I may be posting this a little later than I intended, but I believe that even though it may traditionally be a Christmas treat, lebkuchen is delicious any time of year. My mother's family descends from Germany, and I love making German pastries as a way to connect to my heritage. Lebkuchen is a traditional German Christmas cookie, similar to gingerbread. While gingerbread is usually sweetened with molasses, lebkuchen is usually made with honey, which gives the cookies a distinct sweetness and flavor. These cookies are soft and flavorful, with spices that remind me of the holidays, and a sweet, sugary glaze.
|Melt together brown sugar, butter and honey.|
|Add spices, baking soda, flour, almond flour, and egg to form dough.|
|Chill dough overnight in a plastic bag.|
|Roll dough out between 2 layers of parchment paper.|
|Use cookie cutters to cut dough.|
|Bake cookies and brush with sugar glaze.|
Makes about 2 dozen cookies
85 mL honey
115 g dark brown sugar
30 g butter
225 g all-purpose flour, sifted
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 egg, lightly beaten
50 g almond flour
25 g powdered sugar
2 tsp water
1. Place honey, brown sugar, and butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook until sugar melts, and remove from heat.
2. Sift together flour, spices, and baking soda.
3. Add half of the flour mixture and half of the beaten egg to the saucepan and mix well. Add remaining egg and flour mixture, and mix until completely combined. Mix in almond flour.
4. Pour batter into a plastic bag and refrigerate overnight, or up to 3 days.
5. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 320 F/ 160 C. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
6. Roll dough out between two sheets of parchment paper to about 5 mm thick.
7. Cut dough with cookie cutters. It is best to use shapes that are approximately 1 inch wide.
8. Bake cookies for 8-9 minutes, until golden brown. Allow to cool on pan for about 5 minutes, before placing on cooling rack.
9. Whisk together powdered sugar and water to make a glaze.
10. Brush cookies with sugar glaze twice, then allow to dry. Cookies will keep fresh for at least one week in an airtight container.
Adapted from recipe by The Pink Whisk, available at http://www.thepinkwhisk.co.uk/2010/12/on-the-first-day-of-christmas-the-pink-whisk-sent-to-me-lebkuchen.html
-Posted by Jennifer