Aachen Gingerbread: Christmas in Germany


Gingerbread is synonymous with Christmas. Who doesn't think of gingerbread houses or exchanging these yummy treats at cookie exchange parties. Someone always makes gingerbread every single year (thank goodness) because gingerbread cookies make people happy. And the gingerbread latte at Dunkin is festive and tasty -- it's like taking a bite into a gingerbread cookie!


When I think of Christmas in Germany, memories of Christkindlmarkts flood my mind: stalls filled with handicrafts, warming up with mulled gluhwein in brightly painted ceramic mug, and feasting on gingerbread from Aachen.


The city of Aachen, located in the North Rhine-Westphalia region of Germany is known for their classic Aachen gingerbread. The original dessert is covered in nuts or drizzled with honey or chocolate. Aachen printen is available in bakeries and shoppes in Deutschland and is shipped all over the world.



Enjoy this traditional Aachen Gingerbread recipe. Thanks to our friends from the German Tourism Board for this holiday inspiration.


Aachen Gingerbread

(makes 60 cakes/cookies)


Ingredients

  • 2 cups golden syrup

  • 2 Tbsp water

  • 3/4 cup brown sugar

  • 5/8 cup sugar

  • 2 cups flour

  • 1/8 cup candied orange peel

  • 1 tsp baking soda

  • Gingerbread spices ( 2 tsp aniseed, 1 tsp coriander, 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp allspice, 1/2 tsp cloves, 1/2 tsp cardamom, 1 tsp ground nutmeg)

  • 1 tsp baking soda


Method

  1. Heat the golden syrup in a saucepan with 2 Tbsp of water.

  2. Remove the pan from the heat and add the remaining ingredients. Knead together.

  3. Combine baking soda to the remaining water. Add to the dough.

  4. Roll out the dough with a rolling pin until approx. 5 mm thick. Cut into shapes and place in a greased baking tin that has been sprayed with water.

  5. Bake the gingerbread in a preheated oven at 350°F for approx. 18 minutes.

  6. Decorate the gingerbread cakes with almonds, other nuts or halved candied cherries before baking. Alternatively, cover with dark chocolate (preferably 70% cocoa content) once cool.


Wine recommendation:

A mature Beerenauslese with aromas of dried mango, fig, honey, and spices is the perfect accompaniment. It's also pairs wonderfully with mulled wine.



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