Gingerbread Varieties

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

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In Germany today, Lebkuchen are produced in many sizes, shapes, flavors, colors, and textures: rounds, rectangles, squares, hearts, stars, pretzel forms, St. Nicholas (for the Christmas season), lucky pigs (for New Year), and rabbits (for Easter). See holiday sweets. The Lebkuchen dough ranges from “white” (light-colored) to different shades of brown. German Lebkuchen can be covered with white or chocolate icing; filled with marzipan or jam; or decorated on the top or bottom with whole or chopped almonds. Some versions are sweetened only (or primarily) with honey. Oblaten Lebkuchen are cookies whose dough is baked on top of a paper-thin edible wafer. Delicate, elegant Elisen Lebkuchen are a type of Oblaten Lebkuchen made with finely ground almonds, hazelnuts, or walnuts, and little or no flour.