Stollen spirals - really just festive Chelsea buns I guess...
BBC Good Food recipe
Take 1 (test run, not a gift):
All went fine except I crammed too many in the tin and the middle ones were too doughy. Next time space them out better/use more tins. Also use more fruit, and slice the marzipan rather than using a big wodge in the middle.
Made these dairy free by subbing in coconut oil for butter, and soya milk for the milk. Not a deliberate choice, just what I had in the house to make them for a dairy-intolerant recipient. Also made the changes as above, and happened to use more sultanas and cranberries, no mixed peel, no nuts, and no icing, purely for time reasons. They fit perfectly, with room to expand, at 12 to my big roasting tin, with the remainder (I hesitate to say rejects) in a smaller tin. The 12 were frozen as soon as they were cool, defrosted in the car while travelling, reheated in a low oven for half an hour or so, and hoovered up in no time, so this recipe is definitely a keeper!
Easterised as follows: soak the fruit (a sultana/cranberry/cherry mix) in a mix of tea and amaretto; sprinkle it in the buns along with grated marzipan and dark chocolate chips. Serve warm so the marzipan and chocolate are a bit gooey.
German cinnamon star biscuits
Outdoor Chics recipe
These went OK but cooked too quickly in my oven at 200°C, so were a bit toasty. They have a chewy macaroony texture. I put allspice in the icing, as I'd run out of cinnamon, and some lemon zest. The icing was very sticky to apply, and I also found the mixture a bit crumbly and liable to get stuck in the points of the star cutter,
Nigella's bar nuts
Sweet, salty, spicy, herby roasted nuts. Yum. Again, made with coconut oil not butter - no difference.
A Jamie Oliver recipe
I was a bit worried by the amount of oil in these but they didn't come out greasy at all. Would be good with some sort of spicy dark chocolate topping.