There is nothing that bring out the christmas feeling in me as baking christmas cookies with the family. Son, Husband and I spent an evening together making ginger bread cookies and what translates directly as cake men. I’ll get back to those in a different post.
Pepperkaker translates directly to ‘pepper cakes/cookies’, pepper as in black pepper. In Norwegian there is no word for cookies, we have ‘kake’, which means cake (doh) and also cover most cookies. The Norwegian word for biscuits, ‘kjeks’ (pronounces ‘sheks’ by me, but which should be pronounced with an initial palatal k-like sound (a fricative), which you also find in German ‘ich’ – kjeks would rhyme with shrek, but with a final s). ‘Kjeks’ then cover other types of cookies and, obviously, also biscuits.
The recipe I use for ‘pepperkaker’ is one going back a few generations. I would like to say it’s very straight forward, but I almost messed up this year (I managed to fix it though and save the day) so I would recommend you to follow the recipe (almost) step by step. You probably want to reduce this recipe though, or you’ll be eating pepperkaker until next summer:
- 150 g butter (or margarine)
- 5 dl sugar
Dice the butter and leave it on the counter until it’s tempered and soft. Whisk it with the sugar until it’s white and fluffy. Then add the remaining ingredients:
- 2 dl of sirup
- 2 dl of water
- 1 tablespoon of cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon of powdered ginger
- 1 tablespoon of powdered cloves
- 1 tablespoon of baking soda
- 1,5 litres (850g) of wheat flour
Mix it al together. The machine will help you to some extent, but will eventually start tearing the dough apart and crumbling it. Knead it together then by hand, add a bit of water if that proves difficult, and leave it somewhere cold (fridge is perfect) for at least a few hours before baking.
The figures should only be a few millimetres thick, so make sure you roll the dough out thin. Husband illustrates quite well how thick it should be (Dude is talented when it comes to rolling out that dough!)
The cookies are done after 5-7 minutes at 200 degrees in a pre-heated oven. You should time these cookies as it’s not all that easy to see when they’ve got the right colour. Hope you enjoy 🙂