Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Birthday Letters

Last weekend I went on a family camping trip to celebrate my sister's birthday. I was on breakfast duty. I made some quick scones, bought a bunch of fruit and yogurt, and packed blueberries and chocolate chips for pancakes. Then I decided to make something special - birthday special. I made Dutch Letters, in the shape of "L" for Lisa.

Since it was my first time making them (and because I was in a hurry), I used store-bought pastry dough. After defrosting the pastry dough, I cut it into ~4 x 6" sections. Remembering the flavor of Dutch Letter almond filling from my Iowa trip, I made a filling. I spread the filling down the middle of the pastry sections and rolled them into a tube, pressing the edge with a bit of water to seal. Then, I folded the tubes into L-shapes. While baking, some of these shapes morphed and a few of the letters ended up looking like sausage rolls. But they certainly tasted like Dutch Letters. Delicious.

Dutch Letters

Make your own pastry dough or buy a high quality store-bought brand (made with butter). Roll it out into sections wide enough to roll with a filling and long enough to form your letter of choice. The rolled pastry should be slightly larger than finger width.

1 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp almond extract

See above for instructions on spreading the filling. I used ground whole almonds, but you can grind blanched almonds if you don't like the almond skins.
Bake on a parchment lined baking sheet at 400°F. Check after 15 minutes. The pastries should be lightly browned. Enjoy for breakfast, tea, dessert...


  1. Is this the same almond filling found in almond crossants?

  2. Yes, very similar. If you have a good croissant recipe, let me know!