Amateur Hour Baking: Plätzchen Bonanza

The pre-Christmas weeks were the usual blur of finishing up classes for the year, meeting with friends at various Christmas markets in the area, and of course, baking. I wound up making no less than five sort of Plätzchen from Classic German Baking over the holiday weeks. As such, this post gets long… click on!

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Sunday Snapshots: Festivity!

Wisconsin, 2016

This is what happens when your friend and her fiancé figure, “hey, everyone will be in town for the holidays anyway, let’s get married right before Christmas!”

Which is exactly what they did. Winter weddings can be so pretty, and done for a dime if a venue is already decorated to the nines like theirs was. Major wedding hack right there. Then just get all the aunties to supply the Christmas cookie bar and it’s off to the races! Win win win. 🙂

Sunday Snapshots: Who Said More Cookies?

Franconia, 2016

Way back in 2011, VillageGal and I began a tradition of baking Christmas cookies together. Back then their daughter was but a tiny mouse, and we were highly unscientific bakers. Six years later, they’ve moved, added another little lady to the mix, and I’ve brought BV to the party. We are still highly unscientific bakers though, so not everything has changed.

Now that the girls are a bit older, they’ve graduated from napping while we decorate to taking full part in the whole cookie-baking process. The cookies pictured about may not fit the traditional Christmas aesthetic (pink butterflies? Sure, why not?) but they are Kinder-approved.

Sunday Snapshots: Lebkuchen Time!

Wisconsin, 2016

Last year when BV and I traveled to the States to spend Christmas with my family, we had a few extra items packed into our suitcases. Namely, gingerbread spices, and Oblaten, the white discs pictured above. Those are the special wafers that traditionally form the bottom of Lebkuchen. I don’t recall ever seeing something like that in the U.S., so we figured it was safer to bring our own.

While this attempt at German-style gingerbread was not particularly successful, I’m hoping that when cookie time comes around this year, we’ll do better! It’s December now, so we probably ought to get going on that one…

Sunday Snapshots: Epic Tree Location

Salzburg, 2014

Salzburg, 2014

Back in the day, my sister, dad, grandpa, and I were often dispatched on cookie baking weekend to go pick out our Christmas tree for the year. Some years we went to a tree farm and cut one down, but more often it was a gas station or home improvement store that was selling trees. Needless to say, this tree lot next to the Salzburg Cathedral crushes even the nicest tree display, strictly based on location.