Delicious home-made biscuit. A good one. Crunchy, friable with chocolate or vanilla flavour. Or both. I can grab it to the afternoon tea or the morning coffee. I can put it into the beautiful glass jar that we have on the top of our kitchen cupboard so we can take sometimes one piece out of it. Or maybe two. Theoretically it can last long but not in our house, where these biscuits mysteriously disappear very quickly so I rarely have the chance to even put them in the jar. I could say that Áron is exclusively responsible for the disappearance but I should be honest in my own blog. So I confess, I am an accomplice in that business.
First I try a recipe from an old cookbook. It is not like I expected, it is rather average than special. I once again realise that it has a reason why my grandmothers have written down certain recipes into their notebooks. After the first test I don’t want to risk any more. There is a biscuit that appears in the recipe booklets of both of my grandmother’s under the name “biscuit for New Year’s Eve”, which is a good sign, and actually we can have a reason to celebrate the New Year today as well.
My Swabian grandmother didn’t bake very often. Maybe the reason was that she didn’t like sweets so much. However I could be sure, that she will have these two-colour biscuits sticked together with apricot jam in a metal box in her pantry. In her recipe booklet she is writing with her typical italic handwriting that two biscuits can be sticked together with marmalade or chocolate cream. Since my boyfriend, Áron is passionate about chocolate I will use chocolate cream, no question about it. I don’t find any recipes for that but fortunately I have a wonderful butter cream recipe from Spain from the time I used to work as a pastry cook. So everything is prepared for my desired full cookie jar. The biscuits don’t disappoint me, they are exactly like I rememberer and they remind me a very traditional Hungarian store-bought biscuit called “Pilóta”, but in home-made version. Beside the sweets I only need a bit of spring in the house. So I pass by at my favourite flower shop which is like entering another world, a world of colours, scents and harmony, a place where there is time to stop and take a sit for a tea and cake in the middle of the Christmas rushing. This fabulous place will close its door very soon. I have already learnt in life, that you must find the positive side of all things, in that case the fact that these great people will go and fulfil new dreams. And until they are still open, I will pass by and buy a bouquet. Just because it is beautiful and I can sense the love it was made by two people who loved what they were doing.
A bouquet of spring is on the table and the biscuits are waiting to be eaten, either biting into them and enjoying the complexity of flavours, or eating the levels one after the other one.
As for me observing the diminishing quantity I better go back to the kitchen and bake another portion. Because once we are going to have a full cookie jar. I promise.
My grandmother’s two-coloured biscuits (originally called “biscuit for New Year’s Eve”)
For the biscuits:
500 g flour
2 tsp. baking powder
200 g confectioner’s sugar
200 g butter
1 package of vanilla sugar
2 tsp Dutch cocoa powder
For the buttercream
250 g butter at room temperature
80 ml milk
60 g confectioner’s sugar
300 g dark chocolate
Mix flour and baking powder with butter, add sugar, vanilla sugar and eggs and knead it well. Weigh the dough and divide it into two parts. Add cocoa powder to one part of the dough and knead it until you get an evenly brown coloured piece. Wrap both pieces into plastic foil and put them into the fridge for an hour or overnight. Roll each piece out on a lightly floured surface and cut circles with a cookie cutter. Bake it on a paper-lined baking pan at 200 °C until they get a light colour (approximately 5-8 minutes) In the meantime prepare buttercream. Beat the butter with a kitchen machine well, until it is really fluffy. Dissolve sugar in milk and warm it up a little bit. Melt the chocolate in the microwave oven at very low temperature stopping and stirring once in a while. While beating continuously add milk slowly to the butter, than stir in the melted chocolate. Stick two biscuits with the cream and keep the rest of the cream at room temperature (it will loose its consistency in the fridge) If you don’t have time for buttercream, you can use jam instead.