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Christmas cookies

The history of Christmas biscuits goes back to the winter solstice in pre-Christian times.

Even then, sacrificial breads were baked to drive the demons away in this darkest time of the year. The sacrificial bread then became the Christmas Stollen in connection with the Christian Christmas festival. In commemoration of the birth of Jesus, exquisite baked goods were common, especially in the Middle Ages, also in monasteries. But not everyone had the expensive ingredients such as dried fruit and honey at his disposal. It was cheaper - and no less tasty - to mix flour, butter and sugar and form small biscuits out of it.

Today, varied assorted biscuits are offered at the Christmas markets and in the surrounding bakeries and pastry shops. The spicy-smelling gingerbreads are there as well as the cinnamon stars, originally from Swabia, and the vanilla crescents, an ideal tea biscuit. The little crescents of flour, butter, sugar, vanilla and grated almonds (or other nuts) literally melt in your mouth when prepared correctly. Today, there are countless other variations, which are also often baked at home and emit their unmistakable aroma from the warm oven: "Spitzbuben" with juicy apricot jam, so-called dominoes made of light and dark dough, Bethmännchen with marzipan and whole almonds and spritz biscuits.

Children have fun cutting out stars and snowmen, hearts and bells from the baking dough. By the way: In Italy, the Panettone is also enjoyed at Christmas time, a dome-shaped cake of about 20 cm in height. It is a traditional Milanese pastry and a registered trademark of the Milan Chamber of Commerce. In addition to the soft dough, the panettone contains sultanas, candied orange and lemon zests. Without these additions, it is called a Pandoro. Sprinkle with icing sugar and enjoy!

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