|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Servings: 2 dozen cookies (24 servings)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 11g||14%|
|Saturated Fat 3g||17%|
|Total Carbohydrate 24g||9%|
|Dietary Fiber 1g||5%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
This recipe for Croatian peach-shaped cookies or breskvice is adapted from "The Best of Croatian Cooking" (Hippocrene Books Inc., 2007) by Liliana Pavicic and Gordana Pirker-Mosher.
It takes some time to prepare but the efforts are well worth it. Usually, labor-intensive recipes are left for special occasions like Christmas, Easter, and weddings, and such is the case here. When prepared right, these cookies look exactly like small, ripe peaches. And when you cut into them, the cocoa filling looks like the space where the stone would be. Gorgeous!
- For the Cookies:
- 6 large eggs (separated)
- 3/4 cup sugar (confectioners')
- 1 tablespoon sugar (vanilla )
- 4 ounces/1 stick butter (unsalted, softened)
- Optional: 2 teaspoons peach brandy
- 1 lemon (juiced)
- 2 1/2 cups flour (pastry)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- For the Filling:
- 2 teaspoons cocoa
- 2 teaspoons rum (dark, or rum extract)
- 2 cups jam (peach or apricot)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 1/2 cups walnuts (ground, not chopped) sugar
- For the Decoration:
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup brandy (peach)
- Garnish: red and yellow food coloring
- 1/2 cup sugar (white, coarse)
In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks, confectioners' sugar, and vanilla sugar, until frothy. Beat in the softened butter, brandy, if using, and lemon juice, until smooth and thoroughly combined.
In a medium bowl, whip the egg whites until stiff but not dry. Stir 1/4 of the whites into the yolk mixture to lighten it, then carefully fold in the remaining whites, trying not to deflate them.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder. Sift it over the batter in three additions, carefully folding it in after each addition, being careful not to deflate the volume. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Heat oven to 350 F. Using your hands, take about 1 teaspoon batter and roll into a ball. Place balls 1 inch apart on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake 6 to 8 minutes until only very light golden in color. Do not overbake. Allow to cool completely.
With a sharp paring knife, cut a circle on the bottom of each cookie, being careful not to poke through the other side, and scoop out the insides, saving the crumbs in a separate bowl to make the filling.
To Make the Filling
Put the cookie crumbs in a food processor. Add the cocoa, rum, jam, and 1 tablespoon milk. Process until well mixed. Transfer to a medium bowl and thoroughly mix in the walnuts and remaining 1 tablespoon milk, if necessary. The filling should be moist.
Fill each cavity of the cookie. Take two cookies and sandwich them together. Repeat with remaining cookies.
Place 1/4 cup water in a small bowl and add 2 drops red food coloring, mixing well. Place 1/4 cup peach brandy in another small bowl and add 2 drops yellow food coloring, mixing well. Place 1/2 cup sugar in another small bowl.
Take one cookie and quickly dip it halfway into the red food coloring bowl. Then dip the other half quickly into the yellow food coloring bowl. Roll cookie in sugar. Place on a parchment-lined sheet pan to dry completely before storing in an airtight container.