German Gingerbread Elisenlebkuchen
The German Gingerbread Elisenlebkuchen is usually topped with a white icing or dark chocolate but also can be plain without decoration.
Ingredients for the dough of the German Gingerbread Elisenlebkuchen:
- 4 eggs, XL
- 200 g (7.05 oz) sugar, dark brown
- 1 pouch of vanilla sugar OR 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons of honey, wildflower
- 1 pinch of salt
- pinch of ground: (or use 2 teaspoons of your own gingerbread spice mix find the recipe here)
- cinnamon (Zimt)
- cloves (Nelken)
- coriander (Koriander)
- anise (Anis)
- ginger (Ingwer)
- mace (Muskatbluete)
- cardamom (Kardamom)
- nutmeg (Muskatnuss)
- all-spice (Nelkenpfeffer, Piment)
- 50 g (1.75 oz) of candied lemon peel
- 50 g (1.75 oz) of candied orange peel
- 1 tablespoon (15 g) of crystallized ginger
- orange zest of ½ orange
- lemon zest of ½ lemon
- 150 g (5.3 oz) of hazelnuts, ground
- 200 g (7.05 oz) of almonds, ground, blanched
- 50 g (1.75 oz) of hazelnuts, chopped
- 100 g (3.5 oz) of flour, all-purpose
- ½ teaspoon of ammonium carbonate – Hirschhornsalz (find it here)
- baking waffles round (Backoblaten) 7 cm-2.75 in diameter (optional, find them here)
Preparation of the dough:
Beat eggs until frothy. Add the sugar, vanilla sugar, and honey and beat, until the sugar is dissolved. Mix salt and spices, add to the bowl and beat until creamy.
Chop the candied lemon peel, orange peel, and crystallized ginger using a food chopper, and add to the egg mixture. Beat until all ingredients are combined. Add one after another the ground hazelnuts, almonds, and flour. Spread the chopped hazelnuts on top and mix the ingredients.
Dissolve the ammonium carbonate in 1 tablespoon of water and add to the dough. Continue beating for 2 more minutes.
Remove the dough into a metal bowl, cover it with cellophane wrap and let the dough rest in the refrigerator overnight.
Portion the dough to about 30 g – 1 ounce, which is 1 heaped tablespoon (I used a kitchen scale), and place them on a flour covered surface. Form balls with flour-covered hands and place the balls on a baking sheet covered with baking paper.
Flatten the balls to circles about 6 cm (2.4 inches) in diameter using the fingertips covered in flour. Brush the flour off the gingerbread.
Leave some space between the Elisenlebkuchen so that they don’t stick together during baking. I placed 10 or 11 gingerbreads on one sheet size 17 x 11 inches.
If you are using the baking waffles, place the balls in the center of the waffle, flatten but leave a rim of 5 mm.
Preheat the oven to 160°C-175°C (320°F-340°F) and bake the Elisenlebkuchen on the middle rack for 15-20 minutes. The top of the gingerbread should still be a little soft after baking time.
Ingredients for Decoration of the German Gingerbread Elisenlebkuchen:
- 100 g (3.5 oz) of milk chocolate
- 100 g (3.5 oz) of bittersweet chocolate (60% cacao)
- 50 g (1.75 0z) of white chocolate
- coconut oil
- 400 g (14.1 oz) of powdered sugar
- 6 tablespoons of hot water
Preparation of Decoration:
To decorate the gingerbread with a glaze, beat the powdered sugar with the hot water and spread the icing immediately after baking onto the gingerbread.
The gingerbread needs to cool down, before covering it with chocolate. Place the milk chocolate and dark chocolate together in a metal bowl and melt the chocolate in a bain-marie. Add 1-2 teaspoons of coconut oil to the chocolate. Melt the white chocolate in a separate bowl adding a pinch of coconut oil. Both chocolates should have a nice consistency and flow. Cover the gingerbread with the melted dark chocolate using a tablespoon. Let the chocolate dry for 10 minutes. Fill a decorating bag with the melted white chocolate. Pipe a dot in the size of a one-cent coin on top of the dark chocolate in the center. Use a wooden skewer and spread the white chocolate radiate outwards.
I covered half of the German Gingerbread Elisenlebkuchen with a glaze and the other half with chocolate using of each topping the half amount of the ingredients for decoration. Store the gingerbread in layers in a tin box. Place parchment paper in between the layers.