Speculoos is a type of shortcrust biscuit, traditionally baked for consumption on or just before St Nicholas' feast (December 6th) in the Belgium, the Netherlands and Northern France. In recent decades it has become available all year round.
Speculoos are thin, very crunchy, slightly browned and, most significantly, have some image or figure (often from the traditional stories about St. Nicholas) stamped on the front side before baking; the back is flat.
The Lotus brand is one of the most popular. You can also find them covered in chocolate...a real Belgian treat!
- Sieve the flour into a mixing bowl and make a well in the middle.
Grind and add the spices until fine and sieve into the bowl.
- Add the sugar, butter and a dash of salt into the well and rub slowly between your fingers.
- Knead into a supple dough, wrap in plastic film and leave in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 170°C/350°F. Roll the dough out into a sheet 7mm thick and place onto a nonstick baking sheet.
Prick little holes in the dough with a fork and sprinkle with almonds.
- Brush with the beaten egg and bake in the middle of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
- Leave to cool and break into pieces.