The rule for our cookie exchange gathering is to bring a gift to share and about two or so dozen cookies. The hostess places all our cookies on her dining room table (it is quite the sight) and then we’re invited to pick as many cookies to take home as the number of cookies we contributed.
I’m always impressed when I see the abundance and realize the time, love and history that went into each cookie batch; every woman has a story to share about her specific cookies, often rooted in family and traditions. I too bring a variety of cookies from my childhood Christmases in Norway: Fattigmann (poor man), Berliner Krans (Berlin wreath) and Krum Kake.
My personal favorite is the Berliner Krans – each bite is creamy and buttery and light and sweet (but not too sweet), and if made right, each succulent bite melts in your mouth. But it lacks both frosting and food coloring so my cookie friends have a tendency to overlook this exceptional little treat, and since I don’t want to sound needy by urging them to take a chance on this somewhat bland-looking delight, I end up leaving every cookie exchange with festive and colorful creations lovingly baked by my neighbors – and one dozen Berliner Krans!
Berliner Krans Recipe:
- 2 hardboiled egg yolks
- 2 raw egg yolks
- 8 tablespoons sugar
- 2 cups white flour
- 2 sticks butter – melted
- 2 egg whites
- Pearl sugar
- Take the hardboiled egg yolks and crush well with a fork, mix with raw egg yolk. Whip the mixture with sugar and flour and add melted butter. Mix well for a manageable dough. Put in refrigerator to chill.
- Roll out dough in a rope as thick as your little finger and cut each rope into approximately 5.5 – 6 inches long. Grease a cookie sheet and make each rope into a circle but with the two edges overlapping (will look like a wreath). Dip each wreath in egg white and then in pearl sugar.
- Bake in 375 F oven until light yellow color – about 8 minutes.