Christmas 2007, Cuenca, Ecuador. After a Christmas on the boat in Mexico in 2006, it feels so good staying in our own appartment here in Cuenca during this special period of the year. This time I really want traditional Christmas bakery and plates with Christmas goodies on our table, I just have to solve one tiny thing:
How am I going to bake WITHOUT an oven?
Exactly, without an oven. I obviously won’t get far with the traditional Christmas recipes I know by heart. I check Internet resources for that matter, and strike it rich by finding millions of recipes. I select 12 suitable ones made in pan or pot, and following roam around Cuenca’s supermarkets to figure the available ingredients.
Finally, I make my choice. I will do Rice Balls, a Muesli-chocolate Cake, Orangenkonfekt (sweet orange peel bites), and Berliner Pfannkuchen (jelly filled donuts). I rarely follow recipes, thus just have a quick look at the basic ingredients, check what I have, get some other, imaginably tasty ingredients to add on top, and then mix everything together by feeling. Deeply creative, indeed. Baking without oven turns into real fun.
While for the balls and cake I mix the ingredients freely and creatively together, for the Berliner Pfannkuchen and Orangekonfekt I follow the recipe given, because their preparation is completely foreign territory to me. Also, the Berliner Krapfen might otherwise have been far from the well-known taste I am used to. The Orangenkonfekt in exchange was so simple, it was delightful to see how easy “baking” can be.
The result is amazing! I had so much fun, I am sure the sweet Christmas treats got showered additionally with lots of joy and love. Once I bite into them, I find them very delicious. My tongue and tummy bow deeply in front of me, missing my feet for a kiss by millimeters.
You wanna have some of these yummy treats, too? Then listen 😀
For the Muesli-chocolate Cake and the Rice Balls I used a basic recipe for muesli bars made in a pan (see google). With the Rice Balls I simply replaced the oats with boiled rice. In future, though, I would rather use rice puffs. I also replaced at least half (if not all) the sugar with honey in the recipes. The Berliner Krapfen recipe can be found on the Internet, and the Orangenkonfekt secret you get to know now 😉
Take 150 g Almond Slices, 6 Orange Peels (organic), 200 ml Honey. Peel the oranges’ outer skin with a potato peeler and cut into finest slices. Blanch the peels shortly in hot water. Heat the honey in a pot, then stir in orange peels and blanched almond slices. Finally, separate table spoon big heaps and place them on a separate tray. When dry add hot chocolate on top. After cooling keep them in the fridge for fresh- and crunchyness 🙂
ENJOY and MERRY CHRISTMAS!