>Pepernoten, Speculaasspices and Self-rising flour

>Only a few more days and it’s Sinterklaas: the 5th of December. I promised Natalia to post a recipe for pepernoten, so here it is!! Pictures will follow tonight!!

Pepernoten (recipe adapted from Hollandbymail)
125 grams flour
125 grams self-rising flour (recipe below)
100 grams butter
80 grams brown sugar
2 tbsp water
1/8 tsp salt
1 egg yolk
1 tsp speculaasspices (recipe below)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground aniseseeds

Knead all the ingredients into a dought and shape it like a ball. Let this ball rest in a cool place for an hour, for example in the fridge.

Preheat the oven at 160 degrees Celsius o2 320 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter the baking sheet. Make little balls out of half of the dough, the balls should have the size of a marble. Put the little balls on the baking sheet, equally spaced from each other. Half the ball should fill an entire baking sheet with pepernoten.

Push every little ball down just a bit. Put the baking sheet in the middle of the oven and bake the pepernoten untill they are ready and goldenbrown, this will take about 20 minutes. Let the pepernoten cool. While the first batch of pepernoten is baking, you can make the second batch.

8 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp ground nutmeg
2 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp white pepper
1 tsp powdered ginger
1 tsp cardemom

Put all the spices into a bowl and mix them well. Keep the speculaasspices in glass yar that closes very well to keep the flavours.

Self-rising flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder

Mix to combine.

Recipes still to come this week:

  • Linzer Sables for TWD (pg. 134-135 of Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan)
  • Lemon Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze

>TWD (Thursday with Dorie): Thanksgiving Twofer Pie


Thanksgiving has arrived….. So ofcourse Vibi of La Casserole Carée had no choice but to choose Thanksgiving Twofer Pie! Normally we post on Tuesdays, hence the name Tuesdays with Dorie.

Since this pie is a very good pie for Thanksgiving (you probably figured that out when you read the name….) our fearless leader of TWD L W allowed us to post this recipe late, but it should be posted by the 30th of November. Not wanting to break with traditions (even though they are not mine) I decided that since this is a Thanksgiving Pie I would bake it on Thanksgiving.

This pie actually consists of two pies: a pumpkin pie and a pecan pie. First you bake a single crust pie, than you pour the pumpkin filling on top of the crust. Sprinkle the pecans on top and pour the pecan filling over it. And into the oven…..

Once again there are heavenly smells emurging from the kitchen while the oven is doing its job…. When the pie came out off the oven I actually had to restrain myself from taking a piece of the pie immediately. I managed to practice my patience for 30 minutes….

When I scooped one piece out of the pie-shape, some kind of fluid came oozing out of the pie into the empty spot where that piece of pie used to be…. Maybe it should have stayed into the oven a bit longer?? I had already had it in there for 55 minutes…. The piece looks like a bit of a mess…..

As for the taste…. YUMMY!!! I love this pie!! Give me more….. O no, I can’t…. I promissed to bring the pie to work tomorrow…… It’s nice, sweet, creamy and smooth, maybe a bit too soft. But still: delicious!!!

My everlasting gratitude goes out to Vibi for picking this great recipe!! If you want to check out what the other TWD-ers baked up, click here…..
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!
Posted in Pies, TWD. 7 Comments »

>CEiMB #8: Macaroni and Four Cheeses


This week it was up to MrsBethorama of Supplicious to pick the recipe for CEiMB. She choose Macaroni and Four Cheeses. The recipe can be found here.

Since I never had real Macaroni and Cheese, except from Krafts’ one time, I didn’t quite know what to expect. Since I live in Holland and thus didn’t have all the right cheeses at hand I had to make some cheese-changes, I used Farmer Cheddar instead of extra-sharp cheddar and Manchego instead of Monterey Jack (The local cheeseshop-owner adviced me on the cheeses).

I halved the recipe and decided to make it Wednesday since my friend would come over and have dinner with me before we went to Ladies Night at the cinema (we saw The Women). Although I did like the Mac & 4 Cheeses, I did find it a bit bland. Next time I will use either a bit more cayennepepper or a stronger cheese like gorgonzola. But I will be making this again: to me it”s one of those comforting, wintery dishes!

Check out what the other Ellie-cookers thought of this dish here.

>Butterfly Award

>So today Peggy of Pantry Revisited, one of my favourite blogs, gave me a beautiful award: the Butterfly Award! Thank you so much Peggy!!

Ofcourse there are some rules attached to this award:
1. Pick ten people to pass this onto.
2. Contact them and let them know you have chosen them for this award.
3. Also, link back to the person who gave you the award.”

Again it was very difficult to pick ten people out of all the blogs that I read, there are so many talented people out there!! So here are my ten nominees 😉

  • Shelby of The Life and Love of Grumpy’s Honeybunch, she tries out a lot of different things and I loved the hot white chocolate she blogged about!
  • Deborah of Taste and Tell, I can’t wait to try the Lemon Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze that she made recently.
  • Clara of I heart Cuppycakes, so much creativity with cupcakes!!
  • Judy of Judy’s Gross Eats, because she loves anise as much as I do.
  • Jamie of My Baking Addiction, I simply love her blog-makeover, plus she added kahlua to cheesecake…. Anyyone who thinks of that combo deserves an award!
  • Heather of Randomosity and the Girl, she manages to post a picture including her cute little dog in almost every single post…. although I did miss her in the last three…..
  • Natalia of Gatti Fili e Farina, she’s always so sweet and interested in customs of other countries.
  • Sandy of Eat Real, for being able to come up with one thing to be grateful for for every single day of November so far.
  • Kristin of This Week in Baking, for writing me a Sinterklaas Haiku!
  • Marie of A Year From Oak Cottage, she makes the most amazing cards!!

>And the winners are…….

>You may think: Winners??? I thougth there was one giveaway??? Totally true, but being the generous person I am (if I say so myself) I decided to also give one person a chance to sample the chocolate letter and send some pepernoten to another person. Ain’t I sweet??? 🙂

To be completely clear:

  • The winner gets the chocoladeletter of her choice, the pepernoten and something else
  • The runner up gets the chocoladeletter of her choice
  • The second runner up gets pepernoten

So, using the random generator, here are the results:

Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:17 5 4
Timestamp: 2008-11-21 00:03:44 UTC

So, the winner of the ‘big giveaway’ is MacDuff!!! No need to move: the Sinterklaas-goodies will come your way, but please tell me which letter you want to receive…. Clara is the lucky winner of a chocolate letter “C” and Kristin will receive some pepernoten. Congratulations to the three of you!!!

Marie, Nancy, Jenna, Stevi, Natashya, Jacque, Melissa, Liz, Peggy, Pamela, Kimberly, Cathy, Holly, Natalia and Kassy: thanks for participating in my first ever giveaway!!

P.S. Per request of Natalia I will be posting a recipe for pepernoten this weekend or the coming week so that you will all be able to bake your own pepernoten!! So stay tuned!

>CEiMB #7: Oven Fried Chicken

It’s Ellie-time again!! This means another great (and light) recipe to try. MacDuff of Lonely Sidecar choose Oven Fried Chicken, the recipe can be found here. I had planned on making this recipe during the weekend, but somehow my schedule got turned upside down and I didn’t make it untill tonight. It’s been a busy week!!!

I was somewhat afraid that I had to skip another CEiMB, because I was supposed to be going out for dinner tonight with a former co-worker. But unfortunately she was sick so I had to eat in, which was fortunate because now I had the chance to make the Oven Fried Chicken!!

I thought I still had chickenfilets, but they had gone bad. So out of the corner of my freezer came some chicken strips. I added a little bit of tabasco to the yoghurtdip and used a little less cayennepepper in the crustdip. I halved the entire recipe so I would have three servings, but when I had dipped 2/3 of the chicken into the crustdip I had no more crustdip leftover…. So I popped the rest of the chicken back into the fridge.

I served the chicken with a vegetable stir-fry and some baked potatoes. Man, this was soooooo delicious!! The crust was nice and crunchy plus spicy, but the chicken inside was still quite moist and fully cooked. (I hate semi-cooked chicken….). I loved it and will definetely be making it again. MacDuff, thank you so much for picking this recipe!!

You should check out our site, it has had a makeover thanks to the very creative Leanne of Enjoying My Favourite Things who designed the badge above and the very talented Holly of Phemomenon who designed the new header and the badge below. Thanks girls!!

P.S. Only one hour left to participate in my Sinterklaas Giveaway!!!

>TWD Rewind: Brioche Raisin Snails


I know…. I’m a day late posting this, but well…. You’re just going to have to forgive me!

Isabelle from Les gourmandises d’Isa hosted TWD this week and picked Arborio Rice Pudding as the recipe for this week. But…. I don’t like rice pudding (sorry Isa… 😦 ) and was also put off by the P&Q’s: lots of people seemed to have issues in one way or the other with this recipe. If you would like to try and make it, the recipe can be found here. The results of the other TWD-ers can be found here.

So you may wonder: what did I do if I didn’t make the rice pudding? I decided to do a rewind and make the Brioche Raisin Snails: they were picked by Peabody of Culinary Concoctions of Peabody for March 18, 2008. Since I wasn’t a member of TWD back then I haven’t made these before and had my eye on them since I joined. I will not type over the entire recipe as it can be found here.

The recipe called for 2 packets of dry-active yeast. I had no idea how much grams or teaspoons that would be, but luckily someone asked that question in the P&Q. Thus I found out that 1 packet is 2 1/4 tsp. Instead of the rum called for in this recipe (Peabody used Grand Marnier) I used a cinnamon liquor and I made a plaine glaze instead of Peabody’s tangerine glaze. Other than that I followed the recipe exactly.

I loved these!! I will defenitely be making them again, but next time I will pop the in the oven just a bit shorter: I thought they were a bit too brown and prefer them to be more golden and soft.
As for the other half of the dough: I’m keeping that to make the Pecan Honey Sticky buns that were chosen by Madam Chow of Madam Chow’s Kitchen for TWD for May 27, 2008. They will be appearing on this blog soon. 😉
P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for my first blog give-away!! Deadline is tonight: midnight European time. Sign-up here!!