Thursday, December 24, 2015

Vaniljekranse (Vanilla Wreaths)

I have my favorite cookies that I make every year or so for Christmas, but for some reason, it's been a few years since I dragged the meat grinder out of the cupboard to make these cookies. 

Yes, I did say meat grinder.

Well, that's what we always used to force the very stiff dough through a little disk to make these stellar cookies.  Vaniljekranse.

If you've ever purchased the 'Danish Cookie' tin of cookies, you've seen them in there, and I have to admit to buying a tin or two of them, just so I could have a taste of this cookie.
This year I wanted some home made Vaniljkranse.
Don't worry if you can't pronounce it, in English they're called Vanilla Wreaths.

And really, they're not that hard to make, provided you  have either a cookie press or in my case, a meat grinder.

My dad actually made the little disk I use to force the dough through with, and using it the other day, make me feel as if my parents were close again.  I have such wonderful memories of baking cookies with them at Christmas.  I only make a couple of different cookies, but as I seem to recall, we made several different kinds. 
Hey, if you're a Dane, I think it's a law that if company comes, you have to offer them a choice of cookies with their coffee.
And we could.
The following recipe is in grams, and it's kind of important to actually weigh out the ingredients.


 I also ground my own almonds, cause ground almonds aren't that easy to find around here.  Basically you pour boiling water over some almonds, let them sit for a few minutes, then take the skins off.  Place them in the food processor and process them until they resemble coarse ground meal.




 


Force through a cookie press, or if you're lucky like me, use the meat grinder with a disk that has a cut out.*


Cut into 3 inch strips, and form into rings.  Place on parchment paper,
 My memory says that I used to be able to form really good rings, but you know if they're not perfect, they still taste good.

And believe you me, these taste wonderful.  As you can see, the 'ridges' on the rings stayed pretty distinct as they baked. 
and bake at 375 degrees for about 8-10 minutes.   Cool on a wire rack. 

My dad made this cutout, and using it this Christmas made him feel just a little closer
Of course it is a messy business getting the dough down and into the meat grinder, sigh.  But I persevered.
Along with the Vaniljekranser I also made some French Waffles as well as my Candied Ginger and Lime Cookies.
 I'm ready for company now.  I just have to go and make some more of my Best Ever Frosting for the French Waffles.   I kinda ate the ones in the picture.  But don't tell anyone, K?



yield: 4 dozen cookiesprint recipe

Vanilla Wreaths (Vaniljekranser)

prep time: 15 MINScook time: 8 MINStotal time: 23 mins
This is one of the ubiquitous cookies you find in the Danish Butter Cookie tin, but it's much better than those store bought cookies. These are redolent with the warm taste of almonds, with the perfect crisp crunch of a cookie. The following ingredients have been weighed out on a scale for accuracy.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 100 grams Ground Almonds (About 1/2 cup)
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract (I use my own home made extract)
  • 375 grams Cold Butter
  • 375 grams All Purpose Flour
  • 125 grams Potato Flour (you can use Cornstarch here, but it's not as good)
  • 250 grams Sugar
  • 1 egg

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Mix sugar, butter, almonds, egg and vanilla together, and add flour. You will have a stiff dough. 
  2. Force through a cookie press, or if you're lucky like me, use the meat grinder with a disk that has a cut out.* 
  3. Cut into 3 inch strips, and form into rings. Place on parchment paper and bake at 375 degrees for about 8-10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
Created using The Recipes Generator
Sid Munkholm
Sid Munkholm

Sid loves to cook, feed people and have fun in the kitchen. She shares her successes and the involuntary offerings she sometimes gives the kitchen goddess as well. And she's still looking for the mythical fairy to help her clean the kitchen after a marathon cooking session. Currently working on a cookbook showcasing the recipes from her Danish heritage.

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