Speculoos biscuits are very popular France – you often get them wrapped individually with your coffee in cafés and they’re in every supermarket.
Speculoos is a type of biscuit of Dutch origin and although originally made to be eaten at the feast of St Nicholas in the Netherlands (December 5th) they’re now eaten all year round. Apparently in the US, New Zealand and Australia, speculoos are often sold as Dutch Windmill cookies.
The OH is very partial to a Speculoos (or several) and when I went to the garden centre last week I bought a wooden stamp of St Nicholas and a packet of Speculoos mix which you just add an egg and some butter to. Try as I might – I haven’t been able to find a recipe to make these biscuits from scratch. I know what’s in them and I must say, when they started to cook in the oven the whole house was filled with the aroma of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves and when you eat them you can definitely taste the ginger. There’s also cardamom and white pepper, flour and fine brown sugar.
So, I mixed my shop bought powders with the egg and the butter, made it into dough and popped it in the fridge for 15 minutes to chill. Then I pressed a lump into my wooden bishop mold (actually the OH did – those are his big hairy hands in the picture- not mine!) and rolled and then cut the excess off. I’d put a load of flour in the mold to stop it sticking. Well to tell the truth – I found that out the hard way after I’d finished picking out all the bits that stuck first time round!
Baked them and 25 minutes later – delicious home made Speculoos – just like the real thing!A bientôt Janine