Lebkuchen

These spicy cookies are traditional German Christmas cookies that keep very well. Store them in a closed container overnight to allow the flavors to develop.

Makes: 96 cookiesHands-on: 35 minutesTotal: 8 hours 50 minutesDifficulty: Medium


Makes: 96 cookies

Ingredients

  • 2½ cups confectioners’ sugar
  • ⅓ cup light corn syrup
  • 1 tsp. clear vanilla extract
  • 3–4 tsp. warm water
  • 1 cup honey
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1½ tsp. ground cloves
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped candied orange peel
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped candied citron
  • 1 cup chopped blanched almonds
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1½ tsp. grated orange zest
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. hot coffee
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 4½ cups all-purpose flour

Directions

  • Beat confectioners' sugar, corn syrup, and vanilla in bowl of a mixer until smooth. Add water a few drops at a time, until mixture is right consistency for icing. Set aside.
  • Stir together honey, molasses, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Mix in candied orange peel, citron, almonds, brown sugar, and orange and lemon zests.
  • Stir baking soda into hot coffee; beat into honey mixture. Beat in egg. Stir in flour. The dough will be very stiff and you may need to knead in the flour with your hands. Cover and chill overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment.
  • Roll dough to ½" thickness on a floured surface. Cut into 2" × ¾" rectangles.
  • Place cookies 1 apart on baking sheets. Bake 12–15 minutes, or until just starting to brown. Cool. Glaze cookies while still warm.