Saturday, December 14, 2013


What would the holiday season be without homemade Christmas cookies? Helping my grandmother and mother bake a variety of cookies was something I eagerly anticipated every year. Scents of cinnamon, anise, nutmeg and cloves wafting through the air signaled the beginning of this special time of the year. My favorites were spritz cookies dipped on one end into dark chocolate, vanilla kipferl, cinnamon stars, and speculoos. No matter where I have lived since I left Germany, I have always baked at least two or three of my childhood favorites for the holidays. The following recipe is an adaptation of the traditional vanilla kipferl, using a a gingerbread spice blend (Lebkuchengewuerz) to give it a beautiful gingerbread flavor.

1 tbsp gingerbread spice mix
1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
 3/4 cup ground almonds

  • Preheat oven to 350° F and line two cookie sheets with baking paper. 
  • Measure 1/2 tsp of the gingerbread spice mix and set aside.
  • In a medium-sized bowl mix butter, sugar and remaining spice mix until well blended. Add sifted flour and ground almonds, mix well, and place into refrigerator for 30 minutes. 
  • Remove dough from refrigerator. Using 1 tbsp dough at a time, form crescent shapes and place one inch apart and baking sheet.
  • Bake for approximately 12 minutes, rotating the baking sheet halfway through. 
  • Take 1/2 tsp of the reserved gingerbread spice mix and mix with 1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar. Sift mixture over still warm kipferl. Let cool completely and store in an airtight container.  

To make your own spice blend, try the following recipe:
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp ground cardamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground anise seed
1/8 tsp ground fennel seed

Mix thoroughly. Makes about 2 tbsp.


  1. Mhhhhh....schick mir sofort welche rüber!
    Liebe Grüße,

  2. Darf ich was fragen? Wie viel ist " 1stick" butter in Gramm :-)
    Liebe Grüße,