14 December 2011

Xantner Brocken

Xantner Brocken are a speciality from the German town of Xanten. They're real calorie bombs and honestly the best Christmas biscuits I ever tasted. Gingerbread + chocolate + nougat + brittle = heaven.


Actually, they're not really biscuits. They're more something like pralines or petit fours. Or whatever. 
They're delicious, and that's what counts.

Nougat and cream, how could this possibly get any better?


Well, by smearing it on gingerbread!

Xantner Brocken
(Recipe adapted from Brigitte 12/97 (I think))

50 ml/1.75 oz double cream
150 g nougat
0.5 Tbsp rum

125 g/0.4 cups honey
60 g/0.25 cup sugar
60 g/0.25 cup coconut oil
250 g/2.5 cups flour
0.5 Tbsp cocoa
0.5 tsp cinnamon
1-2 tsp rose water
2 tsp salt of tartar/potassium carbonate
1 egg yolk
300 g/12 cups bitter couverture, grated
Some hazelnut brittle to sprinkle on top

You need to prepare the filling one day in advance: Pour the cream into a pan, heat it up, add the nougat and stir until it has melted. Cover the pan with a lid or plate, then leave over night in a dry, cool place.

In a medium pan, heat up the honey, sugar and coconut oil, and stir until combined. Remove from heat and let cool. Add flour, cinnamon, cocoa and the egg yolk, and combine. Dissolve the potassium in 1-2 tsp of rose water, then add that to the dough, too. Knead into a smooth dough, wrap it in cling film and refridgerate for 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 200° C/390° F. Remove the dough from the fridge and roll it out until it's about 3 mm/0.1 inch thick. Transfer it to a baking tray, put it in the oven and bake for 7 minutes. Then immediately cut it into squares (2.5 cm/1 inch wide and long).

Now take out the nougat cream you made the night before, add the rum, and beat the mixture with an electric mixer until soft and creamy.

Spread nougat cream on every other gingerbread square, then put another square on top.

In a small pot, melt the chocolate. Coat all the gingerbread parcels in chocolate (it works best if you put them on a fork and pour over the chocolate with a spoon), then sprinkle some hazelnut brittle on top and let the chocolate harden.

And now (I know, it's very hard): Put them away. Let them rest for a couple of days. Trust me. The longer they rest the better they get.

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