[22] Garlic Herb Salt

Hey friends,

not long now and then it will be Christmas – so slowly but surely it’s time to calm down a bit. Enough with all the stress and the hustle and bustle. How great would it be if you could just gift some quiet and peace?

Unfortunately I haven’t found a way yet to preserve that in jars, but with delicious spice blends like this Galic Herb Salt, you can make sure your loved ones have a bit of an easier time while cooking.

Garlic Herb Salt

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Drying Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
This salt adds pep to the kitchen and is super easy to make - you got to try it!

Ingredients

  • 2-3 bunches of fresh herbs (such as parsley, rosemary, thyme, sage, ...)
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 250 g table salt

Instructions

  1. Wash, dry and finely chop the herbs. Spread onto a baking tray lined with baking paper.
  2. Peel the garlic and slice it very thinly. Add to the herbs and put the tray into the oven at 50° C to dry for about 2-3 hours. It is best to put a wooden spoon in the oven door so that the moisture can escape.
  3. After that time, turn off the oven and let the herbs cool down.
  4. Grind to a fine powder with a food processor, then combine with the salt and fill it into jars.

This salt has become indispensable in my own kitchen and is my all-purpose weapon from the spice rack – you really must try it!

Stay sweet & HAPPY COOKING!

xx Kristin

[21] Iced Chocolates

Hey friends,

Still looking for a small gift idea? Then these Iced Chocolates might be just right: Fast & easy to make and therefore the perfect last minute present ❤ And they’re super delicious, too!

Iced Chocolates

Yield: makes about 20
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Cooling Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Super fast to make & melt-in-your-mouth delicious - the perfect last minute gift!

Ingredients

  • 50 g coconut fat
  • 50 g milk chocolate
  • 50 g powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • a little vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Melt the coconut fat in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the chocolate in small chunks and let it melt while stirring.
  2. Then add the powdered sugar, cocoa and vanilla and stir until it's creamy and smooth.
  3. Pour into a praline mould and let it solidify in the freezer for one hour. Remove from the moulds and then store in a cool place.

I can’t get enough of them! Prepare to make more than one batch of them because they will disappear in no time!

Stay sweet & HAPPY CHOCOLATE MAKING!

xx Kristin

[19] Mini Yule Logs

Hey friends,

Today’s recipe will be sweet, chocolaty and very christmassy. Especially in the UK (and also in France) it is a Christmas tradition to bake sweet sponge and buttercream tree trunks and serve them as Yule Log (or Bûche de Noël respectively).

This version is closer to the British recipe, but instead of making one big log I decided to go for many many small ones. That way each of your guests can get their own and additionally, I think they are pretty adorable, don’t you think so?

Mini Yule Logs

Yield: makes 8
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Cooling Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Turn the classic 'Yule Log' into miniatures and you have the perfect sweet treat for Christmas.

Ingredients

For the sponge

  • 3 large eggs
  • 75 g sugar
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 25 g cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 pinch of ground cloves

For the buttercream

  • 60 g chocolate
  • 100 g softened butter
  • 150 g powdered sugar
  • 2-3 tbsp milk

For the ganache

  • 115 ml cream
  • 150 g chocolate

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 ° C and line a baking tray (25 × 35 cm) with baking paper and lightly grease it.
  2. Separate the eggs and beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt and 25 g sugar until stiff and set aside.
  3. In a second bowl, whisk the egg yolk and 50 g of sugar until light and creamy. Combine cocoa, cinnamon, ginger and cloves and sift onto the egg mixture. Stir in gently, then gradually fold in the egg whites.
  4. .Pour onto the prepared baking tray, spread evenly and bake for 10-12 minutes.
  5. Remove it from the oven and place a second, likewise greased piece of baking paper on top. Now turn tha tray over onto the work surface and carefully remove the upper baking paper. If it keeps sticking, it helps to put a wet cloth on the paper for a while.
  6. For the buttercream, beat the butter until creamy and melt the chocolate. Stir together, then add powdered sugar and milk until a thick cream is formed. Spread evenly on the cooled sponge cake.
  7. Now divide the spone into 8 rectangles (Cut 1 x lengthwise and 4 x crosswise). Roll up the rectangles from the short side and place them on a large plate. Put in the fridge to set for about 30 minutes.
  8. In the meantime prepare the ganache, chop the chocolate and place it in a bowl. Heat the cream until it almost boils, then pour it over the chocolate and let it stand for about a minute. Now stir well and cover the tree trunks with it.
  9. Allow to set briefly, then use a fork or a toothpick to add a 'bark pattern' to the chocolate and lightly dust with powdered sugar before serving.

Aren’t they cute? Really great to go with your Christmas coffee or maybe even as a dessert – it’s up to you! Have you ever tried Yule Logs or Bûche de Noël?

Stay sweet & HAPPY BAKING!

xx Kristin

[18] Christmas Mustard

Hey friends,

Time for another quick Christmas recipe – but this time it’s nothing sweet. After all the feasting on cookies and nonstop gingerbread-snacking, it’s a welcome change to have something savoury in between. 😉

This delicious Christmas mustard is quickly whipped together and makes such a great gift from your kitchen. In Germany it’s a tradition for many families to have sausages and potato salad for dinner at Christmas Eve and so the mustard can be put to good use right away. But even without a large side dish the mustard will shine, for example in a delicious salad dressing or to season sauces and gravy – try it for yourself!

Christmas Mustard

Yield: makes about 2 small jars
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Spicy, christmas-sy and a fancy gift idea from the kitchen!

Ingredients

  • 2 tsp ground cardamom (or gingerbread spice)
  • 3 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 10 g ginger
  • the zest of one orange (about 3 tsp)
  • 100 ml English mustard
  • 100 ml Sweet mustard

Instructions

  1. Peel ginger and chop it finely, then mix it in a small bowl with orange zest, cardamom, chilli flakes, honey and English mustard. For a smoother texture you can blend the mix at this point. Finally, stir in the sweet mustard and mix well.
  2. Fill into in sterile jar, close tightly and decorate the jars or add nice labels. Stored in a cool place it will stay fresh for at least three months.

I think it’s great to have a hearty gift idea from the kitchen up your sleeve and I’m sure I will give away some of those jars at Christmas. Would that be something for you as well?

Stay sweet & HAPPY MUSTARD MAKING!

xx Kristin

[16] Spiced Apple Sorbet with Apple Champagne + Giveaway | #ad

Hey friends,

I hope you’ll have a happy 3rd Sunday of Advent! Slowly but surely things are getting serious – Christmas is coming! Time for a little checklist:

  • Christmas tree 👉 done (we actually did that 2 weeks ago already)
  • Organise gifts 👉 I think I’m on a good way, quite a bit earlier than usual so I feel prepared
  • Planning Christmas dinner 👉 here I’m still a bit undecided, but at least the aperitif is sorted

Before dinner starts, I will serve utterly delicious spiced apple sorbet topped with fantastic apple champagne to my guests! Only a few weeks ago I came across this apple champagne and absolutely totally fell for it – love at first sip. So of course it had to be part of my Christmas menue this year.

Anyway, the cocktail is a wonderful starter: fruity & fresh with slight Christmas flavours. It doesn’t need much preparation, just a bit of time for the sorbet to freeze in peace – sounds easy? Is really is and therefore perfect for Christmas!

Spiced Apple Sorbet with Apple Champagne

Yield: makes 6
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Freezing Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 12 hours 20 minutes
A fresh & fruity aperitif paired with Christmas spices - it will make you want more!

Ingredients

  • 4 apples
  • 80 g brown sugar
  • 300 ml apple juice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground star anise
  • a little vanilla
  • some lime juice
  • 1 bottle apple champagne

Instructions

  1. For the sorbet, wash the apples, remove the core and cut them unpeeled into small chunks. Put them into a saucepan together with the brown sugar, apple juice, spices and a dash of lime juice. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  2. Remove from the heat and purée thoroughly. Pass the mixture through a fine sieve and pour it into a shallow plastic bowl. Close and freeze for at least 12 hours (preferably overnight).
  3. Take the sorbet from the freezer about 15-30 minutes before serving. Put one scoop of sorbet in a glass, pour the apple champagne on top and serve immediately!

Fast, easy and delicious! Also really unique and probably not something you’d serve every day. But to be honest: the apple champagne is so good – I could definitely drink it every day.

This amazing drink is made by Johannes from Adams Apfel. His dream: bottles filled with a delicious drink that will never empty. And as long as that doesn’t work yet, he lovingly produces a steady supply of his Apple Champagne. And speaking of bottles – have a look at the lovely label! ♥ It makes my little design heart beats a bit faster!

The Apple Champagne is available in two varieties: dry and semi-dry and both taste very delicious! To give you the chance to taste it yourself, I will give away 4 x 1 bottle to you!

HOW TO ENTER:

You can participate by commenting on this post, via Facebook and on Instagram – you can thus secure 1 entry on each platform (that a maximum of 3 entries per participant). My question is the same everywhere: Which is your favourite Christmas tradition?

Giveaway Rules:

  • The raffle starts on 16.12.2018 at 10:00 and ends on 19.12.2018 at 23:59 (CET).
  • Eligible are readers from Germany, who are at least 18 years old.
  • Participation is via the submission of a comment on the blog and under the corresponding on Facebook and Instagram posts.
  • The raffle is not affiliated with Facebook / Instagram and is not sponsored or organized by Facebook / Instagram in any way.

So I wish you the best of luck and until then…

Stay sweet & HAPPY SORBET MAKING!

xx Kristin

[13] Crème Brûlée Chocolates

Hey friends,

Christmas is approaching fast and therefore I would like to give you some nice gift ideas in the next few days.

In our family we (at least the adults) agreed to only gift eachother small presents, preferably homemade. So last year, I put together a box of handmade chocolate for everyone – from salted caramel to berry cream and spicy marshmallows, it had everything your heart could desire. It also included the pralines that I want to share with you today: Delicious Crème Brûlée chocolates with a crunchy caramel crust and sweet white chocolate.

Crème Brûlée Chocolates

Yield: makes about 15
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Cooling Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 3 hours
Just as tasty as the dessert classic & a great homemade gift idea from the kitchen!

Ingredients

  • 80 g cream
  • the pulp of half a vanilla pod
  • 150 g white chocolate
  • storebought chocolates cases + some extra chocolate
  • or
  • 200 g white chocolate and a silicone chocolate mould
  • 40 g sugar
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup or honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Instructions

  1. Put cream, vanilla and the chopped white chocolate into a small saucepan, heat on medium temperature and allow to melt until it's smooth. Remove from heat and let it cool at room temperature.
  2. In the meantime prepare the chocolate shells. To do this, chop the second part of white chocolate and melt in a water bath and (ideally) temper the chocolate. Put some chocolate into the silicone moulds, distribute well and then turn over so that the excess chocolate can drip out. Scrape off the excess and then let the chocolate set in the refrigerator.
  3. Now fill the hollow chocolates (either the homemade or storebought ones) with the cooled vanilla creme, leaving a small gap at the top. Place in the fridge for half an hour, then top with the remaining white chocolate, level and scrape off the excess to seal the chocolates. Let them set for at least one hour in the refrigerator.
  4. In the meantime, make the Honey Comb. Heat the sugar and honey in a small saucepan and simmer on a medium flame until it turns into a light caramel. Now stir in the baking soda (be careful, it will foam up!) and pour the mass directly onto a sheet of baking paper. Even out a bit and let it cool down. The mass will turn very hard and then can be broken into small chunks.
  5. Remove the chocolates from the mould and grind some of the honey comb with a mortar and pestle. Lightly melt the surface of the chocolates with a lighter or flambé burner and dip into the caramel powder. Lastly, caramelise the top lightly with the flambé burner, allow to cool and the chocolates are ready to serve.

Did you make chocolates by yourself before? If so, which is your favourite recipe?

Stay sweet & HAPPY CHOCOLATE MAKING!

xx Kristin

[11] Dog Treats

Hey friends,

are you #TEAMDOG or #TEAMCAT or maybe even #TEAMSTAYAWAYFROMME? A cat girl named Bailey has been living with me for many years now, so I am very used to cats. Then, almost a year ago, a black ball of fluff moved in with my sister and her family. He answers to the name of Campino (more or less acurately) and since then the cat has to share her food from time to time with the dog – as you can imagine she is not thrilled about it.

Meanwhile, the small (or by now rather large) bugger has stolen all of our hearts and to celebrate his first Christmas as part of the family, I baked him a large portion of dog treats. They are super easy to make and his happy tail wagging made it worth the effort ♥

Dog Treats

Yield: makes about 50
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
A tasty snack for our four-legged family members.

Ingredients

  • 200 g rolled oats
  • 150 g cottage cheese
  • 100 g liver sausage or pâté
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • flour

Instructions

  1. Put all the ingredients in a bowl and knead into a smooth dough.
  2. Place the dough on a floured work surface and roll it out evenly. Cut out the desired shape (e.g. little bones) and place them on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
  3. Put the tray into the cold oven, then turn the oven on to 200° C (180° C convection) and bake for 30 minutes.
  4. Allow the treats to cool well and then feed them right away or store in a air tight container for up to 3 weeks.

And now the ultimate taste test… do you think he liked them? Let’s see:

I’d say it looks like a success!

Stay sweet & HAPPY BAKING!

xx Kristin

[8] Gingerbread Trifle + Giveaway | #ad

Hey friends,

In my opinion there are certain flavours that are inextricably linked to experiences, memories or moments. Cinema tastes like popcorn, my children’s birthday tastes like Käse-Sahne-Torte and afternoons after school have the taste of ‘Anna & Kristin’s special pasta’ (maybe I’ll pubish the recipe on here one day 😉).

And Christmas? For me personally, the Christmas season tastes most of all like gingerbread – maybe with a hint of Vanillekipferl (crescent shaped vanilla shortbread) and speculoos. Without gingerbread it just wouldn’t be the same. The nuts, the spices and the chocolate in there ♥ That’s the concentrated flavour of Christmas to me.

Mostly gingerbread just get’s eaten on it’s own, but today I’ll show you a way how to turn gingerbread into a lovely Christmas dessert: piled up layer by layer with a whipped sour cream and fruity cherries to create a marvellous Gingerbread Trifle – here’s the recipe:

Gingerbread Trifle

Yield: makes about 6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
The taste of Christmas: flavourful gingerbread, sweet cherries and rich vanilla creme.

Ingredients

  • 1 jar of preserved cherries (680g)
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 400 g sour cream
  • 200 g cream
  • 50 g vanilla sugar
  • 3-4 large gingerbread with chocolate glaze (ideally German-Style Lebkuchen)

Instructions

  1. Drain the jar of cherries, collecting the cherry juice in a saucepan. Remove about 4 tablespoons of the juice, pour it into a small bowl and stir together with the starch until smooth. Bring the remaining juice to a boil together with 2 tablespoons of sugar. Stir the starch mixture into the boiling juice, simmer briefly until it thickens and then remove from heat. Finally, add cherries back in and let everything cool well.
  2. Meanwhile, put sour cream, cream and vanilla sugar in a large bowl and whip up with a hand mixer until it's thick and creamy.
  3. Finely chop the gingerbread. Now alternately put a layer of gingerbread in a dessert glass, then some sour cream, next some cherries and then again a layer of sour cream. Finally top with gingerbread and serve.

AND NOW THE GIVEAWAY:

Today you can win 1 packet of gingerbread from Pfeffer & Frost – the finest Elisenlebkuchen that come in a really pretty box!

Pfeffer & Frost is a young start-up from Nuremberg: the two founders behind it, Jannik & Tillman, are real gingerbread fans and came up with the idea to create a modern packaging for the old-established Elisenlebkuchen – and they succeeded! Sturdy cardboard and a biodegradable foil protect and keep the gingerbread fresh; the colourful and lovingly illustrated design by  London artist Alec Doherty makes the box a real collector’s item! The edition is limited and next year they will come in a whole new look.

The content of the box is just as amazing! Baked by hand in a traditional Nuremberg bakery and brimming with good ingredients: fine almonds, sweet marzipan and delicious hazelnuts – this turns the gingerbread into a real taste experience!

The great design of the boxes is something you can see in the photos, the taste you can unfortunately only imagine … but that can change, because I’m going give one of them to a lucky winner!

HOW TO ENTER:

You can participate by commenting on this post, via Facebook and on Instagram – you can thus secure 1 entry on each platform (that a maximum of 3 entries per participant). My question is the same everywhere: Which is your favourite Lebkuchen style – chocolate glazed, with icing or au naturelle?

Giveaway Rules:

  • The raffle starts on 08.12.2018 at 8:00 and ends on 12.12.2018 at 23:59 (CET).
  • Eligible are readers from Germany, who are at least 18 years old.
  • Participation is via the submission of a comment on the blog and under the corresponding on Facebook and Instagram posts.
  • The raffle is not affiliated with Facebook / Instagram and is not sponsored or organized by Facebook / Instagram in any way.

So I wish you the best of luck and until then…

Stay sweet & HAPPY DESSERT MAKING!

xx Kristin

[6] Pan di Stelle

Hey friends,

It’s miserable outside, so I prefer to hide in my flat and daydream about our last vacation. This year went on a road trip around Italy. Except for the first stop it was completely unplanned, we simply drove to the places we wanted to see that day, hastily searched for campsites while drving and then set up our camp for the night.

We had pretty great weather although it was fairly late in the year. And in addition to all the great food that we have crushed on the spot, I have also stocked up my personal supply: Pasta, flour, olive oil, tomato sauce, … and also my very favorite Italian biscuits: Pan di Stelle! Those sweet chocolate biscuits with stars on them have stolen my foodie heart but unfortunately my supply is long gone. That’s why I decided to bake some for myself and the recipe is now available for you too!

Pan di Stelle

Yield: makes about 50
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
When sweet cocoa biscuits meet a shower of stars, the most delicious Italian cookies are made!

Ingredients

  • 30 g ground hazelnuts
  • 100 g butter
  • 60 g margarine
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 30 g dark chocolate
  • 400 g flour
  • 40 g cocoa powder
  • 200 g powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • white sugar star sprinkles
  • sugar glitter

Instructions

  1. Put the ground hazelnuts together with 2 tbsp of powdered sugar in a food processor and grind finely.
  2. Melt the chocolate, then cream the butter together with margarine and 1 egg. Now stir in the honey and the chocolate.
  3. Mix the ground hazelnuts with flour, cocoa, baking powder, the remaining powdered sugar and salt. Form a well in the middle and add the butter-chocolate mix. Gradiually add the milk and knead everything until a smooth dough forms. Wrap in foil and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
  4. Roll out the dough on a floured work surface and cut out small circles (about 5 cm in diameter). Meanwhile preheat the oven to 180° C and line several baking trays with baking paper.
  5. Put white sugar stars on the biscuits and sprinkle them with a little glitter sugar. Then bake for about 10 minutes, allow to cool well and serve!

Do you know these delicious biscuits or do you maybe have a different favourite from your vacations?

Stay sweet & HAPPY BAKING!

xx Kristin

[4] Stollen in a Jar

Hey friends,

especially in the run up to Christmas it is nice to meet up with friends and acquaintances for coffee and spend some nice hours together. Talk about what’s new, reminisce on old memories or exchange ideas about this years Christmas presents. The latter I always find fascinating, because it is so interesting to see how other people gift. One person might be more of the last-minute type while another is a crafter and creator. Maybe they will even have tips for you for particularly great gifts – who knows?

For these occasions, I always find it nice to bring the host a little something. A nice thing to bring is, for example, small Stollen (German fruit bread) in a jar! It is quick to prepare and gets baked directly in small screw top jars, so after baking you just put on the lid, let it seal and this way preserve it for a few weeks.

Stollen in a Jar

Yield: makes 5
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
An ideal small present for your Christmas host but also great to prepare and then just eat by yourself!

Ingredients

  • 150 g margarine
  • 200 g sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 250 quark
  • 500 g flour
  • 1 packet baking soda (~2 tsp)
  • 2 tbsp milk (or if you like the flavour: rum)
  • 125 g dried cranberries
  • 100 g chopped almonds
  • powdered sugar
  • 5 small screw top jars à 230 ml

Instructions

  1. Grease the small jars, dust them with bread crumbs and preheat the oven to 175° C.
  2. Beat margarine, sugar and eggs together until creamy, then stir in the quark. Mix flour and baking powder and add it to wet ingredients together with some milk. Knead until combined, then add the cranberries and almonds and mix until evenly distributed.
  3. Divide the dough and fill the jars about 2/3 full, then press down the dough lightly. Bake in the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes. Immediately sprinkle the hot cake in the jars with plenty of powdered sugar, then screw on the lid immediately and allow to cool completely.
  4. Stored in a cool and dry place, the Stollen will keep fresh for 2-3 weeks.

What do you like to gift your host when you’re invited somewhere?

Stay sweet & HAPPY BAKING!

xx Kristin