Germans are quite well known for making the best desserts and cookies in the world. If you are someone who wishes to go beyond the shackles of the four walls of one's kitchen and not just enjoy the food but also gathers knowledge about the same, then you have come to the right place. German Cookies are fascinating, no matter which time of the year you have opted to make them, these always win our hearts. Today we are going to make sure that you can learn more or less about cookies all the way from Germany.
These are the German desserts that everyone almost knows about! Being a transition between cake and cookies, these are mainly called molded cookies and cake. So if it is time for the holidays, you can engage in baking a fresh batch of these cake cum cookies that we can guarantee. They are so similar to gingerbread which is a version found in all parts of the world. So next time you are celebrating during the Christmas holidays and wish to opt for making something traditional but unique go for the lebkuchen right away.
The translation of the word lebkuchen is as follows-
Latin libum (flat bread), from the Germanic word Laib (loaf), and from the Germanic word lebbe (very sweet). The word kuchen mainly stands for defining cake.
The history behind the creation of lebkuchen?
There is rather an interesting story behind the evolution of the lebkuchen and you are definitely going to find the tale intriguing! So the bakers one day noticed that honey-sweetened dough would undergo a natural fermentation process when stored in a cool location for several weeks, creating air bubbles. This was an indication of the improved quality of bread. So when initially the bakers began to produce lebkuchen, it was made in November and then baked in December after the process of natural fermentation was over.
Around the 13th century in Germany, the monks came up with the idea of lebkuchen first. Discovered in Franconia, bakers were recorded as early as 1296 in Ulm, and 1395 in Nürnberg (Nuremberg). Now, you will be surprised to find out that even today, the latter is the largest exporter of Nurmberg lebkuchen which has a high demand around the world.
It is believed that emperor Friedrich III in 1487, held a Reichstag where he invited kids from the town and almost imprinted his portrait on four thousand lebkuchen for the kids. Later this came to be known as the honey cake or the pepper cake. These cookies in the early days used to be quite large and had a diameter of 11.5 cm (4.5 in). If they were made in a rectangular fashion, then the size used to be even larger. In other parts of the world where anyone could bake cookies, here in Germany, only the bakers guild was permitted to make the lebkuchen and sell them.
In 1808, another version of flourless lebkuchen came into being and that was called the Elisenlebkuchen.
What were the types of lebkuchen that came into existence over the years?
Of course, a cookie recipe like lebkuchen which acquired widespread popularity would come up with some of its siblings soon and hence we are here to describe its types. From spicy to sweet and ranging in a variety of shapes and sizes, there are several versions of lebkuchen. Honey is combined with vanished, cardamom, ginger, cloves, and so on, as seasoning for the dish. Almonds, walnut, hazelnut, and candied fruits are also used as their content.
This is to be noted that lebkuchen should be soft but a harder version is also available in the market which is known as the Lebkuchenherzen which is usually made during the time of Christmas at fairs and social gatherings.
Another popular version of lebkuchen which is a favorite among the little ones turns out to be the "witch's house" (Hexenhäusl or Hexenhäuschen). These got famous through the popular tale of Hansel and Gretel. You must have also heard about The closest German equivalent of the gingerbread man the Honigkuchenpferd ("honey cake horse"). The Nuremberg version however must contain no less than 25 percent nuts and less than 10 percent wheat flour.
The best part about making lebkuchen is that it is served in decorated tin cans which look so gorgeous indeed. Chests and small boxes are used as well. The sight of the lebkuchen boxes is an indication that the holidays have begun.
You will find Swiss versions of this cookie as well and why not, when something tastes so good, you always need more of it.
However, we are not done, let's find out more about the German cookies. Till then hold on.
The History of German Gingerbread
There are so many cookies in Germany that it simply becomes impossible to talk about all of them! But we have tried our best to provide you with thorough insights about the German freshly baked goods.
From edible houses to cookie platters, no other coolie but gingerbread does justice to the name of cookies. As we said, these cookies are absolutely symbolic of the holidays. However, in Medieval England, the term Gingerbread was used to denote preserved ginger. Until the 15th century, this term wasn't even associated with gingerbread. Any type of sweet treat today with ginger and honey is denoted as gingerbread.
Gingerbread houses originated in Germany in fact, around the 16th century, and to date, they rule our hearts. It was mainly associated with Christmas and stood as a traditional arrangement! Everyone in the household made sure to build one small to big gingerbread hut during the occasion. As we said, once Brothers Grimm came up with the tale of Hansel and Gretel where these kids stumbled upon a cookie house in the woods and were trapped by a witch before they defeated her and won all the chocolates and cookies as a lifetime reward.
The recent record for the largest gingerbread house was broken by Traditions Golf Club in Bryan, Texas. They erected a gingerbread house, spanning nearly 40,000 cubic feet. The last record before that was set by Mall of America in 2006. 4,000 gingerbread bricks were used during its construction and much like any original house, this looks so realistic and had to acquire permission from the government. It should be noted that the house required 1,800 pounds of butter and 1,080 ounces of ground ginger.
Let's find out about some German cookies now!
Authentic German Cookies Recipe - Tasting the Traditional Right Away
If you like your cookies to not just be sweet but also have a spicy seasoning then you must opt for the Pfeffernusse cookies of German origin. Crispy and crumbly in every bite, you should give it a try for sure.
Of course, we had to share the recipe for the classic German Christmas cookies or Lubkuchen after the elaborate discussion we just had. This recipe justifies the reputation of being the most awesome cookie in the world.
Well, the traditional sandwich cookies have come all the way from Germany! Are you ready to give it a try then? Filled with black forest jam, these cookies are tucked gently into bell jars and stored in the kitchen to last the holidays.
Yes, we are talking about the exotic German butter cookies which are indeed the best! Packed with flavors so enriching, these are very easy to make. Drizzled with sugar dust, enjoy your cookies with a warm beverage on the side.
These are ideal to mark the beginning of the festive season! Loaded with gooey jelly, this is an excellent option that you must try out. Being a traditional idea, there shall be a sense of nostalgia too!
Meant to make your Christmas holidays even more special, the Lebkuchen German cookies are exactly what you need to satiate your cravings during the holidays. Packed with flavors so enriching, you will definitely thank us later for the idea!
Dipped in rich icing, the German gingerbread cookies are simply lovely and you should try them out during the holidays. If not a gingerbread house this year, let's make these cookies at least. See how delighted everyone at your house shall be while they munch on the batch.
Crumbly and creamy, you are definitely going to fall in love with its extraordinary creation! There is no way you should miss out on the glorious flavor of this cookie batch made during the holidays.
As we said, there is no comparison between the taste of butter browned in a pan to any other alternative. This recipe is made in a similar style. You must try it out first and tell us about it.
Yes, you heard it right! We have the gorgeous vanilla crescents, right here for you! The crispy and crunchy cookies are simply lovely and there is no way you can stop at one. So what are you waiting for? Make it today!
The German spritz cookies are absolutely a delightful idea and loaded with the richness of chocolate! Delectable and fascinating, you must give it a try for sure. Tell us how you liked it! We can guarantee that you will make them again and again.
Here we have the most awesome cookie recipe that you must indulge in this season! The gorgeous German Marzipan cookies are lovely and you should give it a try for sure. Enriched with a delectable essence, this is an exciting one to relish this season.
13. Linzer cookies
The perfectly carved Linzer cookies are another wonderful idea that leaves you completely tempted with every bite. The gooey syrupy essence and the crumbly sugar-dusted crust leave you with a temptation so outstanding! So what are you waiting for?
Delectable and crispy, the Old German honey cookies are another fantastic creation. Sweet and filled with a wonderful warm essence, make them with tea and enjoy them to your heart's content! Even the kids will be delighted to indulge in its blissful presence.
The combination of brown spices, molasses, and brown sugar renders this recipe with such an outstanding flavor. No, we ain't joking, but if you wish to find out then you have to give it a try!
16. Cinnamon stars
The wonderful Cinnamon stars are loaded with cream and drizzled with sugar dust! The crumbly cookies are shaped like stars and give such an exotic shimmer to the holiday season! There is no way you can resist yourself from eating more and more.
The authentic German poppy seed cookies are perfectly meant for the brilliance of the holiday season. Creamy and filled with juicy syrup, you are definitely going to feel a sense of orgasm in every bite. So let's get started, shall we?
The German gingerbread bite is an exotic idea that you will be thrilled to bake and then enjoy the whole season. Crumbly and so elegant, the guests will be thrilled with this idea of refreshing cookies! So what are you waiting for?
Yes, we are talking about customized Christmas cookies! Loaded with gooey essence, this recipe turns out to be the most wonderful piece during the holidays! Perfect for the season of Santa and reindeer, we can hardly wait for the holidays to begin.
Nothing is as good as the classic Old German honey cookies! Such a nostalgic treat that will render you with a sense of content and fulfillment in every bite. Rich and luxurious, there is no way you can resist this one.
1. What are cookies called in Germany?
Lebkuchen is the crumbly and crusty cookie that is inherent to the region of Germany! Chewy and glazed with honey, the German cookies are perfectly seasoned to make your season even more special and outstanding.
2. What is the history behind the creation of making Gingerbread cookies?
The German gingerbread cookies came into being during the 16th century. Adorned with edible gold leaves and beautiful designs, these cookies are best suited to the occasion of Christmas.
3. What is the main tip for making cookies at home?
You must allow the cookie dough to chill first before you begin to bake your cookies. In fact, if you do not chill it for at least an hour in the refrigerator then the cookies might spread too much on the sheet during baking.
4. How can you make your cookies soft?
There is only one way to make sure that your cookies turn out soft! Do not allow the dough to be overworked! If you fold the cookie dough for too long then the starch in it will get activated before it should and harden the texture of the cookies.
5. What is the final step involved in cookie baking?
No, not bringing it out of the oven is good enough as the final step, you need to allow your cookies to cool down first! Icing must be done if you want only after half an hour at least.
Bottom Line- So now that you are well versed in the techniques and tricks to bake cookies, it is time for you to indulge in these authentic German cookies! We can guarantee that it shall be an enriching and rewarding experience for you. Good luck.