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Holiday Lebkuchen (German Spice Cookies)

Holiday Lebkuchen (German Spice Cookies)

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Shae's Mama

Since my mother's parents came from Nuremberg and Munich, Germany, lebkuchen has been a holiday tradition in my family ever since I was little. We don't like the usual candied citrus peel, however, so I use apricots and dates instead. Great served with hot tea.

Ingredients {{adjustedServings}} servings

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Original recipe yields 36 servings

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Nutrition

Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 188 kcal
  • 9%
  • Fat:
  • 4.5 g
  • 7%
  • Carbs:
  • 34.8g
  • 11%
  • Protein:
  • 3.9 g
  • 8%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 12 mg
  • 4%
  • Sodium:
  • 61 mg
  • 2%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

Directions

  1. Cover almonds with boiling water in a bowl. Let stand for 1 to 2 minutes and drain. Rinse with cold water and drain again. Pat almonds dry and remove skin. Allow almonds to dry on paper towels.
  2. Place half the almonds in a food processor; pulse until finely chopped. Add apricots and dates; pulse until fruit is chopped. Reserve remaining 1 cup almonds.
  3. Combine flour, cinnamon, ginger, baking powder, cloves, cardamom, and salt in bowl. Beat eggs, brown sugar, honey, molasses, water, almond extract, orange zest, and 1 teaspoon lemon zest in a large bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Add apricot mixture, blending until evenly distributed. Gradually stir in flour mixture on medium speed until dough comes together. Cover dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 8 hours to overnight.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  5. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and roll out to about 1/2-inch thick. Cut out cookies with a 2 1/2 to 3-inch diameter cookie cutter. Arrange cookies about 1 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets.
  6. Lightly press 3 almonds into each cookie with tips towards the center to create a star pattern.
  7. Bake in preheated oven until cookies begin to brown, about 12 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool on a wire rack.
  8. Meanwhile, whisk confectioners' sugar, milk, and 1 teaspoon lemon zest in a bowl until glaze is smooth. Brush warm cookies with glaze and allow cookies to cool completely.
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Reviews

kanthony23
3
10/10/2012

I made these lebkuchen for my classmates for German class. I like the taste of citron but it's not available for a few weeks yet. I was not so sure about using apricots and dates but I have to say, these cookies were fabulous. My classmates ate them up, asked to bring some home--in other words, they were a huge hit. I'm definitely making these for Christmas! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe! My only regret is that I didn't have a day or two to let them sit--I bet they just get better with time.

spatialanomaly
1
12/16/2012

I made a bunch of these to be included with other various cookies as xmas gifts. I love cookies with lots of cloves/cardamom/nutmeg. Very seasonal flavors and so this seemed like a great one. I'm a novice baker at best though and maybe some of my issues are from that but I found these to be a serious undertaking to make. There are so many elements... if you are planning on making these just be ready to sweat. I've run 10k marathons where I didn't work this hard! First, just buy pre-skinned almonds. Second, buy pre-pitted/chopped dates. Third be prepared to make 3 to 4 times as much icing because these cookies were really not very sweet at all, they are a little dense. The end result is ok, they go pretty well with coffee. I will probably not make these again though.