Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Favorite Traditional Christmas Cookie #2

This is a Kringla.I was taught the method for making these Scandinavian cookies by a friend in 1973. I think I've made them for Christmas nearly every year since.

They are not a sweet cookie. That is why I like them. I was also taught to eat Kringla by spreading butter on the back first. Yum! Now that you know the special way to eat them, I'll give you a step-by-step instruction on making, baking, and cooling them. :-)

You must refrigerate the dough well, overnight or even for a day or so longer. Keep the dough tightly covered.

When you're ready to begin, clear a nice large counter space and set out your cooling racks and baking pans. Set out a measuring cup with flour for dusting the counter. Also, set out a small bowl of water with a pastry brush and two or more "tea towels" or dish-drying towels.

To begin: Put about 1 1/2 cups of dough in a cereal bowl and return the rest to the refrigerator to keep cold. Dust your counter with flour and, with a spoon, place about a Tablespoon or so of dough on the counter. Gently roll the ball into a long, narrow log shape (or worm!) ;-)
Immediately place the dough on the cookie sheet, forming an overlapping pretzel shape. This is step one, and the next photo shows step two. I do it very quickly and almost simultaneously.
If the dough is worked too long, it gets warm and won't work very well when you shape it. (You'd need to put it back in the bowl in the refrigerator.)

This is a pan of Kringla, ready to be placed into the oven.Some of my Kringla got a bit browner than usual. I really try to bake them until they're hardly brown at all. (Basically, so they're brown on the bottom and "set.") It's okay if they're a little brown. Better that than not fully cooked! Remove them quickly from the baking pan and get ready for the next step.

Using the pastry brush, you will lightly (and quickly) brush each Kringla with a bit of water. Immediately afterwards, cover them with the dishtowel until they've cooled. Then you can put them in storage containers. (However, you absolutely MUST eat one, with butter, first!!!)
And, here's the recipe.


Cream together:
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter

Add and blend:
2 tsp. vanilla
1 egg

Mix and add dry ingredients (alternating with liquid) first and last:
4 cups sifted flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

1 cup buttermilk

Hint about buttermilk: I purchase "dry buttermilk" for baking. Instead of reconstituting it, I measure the dry milk and add it to the dry ingredients. Then I use the 1 cup of water as the liquid ingredient. After opening, to make it last longer, store the container of dry buttermilk in the refrigerator.

Enjoy! :-)


2greenthumbsup said...

Your cookies look awesome! Cooking and baking are not my favorite pastimes, but I actually did some baking last night. Made some shortbread and lemon squares to take to my brother's house next weekend for our Christmas. All turned out okay...until I realized that instead of sprinkling icing sugar on top of the lemon squares, I had sprinkled cornstarch! Do you think I could use my blowdryer to remove the cornstarch and then re-sprinkle with icing sugar?

Shady Gardener said...

ha! Yes, I think you could indeed try that (I would)! ;-) Do you have a good recipe for shortbread? I have a couple of molds that I'd love to use SOMETIME!

Dellits said...

my aunt used to make these and I LOVE THEM! Oh I wished I lived closer so I could come by and enjoy grandpa and grandma just sent their annual bag of cookies and banana bread...oh I love baked goods from "home"!

Shady Gardener said...

What a nice grandma and grandpa!! Merry Christmas, sweetie!