Drömmar—Swedish dream cookies

by | Apr 1, 2019

“Coffee, black as the soul, and some crushed dreams.”

That order should be enough to write you off as a lunatic. But in Sweden, you’ll just sound dramatic (and a bit high-maintenance—can’t you break up the cookies yourself?). In any case, it should hopefully lure out a smile from the café attendant.

Drömmar, or “dreams”, are pale melt-in-the mouth cookies with a cracked surface.

When you make these cookies, there is one thing to remember.

Do. Not. Open. The. Oven.

If you do, you’ll think that I am trying to poison you.

Actually, it will probably stink anyway.

Baker’s ammonia smells like you have a small illegal fertilizer factory in your kitchen (or at least that what I think it would smell like—no experience). Just wait until the cookies are baked, and it will pass.

Dreams of drömmar

The first edition of Sju sorters kakor from 1945 names drömmar as one of the favorite cookies. That cookbook features a common version with half an almond added to the top of the cookie, but I tend to skip that.

The secret to successful dream cookies, according to Hanna Mendel in Kakor till kafferepet from 1948, is the oven temperature. Warm oven, and the cookies melt and become “toffee-y and really tasty”. Colder oven, and they raise and crack on the surface.

dream cookies or drömmar, sugary and sweet

How to make dreamy drömmar

A common nickname is “sugar dreams” and one thing that you’ll notice is that these are indeed sweet dreams. About a quarter of the weight of the ingredients is sugar. Make sure that the butter is of room temperature when you start, so it mixes well with the sugar. Makes 40-50 dream cookies

100g (1/2 cup) butter (room-temperature)
3 dl (1 1/5 cup) sugar
1 dl (2/5 cups) neutral oil (I use rapeseed oil but sunflower or something similar will also work)
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1 tsp baker’s ammonia (hjorthornssalt)
4 dl (1 3/5 cups) flour

  1. Put the oven on 150°C (300°F).
  2. In a bowl, blend the butter and the sugar with a spatula or wooden spoon until they are mixed well.
  3. Keep stirring and add in the oil, little by little.
  4. Add the baker’s ammonia and vanilla powder to the flour and blend them in well.
  5. Add the flour mixture to the bowl with the sugar mixture. Blend until it forms a dough.
  6. Roll the dough into two logs and cut each into about 20-25 pieces. Place the pieces on lined baking trays and flatten them slightly (this will help the baker’s ammonia to leave the cookie).
  7. Bake for about 20 minutes. Remember, it will stink, but the baker’s ammonia should leave the cookies once they are baked and have cooled a bit.

Suggestions

Baker’s ammonia (or hjorthornssalt, as it is known to the Swedes) is not very common in recipes but makes an appearance in older Swedish cookie recipes. It can be substituted with baking powder, although this will alter the texture of the cookie and make it less crumbly.

drömmar dream cookies

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Hej och välkommen!

My name is Isabelle. Here at Swedish Spoon, you’ll find Swedish food history, tried-and-tested recipes, and a lot of obsessing over great butter. You can also expect some travel tips.

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