10 Favorite Serbian Christmas Cookies (Small Cakes)
The festive season is approaching in Serbia. The cold weather means there is little to do other than eat and drink together at home.
Many will be wondering what dishes to prepare for Christmas, and besides traditional Serbian Christmas main dishes, desserts and sweet bakes are always on the menu.
In Serbia, we enjoy eating from a selection of cookies, or small cakes as we call them. A platter can include up to 20 different cakes to choose from. They are colorful, full of flavor, and cut into bite-sized portions.
Without further ado, here is a selection of popular Serbian Christmas cookies for you to consider.
This is a favorite for many who remember Yugoslavia, as this small cake was enjoyed throughout the country back then. Not only does it provide a bit of Yugonostalgia, the cake is simple to make and is very tasty.
You have two main layers. One is light and is made with ground cookies and walnuts, the other is dark and made with chocolate.
Both layers include melted butter and sugar. The layers are rolled separately, stacked on each other, and then melted chocolate is poured on top. After everything cools, the bajadera is cut into bite-sized cubes.
2. Raffaello Balls
Raffaello balls are famous at Christmas in Serbia. This small cake is made from hazelnuts embedded in vanilla, butter, and powdered sugar balls. After the ball is formed, with the nut in the middle, it is rolled in coconut flour.
The result is a ball full of layered flavors. First, the coconut hits you, then the creamy vanilla, and lastly, the hazelnut. For added flavor, you can roast the nuts first.
This is one of the most colorful small cakes you will encounter at a Serbian Christmas celebration. They are made from a sort of biscotti that is baked in the shape of a peach.
You need two halves glued to each other with jam filling, usually plum jam with added candied peaches. The round biscotti are colored to resemble the color of a peach, then the entire ball is rolled in sugar, and a decorative edible leaf is placed on top.
4. Vanilla Biscuits
This is one of the simplest small cakes to make, but it is indispensable for Christmas. You mix flour, butter, sugar, as well as vanilla sugar and extract. Then you roll out the dough and cut out small cookies with a glass.
You can decorate them with a fork or leave them as they are. They resemble gold coins and for added effect, you can roll them in patisserie sugar.
5. The Hungarian Maid (Mađarica)
Hungarians are one of our neighbors and we often integrate Hungarian cuisine into our meals. This is a small cake called the Hungarian maid, but it is unclear exactly where it originated.
It is a layered small cake made with a light biscotti covered with a layer of caramel. Usually, the cake has three layers of cookie and three layers of caramel, and the entire composition is topped with chocolate.
6. Coconut Roll
Coconut roll consists of two layers: a dark one made, with ground cookies, butter, and cacao, and the inner layer, made with butter, patisserie sugar, and coconut flour.
First, you roll out the dark layer then roll out the white filling. You then roll them up into a dark brown log. It should be compact enough to slice into bite-sized pieces. Cutting it into thin slices reveals the spiral inside.
Wafers are eaten all through the year, and Christmas is no exception. The two main ingredients are the thin crusts, usually store-bought, and the filling. Most stores in Serbia have pre-made wafer crusts, though if you are feeling ambitious, you can always try and make them yourself.
The wafers are filled with a combination of margarine, walnuts, ground biscuits, and chocolate. To make them more decorative, you can make two fillings, one darker and one lighter, depending on how much chocolate you add.
To combine, place the filling on a wafer, place another wafer on top, and cover that with filling. Repeat this 4 or 5 times. Make sure all the layers are spread equally thinly, and end with a wafer on top. Once cooled, the wafers into bite-sized pieces.
8. Honey Toblerone
The next Serbian small cake on our list is similar to the world-famous Toblerone chocolate. You need just three ingredients: chocolate, almonds, and honey. Combine them and pour the mixture into a triangular mold.
Once set and cooled, cut into small triangles. These are typically served stacked up.
9. Poppy White Cake (Milka Kocke sa Makom)
This is turning into a new hit at Christmas. The cake is made with two layers of cookies, one white and the other made with poppy seeds. A thick white cream is placed between the layers, made with egg yolks and patisserie cream.
The whole cake is covered with layer of cream to seal it all in, sprinkled with poppy seeds and white granulated sugar, and cut into bite-sized pieces.
The last Christmas cookies on our list is puslice. These are pretty simple meringue cookies made with egg whites and sugar. Once mixed into a nice foam, it is dolloped into little fluffy, pillowy towers and baked till they harden.
For a little something extra, place a walnut on the tray and dolloped the foam over it. This will give this simple cookies some extra flavor.
Related: Popular Serbian Desserts & Sweets
Related: Most Popular Serbian Foods