1/4 Photos of Pfeffernuesse (Peppery Gingerbread)
1 hr 15 mins
These little spicy gingerbreads bring out the wonderful flavours of pepper, ginger, and anise. Soft inside and crunchy outside with a touch of lemon glaze. Pfeffernüsse contain much freshly ground pepper, but don’t reduce the amount, because the pepperiness makes the difference. In the past pepper was one of the most expensive spices and to use much pepper was a sign of wealth. Nowadays pepper is often used in advent and Christmas bakery throughout Europe. Pfeffernüsse are so easy to make, yet so tasty, and are a typical German christmas cookie.
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Units: US | Metric
- 1/3 cup butter
- 3 1/2 ounces dark molasses
- 3 1/2 ounces sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground aniseed
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, freshly grounded
- 2 cups flour
- 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
- 1Mix flour and baking soda and set aside.
- 2Bring butter, dark molasses, sugar, and spices in a pot to a boil and remove from heat.
- 3Add flour at once and stir in quickly.
- 4Let dough cool down. Then wrap into cling film and put into the fridge. Leave it there overnight.
- 5On the next day: The dough should be very firm. Halve it with a knife. Set one half aside for the moment. Divide the halved dough into 8 pieces. Each of the 8 pieces divide into 3 little pieces (they should have almost the size of nuts).
- 6First knead the little pieces of dough, so that they get a little waxier. Then roll them between your hands to form a little ball. Place them on a plate and put in the fridge. Do the same with the second half of the dough.
- 7Let the dough balls rest in the fridge for one hour.
- 8Meanwhile preheat oven (360 F, 180 C). Line out two baking trays with baking paper. Take the dough balls out of the fridge and put them on the baking tray.
- 9Put baking tray into the lower third of the oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Cookies will flatten a bit and should be golden. They are still soft.
- 10Put them on a cooling rack and let the them cool completely.
- 11While the first batch is baking do the same as described above with the second half of dough.
- 12Mix powdered sugar with as little lime juice as possible to form a glaze. The glaze should be pasty, so use as much lime juice you need to get this consistency. Decorate the Pfeffernüsse with the glaze. I use an icing bag with a very small opening to decorate the Pfeffernüsse with the pasty glaze.
- 13Store the Pfeffernüsse between layers of parchment paper in an airtight container. You can store them in a dry and not too warm place for about 4 weeks.
- 14NOTE: I use anise seeds and ground them freshly. The anise flavour will be more intense.
- 15Cooking time does not include time for cooling (overnight and additional 1 hour). Passive work (baking) time is for 1 baking tray.
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Nutritional Facts for Pfeffernuesse (Peppery Gingerbread)
Serving Size: 1 (621 g)
Servings Per Recipe: 1
- Amount Per Serving
- % Daily Value
- Calories 50.8
- Calories from Fat 12
- Total Fat 1.3 g
- Saturated Fat 0.8 g
- Cholesterol 3.3 mg
- Sodium 15.4 mg
- Total Carbohydrate 9.2 g
- Dietary Fiber 0.1 g
- Sugars 4.8 g
- Protein 0.5 g