The Speculaas Spice Company

Speculaas - an introduction

 

A Speculaas biscuit is a biscuit with lots

of different sweet tasting spices.

 

It is thought that the Dutch name

Speculaas comes from the latin

'speculum' that means mirror.

 

Specerij(en) - the Dutch word for

spice(s) - is another possible source.

 

Traditionally speculaas biscuits are the

mirror image of the carved wooden

moulds they are baked in.

 

Windmill shaped speculaas biscuits are

known throughout the whole world, as

are male or female speculaas figurines.

 

These days speculaas biscuits can take

any shape or form. But you can do so

much more with speculaas spice than just making biscuits. Check out our Recipes.

 

Speculaas spice mix

 

Speculaas biscuits, cakes and bakes are all infused with a speculaas spice mix. There is no fixed recipe for the mixture, but all blends will contain at least cinnamon, ginger and cloves.

 

When spices became more widely available in the 17th Century, and onwards, Dutch bakers started to experiment making spice mixtures. The one that survives from that time is the current day 'speculaas spice mix'. This spice mix was, and is still, used to make a buttery biscuit - the speculaas biscuit.

 

Due to the relatively high cost of the various spices in the mixture it remained a luxury item for several centuries, often baked only in the winter and given as a present. These days, every indpendent baker in The Netherlands will have his own recipe.

 

The secret vandotsch speculaas spice mix contains nine spices, including real organic cinnamon, from Sri Lanka, cloves, ginger and six other spices that we not disclose.

 

Speculoos versus Speculaas

 

Speculaas and Speculoos biscuits are two completely different

biscuits. Not many people know the difference and therefore

there is much confusion between the two.

 

It is actually very easy. The main difference lies in their spice

content. Speculaas biscuits contain a number of different spices

while speculoos biscuits often include only one spice: the

cheaper version of real cinnamon: cassia.

 

It is believed that speculoos biscuits originated in the Belgian

region of Verviers in the early 19th century. In contrast to the

Netherlands, where the spices for speculaas biscuits were relatively inexpensively imported from its colonies, spices were very expensive in Belgium.

 

A biscuit recipe was therefore developed in Belgium without the expensive spices called: Speculoos - "loos" = less - because these biscuits were baked without spices. The word speculoos does not even exist in Dutch, it's a Flemish word.

 

These days, speculoos biscuits and speculoos spreads still contain primarily the cheaper version of real cinnamon (cassia), candy syrup and caramelised sugar.

 

The Spice Wars

 

Until 1800 spices such as cloves, mace and nutmeg were exclusively found on the Maluku Islands, in the East Indian Archipelago (nowadays Indonesia), while real cinnamon only grew on Ceylon (nowadays Sri Lanka). That's why these islands were called the 'spice islands'.

 

To make one's fortune in Europe, through the spice trade, one needed to control these islands. Since 1500, the Portuguese owned the monopoly on the European spice trade. However as from 1660, this monopoly was firmly in Dutch hands having conquered these islands, supplanting the Portuguese, while fighting of the Biritish.

 

In the late 17th and 18th century - the so-called Dutch "Golden Age", The Republic of the Seven United Netherlands, through the Dutch East India Company (VOC), occupied Ceylon (Sir Lanka) and the Indonesian archipelo. As a result, the Dutch owned the monopoly of several spices allowing them to make huges fortunes due to them maximising the prices of these spices in Europe.

 

With Belgium not having any 'spice' related colonies Flemish bakers used other ingredients to flavour their biscuits, calling them speculoos biscuits rather than speculaas biscuits.

 

The vandotsch speculaas spice mix

 

The vandotsch speculaas spice mix contains nine different spices, the key one (55%) being organic real cinnamon from Sri Lanka. This cinnamon base combined with the other eight spices delivers deliciously warm, sweet and spicy ‘layers’ of taste that take any simple cinnamon taste to another level.

 

Ingredients:

 

Based on my Dutch grandmother's sweet tasting spice mix, vandotsch speculaas spice mix contains organic high grade 'real' ground cinnamon from Sri Lanka (55%), organic ground cloves (14%), organic ground ginger (14%) and six other organic ground spices to give our spice mix that unique kick.

 

> Suitable for vegetarians

> No artificial flavourings, colours or preservatives

> Sourced from responsible producers with organic certification and in many cases fairtrade certification.

> Gluten free

> Milk free

> Nut free

 

The vandotsch speculaas spice mix comes in a 60g mini Kilner glass jar and 25g - refill - pack.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The vandotsch speculaas molds

 

We have a limited number of small wooden vandotsch speculaas molds / moulds for sale, to make authentic Dutch speculaas biscuits including a man and a woman, both in traditional Dutch clothing,

as well as two types of Dutch windmills. They make a perfect gift for young and old to enjoy making speculaas biscuits the ‘old-fashion’ way.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All our moulds / molds come with an instruction sheet - what to with the mold, how to make the dough and how to bake the  biscuits.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How easy is it to make speculaas biscuits using wooden moulds?

 

It is very easy. It jtakes just five steps to create delicious

tasting speculaas biscuits:

 

1. get a vandotsch speculaas wooden mould to make

   speculaas biscuits

2. prepare your wooden mould

3. prepare your vandotsch speculaas infused dough

4. make speculaas biscuits with your moulds

5. bake your speculaas biscuits

 

All explained in an easy to read in a FREE eBrochure that

you can download.

 

I promise you will be a speculaas biscuit maker using

wooden moulds in no time. Not only that . . . your

kitchen will also smell divine.

 

Happy vandotsch speculaas spice baking times ahead!

 

Steven

The Speculaas Spice 'Master Chef'

speculaas-biscuit Speculaas dough figures jar in postal box speculaas=mould-man-in-shop Large windmill mill mold with spice pack vandotsch-speculaas-spice-with-windmill-mould - Co vandotsch-speculaas-spice-pack-mix vandotsch-speculaas-spice-with-man-and-woman-mould vandotsch-speculaas-spice-with-a-man-mould vandotsch-speculaas-spices-with-woman-mould How To Make Speculaas Biscuits with Wooden Moulds