Hi, I’m Poppy, and I’m a box-alcoholic… I collect all kinds of boxes, I just cannot resist them, and after I have brought them home I try to justify their existence by putting random things in them, making them somewhat useful. It usually results in none of us finding anything. As my husband once said, after looking for his phone charger in vain: “You and your boxes…”
But there are a few boxes that everyone knows for sure what they hide. The lovely tin boxes, sitting on the top of the kitchen cupboard, waiting for me to make some cookies and fill them up. Even my 21 months old Paddington knows without doubt, and from time to time you find him standing in the kitchen, pointing up to the boxes, repeating one word of his (so far) not too wide repertoire “mere, mere, mere!” (more, more, more!)
Well, Christmas is coming, and it is time to fill up my lonely, empty cookie boxes again. One by one 🙂
We have a lot of different kinds of cookies on plan, since I long for the tastes of my childhood, the Hungarian Christmas cookies, and my husband longs for the tastes of his childhood, the Danish ones:) The kids luckily don’t have any preferences yet, they simply want to eat, preferably all the time, if possible. Any kind of cookie is welcome in their little, round bellies.
I decided to start the line by making one of the Hungarian cookies (I make them, I get to choose the order – aka: my kitchen my rules, hehe 🙂 ). I was browsing the Internet the other day, and stumbled upon a lovely recipe of a kind of gingerbread, called Honey Kisses in Hungarian (or, if you prefer, Mézespuszedli). It’s something I always loved very much, and because of the spices used for making it, it is very christmassy. Usually, for Christmas, I always bake according to old, family recipes, but my handwritten cookbook, that I once copied from the one my Mum owns (containing recipes from her Mum and Grandma as well) unfortunately doesn’t include a recipe for the honey kisses. So I decided to give a go to the recipe I had found. It is of a Hungarian gastro-blogger, TücsökBogár. And here it goes:
- 330 g flour
- 50 g brown sugar
- 120 g honey (I prefer a liquid kind of honey for this recipe)
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp water
- 3 tbsp veg. oil
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tbsp gingerbread spice mix (If you, like me, cannot find the spice mix, you can substitute it with 1tsp cinnamon, 1tsp ground cardamom, and 1 tsp ground cloves)
- a pinch of salt
- 2 egg whites
- 175 g icing sugar
First you take the brown sugar, the eggs (both whites and yolks), the honey, the water, the oil and the salt, and whip them very good. Then you add the mix of the flour, the baking soda and the spices to it, and work the whole thing together thoroughly. You get a soft dough. Now you put it in the fridge, for min. 1 hour. (My dough was chilling in the fridge for more than 2 hours, because it was such a beautiful sunshine, that we had to go for a walk with my husband and the dog).
Preheat the oven to 175 Celsius. Take the dough, and form little, walnut sized balls of it (it is easy, if you water your hands regularly, so the dough is not gonna stick on your fingers), and put them on a baking tray covered with baking sheet. Leave some space between the balls, as they are going to rise while baking. Once you formed the balls, take a tablespoon, water it, and gently press the top of the balls with it. Now bake them for 10-12 minutes.
Once the kisses are done, prepare the icing. Put the egg whites and the icing sugar in a bowl, and whip them very good, above steam (a pot of boiling water). Wait until the cookies get cold, then fold them into the icing. You can also choose to fold them in melted chocolate instead, and probably you want to hide a little bit of prune jam inside of the kisses as well… possibilities are countless 🙂
Let them dry… If you can… This recipe gives you about 40 honey kisses, we only had about half of them left, by the time they got dry. I heard that they should last and stay nice and soft quite long in a box, but we will never experience it, the kisses are all gone by now… 🙂