12 days of homemade Christmas presents
Day 9, Medaljer 🇩🇰🎄
You know how food is memory? Well these biscuits are a memory of my maternal grandmother who, to my great joy, would often make them for us when we came to stay.
Medaljer are buttery sweet biscuits sandwiched between thick custard with a lemon icing and a raspberry on top (traditionally glace cherries are used here but I’m not a massive fan). They are my all time favourite treat.
A classic Danish recipe (via Mum’s Danish heritage) these bickies form part of a trio (with vanillekranse and brune kager ) that Gran, would make often but especially at Christmas. Now we kids/cousins have over the years adopted various recipes from Gran’s baking repertoire as ours, I went with medaljer.
A note about giving these as a gift – they are a complete delight and so very delicious but quite fragile and once assembled should be given and consumed within the day. Keeping in the fridge for a couple of hours after assembling does help the custard set between the biscuits too.
You could make them a bit more ‘stable’ by swapping the custard filling with more of a melting moment-style buttercream icing but I think the contrast in textures – the cool vanilla custard, the crumbly buttery sweet biscuits, the tangy icing and raspberry on top is worth any fiddle.
I also think a plate of these for dessert for a nice dinner would be pretty lovely too. Maybe with a bowl of cherries on the side (when it ever becomes warm enough for them to ripen!).
3 egg yolks
2 tsp caster sugar
1 tbsp plain flour
1 cup cream
1 tsp vanilla paste
1 2/3 cup plain flour
1/3 cup icing sugar
250g butter, cubed, cold
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup icing sugar, sifted
Juice of one lemon
Raspberries or glace cherries
Whisk the egg and sugar together until pale and fluffy, add the flour and whisk again. Meanwhile place the cream and vanilla in a small saucepan on medium heat and bring just to boiling point. Whisk a little of the hot cream into the egg mixture. Gradually add the rest, beating well between each addition.
Return the hot cream/egg mixture to the saucepan, reduce heat to low and cook, stirring continuously, until the mixture has thickened to a smooth custard. Watch out that the eggs don’t get too hot and curdle towards the end. Transfer to a jar and cool completely, it will thicken up in the fridge.
For the biscuits; combine all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and blitz until the mixture comes together in pea sized clumps (or rub together by hand) then turn out to the bench, bring together into a dough, cut into two, shape each piece into a disc then wrap and pop in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 180C and line a couple of baking trays with paper. Roll the dough out on a floured surface until about 5mm thick and using a 4cm round cookie cutter (or thereabouts) cut dough into discs, place these on the prepared trays. Re-roll any scraps and place in the fridge to chill before rolling and cutting out again. Continue until all the dough has been used. Bake in batches if you need to, keeping the extras in the fridge while waiting for their turn.
Bake biscuits for about 10-15 minutes or until pale pale golden. Let cool on a wire rack.
For the icing, mix the lemon juice into the sugar a little at a time so you have a lovely thick paste of an icing.
To assemble the biscuits, ice half and place a raspberry on top. Using a tsp, place a little custard on one biscuit, gently sandwich on the top with an iced biscuit. Repeat with remaining bickies then place in the fridge until ready to share.