Sunday, January 27, 2013

January Daring Bakers' Challenge: Gevulde Speculaas

Guevlde Speculaas almond paste between spiced dough

Francijn of Koken in de Brouwerij was our January 2013 Daring Bakers’ Hostess and she challenged us to make the traditional Dutch pastry, Gevulde Speculaas from scratch! That includes making our own spice mix, almond paste and dough! Delicious!

This was a fun and easy challenge. I had never made almond paste from scratch, but I would again. Mine did not taste too almond-y, but it was probably the quality of my almonds.

nekkid almonds and their skins

The paste was jut almonds, sugar, an egg and lemon zest in the food processor. Really simple, and it did not take too long to make.

homemade almond paste
The dough was also easy to make. The first step was to mix the speculaas spices. According to Francijn, "Speculaaskruiden contain at least cinnamon, cloves, mace and ginger, and these spices to taste: pepper, cardamom, coriander, anise seeds and nutmeg." Unfortunately, I did not have mace. The mix of spices I used is in the picture below.

speculaas spices
The dough consists of flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, spices and butter that you mix together by hand in a bowl, then roll in a ball. The dough and almond paste should be refrigerated from a few hours or a few days. I left mine in the fridge for a day to help the flavors meld.

The dough then gets divided in half and  rolled out. I had some issues with that and ended up just pressing the dough into the bottom of my pan, then pressing in the almond paste and then the rest of the dough - it totally crumbled. The top is supposed to be smooth but oh well! you also brush on egg in between each layer and on the top.

Crumbly speculaas
Add some almonds on top, bake and EAT!!! The speculaas was crumbly and light. Jeff said the psice tasted like gingerbread, but to me it was cinnamon with a hint of other spices. so good. It was the best on the day one, but today is day 3, and the spices have really come together. It is much more flavorful today.

Gevulde speculaas before and after

This was a great challenge! Thanks Francijn!

1 comment:

  1. Your speculaas looks great, next time I'll try to make mine last 3 days to check if the taste gets better ;)