Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Lebkuchen

Lebkuchen

These delicious and beautiful cookies should have been included in last year’s holiday series – at least that was my idea – but here they are, a year later.
My birthday is in November and Martha’s book was a gift from a very dear friend – after receiving it I immediately started looking for cookies with a Christmassy feel and the lebkuchen seemed perfect. However, I somehow kept forgetting to buy all the necessary ingredients – me and my poor list making skills – and when I finally got the dates but forgot the apricot jam I simply gave up and ended up baking the almond spice wafers from the same cookbook (which, by the way, are fantastic).

So now, without further delay, I bring you the cookies I would love to eat from now up until next Christmas, nonstop. :D

Lebkuchen
slightly adapted from the wonderful Martha Stewart's Cookies: The Very Best Treats to Bake and to Share (Martha Stewart Living Magazine)

Cookies:
¾ cup (105g) all-purpose flour*
½ teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
100g blanched whole almonds toasted + more untoasted for decorating the cookies
1/3 cup diced candied orange zest
4 dates, pitted and chopped
85g (3oz) almond paste, crumbled into small pieces – I used homemade, recipe here
1/3 cup apricot jam
3 large eggs
¾ cup (131g) packed light-brown sugar

Glaze:
¾ cup (105g) confectioners' sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons whole milk

Cookie: whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and spices. Pulse almonds in a food processor until very finely chopped. Add candied orange zest and dates, and pulse until finely chopped. Add almond paste, and pulse to combine. Add jam, and pulse. Add eggs and brown sugar, and pulse. Add flour mixture, and pulse. Transfer dough to an airtight container, and refrigerate overnight (or up to 3 days).
Preheat oven to 165°C/325°F (I baked my cookies at 180°C/350°F). Line two large baking sheets with baking paper.
Using a 2-inch ice cream scoop (¼ cup), drop dough onto parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing cookies 7.5cm (3in) inches apart. Place 3 almonds close together on top of each cookie. Bake until golden brown, about 14 minutes. Let cool completely on sheets on wire racks.
Whisk together confectioners' sugar and milk, and brush over cooled cookies. Let stand until set. Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

* the batter was too liquid (even after one night in the refrigerator) and after testing it by baking one cookie – which spread like crazy – I added more flour to the batter; that way I ended up using 170g flour total

Makes 18 – I used a 3-tablespoon capacity ice cream scoop and got 15 cookies

10 comments:

Dawn Marie said...

What is the amount of flour you finally ended up using for this cookie? Should it be 170g... and if so, is that close to a full cup?

Melissa@Julias Bookbag said...

Yes yes I would love to know exactly how much flour because I have ALWAYS wanted to make these cookies and NEVER have! They look divine and so festive!!!! And I hope you had a lovely birthday!

Priya said...

Just wow, stunning cookies.

Lynna said...

That book is also on my wishlist! These do look great and festive with the glaze.

Anonymous said...

eres genial

Laura (Tutti Dolci) said...

Beautiful cookies, I love the flavors and that glaze!

Julia | JuliasAlbum.com said...

What a great Holiday cookie! I'd love to make these.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Girls, the recipe calls for 3/4 cup (105g) flour total - I ended up using 170g (1 cup + 3 tablespoons) to get the right consistency.

Dawn Marie said...

Thanks for the flour update! :)

Laura Dembowski said...

I love lebkuchen! Can't wait to make my own. I crave them every Christmas.

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