24 January 2013

Den Store Bagedyst

A few days back, I stumbled across the Danish version of The Great British Bake Off and thanks to the generosity of the Danish Radio, the episodes are still available in their entirety and I've been working my way through them. Denmark has one massive baking tradition to dip in, so watching the shows was very inspirational and I've saved most of the recipes, even though I probably won't get round to actually trying them out.


But I decided to start with what was called Nougatsnitter from week 3, when they made cookies, macaroons and small strawberry tarts. In the competition, they asked for 15 cookies, from the amounts below I got 58 pieces.

Vanilla dough
200 g plain flour
100 g caster sugar
0.25 tsp baker's ammonia
140 g unsalted butter at room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
0.5 egg

Cocoa dough
190 g plain flour
20 g cocoa powder
100 g caster sugar
0.25 tsp baker's ammonia
30 g finely chopped roasted hazelnuts
140 g unsalted butter at room temperature
0.5 egg
1 tsp water (if needed)

Nougat cream
250 g Danish soft nougat
zest from half an orange
zest from half a lemon

whole blanched hazelnuts, one per biscuit
melted white chocolate to glue them on


  1. For each of the two doughs, first mix together the dry ingredients.
  2. Then work in the butter to form fine crumbs.
  3. Finally add the liquid ingredients and stir in to form the doughs, but careful not to over-work. It may be better to use a food processor for this.
  4. Roll out each dough to long sticks of about 1.5 cm diameter. Then put the sticks together - one vanilla and one cocoa and gently press together.
  5. Wrap the pairs in cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  6. In the mean time, grate the nougat coarsely, add the zests and stir in well into a cream, then cover with cling film and set aside.
  7. Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees C and line some baking sheets with baking paper.
  8. Take out the "double-sticks" from the fridge and put together so quadruples form and the vanilla and cocoa doughs alternate.
  9. Now cut out biscuits, about 5 mm thick and place on the baking sheets, making sure they have some 3 cm space between them.
  10. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes, keeping an eye on them, so the vanilla parts don't go brown.
  11. After baking, transfer the biscuits to a cooling rack and allow to cool down completely.
  12. Pair up the biscuits, then place the nougat cream in a piping bag with a smallish nozzle.
  13. Pipe a little cream in the middle of one biscuit and carefully press a second biscuit on top of the cream.
  14. Melt the white chocolate, dip the bottom of the whole hazelnuts and stick one in the middle of each top biscuit.

I've made some alterations to the original recipe. I did try to stick to the original when I made the biscuits today, but they weren't quite right for my and Lundulph's tastes.

The bake-off called for 15 biscuits, the above recipe resulted in 58. I increased the nougat cream, as the original was only enough for 51 of the biscuits.

And when I make these again, I need to get two rectangular wooden pieces of 1.5 cm thickness to use as guide when I make the initial dough sticks. It would work better if placing dough between the sticks and use a rolling pin with the guides. That would give me rectangular sticks and the final baked shape should be better and have a clearer chequered effect.

I was concerned about getting a cream out of the nougat, which is generally solid, but once I'd grated it and stirred in the zest, it turned out quite nice. But care must be taken with the zest, it can very easily over-power the hazelnut flavour and vanilla.

Lundulph's comment was that he would prefer the biscuits chewier, however these are not that type of biscuit. Also he wasn't too keen on the whole hazelnut on top, he didn't feel it added anything other than make it look pretty.

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