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My secret Family Recipe for German Christmas Cookies

This is my family's recipe - not so secret anymore because I just love to share it

Growing up in Germany, we always took our "Adventszeit" very seriously. This is the period that starts the 4th Sunday before Christmas and it is the 4 weeks you have to prepare for the ultimate Christmas event on the 24th of December. One of the absolutely non negotiables of that time was baking cookies. Most of the time we would make these delicious buttery cookies and decorate them with sprinkles or chocolate. These cookies are also great for kids' birthdays!


Ingredients (makes about 40 cookies)

300 gr flour

200 gr butter (room temperature)

100 gr sugar

1 egg 1 tbs

baking powder

To decorate:

lemon juice

confectioner's sugar

food colouring, sprinkles... etc


Knead all ingredients together - this might take a while. You want the dough to be homogenous and smooth, but not sticky. Let the ball of dough test in the fridge for about one hour. Roll out the dough on a workspace covered with a thin coat of flour (cover the roller in flour too so it doesn't stick) and cut out shapes with cookie cutters (You want the dough to be about 3-5 mm thin). Bake in a preheated oven at 350/375 F for 7-10 minutes. Keep an eye on your cookies, you want to take them out before they turn brown.

Directions should always be short and to the point.

  1. Your first step should focus on prep. E.g., Preheat to 375°F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

  2. All middle steps should describe what the reader should do in a certain order. E.g., In a large bowl, cream the butter, sugars and vanilla extract until light and fluffy. Then add your eggs to the mix one at a time.

  3. End with the final baking or cooking time. Describe what the final product should look like and when it should be served. E.g., Bake until the cookies have golden edges. Remove the cookies from the oven and set them in a baking rack for 10 minutes. Voila! Your cookies are ready. Serve them right after or store them in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Decorating: Make sure your cookies have cooled down before you decorate. Mix some confectioner's sugar with lemon juice and food colouring to paint on the cookies or use the mix as glue for sprinkles!

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