Friday, November 18, 2011

Russian pryaniki: Tula gingerbread

Russian gingerbread is most famous as Tula gingerbread, usually filled with  jam. These gingerbreads are my favorite since now, I loved how wonderful taste they have and also keeps easily pictures from cookie mold.

Recipe is from Russian website which can be translated with little help of google translate. Here is recipe as I did it, with only exception on glaze. I simple left it out, because I still need to practise how to prepare good glaze and how to add it without having sticky gingerbreads.

Tula gingerbread

250 g flours
75 g sugar
75 honey
1 egg
1 tablespoon butter
3 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Spices, my mix:
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cardamom
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
200 g jam

Egg for sticking gingerbread layers together 


Russian website gives own guidelines how to bake gingerbread. I simply added honey, sugar, spices and melted butter in bowl and mixed them all together, added egg and mixed little more. I did use quite a lot spices considering very small amount of flours, but I do recommend trying this at least once. Gingerbread with spicy aroma will work very well with sweet jam.


This dough can be little sticky and use of extra flours is a good idea, just keep it real so you keep your gingerbreads soft. Compared to Appenzeller biberli, this was much easier to handle.  Roll dough, cut two same size parts and use another for bottom and another as cookie mold part. Add some jam on bottom and brush edges and carefully place upper part on it. Use your fingertips to seal gingerbread properly. 

Doing this might make edges ugly, and you can either work on your gingerbread skills or simple shake or roll bigger cutter around gingerbread. This will make edges round again. 

The burning sensation

Original recipe called baking Tula gingerbread in the oven for 10-12 minutes in 240-250 C degrees.

In my experience this will results wonderful color for cookie, but might give little smoke in the kitchen if not careful. Difference between well browned and severely burned gingerbread is very small, so stay next to oven and take them out instantly when good color is formed.

Lowering temperature will give less impressive color. Brushing gingerbread before baking will give shiny and darker looks, which I enjoyed very much. Appenzeller biberli was baked in +160 C degrees, see difference.

From Russia with Love

Not always traditional cookie or gingerbread recipes result good gingerbread. While dough might be easy to handle, taste is something that can't be described with joyful words. Tula gingerbread is exception. It is both easy to bake and such pleasure to eat with tea. 

Taste comes from both gingerbread and jam: gingerbread has rich spicy aroma,  little warming feeling from ginger, yet, while jam kicks in it feels bit colder. These gingerbread are soft.
This gingerbread will take certain place in my heart and I will focus on how to evolve my skills baking it even more better.
Video about real Russian gingerbread

Pryaniki brushed with egg and without.