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Chocolate Pfeffernusse (text)

Veteran Member
3012 posts
Joined: Jul 17, 2006


Posted to Thread #21199 at 4:36 pm on Dec 15, 2011

Here is one I make every year. I bake lots
of German Christmas cookies and most of them
require a long storage time to mellow before
they are eaten. This makes them ideal since
they can be baked well in advance of the
holidays and pulled out when they are needed.
If any of these make it to January, that's
when they really start tasting good.

Chocolate Pfeffernuesse

(Makes about 70-80)

1 cup honey
1/3 cup molasses (not corn syrup)
1 cup light brown sugar, not packed
1/2 cup butter
4 cups a.p. flour
1/2 cup sifted dark cocoa
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. each of cinnamon and white pepper
1/2 tsp. mace
2 eggs
1/4 cup diced candied lemon peel
3/4 cup finely chopped blanced almonds
zest of 1 lemon
1 1/2 lbs. good semisweet chocolate

Combine honey, molasses, brown sugar, and
butter in a heavy saucepan. Place over med.
heat and cook, stirring occas., until butter
melts and mix begins to bubble gently.
Remove from heat and let cool 15 minutes. In
large bowl combine flour, cocoa, baking
powder and soda, spices, and salt. Add eggs
to honey mixture, pour at once into flour
mixture. Stir to form a dough. Add candied
lemon peel, almonds, and lemon zest; mix
well. Divide dough in half. Wrap each half
separately in plastic wrap. Refrigerate
for at least 1 day or up to 1 week. Pinch
off small pieces of dough and roll into balls
(use about a heaping teaspoons worth of dough
to make 80 cookies). Place on greased baking
sheets about 2 1/2 inches apart. Bake at
350F. for 12 to 15 minutes, or until done.
Remove to racks to cool completely. Pack
into air tight containers and store for at
least 1 month.

To finish: Temper the chocolate (refer to
Joy of Cooking-Chocolate, Coating and
dipping). If you are in a hurry, you can
melt the chocolate slowly and stir in 1 tsp.
of shortening.

Dip the cookies in the melted chocolate and
tap excess off side of dipping bowl. I spear
them from the back with a fondue fork, swirl
them in the chocolate, then carefully place
them backside down on wax paper to harden.

Store these for at least another week,
preferably two. Then be prepared for one
of the most sublime cookies you've ever
tasted (IMHO).

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