A traditional Christmas treat from Germany, Pfeffernusse translates to ‘pepper nuts’ so you can imagine just how flavoursome these little biscuits are.
While I don’t remember my great aunt ever baking them, they do remind me of her generous German hospitality and homemade cakes, so Pfeffernusse holds a special place in my heart.
Warning: highly addictive with or without the icing on top.
- 1 cup brown sugar or 1/3 cup brown sugar and 2/3 cup honey
- 1/2 cup butter
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract(optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon anise extract (optional)
- 1 1/1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon each ground allspice, nutmeg and ginger
- pinch of ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 3/4 cup plain flour
- 100grams icing sugar
- 1 egg white or water or The Kitchen Lionesssuggests Kirsch (cherry brandy)
In a medium bowl mix the sugar and butter together until light and fluffy.
Add 2 eggs and mix until thoroughly incorporated.
Add extracts and mix.
Fold through spices and flour until incorporated. Cover and refrigerate until firm.
Preheat oven to 180℃
Take teaspoon size amounts and roll into balls, placing them onto a tray lined with baking paper.
Bake for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. The biscuits will harden when cooled.
Mix ingredients to a smooth thick consistency.
Dip the tops of the cooled Pfefernusse into the icing or use a spoon to dribble the icing on top, then allow to set hard.
I like to dust them with icing sugar but I wouldn’t mind trying The Kitchen Lioness recipe using crushed pink peppercorns to decorate the iced Pfeffernusse with. Not only do they look so festive but I a little bite of pepper would finish off these ‘pepper nuts’ perfectly.