Monthly Archives: April 2011

April 26th, 2011

Little Easter nests

Osternestchen 2I did not only bake something for Breakfast at Good Friday, I also wanted to have something nice for our Easter Breakfast, of course. And so I decided to bake little nest of sweet yeasted dough this year. In the past I filled them with a hard boilde egg before baking, but the natural dyes seem to loose their colour when baking in the oven. ‘That’s why I make the nest a little bit bigger,  and place the egg in the middle of the nest after baking.

The dough is made with sour cream, which adds a nice taste to the bread and makes the crumb fluffy. To make the baking day more relaxed I decided to let the dough rise in the fridge, the cold and long fermentation together with the Pâte fermentée adds a complex taste to the bread.

I liked the taste of this little easter nests very much and I am sure that soon I will try this dough for sweet buns, too. Continue reading

April 23rd, 2011

Easter eggs coloured with natural dyes

Ostereier natürlich gefärbtI love to test different natural dyes for Easter eggs. And so I try each year different dyes which I extract from plants and spices.

This year I decided to use tumeric, red cabbage and red beets. I started to collect peels from red beets when cooking already some weeks ago and keep them in the freezer until now. With the red cabbage I use the fact that the anthocyanin which gave the colour to the leaves is pH sensitive and  change colour depending on the pH. A high pH gave a green-blue colour, while a low pH change the colour to red.

I used the red cabbage dye at a neutral pH for staining dark blue-green eggs, while increasing the pH with soda leads to light green eggs. The most suprising fact is that the red solution which had a low pH because of the vinegar resulted in bright blue egg. I never expected such a bright colour because I used brown eggs. Continue reading

April 22nd, 2011

Pani di cena

pani di cenaThis week Petra baked a delicious looking Sicilian Easter buns: Pani di cena. It is a bread that is traditionally baked on Good Friday and which is often glazed with icing and topped with sugar sprinkels. I fell in love with this buns directly and decided to serve them for breakfast on Good Friday.

I changed the recipe a little bit depending on my personal habits – I used the pulp of a vanilla bean instead of vanilla extract and because of the high amount of sugar and butter I decided to add them at the end of kneading, so they couldn’t interfere with the gluten development. After forming the buns I placed them in the fridge, but they didn’t rise so much here because the butter in the dough get stiff in the cold.

The next morning I preheat the oven to 30°C and let the buns rise there for 1 hour, in this time they doubled their volume!

During baking the smell of the buns was seductively: a scent of butter and vanilla filled the kitchen. And tasting them after they cooled down proofed that their scent did not promise to much.  A very rich sweet bread, that reminds me of brioche, incredible soft, buttery and luxurious. Continue reading

April 9th, 2011


BienenstichSome weeks ago I promised my sisters fiancée to bake some Bienenstich (Bee sting) when we meet to drink coffee in their new house. But then I was busy in the lab and so I bake fast and easy nut triangles instead. The next time we planned to meet for cake and coffee I was ill and bake nothing at all. But when I was thinking about what to bake for my mums birthday last week the promised Bienenstich seemed to be perfect.

Bienenstich is a traditional german yeast cake topped with a crunchy almond layer and filled with a  vanilla pastry cream

Because I like the taste that Pâte fermentée adds to a sweet yeasted dough I decided to vary my old recipe. And because my kitchen machine does not work so nice with small amounts of dough (everything less then 500g flour ) I decided to knead the dough completely by hand. That was a little bit difficult because the dough is very soft and tend to stick to hands and counter. But it is good to resist the temptation of adding more flour because the softness of the dough will result in a fluffy and soft cake. Continue reading

April 3rd, 2011


Vierkorn-Joghurt-BrotSlowly I bring the recipes on the blog up to date again. In the last two weeks I was extremely busy again so that I manage to bake bread and other things but did not have the time and energy to blog about it.

I work at the moment again fulltime on our paper like in last autumn, to add some data the referees asked for. And like always in life (or lab) if you working under time pressure something will not do the job as you planed it. That’s the bad thing when working with living plants. I am pretty sure that they giggle very meanly when I enter the lab! Zwinkerndes Smiley

And then there was also a bad cold, a broken fridge and the preparation of a talk I had to give. But this weekend I take a break from lab work and everything else is fine again, too and started to post all of the things I  bake.

The four grain yoghurt bread I bake last weekend. Due to a little spring cleaning in my grain storage it is loaded with healthy grains and tasty seeds. It has a nice dense crumb because of all the grains and has a nice nutty taste because of the roasted seeds. Continue reading

April 2nd, 2011

Korvapuustit – Finnish cinnamon rolls

Finnische ZimtbrötchenMy colleagues are the best colleagues in the world and so I protested when they claim that I would NEVER bake cinnamon rolls for them. That is just partly true, but in the last month I bring nut triangles or cookies for our morning coffee break. And so its been a really long time since I bring cinnamon rolls.

So I promised to better myself Zwinkerndes Smiley and looked at the internet for a interesting recipe. A recipe that hooked me directly is the one for Korvapuustit – a Finnish cinnamon roll with a very nice shape. And I like cinnamon rolls with a nice shape! They remind me of Hamburger Franzbrötchen, who knows, maybe they are distant relatives?

Because two of my colleagues are lactose intolerant I create a recipe without dairy, similar to my lactose free challah, but with an additional Water roux to make the rolls more fluffy.  And I included a for me  essential spice for Scandinavian cinnamon rolls: cardamom.

When you serve them still oven warm with a cup of coffee then everyone will be happy! Smiley Continue reading