Happy Halloween everyone!
Tonight I’m all by myself. The kids are around town enjoying this fun night. And I’m taking this time to write a quick post valid for tonight and tomorrow, All Saints’ Day.
In Madrid is customary to make these delicious treats for the festivity of All Saints which coincides with the beginning of the almond harvest.
This dessert takes its name from its appearance, similar to a bone with marrow. The use of the marzipan, made with ground almond, denote their Muslim influence due to the Moors’ occupation of the Iberian Peninsula between 711 and 1492. But the first mention of this dessert is from 1611 in a book called Cooking Art by Francisco Martínez Montiño.
Although they were originally filled with sweet egg yolk cream, nowadays there is a wide variety of flavors and fillings, including chocolate, coconut and yogurt. However, I decided to stick with tradition. So here they are: Huesos de Santo.
- 250 g ground almonds
- 200 g sugar
- 100 ml water
- Zest of one lemon
Sweet egg yolk cream
- 4 egg yolks
- 100 g sugar
- 50 ml water
- 200 g icing sugar
- 4 tablespoons water approximately or a combination of water and lemon juice
Let’s start by making the filling. Separate the yolks and put them in a heat proof bowl, lightly beat with a whisk. Save the whites for making macarons!.
Mix sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. When the syrup has reached a Thread Stage (223-235 ºF or 106-112 °C), pour over the yolks, stirring constantly to avoid curdle.
Now place the bowl on a Bain Marie and continue whisking until it thickens (20/25 minutes). Leave to cool.
To make the marzipan, we start by making a light syrup with the water and sugar over the fire. The minute it starts to boil and the sugar has dissolved, pour the ground almonds and the lemon zest. Mix well and dump it onto your work surface, previously dusted with icing sugar. When it is cold enough to handle, knead it until it is smooth. Allow it to rest for an hour or so.
Roll out the marzipan over your work surface, dusted with icing sugar, or between two pieces of plastic wrap. The marzipan has to be thin but not too much or it will break when you try to roll it up (1/8 inch is good).
Make longitudinal marks with a skewer. Cut strips with a knife or a pizza wheel, about 5-6 cm wide (2 inches).
We can use the handle of a wooden spoon to make the rolls or any other utensil similar to it.
Roll up the marzipan strip around the handle and cut. Apply a little pressure to make sure it is closed and slide out. Finish with all your rolls and allow them to dry for about 45 minutes or so.
You probably won’t use all the marzipan on this recipe, the filling will be enough for about 20-24 bones. So save the rest for later.
Now, place the egg yolks in a pastry bag and fill the rolls.
Prepare the frosting and dip the rolls in it, then place them over a wire rack (better to put something under there because it’s going to drip) and allow them to dry completely before serving.