These cookies are very similar to a cookie called elisenlebkuchen. Elisenlebkuchen is a lebkuchen variety from Nürnberg (Nuremberg). In the middle ages Nürnberg was an important town for the spice trade. Therefore it has a long lebkuchen tradition. Traditionally elisenlebkuchen are made without flour. Eggs or egg whites are used to bind the nuts, which are the main ingredient in these soft cookies. Another important ingredient is candied citrus peel. Both succade and candied orange peel are used. To prevent the cookies from sticking to the baking sheet they are baked on thin wafer papers.
If you can’t find candied citrus peel, you can make your own. There’s a great recipe on the blog Bread without Butter.
For this recipe, the wafer paper is not really necessary. If you bake your cookies on parchment paper, you should be fine.
These cookies are a very special treat. They are almost flourless (I added two tablespoons for binding) and therefore a bit chewy. Like traditional elisenlebkuchen they are made without added fat. They are spiced with cinnamon and a homemade lebkuchen spice mix. The spices are not as overwhelming as they can sometimes be in lebkuchen (that’s just my opinion) and the candied citrus peel gives these a fresh twist.
Lebkuchen spice mix
20 allspice berries
4 cardamom pods
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground anise
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ginger
Finely grind allspice, cloves, and cardamom in a coffee grinder or with a mortar and pestle). Combine with remaining ingredients and mix well. Store in an airtight container
Almond and Candied Citrus Spice Cookies
adapted from this recipe
Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F).
150 g blanched almonds
50 g (5 tablespoons)chopped succade
50 g (5 tablespoons) chopped candied orange peel
1 teaspoon lebkuchen spice mix (see recipe above)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon flax
3 tablespoons hot water
75 g browen sugar (1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons)
1 tablespoon chickpea flour
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
In a food processor finely grind almonds, succade, and orange peel. Mix with lebkuchen spice mix, cinnamon, and lemon zest.
In a small bowl, combine flax and hot water. Let sit for five minutes and stir in sugar and chickpea flour. Add ground almond mixture, flour, and baking powder. Mix with your hands until the dough comes together. Form the dough into 15 balls. Place them on the wafer paper or on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Flatten the cookies a bit and bake for 8-10 minutes. Their tops should be golden brown but the centre should still be soft.
You can enjoy them plain, but they are also great with lemon glaze or dipped in chocolate.