It is thought that the Dutch name Speculaas comes from the latin 'speculum' that means mirror.
Traditionally speculaas biscuits are the mirror image of the carved wooden moulds they are baked in.
Windmill shaped speculaas biscuits are known throughout the whole world, as are male or female speculaas figurines.
These days speculaas biscuits can take any shape or form. But you can do so much more with speculaas spice than just making biscuits.
Find out more about the delicious recipes you can make using vandotsch speculaas spice mix.
I never saw that one coming . . . . a speculaas tuiles recipe from 'part-time' emigre Sarah James, author of blog Tales from the Kitchenshed
Sarah is an experienced home cook, now sharing her time between England and France after spending seven exciting and challenging years living in a caravan, a collection of sheds and a "magic bus" in a tiny hamlet in Southern Brittany.
Growing and cooking food for family and large groups of visitors in France, Sarah remains the "hands on" provider she was in her native England. Whilst abroad, Sarah's English cooking has proved popular with French and English alike, selling home-made produce at food markets and providing cakes to a local French owned restaurant.
So, you may be asking yourself, what's a 'tuile'?
Well, I remember them fondly, in Amsterdam, when in my somewhat younger years, my sister and I 'gorged' on them regularly as they were sort of a favourite of the family. But that aside, infusing a tuile with vandotsch speculaas spice mix is an absolute first, at least for me.
But, I am afraid, you are still not much the wiser, so herego . . .
Tuiles are thin cookies named for and curved like the
tuiles, or tiles, that line the rooftops of French country
homes, particularly those in the Provence.
To get a curved shape, tuiles - the cookie version - are usually made on a curved surface, such as a wine bottle or rolling pin. In France, tuile molds are also sold. Tuiles must be curved while they are hot, otherwise they will crack and break.
Tuiles are commonly added as garnishes to desserts such as panna cotta or used as edible cups for sorbet or ice cream. Or, eaten as finger food!
What follows is an overview of the ingredients that Sarah used to make the vandotsch speculaas tuiles, including:
Makes approximately 36 speculaas tuile biscuits
- 2 egg whites
- 125 g (¾ cup) caster sugar
- 60 g (½ cup) plain flour
- 7.5 grams (1 ½ teaspoons teaspoon) of vandotsch speculaas spice mix or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 60 g (¼ cup) butter, melted and cooled
Optional: Flaked almonds
I refer to Sarah's write-up for directions on how to make her vandotsch speculaas tuiles.
How to make Sarah's speculaas tuiles
"My homemade tuiles are generally flavoured with almond or vanilla (depending on the dessert) but adding the vandotsch speculaas mix enhanced my tuiles to another level with the deliciously aromatic blend of cinnamon, ginger, cardamom