Saturday, November 11, 2006

Thought For The Day...


Spekulatius - biscuits with drawings on. They taste good, too.


If you live near a branch of the German supermarket chain Lidl, keep an eye out for these - Spekulatius, spiced ginger biscuits. I happened on them a few years ago when I was living in Vienna. They're absolutely divine, and our branch of Lidl, at least, has them on offer (80p or so for a 600g bag). They are a purely Christmas thing, though, so be sure to get them in the next few weeks. Your tummy will love you forever.*

*I was going to say, "they're better than sex," but actually, you'd have to be pretty bad at sex for that to be true.

5 comments:

I. N. J. Culbard said...

my gawd, these are delicious. Lidl stock them! That's great, there's a Lidl on the Mansfield road near us, shall have to stop there and get some. Great half melted in coffee, but that's just me.

D'Israeli said...

Ahh, yes, Spekulatius and coffee, truly a wonderful thing. I also recommend a square of Green & Black's 70% Cocoa/Maya Gold popped in the mouth and then left to dissolve in a generous sip of coffee... (for the weight-conscious among you, 3 squares of any 100g Green & Black's bar contain fewer calories than one digestive biscuit).

Mikal said...

I think you will find those are Dutch biscuits. My mother in law has a recipe for making them but they aren't exactly like the packaged thing. I will see if I can get you a copy. Also my folks have an antique wooden Spekulatius mould hanging up in the kitchen.

Dutch confection is something else!

Other delights include the weird aniseed based breakfast toast toppings they sell called Muisjes. Usually configured into tiny pink and white globules but can be bought in powdered form and traditionally served at christenings on cracker bread.

The same manufacturer De Ruyter also do a similar thing with what the English call hundreds and thousands but are called hagelslag. And they also extend the toast topping range to shavings of white and brown chocolate.

But my favourite of all Dutch confections is the salty liquorice. I will eat it by the bucket but get a limey to sample one and they will immediately spit it out. They are kind of like a fishermans friend without the menthol. They do make honeyed liquorice as well but I'm not as keen on that.

There are also poffertjes which are basically tiny pancakes about a quarter of the size of your smallest English variety. Lovely with loads of butter and icing sugar.

Apple flappe (my spelling) are nice as well being slices of apple deep fried in batter (or something similar). Served at New Years eve.

Xmas celebrations are great in Holland with them being more firmly rooted in their own culture and not from some Norman Rockwell derived image of Santa. Although the black pete character that accompanies St Nicholas everywhere is in these enlightened times rather an odd sight. Although since I last saw him around 1979 I think they now have yellow, purple and green petes as well to negate the black and white minstrelness of it. If you want to see how little britain like the character looks google-image 'zwarte pete'.

Nel said...

The brand I like the most is the Spekulatius from Lebkuchen-Schmidt in Nurnberg. We live in Florida and received a package of thes luscious cookies as a gift last week. I bought some Bahlsen Spekulatius but those are denser, more like what we call a graham cracker, maybe known in UK as a disgestive biscuit? The Lebkuchen-Schmidt is more buttery and flaky! Ah, heavenly! I'm hooked and guarding the last half-dozen of them!

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