with paper towel.
    3. Chop the walnuts into medium chunks.
    4. Knead the chopped walnuts, mandarin zest and juice together with the marzipan. If needed add the icing sugar to adjust the texture from being wet to dry.
    5. Use teaspoons to place the marzipan mass on a baking tray covered by baking paper.
    6. Bake the marzipan cakes in the (conventional) oven at 220'C in the upper of the oven for 8-10 minutes.
    7. Lets the marzipan cakes cool down, before they are stored in an air tight container.

    December 10, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 10 - Christmas Tea

    Christmas Tea 2013
    Together we have been busy during these first days of December, so I think it is time for something, which is fast to make in the kitchen, so we can relax a little and perhaps enjoy some of the creations from the last days.

    Last year it was the very first time, that I made my very own Christmas tea version 2012. Last year I used Assam tea based on advise from my loca "tea pusher". However based on tasting of this tea and discussion with some good work colleagues, we thought, that the bergamot flavour from the Earl Greay tea could good give a good flavour twist.

    So this year I decided to make the Christmas tea based on Earl Grey. And inside of orange peel I used the peel from two mandarines, which was the citrus fruit available for my kitchen activities of today. So you can either use orange and mandarine depending on, what you have in your kitchen as long as the citrus fruit is organic, as you are using the peel.

    Christmas Tea: - 100 g tea
    • 100 g black Earl Grey
    • 2 mandarines (organic) - only the peel
    • 3 star anise
    • 10 cloves
    • 5 all spices
    • 2 small cinnamon stick
    • 15 cardamon capsules
    1. Use a potato peeler in order to remove the peel in a thin layer of the mandarines
    2. Dry the mandarine peel either at 75'C for 1 hour or on top of the radiator for a few hours
    3. Cut the mandarine peel into small pieces. I used a scissor for this purpose.
    4. Add the dried spices into a freezing bag, hit the spices with a rolling pin.
    5. Mix the tea with broken spices and the small pieces of dry orange peel.
    6. Let the tea stand for a few hours, before making the first cup/pot of tea.

    December 09, 2013

    Christmas Calendar 2013 Day 9 - Liquorice almonds in lemon flavour white chocolate

    This is my interpretation of Summerbirds liquorice almonds in white chocolate being lemon flavoured. They are not looking as delicate as the almonds from Summerbirds, they are having more of the rustic appearance, which is a classic characteristics of Kitchen of Kiki. And your mouth are only caring about flavour and texture !

    Liquorice almonds in lemon flavour white chocolate:
    • 100 g almonds
    • 1 tablespoon sweet liquorice syrup
    • 100 g white chocolate
    • zest of 1 organic lemon
    • 5 drops of lemon flavour
    • 2 teaspoons of English liquorice powder
    1. Heat up the (conventional) oven to 200'C
    2. Mix the almonds with the sweet liquorice syrup, before placing them in baking stable tray.
    3. Roast the almonds at 200'C for 10 minutes.
    4. Cool down the almonds.
    5. Melt the white chocolate. I use my microwave oven for this purpose.
    6. Add lemon zest and lemon flavour into the melted white chocolate. Stir everything well together.
    7. Coat the almonds in the white chocolate.
    8. After the chocolate coating place the almonds on a piece of baking paper.
    9. Sprinkle the chocolate coated almonds with English liquorice powder through a sieve.
    10. Let the chocolate coated almonds dry, the part of the process takes a long time, 3-4 hours.
    11. Store the almonds in airtight container.


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