It’s been some month ago when a reader suggested to build a “help” page where I could bundle and answer the most frequent questions. That was a great idea and I can use this page as roadmap to one ore the other informative post I wrote in the past eight years. Many of these are hiding between all the recipes.
I hope, you will find this page helpful and that you find the answers for your questions. And if not, this will be a good place to asked general questions
The moment I took the Luftikusse from the oven my never resting mind started to muse about a whole grain variant. And it needed just Michas comment to sent me straight to the kitchen to try it.
Whole grain flour needs more water then white flour, that is a well known fact. And the psyllium hulls can bind a lot of water, too. Nevertheless I was surprised by the amount of water I needed to reach the right consistency when I prepared the dough. At the end there was more water then flour in the dough. It yielded good rolls but I found the amount of water a bit to much, anyway. And so I changed the recipe, using less water and bit of sugar beet syrup to break the slight bitterness of the bran.
And with this second try I was happy. They have a nice, moist crumb and stay fresh for a long time. They are not as airy as their siblings but a delicious, more healthy variant. The right roll for a healthy lunch break!
The first post in 2017 found its inspiration back in 2016. When I put together my “Best of 2016” I stumbled upon upon a readers question for rolls with open crumb. Back then I suggested this Baguette rolls and then the question slowly slipped from my mind. It has a simple reason: I normally prefer rolls with a finer crumb as we eat them mainly for breakfast and a wide open crumb means honey dropping all over the place. But during vacations we like to eat rolls for lunch or dinner, too. And with a slide of cheese a chiabatta-like roll is a delicious thing.
But the infection I catch before christmas was a mean one and so I spent most of my vacation on the sofa with hot tea and a good book – slowly recovering. I slept a lot, but baked nearly nothing and we went not for shopping food either but feed on our well stocked pantry and fridge. When we finally had to buy some groceries I discovered something new in our supermarket: organic pysillum hulls. I find their water binding capacity fascinating and so a package went home with me.
Sometimes it is not easy to please me. For example a stuffed cabbage recipe I tested for Christmas failed completely due to its consistency. The filling made of pumpkin, chestnuts and porcino tasted good but was way to mushy.
And when I thought about it, I realized that one of my favourite stuffed cabbage from Ann-Kathrin Webers “Deftig Vegetarisch” offers a somehow firmer consistency due to the great mixture of cooked spelt, feta cheese and thyme. It is delicious but a bit too rustic for Christmas. But when I was searching for my perfect burger patty I struggled with the same problem until I invented my all time favourite ABC-Burger-Patties.
For Christmas everyone likes to serve something special. Here at “Hefe und mehr” we are no exception and this includes bread, of course. This year I decided to go for an elegant variation of my favourite combination: nuts and potatoes. For the festive touch I combined walnuts, hazelnuts and pistachios. These nutty flavours are supported by hints of roasted malt and cacao – just enough to add a deepness to its aroma. The bread is risen by my favourite preferment: Sweet starter. And so the bread contains everything you need for a little flavour fire works – again a bread that needs nothing but a bit of butter as spread.
The December some haste away so quickly that I want to enjoy my Christmas with the family without distractions. And so I will be not be online during the holidays and answer comments and emails after Christmas.
An ugly flu hit me and so my baking plans (Lusekatter, Kletzenbrot and rye flat bread) are nothing more then dreams at the moment. My stock of unposted bread recipes ran dry as well. Only a nice marzipan recipe – which fits well with Christmas – is left.
During the autumn holidays I was shopping in the “Stuttgarter Markthallen” and bought a small parcel of bitter apricot kernels. Bitter apricot kernels and bitter almonds contain hydrocyanic acid and just a few can endanger very small kids – so please store them out of children reach and not together with sweet almonds! The dangerous dosage are one bitter almond per kilogram body weight. So two for 200g Marzipan is no problem at all but if you feel unwell with using them you can use bitter almond extract instead, too.
The marzipan is easy to make with a food processor and so a good last minute Christmas present.
I tried this little Cookies some years ago when a colleague brought a bag of his moms christmas cookies when he came back from the Alsace. The bag was filled with beautiful and delicious cookies, like Linzer Ringe. And there was this rather plain, simple square cookies. But with the first bite I was in love. So plain they look so brilliant was their taste: a mixture of lemon and orange with a hint of almond was a great counterpoint to all the (delicious) vanilla and cinnamon Christmas flavours. And so I begged and begged and begged until the dear colleague brought a recipe when he came back from a family visit. I tested it and realized while making that it was for the second lemon cookie in the bag: Délices au citron – a good cookie, too but not the cookie I fell in love with…
And so I searched long and for some years. And finally I found a recipe that sounded similar: Orangenschnittli. I changed the recipe more and more, until it fits to the flavour I remembered. They need some days for ripening, as the flavour has to diffuse and melange for the perfect taste. But then this little cookies are a clear new favourite of my cookie plate: easy to make and so delicious!
In Engelskirchen, in dem mit dem Christkind-Postamt in jedem Jahr in der Adventszeit himmlische Zeiten anbrechen, weihnachtet es bereits schon sehr. Und auch der Nikolaus war nicht untätig: Für den letzten Backkurs des Jahres (“Brotbacken für Anfänger” am 10. 12.) hat der Nikolaus heute einen Rabatt für alle Kurzentschlossenen mitgebracht.
When I was researching another recipe, I stumbled upon the recipe for anise pretzels . These pretzles are made without lye and are typically served during winter in the region Upper Franconia. They contain a lot of anise, as their name promise.
Interestingly it seems that the recipe vary from town to town: In Weidenberg the dough is made without the addition of fat, while in a recipe from Bayreuth the dough is enriched with some milk and butter. I liked the richer variant more and so my dough contains both milk and butter, too. A egg yolk is added as emulsifier and helps to create fluffy and soft crumb.