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Pfefferneusse or Peppernut Cookies

Submitted by: ruthmarie on December 12, 2011
0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 50 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5
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Pfefferneusse or Peppernut Cookies

A hybrid of two family recipes from a dear friend of German descent and my maternal grandmother, this is a family favorite that is baked first at Christmas for adequate ripening. I usually double the recipe as these German “peppernuts” store very well and is high tradition in our holiday cookie lineup.

Difficulty: Easy

Servings: About 5 dozen

Ingredients

2 eggs
1 C sugar
2 C unbleached flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp white pepper (black will work if white is unavailable)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cardamom
1 tsp grated lemon peel
1/4 C ground blanched almonds
1/4 C finely chopped candied citron*


Directions

Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease cookie sheets.
In a large bowl, beat together eggs and sugar until light. Combine remaining ingredients and add gradually, mixing well each time.
Shape into one inch balls. Place 1-1/2 inches apart on greased baking sheets. Bake 13 to 15 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned; my scant 1-inch cookies = 10-1/2 minutes baking. Remove promptly and cool cookies on racks.


FROSTING
1-1/2 C powdered sugar + about 3 Tblsps milk
Mix sugar and milk to thick cream consistency. Place cooled cookie in frosting and coat on all sides (gloriously messy!). Scrap off excess from bottom of cookie and set each cookie on waxed paper to dry — this can take up to 24 hours depending on humidity.
Store cookies in an airtight container at least one week (even better after 2 weeks) to ripen to full flavor. Keep container in a cool, dry place, preferably well hidden.

NOTE: *Rinse excess syrup from candied fruit with hot tap water; pat dry on paper towels. Finely chop the fruit by combining with almonds (start with a measure of toasted slivered almonds) in a food processor. To allow a smoother grind, add 2 Tblsps to 1/4 C of flour from the recipe if nuts and fruit begin to clump on the blades.

Categories: Cookies & Bars, Gift Basket Goodies, Holiday, Special Occasions

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