Friday, December 5, 2014

Lebkuchen Cookies........ an easier recipe than the traditional ones with wafers!

I have a couple of recipes for a traditional Lebkuchen Cookie. They can be intimidating to a new baker. However, this recipe is easier and tastes just as good.
I lived in Germany for a year and these cookies are a great Christmas memory from Germany. I visited the Cristkindle Market in Frankfurt when I was living there and Anne and I visited the German Christmas Market in Birmingham, England in 2012. It's an amazing experience.

Ich lebte in Deutschland für ein Jahr und erlebt ein traditionelles deutsches Weihnachten. Der Christkindlmarkt ist erstaunlich. Diese Cookies sind eine gute Erinnerung an Deutschland in der Weihnachtszeit.

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Sheet Pan lined with Parchment Paper
1 recipe of Glaze. (recipe to follow)

1/2 C Honey
1/2 C Molasses
3/4 C Brown Sugar
1 Egg
1 TBS fresh Lemon Juice
1 tsp Lemon Zest
2 3/4 C Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Ground Cloves
1 tsp Allspice
1 tsp Nutmeg
1/3 C diced Candy Citron (candied Lemon or Orange will work)
1/3 C Chopped Hazelnuts

Glaze ingredients:
1 C Granulated Sugar
1/2 C Water
1/4 C Confectioner's Sugar

In a saucepan on median low heat:
Whisk well and bring to a boil.
Immediately remove from heat.

Brown Sugar
Lemon Juice
Lemon Zest
Stir to mix well.

In a Large Mixing Bowl:
Baking Soda
Whisk well.

Add Molasses mixture to the Flour mixture.
Stir well by hand with a wooden spoon.
Fold in the Citron and Hazelnuts by hand with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate the dough overnight.

Use small amounts of dough at a time and roll it out on a lightly floured surface to 1/4" thick.
Cut the dough into small rectangles and place them 1" apart on the Sheet Pan.
Bake for10 - 12 minutes.
Remove the pan to a rack and immediately brush the hot cookies with the glaze.
Transfer the cookies to the rack to cool completely.

I transfer the cookies to a cooling rack that has been placed in a sheet pan to collect the dripping glaze when brushed over the hot cookies.

They get better when stored in an airtight container for a few days before serving.

Glaze recipe:

In a saucepan on medium heat:
Use a candy thermometer and heat until between 234 and 240 degrees.
Immediately remove from heat and carefully stir in the Confectioner's sugar.
If it becomes crystalized while brushing the cookies, reheat slightly on the stove, adding a small amount of water until the crystals dissolve.

Frohe Weihnachten und Frieden in der Küche!

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