This spicy traditional German cookie takes a few days to ripen into its full flavor. This makes a large batch, but they last for weeks in a sealed container.
INGREDIENTS (for 9 servings):
- 1 cup honey
- 1/4 cup dark molasses
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
- 2 tablespoons chopped candied orange peel
- 2 tablespoons chopped candied citron
- 1 cup chopped blanched almonds
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 1/2 teaspoons orange zest
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons hot water
- 1 egg, beaten
- 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
In a large bowl, stir together the honey, molasses, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves until well blended. Mix in the candied orange peel, citron, almonds, brown sugar, orange and lemon zests. Stir the baking soda into the hot water, then beat into the mixture along with the egg. Gradually mix in the flour. The dough should be very stiff, you may need to knead it on the counter to get it thoroughly blended. Cover and chill overnight so the flavors can ripen.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to 1/2 inch thickness. Cut into bars about 2 inches long and 3/4 inch wide. Place cookies 1 inch apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until the bottoms are only starting to brown. Remove cookies to cool on wire racks. Ice them with a thin confectioners glaze while they are still warm, if you like. When cool, store in a tightly closed container. If you want soft cookies, put half an apple in the container for several days.