Even the pickiest eater will find it impossible to pass up one of these delicious recipes. The classic sticky bun, traditional holiday cookies, and hearty, aromatic sweet bread are all on the menu.

 

Schnecken

Yield: Makes 12 to 14 schnecken

 

INGREDIENTS

Dough

1 stick unsalted butter, extra bowl & pan

1 cup milk

5 tbsp sugar

1 tbsp active dry yeast

1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 egg plus

1 egg yolk

3 1/2 cups all- purpose flour

 

Sugar-pecan topping

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 cup light corn syrup

3/4 cup chopped pecans

 

Cinnamon-sugar filling

1/2 stick unsalted butter

1 cup granulated sugar

1 tbsp ground cinnamon

 

Preparation

special equipment:

9 × 13-inch Baking Pan

Dough: Melt 1 stick of butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add milk and sugar. Heat to lukewarm (about 110°F), stirring to dissolve sugar. Pour warm milk mixture into a mixing bowl. Stir in yeast. Allow mixture to sit for 10 minutes, then stir in salt. 2. Beat whole egg and egg yolk together and add to yeast mixture. Stir in flour 1 cup at a time until a sticky dough forms. Scrape dough onto a floured surface and knead for 5 minutes, until dough is smooth. Butter a large bowl. Place dough in prepared bowl and cover. Put bowl in a warm place for about 2 hours, until dough has tripled in volume. When ready, punch down dough and turn it out of bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Knead for one minute, then use a lightly floured rolling pin to roll dough into a rectangle about 15 × 12 inches and 1/8 inch thick. Coat a 9 × 13-inch baking pan with butter or treat with non-stick cooking spray. Topping: Melt butter with brown sugar and corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring to combine. Remove from heat and spread mixture in bottom of the pan. Sprinkle with chopped pecans. Filling: Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat and let cool. Brush butter thoroughly over surface of dough. Combine in a mixing bowl sugar and cinnamon, mixing thoroughly. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly over melted butter. Roll the rectangle up, like a jelly roll, along one long edge. Slice log of rolled dough into 1-inch-thick slices and arrange slices, cut sides up, in prepared pan. Cover pan with a piece of plastic wrap treated with non-stick cooking spray to prevent sticking to dough. Allow buns to rise in a warm place for 40 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake schnecken 40 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking time. Check occasionally during the baking time, and if they are browning too quickly, loosely cover them with a sheet of aluminum foil. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes. Serve schnecken warm.

 

Spice cookies

Yield: Makes 16 cookies

 

Ingredients

3/4 cup + 2 tbsp currants

2 tbsp apple juice

scant 2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp cocoa powder

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp each ground cinnamon, allspice, ginger, and nutmeg

1/4 tsp salt

5 oz dark chocolate, coarsely grated

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp grated lemon zest

1/2 tsp grated orange zest

1 egg

1 tbsp diced candied citrus peel

 

Glaze

3 tbsp lemon juice

1 1/3 cups confectioners’ sugar

 

Preparation

Soak currants in juice for 10 minutes. Mix together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, spices, salt, and dark chocolate. Mix well with a whisk. Combine in a mixing bowl butter, sugar, vanilla, and lemon and orange zest. Beat with electric mixer 1 minute. With mixer running, slowly add egg and mix for 1 minute. Add dry ingredients and currants with apple juice. Mix until well blended. Gently knead dough in the bowl until it is uniform. Divide dough into chunks and shape into a ball, suitable size for a cookie. Place balls on baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spaced about 3/4 inch apart. Rest in refrigerator for 1 hour. Preheat oven to 375°F. Bake cookies for 15 minutes. Remove from oven. Let cool. Whisk together glaze ingredients, forming a thin icing. Pour 1 tablespoon of glaze over each cookie. Finish with 3 pieces of candied peel placed at the center.

 

Aroma Bread

Yield:  1 (2-pound) loaf


Ingredients

3 cups whole grain spelt flour

1 cup whole grain rye flour

1/2 cup medium stone-ground whole grain cornmeal

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/4 cup flax or sesame seeds

2 tablespoons aroma spice blend(see below)

1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt

1/4 teaspoon rapid-rise or instant yeast

2 cups cold water

Cornmeal, for sprinkling

 

Aroma Spice Blend

6 tablespoons whole coriander seeds

3 tablespoons fennel

3 tablespoons caraway seeds

 

Preparation

Prepare the dough at least 12 hours ahead. Whisk together all ingredients and the water in a large bowl. Blend well. Dough should be wet and sticky to the touch, like firm oatmeal. Cover loosely and let sit at room temperature to ferment for 12-18 hours. To finish bread, sprinkle linen or cotton towel (not terry cloth) with cornmeal and generously flour work surface. Using a rubber spatula, scrape the stringy, bubbly dough onto work surface. Using floured hands, fold it 4 times, always toward the center — from the right and from the left, as well as from the top and the bottom. Turn loaf upside down so fold is at the bottom, and set it on the kitchen towel. Fold the towel over the loaf to cover and let it rest for 1 hour. Position rack to bottom third of oven and preheat to 475°F. Place a 5-quart cast-iron pot or Dutch oven, with its lid, in the center of the rack. When dough has completed 1 hour est, remove pot from oven. Unwrap the dough, sprinkle with cornmeal, and insert into the pot, seam side up and centered in pot. Cover with lid and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 25 minutes until loaf is nicely browned. Remove loaf from pot and cool for 3