Christmas is around and even if many don’t celebrate it for religious reasons they do family gatherings and a lot of good, homemade food. Especially the sweet part can be very tricky for many who can’t eat gluten and dairy and try to avoid refined sugar.
This year it will be twice so difficult to stay in shape during the Holiday season: first we can’t be active as much as we would like due to the Corona restriction and in result the good food is calling even louder.
During the years I prepared a lot of Christmas cookies and cakes, especially as a Christmas gift. Some I were missing from my childhood and I wanted to eat them again, others I was just curious how they are. But all of them are super delicious and most of them also easy peasy to prepare.
Here are my suggestions for this year baking, all my own recipes, gluten-free, dairy-free and refined sugar free.
Let’s fill the house with the smell of cinnamon and vanilla! It’s Cookie-time, it’s Christmas-time!
Typical German Cookies:
Cinnamon is the number one winter spice. And Cinnamon Stars are easy to prepare. Make them with a little hole in the middle and hang them in the Christmas tree.
Domino tiles have 3 layers: 1 gingerbread, 1 jelly, 1 marzipan. All covered with a chocolate coat. Super yummy, but a little more work!
Braune Kuchen are a kind of thin ginger snaps. They are super crunchy and I like them with apples slices. Very easy to make.
Gingerbread has its origin in Armenia and came to Europe more than a thousand years ago. For many it is a typical German Christmas treat. Easy to make, but a little bit more work.
The cookies are made with short-crust paste. They are very friable and can be just with vanilla or also chocolate.
Vanillekipferl is maybe the most eaten in Europe. They are as well a short crust paste but with almond meal in addition.
Typical Italian Cookies & Cakes:
Marzipan or almond paste is one of the most typical Christmas or holiday treats in Italy. Most famous is the one from Sicily. Pure art of pastry!
Panettone now everyone knows. You can buy it worldwide. The recipe is the same like for my Easter Dove. It is a little more labour-intensive here with raising the dough twice.
Easy to make and so effective when you present it: the chocolate salami looks like a real one!
My fig nut cake is very similar to the Italian Panforte, chewy and pretty filling. Great for snacks on a hike! Easy to make.
Roccoco are a hard almond cookie. Normally you brake it in two pieces and then let them sit a little in the glace of wine. The cookie get’s softer and easier to eat. Not that easy to make though.
Mustaccioli are a traditional Christmas cookies from Naples. They are a little similar to the Armenian gingerbread. Not that easy peasy to make, they are great in taste!
Not really Christmas related, they are made with almonds which always make me thing about Christmas. The recipe is super simple!
International Cookie & Cakes
Oranges are a winter fruit. That’s why I think orange cookies are perfect in the winter and especially for Christmas when the oranges are maturing! Pretty easy to make.
Though the name of the cake is Swedish, the origin comes from France. Sponge cake with a jam filling rolled into a log and covered by chocolate frosting. Pure indulgence! Easy to make but more laborious.
Hazelnuts are, like all nuts, a winter fruit and great for cookies and cakes. Very easy to make.
These are two recipes: almond brittle and Turkish honey. Both very typical for the winter-time and the holiday season. They are both a little more labour-intensive.
Happy Holiday Baking!