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Jan Hagel Cookies (Bumpy Cookies) – a Dutch treat!

When I was a kid (way too many years ago) my grandma made Christmas cookies from her German and my grandpa’s Dutch family recipes.  Some of our favorites were fruit cake (made with gum drops instead of candied fruit) stored in a rum-soaked rag, Pfeffernusse Cookies, and Jan Hagel, which we called ‘Bumpy Cookies”.

I’ve seen recipes for other people’s Jan Hagel, and I think that my Grandma may have adjusted it somewhat – I think the recipe we use is more a combination of both Pfeffernusse cookies and Jan Hagel together.  Whatever, they are yummy, and they scream “Christmas is Here” in our house!

Today I had help with the baking.  Our youngest grandson (almost 4) is spending the day with us, and he loves to help bake.  So, we got started (after a quick trip to the store to get ingredients I thought I had but didn’t).

As you can see, we started with a bit of a mishap when I tried to pour the flour too quickly.  Don’t you just hate it when that happens????

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Here’s the recipe that we use (passed down from my grandma):

  •    4 cups flour
  •    2-2/3 cups brown sugar
  •    2 eggs
  •    1/2 cup butter/margarine (softened)
  •    4 tsp Baking Powder
  •    2 tsp Cinnamon
  •    1 tsp Nutmeg
  •    1/2 tsp Cloves
  •    1/2 tsp Ginger
  •    2 tsp Almond Extract

Mix all ingredients together until you are able to form small balls with the dough.  If it is too dry add some liquid such as orange or apple juice.  If too wet, add some more flour.  Roll into balls the size of filberts (I made mine a lot larger though) and place on Pam-sprayed pan close together.

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes (mine took 25 because the balls were the size of walnuts)

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Although not necessary, after the cookies cooled I added a powdered sugar glaze over the top.

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 4 tbsp milk
  • 1/2 tsp Almond Extract

Mix the powdered sugar, milk and Vanilla together.  If too dry add milk as needed (be careful because it will only need a few drops at a time)

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Serve with a glass of cold milk. They also taste great with a cup of coffee in the morning.

They taste just like I remember them – the memories came flooding back!  Now if I could remember how my grandma and mom managed to keep Christmas cookies safe from us – they don’t seem to last like they used to!

What special Christmas cookies do you remember?  I’d love to hear about them and the memories they evoke!

Merry Christmas to you and all your family!   I hope that you are blessed with happiness and health in the new year!

Linda

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Pinterest Angel Food – Pineapple Dessert

While perusing Pinterest recently I stumbled upon a recipe that had been posted from Dawn’s Quilt Corner.  I read her post and she ASSURED me (well, everyone!) that this two-ingredient recipe was super simple and yummy too!  Two ingredients????  Yup!

I decided to give it a try last week.  We had company staying, and we wanted something sweet but not too heavy.  Sounded like the perfect opportunity to try out the Angel Food – Pineapple Dessert!

I followed the directions that Dawn posted, pretty much to the letter.

–   I used a 9 x 13 glass baking pan (I didn’t spray it)

–   I dumped one (1) box of Angel Food cake mix (no extra ingredients) into the pan (I had Duncan Hines mix on hand)

–   and I then dumped one (1) 20 oz can of crushed pineapple (including the juice) over the cake mix (I used HEB Hill Country brand).I gently mixed the angel food cake mix and the crushed pineapple together.  Dawn was careful to mention that she stirred by hand – no mixer needed – and I followed her suggestion.  It was interesting watching the interaction of the pineapple juice with the angel food cake – it didn’t exactly bubble, but it did froth up while I stirred.  I think if a mixer is used that frothiness wouldn’t occur, and the cake may not raise as much.

When you make this dessert, make sure that you mix all the dry ingredients into the the pineapple juice.  It won’t seem possible when you start, but it does mix into a cake-like consistency.

Pop it into the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, and Ta Da!!!! – you’ve got dessert.

 

After we let it cool a bit, we served it up to the company – we used sugar free Cool Whip as our topping, but it would be delicious with vanilla ice cream as well.  The cake was very light because of the Angel Food mix, but moist from the pineapple.  We all really liked the taste and texture of the pineapple bits in the cake.

Everyone LOVED it – in fact, they ate it for breakfast the next day as well!!!

When we make this again, we might change it up a little just to see how it works – someone suggested a powdered sugar glaze over the top which sounds really good. Someone else suggested putting pineapple SLICES at the bottom of the pan before baking.  That means you would have to mix in a separate bowl, and carefully pour over the slices.   A variation of a ‘Pineapple – Upside Down’ cake!

Have you tried this Pinterest find yet???  If you do, I’d love to hear how you like it, and if you made any variations to the original recipe!  Your comments and feedback are much appreciated!

 

Red, White & Blue Cake Pops – I made them!!!

A week or so ago I wrote about 4th of July cake pops that I wanted to make, using my new cake-pop maker!  The Independence Day treat was inspired by a Pinterest post from Party City.  The pops were so festive looking and I was hoping to recreate the tasty-liciousness of it all!

Preparing to Bake!

I pulled my supplies together and got started mixing the cake batter while the cake-pop machine warmed up.  It works much like a waffler maker!

Unfortunately my cake pops didn’t turn out quite as pretty, and not nearly as round.  More like little space ships 🙂

Well, with my husband’s help, we got started placing the cake-pop sticks in the cake pops (using some of my melted almond bark).  That went pretty well, but since the pops were such odd shapes they really didn’t stand too well.  We placed them in the freezer so that they would be easier to dip.

   Unfortunately the frosting process wasn’t much easier.  We melted the almond bark, and added a few drops of vegetable oil to thin it out some, which was supposed to make it easier to dip.  It was still pretty thick on the pops, and dried so quickly that they didn’t dry round.

So, not as pretty as the original recipe (as you can see here) – and unfortuntely not enough pops to make a whole flag!

But, all that aside, everyone loved them!!!  And really, that’s all I cared about.  It would have been nice to make the beautiful cake pops that I saw from Party City, and maybe with more practice I’ll be able too, but for now I’ll settle for “These taste really good, Mom!”, and “Can I have another one Nana?”.  Music to my ears!