In the spirit of Christmas
Knowledge and passing it on is what keeps civilizations going. Traditions, recipes, ways of doing things, stories and wisdom is passed from one generation to the next. I have a feeling that grandmothers have passed along the majority of the knowledge until there was printing and books. Now the internet is this wonderful source of knowledge that one couldn't even have dreamt about before.
I am very grateful to the many women (and few men) who make soap and blog about it. The knowledge that they share so generously has become a constant source of delight for me. I eagerly wait for every new post and photo and I try to find new blogs every now and then. And new countries. I am also grateful for Google translate. I know that the translation isn't perfect, in fact at times it makes foreigners speak the weirdest English, but how else would I have an inkling what bloggers in countries like Russia, Japan, Chile, Turkey and Spain are talking about. As it is I have learned so much from so many people that I have never met, nor am I ever likely to. I love that and I am grateful to every one of them.
I have a favorite recipe that I have never given to anyone (well, no one has ever asked so it's not like I said no, even if I would have wanted to). It is my German grandmother's Christmas cookies. My mother has made them every Christmas for as long as I remember and so have I ever since I had a home myself. I usually make a double recipe because they are quick to go. In the spirit of Christmas I would like to share it.
150 g. /5.3 oz. Hazelnuts (or Almonds if you prefer)
125 g. /4.4 oz. Dark chocolate
175 g. /6.0 oz. Icing sugar
2 egg whites
Grind the nuts and the chocolate in an almond grinder. Blend the dry ingredients, siv the sugar if it is lumpy. Whisk the egg whites stiff. Fold the dry ingredients into the egg whites. Don't stir. It will look like it is impossible to do but it will get there. Make little tops with a teaspoon onto a baking paper and bake for 7-10 minutes at 175 degrees C. Let cool on the baking paper. Store in a cake tin.
The cookies sometimes keep their shape, but sometimes they go flat. Either way they taste wonderful. Crunchy on the outside and slightly chewy on the inside and they are of course absolutely essential for reading comprehension during the holidays.