25 March 2012

Nutty triangles - 'Nussecken'

Inspired by my crumbly pastries last week, I continued with the Süsse Stückle theme this weekend. The first recipe I baked was these nutty triangles, or Nussecken. Nussecken have a bit of a reputation for being old fashioned and a lot of people associate them with the 1970s. I am not sure why and they are certainly still very popular today. Actually, the first time I had these very delicious cakes was when my aunt Klara baked them for us sometime at the beginning of the 1990s. I liked them a lot and I have baked them many times since. So here it is: my aunt’s Nussecken recipe – thank you, Klara! These triangles are great, because they not only taste really good, but they also keep fresh for quite a while in a tin. They consist of a buttery hazelnut topping baked on top of buttery pastry and finished off with some dark chocolate. 

I baked this in a rectangular tin of 20 x 30 cm (which cut into 18 triangles) and there was enough left over to bake an additional 20 cm round tin of the stuff.

For the pastry base:

300 g flour
1 tsp baking powder
130 g butter
130 g sugar
2 eggs

For the hazelnut topping:

200 g butter
150 g sugar
Some vanilla seeds or vanilla extract
400 g ground hazelnuts (roasted hazelnuts are even better)
4 tbsp water

A few tbsp apricot jam
200 g dark chocolate

Make the pastry, roll out until about ½ cm thick and press this into a well-greased tin. Spread the apricot jam on top of the pastry and refrigerate.

Melt the butter, mix in the sugar and vanilla and stir until the sugar has resolved. Add the hazelnuts and water. Combine well and leave to cool. Spread the hazelnut topping on the pastry and smooth the surface. Bake at 175 degrees for about 25 minutes (or until the edges start turning brown). Leave to cool in the tin, then carefully cut into triangles with a sharp knife. 

Melt the chocolate and use this to decorate two corners of the triangles. Leave the chocolate to set, then store in a tin.

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