Swiss Carrot Cake

I hope you all had a happy Easter! And we certainly can not complain about the longer weekend;) Here in Canada our kids do not have spring vacation like my nephew and niece have in Switzerland. So we take the extra two days off of course! Also the weather was pretty nice and warm on Easter Sunday.

We have been making a few treats, like these carrot cookies!

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I will definitely make these again, these cookies were so soft and just yummy!! I used coconut sugar for sweetening. I might be posting the recipe another time.

This year I colored our eggs traditionally with onion peels.

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But the grand dessert was our carrot cake. Now a European carrot cake is a bit different than a North American carrot cake. So once in a while I like to make it the way I grew up eating it. Also in Switzerland you decorate a carrot cake with Marzipan carrots and I made some “grass” also using Marzipan. Now here in Canada, because you can not buy the finished product, you will have to make your own “carrots” using plain Marzipan and food coloring. I was lucky that my mom brought those when she was visiting:) This is not the original recipe I have in my 1982 Betty Bossi book: Kuchen, Cakes & Torten, rather a bit of a lighter version with less butter and flour. I admit, I did use coconut sugar, which turned out beautiful. We really, really liked it! And it is a keeper all year long! Make it a day or two in advance, it will taste even better:)

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Swiss Carrot Cake

  • 240 g almonds, ground
  • 300 g carrots, shredded
  • 90 g butter, unsalted, melted
  • 6 eggs, egg whites separated
  • 230 g sugar
  • 1 organic lemon, zest
  • dash salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp clove
  • 60 g unbleached flour

-Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Line the bottom of a 8-inch round baking pan with parchment paper. Grease and flour the sides.

-Cream together 100 g sugar and egg yolks. Add lemon zest, salt, cinnamon and clove. Mix in carrots, flour and nuts.

-In a separate bowl, whisk egg whites until stiff. Slowly add 130 g sugar then whisk again until shiny.

-Add 1/3 of the egg whites to the first batter and carefully mix under. Then add the rest. Mix in melted butter just until combined.

-Fill in prepared baking pan and bake for about 45-50 min, or until tester inserted comes out clean. Let cool completely.

Decoration:

  • almond shavings (around 50g)
  • apricot jelly, or jam warmed and then strained through a sieve. Spread around cake then sprinkle the almond shavings on.
  • Marzipan carrots
  • green Marzipan (around 200g), roll out, in between plastic wrap, to cover the top. Then make some “grass”.
  • or plain marzipan and orange and green food coloring and some pistachios for the “carrot top”.
  • using a garlic press to make the “grass”
  • Some chocolate eggs

 

-You can also simply dust the cake with icing sugar.

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If you never had a European style carrot cake you might want to give this a try;) just saying…!!

 

Enjoy!

Ursula

 

Lemon Easter “Egg” Cookies

Happy weekend everyone!

After an other taste of spring weather craziness, we are hopefully done with snow until next winter! I am really looking forward to warmer temperatures and some more spring flowers blooming in our garden, for now only crocuses are blooming.

I found these fun “egg” cookies on the chefkoch.de website and just had to give it a try!!

These are so cute:) I really like the lemon curd filling that I found on texanerin.com, it is so refreshing! You could also fill these with apricot jelly.

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My kids are maybe a little to old now for Easter egg hunt and such, but we are never to old for some little treats;)

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Makes about 5 big and 10 small cookies, depending on the size of your cookie cutters.

 

Lemon Easter Egg Cookies 

  • 150 g butter, soft
  • 1 tsp organic lemon zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla sugar
  • 75 g icing sugar
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 150 g unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 75 g cornstarch

-Whisk together butter, sugar, vanilla sugar and lemon zest. Add flour, cornstarch, milk. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

 

Lemon Curd (Paleo) 

  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • 1/4 cup refined coconut oil or unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup+1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

-Mix together eggs, honey and lemon zest in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat stirring constantly until it thickens, about 5-10 minutes.

-Strain and let cool completely. Store in airtight container (I used a mason jar) in the fridge for up to 1 week.

 

-Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

-Roll out the dough 2-3 mm thick, they will rise a bit. Cut out a even amount of egg shape cookies. I had one left over which I baked just like that and then was gobbled up by my daughter for “testing” of course:) Half of the cookies need a small hole, you can do that by taking a small circle cookie cutter or the round part of a piping tip.

-Bake in a 200C/390F preheated oven for about 11 minutes or light brown. Let cool completely.

-Spread lemon curd on half of the cookies. Dust the cookies with the hole with icing sugar or a cookie icing (lemon juice and icing sugar mixed together). Place two cookies together. Store in fridge.

 

–I used 1/4 cup honey for the dough instead the icing sugar–

 

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Enjoy!

 

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Thank you so much for 200 followers!!! It was amazing to get to know so many amazing bloggers and looking forward to many more:)

 

You can find me on Instagram #littleswisslittlecanadian

 

Ursula

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blueberry-Coconut-Streusel Muffins

Happy Weekend everyone!!

These cake-like muffins were a huge hit with my family! Blueberries and coconut with a hint of vanilla…amazing!

This was mostly a surprise for my son who had a small surgery on his hand this week. I have been very proud of him because he was very brave!

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Blueberry-Coconut-Sreusel Muffins 

  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 cup shredded coconut, unsweetened
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 cup butter, soft
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen

-Combine flour with coconut, sugar and baking powder in a large bowl. Cut in butter and mix until it is in tiny pieces. Remove 3/4 cup of this mixture to a small bowl.

-Combine milk with eggs and vanilla. Add to the flour mixture in the large bowl. Stir just until moistened.

-Stir blueberries in gently. Do not defrost frozen blueberries.

-Spoon batter into 12 buttered or paper-lined muffin cups. Sprinkle each with the reserved crumb mixture.

-Bake 30-35 min. in a preheated 350F/180C oven. Cool 5 to 10 min. before removing from pan.

 

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The recipe is adapted from: “Best of the Milk Calendar recipes” Baked Goods.

 

 

 

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Enjoy!

 

 

Mohnstrudel, Poppy Seed Strudel

Happy Friyay!!

Poppy seed pastries are very popular in Central and Eastern Europe. We have a wonderful Hungarian Restaurant in London where we went for lunch a while ago and we had a Mohnstrudel for dessert, it was amazing! Usually we buy a poppy seed pastry at our local Polish Delicatessen store.

It does not happen often that I make it myself;) But I tell you it was totally worth it, so good!

Poppy seeds are an excellent source of minerals like iron, magnesium, calcium, zinc, copper and potassium. They are also loaded with dietary fibers, vitamins and healthy fats.

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Mohnstrudel

Yeast dough:

  • 50 g butter, melted
  • 150 ml milk
  • 50 g sugar
  • 400 g unbleached white flour
  • 7 g instant dry yeast
  • 2 eggs

Filling:

  • 150 ml milk
  • 150 g poppy seeds, finely ground
  • 5 tblsp sugar
  • 1 vanilla pod, or 1 tbsp extract
  • 5 dried prunes, soaked in Kirsch Schnapps
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • milk for brushing
  • powdered sugar

-For the dough: Mix together butter, milk and sugar until creamy. In a mixing bowl add flour and yeast, add wet ingredients and using a standard mixer or you hands mix and knead until holds nicely together. Cover with a plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for about 1 hour.

-For the filling: In a medium saucepan heat the milk then add poppy seeds and sugar, reducing heat to your lowest setting and continue stirring so it does not burn, for about 30 minutes, then add vanilla and cinnamon. I had to add a little bit more milk because it seemed so dry. It is suppose to be moist but not to wet.

-Cut prunes very finely. Mix prunes into the poppy seed mixture. Puree mixture in a blender or food processor. Let it cool.

-Preheat oven to 180C/350F

-On a floured surface or on a parchment paper, roll out dough to a rectangle. Spread filling evenly on the dough leaving a 2 cm space all around. Fold in edges then roll the dough up.

-Place Strudel on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush Strudel with some milk. Bake for about 30 minutes.

-Serve dusted with icing sugar.

 

–Was served at the Restaurant with a chocolate sauce–

 

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It was even better the next day!!

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Enjoy!

Happy weekend!!

 

 

Check out my Instagram @littleswisslittlecanadian

 

 

 

 

Maple Coconut Tarts

Happy weekend everyone!! My kids had a week off from school for Spring (March) Break. Unfortunately the weather did not turn out to be so great…in other words, winter returned! For most of the week it was snowing and cold.

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Anyway I found another way of using Maple Syrup in a recipe…I promise I will stop soon, but it is still the season right!;) These Coconut Tarts were soooooo good! I will definitely make these again soon.

Use with your favorite pastry. Makes enough filling for 7 tarts. I will add the pastry I used.

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Maple Coconut Tarts

  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • pinch sea salt
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup coconut, shredded, unsweetened

 

-Preheat oven to 400F/200C. Grease 7 muffin tins and line with your favorite pastry.

-In a small bowl, mix all ingredients together well. Fill in prepared tart shells only 3/4 full. Bake at 400F/200C for 15 minutes.

 

 

Following recipe is adapted from my 1985 Betty Bossi book “Dessert Traeume”.

Pastry

  • 125 g unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 3 tbsp honey or sugar
  • 50 g butter, cold, cut in small pieces
  • 50 g coconut, shredded, unsweetened
  • 1 egg

-Mix flour, salt and honey or sugar. Add butter pieces and using your hands rub everything together until it resembles fine crumbs. Mix in coconuts then add the egg and mix everything well. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

-On a floured surface roll out dough and cut out circles to fit 7 muffin moulds.

 

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Coconut Dream!!

 

Enjoy!

 

You can find me on Instagram: #littleswisslittlecanadian

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hazelnut-Butterfly Sweet Yeast Bread

There are some dishes from Switzerland, sweet or savory, that I am sometimes suddenly thinking off…maybe even missing a little. And that can be at times like right before I go to bed for some weird reason;)

Most of my baking is out off Swiss or German cookbooks, some old true and tested recipes that everyone loves. The other day my husband was asking for a Hazelnut Sweetbread. A traditional sweet yeast dough filled with ground hazelnuts. We call this a Russenzopf (Russianbraid, I do not know how or why it got that name). The great thing about it is you can take the same recipe and make hazelnut rolls or crescents called Nussgipfeli, which I LOVE and need to eat when we are in Switzerland, or like I did for this recipe, a butterfly.

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However you shape it, it is delicious!

Now trying to cut down on white refined sugar, I used honey and coconut sugar. I will give you the original version as well, using white and brown sugar.

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Hazelnut-Butterfly

Yeast dough:

  • 350 g white unbleached flour
  • 1 tbsp instant yeast
  • 2 tbsp honey, or sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 125 ml milk, room temp.
  • 25g butter, melted
  • 1 egg

-Mix all dry ingredients together. Whisk together milk, egg and butter. Add to dry ingredients. Knead dough until smooth. Cover with a plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until doubled in size. About 1 hour.

Filling:

  • 200 g Hazelnuts, finely ground (you can also use ground almonds)
  • 5 tbsp coconut sugar, or 4 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 organic lemon, juice and zest
  • 100 ml cream or milk

-Mix all ingredients together.

-Preheat oven to 180C/350F (Convection setting). Line a 30 cm loaf pan with parchment paper.

-Roll out dough into a rectangle. Spread filling out evenly. Cut horizontally. Roll each piece from the outsides to the center and lay both pieces on top of each other in a prepared baking dish. Let it rise for another 30 minutes. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes. Spread the icing on while it is still warm.

Icing:

  • 4 tbsp icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

-Mix together well.

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Tip: Original recipe calls for 250 g Marzipan, 1 organic orange, zest and 1 tbsp juice. It is called Almond-Butterfly.

Recipe adapted from Dr. Oetker “Backen macht Freude” and Betty Bossi “Backstube”

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Have fun and enjoy!

You can find me on Instagram. #littleswisslittlecanadian

Maple-Pecan-Coffeecake

 

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This is a recipe from Rolling Ridge Maple Products. A small Maple Syrup producer in Southwestern Ontario, just outside of London. We had my Mother visiting for two weeks and of course we had to visit a Maple Syrup producer;) She loved it!! We went home with some Syrup, Maple Sugar and Maple Butter…amazing!

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Maple-Pecan-Coffeecake

  • 1/2 cup unbleached flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup buttermilk or sour milk
  • 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup Maple Syrup

Topping

  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar or brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter

 

-Preheat oven to 375F. Sift together the white flour, baking soda and salt. Mix in the whole wheat flour with a fork. In a large bowl, beat egg until very light; add the buttermilk, melted butter and maple syrup and beat until just combined. Spread batter smoothly in a buttered 8-inch pan.

-Sprinkle with topping. (To make the topping: mix together whole wheat flour, coconut sugar, pecans, cinnamon and melted butter)

-Bake the coffeecake about 25 minutes or until a tester inserted in the middle comes out clean.

-Drizzle with some Maple Butter, Maple Syrup or Icing Sugar.

 

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Enjoy!

 

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