Now that my Christmas Baking muscles are getting warmed up… Another cookie… the Czech’s answer to Fruitcake! The ‘dreaded’ candied fruit in the best cookie you’ll ever have this season. My mother started making these quite some years ago and they are by far my favourite.
I am not and have never been a fan of the traditional fruit cake. I could never understand how something that seemed to be the consistency of a brick could be tasty… and I’ve also been privy to the joke of re-gifting the cake. This isn’t to say that it isn’t good, I know some people who love it… I am just not one of those people.
You would think then that I wouldn’t be a fan of candied fruit and things that harbor candied fruit in them. Generally you’d be right… however these candied fruit cookies are my most favorite cookie this time of year… and my kids love them too. Known in the Czech Republic as “Markokanky” these Christmas fruit cookies are sweet, chewy, chocolaty and crunchy… and so absolutely delicious.
Put these out on the table when guests come over and I dare you to have any left over for dessert! I doubled this recipe and was able to make about 80 cookies. Trust me… that’s not a lot this time of year. I also spooned them out with a soupspoon and tried to keep them small because they spread out like crazy. I got about 9 to a pan. These freeze incredibly well, just in case you want to hide them for guests… hide them… take them out the day of and voila the best Christmasy treat… ;)
- 1/4 litre whipping cream
- 160 gr candied fruit
- 160 gr slivered almonds
- 160 gr sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 20g flour
Chocolate for brushing the back of the cookies
- 8 Baker’s chocolate squares
I used half semi-sweet and half unsweetened since the cookies are quite sweet already.
Cook the cream, sugar, vanilla and flour over a low heat stirring frequently, until you have porridge like consistency. Let the cream mixture cool slightly. Once it is warm, mix in the nuts and candied fruit. You can always use any combination of chopped dried fruit in place of candied fruit and any mixture of chopped nuts. Place small piles of the mixture on a pan covered in parchment; make sure to give them LOTS of room to expand. They will bake down into flat pancakes. Bake them at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes. Watch them because you want the edges a dark golden brown and they will burn quickly. Let them cool for a few minutes then lift the whole parchment and place them on a cool surface to cool completely.
Do not try to lift them until they have cooled. They will be quite gooey and will bend easily. If you notice that they fall apart when you try to pick them up then you need to bake them a minute or two longer. Once the cookies have cooled place some bakers chocolate in a double boiler to melt. Then brush the underside of the cookies with chocolate. I have a small paint brush that I use specifically for baking.
You can also drizzle the top of these cookies with dark or white or any combination of chocolate.
If you are going to hide these, make sure you store them in a cool place… they are so gooey that they need to be cool so as not to stick together. My kids and I can tell you… they are even good frozen!!!