This Dutch pastry is also called Dutch Letters. I usually make it around Christmas, but it can be made year-round.
Servings: 40Prep Time: 1 hour? Cook Time: 20-25 minutes
1 lb almond paste, grated
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups flour
¾ lb butter
¼ lb Crisco
1 cup water
¼ cup milk
1. Grate the almond paste. Mix almond paste, sugar, eggs and vanilla together. Let sit for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, cut butter and Crisco into the flour. (You can use all butter, but I find the Crisco gives it the flakiness that the pastry needs.) Cut in the water, a few tablespoons at a time, as for pie crust. You can use the dough hooks on your mixer – much easier.
3. When the dough is mixed together, divide into thirds. Roll each dough portion out into a rectangle, approximately 8×10. Cut in half lengthwise.
4. Spoon almond paste filling into the middle of each rectangle along the entire length. Filling should be no wider than an inch. Fold over the short ends and then the long sides, overlapping a bit. Moisten one side with milk to seal, then press closed.
5. Place rolls seam side down on a cookie sheet. Brush the tops with milk. Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes. Prick holes on top of each roll and return to the oven. Bake for 10-15 minutes at 375 degrees or until lightly browned.
6. You can leave them in the logs if you want. To serve, cut them into one-inch pieces.
Some recipes mention sprinkling cinnamon sugar on top prior to baking or spreading a powdered sugar icing after baking. I’ve made this using spelt flour and raw sugar, using the same quantities. With spelt being spelt, it doesn’t hold together very well, but it sure tasted good.
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