I’ve been baking some cookies for Christmas. Not your average tree decorations, I’ve been attempting to bake Alsatian “Bredele”, which might be called “petit-fours” in French. These have traditionally been baked at Christmas since the mid 15th century in Alsace. I’m working from a French recipe book called “Bredele et Gâteaux de Noël” by Thierry Kappler. So far I’ve made (I’m using the Alsatian names as they are more interesting!):
- Wiss un schwàrzi butter bredele (those chequered and spiral ones)
- Vanille hernle (litttle vanilla crescents, no picture as they, um, got tasted a bit too much)
- Spretz bredele (wiggly piped vanilla shapes)
- Hernele (a.k.a. Fer à Cheval, i.e horseshoes)
- Kokos Màkrone (coconut macaroons)
- Spetzbuewe (home-made jammy dodgers!)
I’ve run into a few problems; the coconut macaroons were looking perfect until I added the coconut, which made the meringue separate horribly in the piping bag; the hernele dough was far too crumbly to roll, so I added an egg; the spretz bredele dough was far too stiff to pipe; I don’t know if it’s my oven, but nearly all the recipes turn out undercooked, so I’m adding on about 50% cooking time.
I’ve still got a few more to do, but I’m pretty happy with how these are turning out; they certainly look nice!