3/4 vanilla pods
100g ground almonds
150g all-purpose flour
150g cold butter
50g caster sugar
pinch of salt
30g vanilla sugar
3 heaped tbsp confectioner's sugar
Makes about 50.
Slit the vanilla pods in half lengthways and using a knife, scrape out the seeds. Mix the vanilla and the almonds together so that the vanilla is distributed evenly.
Mix together the flour and almonds, add the sugar and salt and then cut in the butter. Mix well and knead the ingredients together to form a dough. Halve the dough and form each half into a roll. Wrap the two rolls in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for an hour.
Preheat the oven to 150 °C and line 2 flat baking trays with baking parchment. Divide the dough-rolls into 1cm thick pieces, then roll each piece into a crescent shape about 6-7 cm long with pointed ends.
Lie the crescents on the baking trays and bake in the oven for about 20 minutes.
Mix the vanilla sugar with the confectioner's sugar. Take the crescents out of the oven, allow to cool briefly and then lightly roll them in the sugar to coat. Let them cool fully on a wire rack.
200g flaked almonds
150g confectioner's sugar
100g dark chocolate
2 egg whites
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 pinches ground cardamom
Makes about 30.
Roast the flaked almonds in a big pan on medium heat until they're golden. Powder them with 3 tbsp confectioner's sugar and let caramelize. Distribute evenly on a sheet of baking parchment and allow to cool.
Preheat the oven to 150 °C and line baking sheets with parchment. Chop up the chocolate finely. Beat together the egg whites and the salt with an electric hand-held mixer until it forms stiff peaks. Gradually add in the rest of the sugar, cinnamon and cardamom and beat everything together to form a thick meringue mixture.
Fold in the chocolate and almonds with a spatula. Using two teaspoons, place lumps of the mixture onto the baking tray, spacing them out evenly. Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes. Allow to cool fully on a wire rack.
100g citrus peel
3 tbsp rum
100g ground hazelnuts
200g ground almonds
3 tbsp Lebkuchen Spice (or alternatively you can make up your own mixture of spices such as cinnamon, allspice, cloves, ginger)
1/4 tsp baking powder
20 wafer discs of 7cm each (I used rice paper)
150g cane sugar
pinch of salt
150g dark chocolate
Makes about 20.
Finely chop the citrus peel. Mix the hazelnuts, almonds, spices and baking powder together.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment and place the wafer discs onto them keeping space between each one. Beat together the eggs, cane sugar and salt with a hand-held mixer for about 5 minutes until it becomes thick and foamy. Then fold in the peel and nut-mixture.
Using a tablespoon, divide out the mixture evenly onto each wafer disc, then use wet fingers to lightly form the shape of flat gingerbread rounds. Allow about 1 hour of resting time.
Preheat the oven to 150 °C. Place the Lebkuchen in the oven and bake for about 15-20 minutes, until they get a light color and become firm, but still soft and moist in the centers. Allow them to cool on the baking sheets.
Chop up the chocolate finely, place in a small bowl and melt over a saucepan of simmering water. Thickly smear the Lebkuchen with the chocolate and then allow time to dry completely before eating.