Sunday, December 2, 2012
Mézeskalács - Hungarian gingerbread
Today I was inspired by the Hungarian gingerbread making at the House of Hungary in Balboa park, so I decorated our home made gingerbread cookie after our arrival home with a different technique then I usually do...
It is easy to be made with kids for Xmas.
The recipe came from a Hungarian site as I didn't find my cook book yet.. Messy me :).
You can find the original at A büfé, for those who read Hungarian it might be more enjoyable.
For those who don't, here is the English version.
300 g pastry flour
50 g whole wheat flour
150 g acacia honey, I actually used ginger honey, but use any type of not so thick honey
100 g icing (castor) sugar
1 tsp cocoa powder – optional, only for color, you can make different shades of gingerbread
1 tsp baking soda (flat)
60 g butter
1 egg + 1 egg yolk (save the white for the icing/decoration on top)
1/2 - 1 tsp cinnamon (depends how spicy you like the gingerbread)
1/2 - 1 tsp clove, minced (depends how spicy you like the gingerbread)
pinch of minced ginger – optional
1 egg white
200 g icing sugar
1 small tsp vinegar - optional, makes the icing more shiny
2 tbsp of food starch - needed only if you want more professional looking cookies, of course healthier without
Preheat the oven to 180 C, 355 F. Mix the dry ingredients like flour, icing sugar, spices, baking soda.
Add the room temperature butter and crumble it in the flour mix.
Heat the honey to a bit higher temperature then the body temperature (approx 50-60 C, 120-140 F) and add it to the mixture.
Last, but not least, add the egg and the egg yolk, mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon.
Wrap it with cling wrap and let it cool for at least 15 minutes in the fridge. I forgot it for about 4 hours and it was still good :), so I suppose you can leave it for overnight if time is tight.
Divide it into three 3 parts (roughly, it is only for convenience) and roll it out 2-3 mm thick. You can add a little flour at the bottom and top if the dough is too sticky.
Cut it with your favorite shapes and place them onto trays covered with baking paper. Put approximately same size cookies in the same tray as the smaller ones need less, the bigger ones more baking.
Bake it for 8-10 minutes (8 min softer texture, 10 min easier to handle), and let them cool on a flat surface.
You can store them in airtight containers for weeks, with the honey they will only get softer :).
PS. My suggestion would be NOT to add any cocoa powder at the beginning but rather mix all the other ingredients, divide the dough into three parts, leave one part as it is, add one half a teaspoon of cocoa powder to the second, and one teaspoon of cocoa powder to the third part.
You will right away have a nice variety of shades, and they look great on the plate.
Tomorrow we will bake the Finnish style Xmas gingerbread called Piparkakku, which has a bit different spices, more butter, and maple sirup instead of honey. If interested come back a bit later for the recipe, I can't promise though that it will come right tomorrow :).