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German Baking - How About Learning How? 

MunichNOW went in search of Christmas baking courses in the city.  It’s Advent time and surely you’ve seen the plates of Christmas cookies in bakeries all around Munich. Ever thought that you’d like to try making these at home?

We discovered our favourite at the studio of the internationally renowned executive pastry chef and Confectioner with a Master Craft certification, Beate Wöllstein, at “Wöllsteins Desserthaus” in Schwabing-West.

Beate and her team will teach you how to amongst others, make wonderful Christmas truffles, traditional German biscuits (e.g. Zimtsterne, Vanillekipferl or Hazelnut Macaroons), home-baked gifts and also more advanced refined treats.

Beate Wöllstein at “Wöllsteins Desserthaus” in Schwabing-West. — photo: munichNOW

A great idea for the whole family is the “Gingerbread House” course, which could prove excellent fun. Nothing can go wrong under the careful architectural supervision of Beate, who imaginatively re-created London out of gingerbread during her time in the UK. Being the granddaughter of both an architect and master confectioner helped very much in this huge construction that took two months to create. She says she would gladly be up to doing a Munich gingerbread interpretation if the correct opportunity arose.

For more details on the courses see here: http://www.woellsteins-desserthaus.de/kurse/kurse

Beate’s resume is as impressive as her stunning creations. Even international superstars such as Madonna, Elton John, Johnny Depp and Tom Cruise have complimented her work. She worked abroad as Executive Pastry chef in many 5-star houses such as The Dorchester or Langham Hotel in London and introduced high-end patisserie methods during her time at Emirates Flight Catering in Dubai. After ten years abroad she returned to Munich to work for Feinkost Käfer, successfully introducing mini-cakes to the German market. After 2 years there, she decided to fulfill her life-long dream and open her own business.

Beate loves the Christmas period and incorporating spices such as cinnamon, aniseed and cloves into her recipes. Her family celebrates in a stylish, yet relaxed manner and whilst they don’t do the present thing anymore, she bakes Christmas treats for the entire family during Advent so that they all have traditional biscuits and Stollen on the table for the four weeks leading up to Christmas.

She really enjoys Christmas pudding and mince pies from the UK and would love to see them introduced into the German market – made from scratch with the finest ingredients, of course. She laughs and says that says that that would also be a good idea for a course to offer next Christmas, perhaps.

Her courses are all designed to cater to bakers with a little bit of experience (you should have baked a cake or two in your life) to professionals. Groups are small and as she is fluent in English, she would also be willing to offer courses in English if the demand was high enough. But even in a normal course, if someone were struggling with German she would explain things to him/her in English too.

Due to Beate’s extensive know-how she can offer a large variety of interesting courses and keep up with the trends. Course participants have all been remarkably pleased with the courses and offer great feedback – often returning to do additional courses. Beate’s friendly and bubbly personality also definitely contributes to this success.

Beate says: “I’ve got very high standards – for myself, for the products that leave my shop and on the recipes I create. They have to be perfect. I want to share as much of my know-how as possible. But it should also still remain fun.”

Macaroons, cupcakes and skillful cake decorating with fondant are the trendy courses at the moment and they are also looking into the possibility of offering cronut and vegan baking courses soon.

If you’re on the look-out for a perfect Christmas present for that special baker in your life, perhaps think about getting a voucher for one of the other exciting courses happening throughout the year at Wöllsteins Desserthaus , such as British afternoon tea or French tarts.

Beate was kind enough to share this yummy recipe with us. It’s a delicious “gooey” chocolate dessert that’s perfect for entertaining this holiday season. Enjoy!

Hot Chocolate Fondant — photo: munichNOW

Hot Chocolate Fondant
Makes 10 Portions à 80 g
Baking Temperature 190° C
Baking Time: around 13-14 min

- 60 g Egg Yolks
- 225 g Whole Eggs
- 100 g Sugar
- 202 g Bitter Chocolate (72% Valrhona)
- 202 g Butter
- 46 g Flour, sieved
Firstly line the rings (Diameter 5 cm x 6 cm) with parchment paper and lay it on a baking tray also covered with parchment paper (alternatively butter Ramekin forms)
Beat the eggs, egg yolks and sugar together
Melt the butter and the chocolate (do not mix together) in a water bath or in the microwave
• Now carefully stir the melted chocolate into the egg mixture until all the chocolate is stirred in. Then stir in the melted butter afterwards.
• Lastly, fold in the sieved flour.
• Divide the batter amongst the forms and bake at 190°c for 13-14 minutes.
• The fondant is ready when the centre is still runny. Tip: Do a quick baking test as every oven is different and the mini cakes are very sensitive.
• Dust with icing/confectioner’s sugar and serve warm!

Fruit components such as raspberries and citrus fruits are very complimentary to this dessert. Round it off with a fine sorbet and/or a berry sauce and serve.
Wine suggestions: Gewürztraminer Weißwein, Achkarren


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