Ok… the picture is not brilliant, but I promise you they tasted lovely!
“What are they?” I can hear you ask. So here’s the answer, but it has to start with a little story…
December 6th is Saint-Nicholas day. Saint-Nicholas was a bishop, who lived in the 4th century AD. Apparently he was rich and kind, and tried to help the poor and needy. Now in many European countries, Saint-Nicholas is a day that is celebrated with various customs. I know from my Dutch cousins, that in The Netherlands, there are more gifts exchanged on December 6th than on Christmas day! Here in Switzerland, the celebrations vary depending on whether you live in a catholic or a protestant canton. I believe that many children leave their stockings at the bottom of their bed, or their boots in front of their doors, and if they’ve been good, Saint-Nicholas comes in the night and fills them up with goodies. In the area where we live, Saint-Nicholas isn’t celebrated much, but the shops – making the most, as usual, of yet another marketing opportunity – sell little Saint-Nicholas men made out of pastry. When I was a child – a very long time ago! – you could only find these lovely pastries on December 6th, and my mother would always buy us one. It was a really special treat! Now of course, shops sell them a few weeks before and about a week after the real day, so it’s kind of lost its “special” feeling. But with my own children, I’ve always liked to keep this tradition of making Saint-Nicholas pastry men on December 6th…
So, your question was: “What are they?”
Well, now you know! They are Saint-Nicholas pastry men, all gluten free, of course!
Last Wednesday, I got up early and prepared the dough so it had a nice long time to rise. Then in the morning, while the girls were busy writing their stories, Benjamin and I made our little men and baked them in the oven. We had our lovely friends here with us – Martina and her children – so her little girl helped us out too.
They were intended for our afternoon snack… but I’ll tell you a secret… they were so nice, most of us couldn’t resist and just ate them after lunch 😉
So… can’t wait to try and make some? Here is the recipe for you – just click on the link!