Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Estonian Recipes: kamakäkid or kama and mascarpone truffles
Photo updated in June 2009.
Here's a recipe for sweet tidbits made with mascarpone and the ubiquous Estonian ingredient kama. (I've written extensively about kama earlier here). Last night I made kamakäkid - a term that's not easy to translate, so I call them kama mascarpone balls.
Every country probably hopes that visitors will try some of their local traditional foods and fall in love with the cuisine. So lots of Estonian ethnic eateries would have a roasted and ground rye-barley-pea-oat mixture (alias kama) mixed with curdled milk on the menu. Alongside thick fried blood pudding slices, hearty sauerkraut stews and pickled cucumbers. Whereas this all sounds rather divine to me, to slightly more refined taste buds all that rusticism may seem a bit too much. They'd probably finish their dish, but would order something 'safer' and lighter next time.
Hence the attempt to lighten up and 'Westernise' the local food, sometimes quite successfully. In stead of fried black pudding slices you get dainty blood pudding chips, for example. Here is one such attempt to adjust a very traditional ingredient for Western - or even modern Estonian - palates. Instead of eating kama with fermented milk, it's mixed with mascarpone cheese, rolled into small balls and eaten with coffee.
For those of you who can't get hold of kama (eeh - that's all of you then:), try using oatmeal instead, as texture & flavour wise this is rather similar. If you do so, you may want to replace the cream liqueur with whiskey/whiskey liqueur (Drambuie). In which case you'd probably call them Cranachan mascarpone balls:)
Kama & mascarpone truffles
(Mascarpone-kamatrühvlid ehk peenemat sorti kamakäkid)
250 grams of mascarpone
3 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp raisins
2 Tbsp chopped nuts (I used walnuts, though hazelnuts would have been more 'authentic', as these are the only nuts that are native to Estonia)
3 heaped Tbsp kama flour
a generous dash of cream liqueur (I used Vana Tallinn cream liqueur, but Bailey's would do)
Mix everything together, put into the fridge for a while. Form into small balls, roll in kama or cocoa powder and keep in the fridge until ready to serve.
UPDATE 16.1.2006: Anne of Anne's Food successfully tried my recipe for kama truffles:)