April 26, 2006

Pryaniki's for Priyanka (Pinky)

Just a couple of days ago; while in search of a Russian Pelmeni recipe, something else caught my attention. Along the long lists of Russian words I spotted = Pryaniki. The word reminded me of my housemate; Pinky , who's name is Priyanka. The ingredients and method seemed similar to those of spice cookies. I decided to jot down the recipe to try it out! I did that this morning.
They turned out YUM! Although the egg white glaze gave it a little 'funky' smell (I didn't really like it). I got my Russian buddy to come over to be my taste tester (as I have NO idea what Pryaniki's are supposed to look or taste like). His verdict was: yea...that's pretty close, but priyaniki's are supposed to be darker in colour and they have a thicker coating of white sugar glaze on top. ( I like mine with less glaze coating :P I don't really like how it smells!). I'm guessing the darker colour comes from the cocoa powder which my recipe did not include; I searched for some other Pryaniki recipes, and they had that included.
I'll probably make these again! This time, without the glaze and a prettier shape and design.

Here is my recipe with a few alterations:
1 3/4 cups self raising flour
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 baking powder
1 egg + 1/2 cup brown sugar beaten until thick and tripled in volume.
2 tbsp milk

Gradually fold in sifted flour and other spice ingredients into beaten fluffy mixture. Add milk. You should get a nice workable cookie dough. Shape and decorate as you desire. Place on greased baking sheet and bake in moderate oven (190 degrees) for approximately 15 minutes, till they brown on the top.
: Beat 1 egg white until stiff. Boil 100ml water with 125 g sugar and pour syrup into egg white mixture. Beat until combined. Dip freshly baked pryaniki into glaze and leave on wire rack/baking sheet to cool.

I found a few very interesting facts about Pryaniki from www.russianfoods.com for those who would like to know more.
  • Pryaniki are ones of the most interesting makes of Russian cuisine. The name of Pryaniki comes from the spicy taste and smell which are achieved by special various additions. They could have different sizes, sometimes they made to order Pryanik up to several poods ( pood is old Russian measure, 16,38 kg (36 lb) and decorations. There were two kinds of Pryaniki - painted and printed. Painted Pryaniki are decorated with nuts, berries and candied peel. Real dynasties were involved in making forms for Pryaniki. Sometimes Pryaniki were made from two layers with fruit jelly or jam between. Expensive Pryaniki were always covered with icing. Pryaniki are one of the favourite food. They were always offered to guests, relatives. But there were "leavingaway" Pryaniki that were given to late guests and, having received such Pryanik, they had to leave the house immediately. They baked Pryaniki to any occasion and the quality and the decoration were perfect.
The English on the translation is a little strange, but I suppose we all get what it's trying to say ;)

1 comment:

J Luria said...

can you please send me two dozen of those.