I was half-tempted to call this post “The Full Monty” – but I didn’t want to scare anyone off :-)
It’s because of these:
Remember the not-quite-but-nearly lebkuchen from last week? They were nice ginger/spice biscuits but they weren’t exactly right. I wanted soft, crisp-edged slices and I was determined to make them. I was hunting everywhere for a better recipe – and my mum, bless her, found one. It came from an old German recipe book – and it’s this week’s contribution to:
12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies and Sweets, thanks to Brenda.
Lebkuchen, makes 30+ pieces
245g flour (I used the Doves Farm white gluten-free blend)
125g brown sugar (I used half light and half dark)
35g ground almonds
3 heaped tbsp (75g) honey
50 ml water
1tsp baking powder
1/2tsp ground ginger
1tsp ground mixed spice
Glaze: 110g sieved icing sugar
1-2tbsp hot water
lemon juice (optional)
Whisk the honey, sugar, ground almonds, spices, milk and water together till smooth, then sieve the flour and baking powder in together and mix well. It won’t be stiff like a cut-out biscuit dough, but a spreadable consistency. Handy, really, as your next step is to spread it – on a lined baking sheet, to about 1cm thick. Leave to set for an hour, then bake in the middle of an oven preheated to 200C for 17 minutes, until golden brown.
Mix the icing sugar with enough hot water to make a spreadable but not too liquid consistency. I don’t think lebkuchen traditionally have lemon glaze but I love the combination of lemon and spice so add away if you fancy it. Spread on the glaze and cut into pieces while still warm, then leave to cool and set.
And once they had (or possibly slightly before they had) I got stuck in – and this was what I’d been aiming for! Soft, spicy and gingery with the crisp edges and the set glaze… delicious and very Christmassy.
I’ve actually already bought three presents *pats self on back* but only because I’ve happened to spot them… I never really think about Christmas till December; last minute panic beckons, no doubt :-)
Have you started thinking about/getting organised for Christmas yet?