Faschingskrapfen

Faschingskrapfen, also simply called Krapfen, are another very opulent Austrian pastry, made of yeast dough, filled with apricot jam and usually fried in hot oil.

In this recipe, they are not fried, but baked in the oven, which saves a couple of calories and also quite some work.

Krapfen are not very difficult to make, but the yeast dough takes quite some resting time, so there’s a lot of waiting involved.

With this recipe you should be able to make 18 Krapfen. The dough will grow a lot, so it will actually be 2 sheets of 9.

KrapfenThe equipment you will need:

  • a hand blender with dough hook (er enough enthusiasm to knead by hand)
  • rolling bin
  • a round glass or cookie cutter (~7-8cm / 3inch in diameter)
  • a pastry tube with a thin, long tip
  • 2 sheets of parchment paper and a baking tray

KrapfenIngredients:

  • 500g flour + some extra flour for rolling out the dough
  • 1 package dry yeast (7g)
  • 70g sugar
  • 70g margarine (I used half fat, regular works as well)
  • 300ml soy milk
  • ~250g apricot jam

How it’s made:

  • warm the soy milk (not too hot, you don’t want to kill the yeast)
  • take some tablespoons of the soy milk, some of the flour and mix in the yeast thoroughly
  • dissolve the sugar and melt the margarine in the rest of the soy milk; if necessary, you can warm the soy milk a little more for this step
  • mix soy-milk-margarine-sugar-mixture with the flour in a big bowl
  • add the yeast-mix and knead for several minutes until you have a smooth dough ball
  • but a damp kitchen towel over the bowl and let it rest on a warm place for 60 minutes
  • after 60 minutes the dough should have grown considerably
  • knead the dough again, add more flour if necessary
  • but some flour on your pastry board or kitchen counter and roll the dough, it should be 1-1,5cm / 0,5 inch thick
  • use the glass or cookie cutter to cut out 18 pieces
  • put 9 Krapfen on each parchment paper – make sure each Krapfen has enough room to grow, you don’t want them to stick together
  • let the Krapfen rest for another hour

Krapfennow they should look something like that

  • preheat the oven to 180°C / 360°F
  • bake each set of Krapfen for about 10 minutes; they are done when the top turns slightly brownish

Krapfenlight brown on top – those are done

  • when they are done, take them out and let them cool off for a couple of minutes
  • fill the pastry tube with apricot jam and squeeze some apricot jam into each Krapfen
  • dust with powdered sugar

Krapfen   The finished Krapfen

I calculated, that with the ingredients I used and with 18 Krapfen made, each Krapfen has ~170 kcal, which is not that bad actually.

 

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Valentine’s Day Punch Hearts

For this recipe I took inspiration from an Austrian pastry called Punschkrapfen.

They usually have the shape of squares, but I thought it would be nice to make heart shaped ones for Valentine’s Day.

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts

Sweet Punch Heart for Valentine’s Day

My first attempt yesterday didn’t turn out as I had planned: the cake was to high for the cookie cutter, so the hearts all were somewhat uneven. Also, the filling was too soft for being used with a cookie cutter. I had to place the cutter on top of a heart shaped cookie, fill it with the way too soft filling, put another cookie on top of it and then carefully pull the cookie cutter up without destroying the whole thing. I still managed to get them in shape, but it was very, very messy and time-consuming, I really don’t recommend that method.

It was so much work that I didn’t even bother to glaze them all, once I was finished. (They were really delicious though).

Valentine's Day Punch HeartsThe first attempt: somewhat messy production process, but very delicious outcome.

Today I made a second attempt: I used only half the amount of dough and a much larger baking tray. Unsurprisingly this time the cake turned out to be too flat 🙂

So I simply decided to turn this into a special feature of my very special Valentine’s Day Punch Hearts: instead of one filling between two cake layers they now contain two fillings between three cake layers.

Before I post the recipe just a couple of things in advance: making those Punch Hearts is a lot of work, it’s very messy and they are somewhat unhealthy, as they contain lots of sugar.

But hey, Valentine’s Day is only once a year, so it might as well be worth the effort and the extra calories on a special day and for a special person, and besides: I think they look really cute (and they taste great as well!).

Ingredients:

for the dough:

  • 90g sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 package of vanilla sugar (8g)
  • 120g flour
  • a bit of tumeric for a nice yellow colour (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 150ml water

additionally for the filling:

  • 55ml cherry liqueur rum (or regular rum)
  • 135g dark chocolate

for the glaze:

  • 200g powdered sugar
  • 50ml cherry liqueur rum (or regular rum)
  • red food dye

Preparations:

  • line a baking tray with parchment (the tray I used has a size of 37x26cm and the cake turned out very flat – I guess a smaller tray would be okay too)
  • preheat oven to 180°C/350°F

Cooking:

  • mix sugar, baking powder, flour and  vanilla sugar thoroughly (add a little tumeric if you want your dough to have a nice yellowish colour)
  • add oil and water, mix with a blender
  • pour the very liquid dough on the parchment paper that lies on your baking tray
  • shake the tray a little to make the dough spread evenly

Valentine's Day Punch HeartsThe dough in the tray before baking…

  • put the tray in the oven and bake for 10-15 minute; the time depends on the size of your tray (the surface should be of yellow/light golden colour, you can also do the toothpick test to find out the right moment for removing the tray from the oven)

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts… and after baking. Nice yellow colour.

  • let the cake cool off for at least 30 minutes
  • remove the parchment paper from the tray
  • now cut out hearts with a heart shaped cookie cutter; I cut out 27 cookies for 9 punch hearts

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…cutting out the hearts.

  • make sure there’s enough cake leftovers, because you will need those  for the filling; I weighted my cookies and leftovers: the cookies weighted about 60% of the original cake, the leftovers 40%

Valentine's Day Punch HeartsThe leftover cake parts.

  • now put the leftovers in a bowl and crumble into smaller pieces
  • add cherry liqueur rum, then mash the soft, soaked crumbles with a fork (maybe start with less than 55ml rum and add more if necessary)

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…soaked in rum and mashed.

  • melt dark chocolate in the microwave oven; it should be soft, but not too hot
  • mix the melted chocolate with the rum soaked cake mash

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…mixed with melted chocolate.

  • the consistency of the cake mash should be soft enough to be spread on the parchment, being cut with the cookie cutter and stick with the cookies, but not so soft that it will loose its shape or melt away – depending on the amount of cake leftovers you started with, the amount of rum and melted chocolate you are going to need may vary; also the cake mash will get a little harder once the chocolate has cooled off, so you may want to wait a little or put the filling in the fridge for some time
  • spread some of the filling on a piece of parchment paper and use the cookie cutter to cut out a heart; remove the heart (by carefully lifting it up with a knife, if it sticks to the parchment paper) and place it on a cookie

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…cutting the filling, layering the punch cakes

  • place another cookie on top, another filling on that one and a third cookie on top of it, so that each little cake has 5 layers (if your cookies turn out to be much higher than mine, you can stick with a three-layered cookie-filling-cookie)
  • now it’s time for the glazing; put the powdered sugar and rum in a bowl and mix thoroughly; I recommend not to start with the whole 200g sugar/50ml rum, but with maybe half of the amount, and then slowly add either more sugar if it’s too liquid or more rum if it’s too viscid
  • add as much red food dye as you like, for bright red or tender pink
  • place each cake on a fork, and pour the sugar glaze over it

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…glacing the little cakes with pink or red sugar icing.

  • place the cakes on a little paper muffin cup
  • eat and enjoy – but not all at once 🙂 I calculated that each of the 9 punch hearts I made has a little over 300kcals.

Valentine's Day Punch Hearts…delicious!

Heaven’s Dish

Okay, so here’s the fruity, fluffy semolina cream that caused the premature end of my as-good-as-new ceramic glass cooktop.

I got to know this recipe about 10 years ago, when a girl from Germany who I met on an online game told me about it, and it turned out to be an easy, not too unhealthy and extremely filling dessert.

Ingredients:

  • 500ml black currant, strawberry or cherry juice
  • 65g semolina
  • optionally sugar or artificial sweetener to taste

Cooking:

  • bring fruit juice to boil

  • add semolina, stir
  • let semolina simmer for 5 minutes or so, til its soft and soaked

  • pour the semolina mash in a large bowl

  • mix on highest level for al least 10 minutes

Through the mixing the mash will become all fluffy, soft and creamy, its colour will become lighter and its volume will increase.

You can eat it right away, when it’s still warm or wait til it has cooled off.

Especially the variant with strawberry juice will go very well with chocolate cream.

(I know, the picture could have been better, but at the time this photo was made, I was  busy removing shards.)