Friday, December 17, 2010

4th Advent

Sunday is the fourth Advent, the last Sunday before Christmas! This is very important because every Germans' ticking Christmas time bomb seems to be measured in terms of the 4 Sundays of Advent. The first Sunday is a really relaxed and cozy affair, filled with Glühwein and Lebkuchen (soft German gingerbread). By the time the last one comes around, you hear far more sighs of exhaustion and "I can't believe it"s--now we REALLY have to get on that Christmas shopping!

One thing is for certain, however: Advent is a really Gemütlich event. Each Sunday the Germans light another candle around the Advent wreath, much like my beautiful Jewish ladies light another candle for each night of Hanukkah. By the end of Advent, all of the candles on the wreath glow warm and bright, signaling that Christmas is only days away. And, if you are not careful enough, your whole apartment or house is a blazing inferno waiting to happen.

In honor of the last Advent (which will be here in only 1.5 days) I am posting a cookie recipe that my mom gave to me last night. They aren't anything out of the ordinary but they sure are good. And I promise they are a cinch to make! I made them last night, exhausted and with a headache, and then had like 7 people from all over the world ask for the recipe today in my German course.


Pecan Puffs

1/2 lb (225 grams) butter
2 Tbsp (25 grams) sugar
2 Tsp (5 milliliters) vanilla extract
2 C. (125 grams) sifted flour
a dash of salt
2 C. (100 grams) chopped pecans
(you will need powdered sugar at the end as well)

Mix ingredients in the order given. Roll into small balls the size of large marbles (or bouncy balls).

Bake on a cookie sheet for 30 minutes at 325 degrees F (160 degrees Celsius).

Dip and roll in powdered sugar when they are slightly cooled.

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