Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Yummy in My Tummy

As the clock creeps closer to noon, my thoughts naturally turn to food. Czech food, in particular. In researching Czech culture, I found out that the Czech people love sweets. They love fruit dumplings, made with plums and cheese and bread crumbs. They love koláče, small cakes filled with sweetened cheese or fruit preserves. There’s bábovka, a semisweet cake, and apple strudel.

I have found my people.

And I have found a recipe for Vanilla Crescents, a yummy Christmas traditional treat that some say was a favorite of former president Vaclav Havel.

Vanilla Crescents

The recipe makes about 36 cookies.

Ingredients

· 1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
· ½ cup sugar
· 2 cups all-purpose white flour, sifted
· 1 1/14 cup ground almonds
· 1 tsp vanilla extract
· Powdered sugar
  1. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
  2. Blend in the flour ½ cup at a time, then add the almonds and vanilla extract.
  3. Beat until the mixture becomes slightly stiff.
  4. Shape the dough into a ball, wrap in wax paper, and refrigerate for about an hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil two cookie sheets or use nonstick cookie sheets.
  6. Tear off tablespoon-sized chunks of the dough and place them on a floured working surface. Roll each one into a strip about 2 inches long and shape them into crescents.
  7. Place the crescents about ½ inch apart on baking sheet.
  8. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
  9. Let cool for five minutes, then dust with powdered sugar.
I may have to make these tonight…in the meantime, I wonder where you can get some good koláče around here…

-Heather Tinley, Opera Colorado Marketing Coordinator

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