Lebkuchen : A Traditional Gingerbread Christmas Cookie Recipe
What is Lebkuchen? It is German gingerbread. This isn’t quite a gingerbread cookie that you and I are familiar with but more of a soft gingerbread like cookie made with honey, almonds, and marmalade.
My Oma and Opa would send us kids authentic Lebkuchen cookies from Germany during Christmas time, both the original flavor and chocolate. I can also remember those beautiful and large heart shaped Lebkuchen which are harder but oh so iconic and nostalgic.
Here is a little history on these awesome little cookies. Lebkuchen’s earliest record of being baked was around the 13th century in a few cities in Germany but became the most famous exporter from Nuremberg, Germany. Back then, these cakes were called honey cakes. According to mythology, honey was thought to be a gift from the Gods and these cakes were perceived as such. They were such a great commodity that these cakes were used as currency at one time. Oh how I wish that was still the case!
I stated above that you can have two different kinds, ones glazed with lemon icing or chocolate variety. Some of the comments I have seen about my German cookies are that the lemon icing doesn’t work for them. And that is okay, just go with a chocolate or simply plain white icing without the added lemon juice.