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Swiss Style Gingerbread - Basler Laeckerli - Swiss-German Christmas Cookies


Basler Laeckerli - Swiss German Christmas Cookies

Basler Laeckerli - Swiss German Christmas Cookies


Basler Läckerli ("Lek-ur-lē") is another 300 year old cookie with a secret recipe. Dry and filled with nuts and "Orangeat", this cookie keeps well for weeks. If you cannot get a hold of real Basler Läckerli from Basel, Switzerland, this recipe yields good results and is delicious, too.

Makes 3 dozen cookies.

See larger image

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes


  • 3/4 c. raw almonds (90 grams)
  • 3/4 - 1 c. raw walnuts (90 grams)
  • 3/4 c. raw hazelnuts (90 grams)
  • 1 c. honey (350 grams)
  • 1 3/4 c. sugar (350 grams)
  • 4 5/8 c. flour (570 grams)
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 3/4 - 1 c. candied lemon peel (125 grams)
  • 3/4 - 1 c. candied orange peel (125 grams)
  • 6 T. cinnamon (30 grams)
  • 2 tsp. cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 2 tsp. potassium carbonate (food grade potash) (about 10 grams)
  • 2 tsp. ammonium carbonate (baker's ammonia or Hirschhornsalz) (about 10 grams)
  • 3-4 T. Kirschwasser, other liqueur or water
  • ***Glaze***
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/4 c. water


Blanch almonds and hazelnuts and remove the skins. Let dry. Finely chop all nuts (you may pulse in a food processor several times) and set aside.

Heat sugar and honey until boiling and sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.

Finely chop candied lemon and orange peel.

While sugar and honey are heating, mix all dry ingredients with the candied peel and nuts. Carefully pour hot syrup into dry ingredients and mix until a sticky, thick dough comes together in a ball.

Form the dough into a loaf shape, wrap in plastic and let the dough sit at room temperature for 1-3 days.

On a lightly floured board, roll out dough to fit a cookie sheet, about 1 centimeter (less than 1/2 inch) thick. Place the dough on a greased cookie sheet and bake at 350°F for 25 minutes, or until cookies are browned and hardening on the edges.

Remove from oven and cool slightly.

While cookies are cooling, boil together sugar and water until sugar dissolves to make the glaze. Brush glaze over warm cookies. Score the cookies with a knife and let cool completely.

Cut into squares when cool. Store in a dry container. If glaze is still a bit sticky, you may dust cookies with powdered sugar before packing them together.

Cookies will keep for several weeks if you can keep from eating them. These cookies may be shipped successfully.

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