14 December 2010

14th December 2010

All the posts this week are guest-contributed by Twitter friends. Today, @maxnugget shares a Belgian family tradition:

I'm making speculoos in celebration of Sinterklaas.
(I'm 6 days late though)

from Wikipedia:

Speculoos is a type of shortcrust biscuit, traditionally baked in Belgium for consumption on St Nicholas' Eve (December 6). They are thin, very crunchy, slightly browned and, most significantly, have some image or figure (often from the traditional stories about St. Nicholas) stamped on the front side before baking; the back is flat. They are baked with light brown sugar and baking powder, but Belgians make them with little or no spice.
There are several interpretations for the origins of the name Speculaas. It may derive from Latin speculum, which means mirror, and refer to the fact that the images are cut as a mirrored bas-relief into a wooden stamp which is then used to decorate the Speculaas. Another explanation of the name refers to the Latin word speculator which, among other meanings, could also refer to a bishop or St Nicholas' epithet "he who sees everything".

1 comment:

maxnugget said...

Thanks Adam! :) They were great fun to make, although everything now seems to be welded to the counter top with icing sugar.

I should add that whilst remaining true to my Belgian roots, I also retained a bit of northern-ness by wearing my Eric Morecambe pinny while making them. :)