<>*<>*<>*<>*<>*<> GERMAN GOODIES RECIPE NEWSLETTER Dec 12, 2014 <>*<>*<>*<>*<>*<>
Turn on some German Music!    |   Our German Recipe Site  |   Our Facebook page


While you read the newsletter here is some fun Music

While you read the newsletter here is some fun Christmas Music


Guten Tag,

Lebkuchen Season! Comforting Soups for the Cold Weather

Our German Cookbook

Braune Lebkuchen

Cream of Wheat Dumpling Soup or

It is time to make Christmas cookies and so my first one is usually Lebkuchen. In specific Braune Lebkuchen that is a thin cookie with amazing flavor that can be chewy or crispy depending if you use Hartshorn.
Lebkuchen has many styles, shapes sizes and textures and an interesting history.

Winter is here and soups are part of my daily routine.
One they are comforting, can be low in calories and they use up valuable tidbits, you know the ends and pieces too good to throw away or those few carrots, asparagus or peas that aren't enough for a meal.

Also I recently made a soup my German grandma use to make that we called Cream of Wheat Dumpling soup. I know this may sound odd but its also a German classic called Griessnockerlsuppe.
Cream of Wheat is a trade name for a thicker cut wheat than flour.




I recently made Graupensuppe (German Barley Soup) and it was great and I cold canned the rest so
it will keep for a long time.

When you have the habit down, a soup can be made very quickly, between chores, or put in a crockpot before you go to work.

When it makes more than a pot for the day then I do what I call cold canning, which is putting it in a canning jar hot, seal it but keep it in the fridge. It will last a month or more.


Graupensuppe (German Barley Soup)


Braune Lebkuchen

IF you want to skip the history
Go Here for the Lebkuchen Recipes

I have always loved the flavor of Lebkuchen and gingerbreads something fierce. I can start while watching a movie and eat a plate full by the time the bad guy is caught. I also love to read about it.

There is so much history behind this little cookie, bar or cake that taste similar to Gingerbread.
I can only give a few tidbits that I think you will enjoy.

How did it become so popular?
Lebkuchen or Gingerbread type cookies became popular in the old world because it is believed that ginger was a natural preservative.

Gingerbread then became popular to make into shapes to take on a hunt, journey or out to sea. So the idea spread quickly to other countries. Honey and spices were always associated with something almost sacred. A honey cake was believed to bring good luck. Soldiers sometimes would wear a honey cake into battle as a Talisman around his neck.

Documents are recorded that Franconia Monks started to make these cookies and give them out to kids as rewards for good prayers and behavior. They even made a special lebkuchen that had loose dough and placed it on rice wafers that they used for communion so they wouldn't stick to the baking pan. These were well liked and to this day are produced and very popular.

The Franconian area of Bavaria is in the North.






Nuremberg becomes the Lebkuchen Capital

is in the Franconia area of Bavaria


Lebkuchen were first baked in the city of Nuremberg, with the earliest records from the year 1395. During the Middle Ages, spice inspectors at the gates to the city checked the spices used for baking the gingerbreads which traveled as far as China. In 1643 the city of Nuremburg approved the first Lebkuchen Baker's Guild which began with 14 master gingerbread bakers who were bound by strict regulations.

Being along the spice route was one advantage that Nuremberg had. Another was the local Lorenzer Forest. This was a colorful, foresty countryside filled with many different kinds of flowers and blooms - the perfect environment for bees and honey production.

Until 1867, Lebkuchen were made by hand. Automated processing started thereafter with the liberalization of Bavaria's commercial trade.However, many of Nuremburg's bakeries still produce some of their Lebkuchen specialties by hand. using traditional recipes passed down from generation to generation. The oldest gingerbread recipe from the 16th century is housed in the German National Museum in Munich. In 1996, Nuremburg gingerbread was declared a "protected geographical indication" and is authorized to use the EU stamp


In Nuremberg the Christkindle markets are very popular

Lebkuchen of all types can be found




Why at Christmas ?

Most of us of Germanic origin probably had a relative that was part of a Yulefest that sacrificed an animal as an offering to the gods that you would have an easy winter , and a good harvest. These were celebrated around this time of year, when it was cold.

Many families couldn't afford to sacrifice a needed farm animal so they would use a bread or cake shaped as an animals for a symbol. Other shapes like hearts and even people were popular also that had symbolic meaning. This is of course where our gingerbread men came from.


When Christianity came the Yulefests turned into Christmas but the festivals
were so much fun that they just kept them and turned pagan symbols into Religious symbols.

So many shapes of Lebkuchen are in animals and other symbols.

Even pictures are cut out and mounted on top of the lebkuchen.


These are Lebkuchen onto which a picture is drawn or imprinted.

Last year Karen Kinanne bought me a Lebkuchen Santa made by Pahana Lebkuchen company,
when she was in the Kristkindle market in Dresden.
Just cut out your favorite Santa and out paste it on top of the cookie.

Here is an old hand written recipe for Lebkuchen believed to be
centuries old.

click to enlarge picture





Gingerbread Houses are believed to become popular after the German authors
The Grimm brothers wrote Hansel and Gretel . However it may have been the other way around,
that someone had made Gingerbread houses and the Brother's Grimm developed a story around them.

Lebkuchen Recipes


Braune Lebkuchen

Brown Lebkuchen thin cookies, with Molasses

This is a cookie that is very rich in flavor but has an
old world texture, that is a little chewy but every year
I get the family that requests me to make them.

Come into my kitchen and let's make
Braune Lebkuchen
With Step by Step Pictures


Cake like Lebkuchen

Some Lebkuchen is baked in cake form and served with
whipped cream or lemon sauce.

Here is my grandma (Oma's) recipe for
"cake like" Lebkuchen.

Lebkuchen Hearts

Here is a recipe how to make Lebkuchen Hearts



Lebkuchen Baked On An Oblaten Wafer


Here is where you can get some Oblaten Wafers



Bahlsen Contessa Lebkuchen ........Yum !
Order them here


Elisen Lebkuchen

Elisen Lebkuchen is considered the finest. It needs to use only almonds, hazelnuts or walnuts
and must be at least 25% of the dough, and flour needs to be only 10% of the dough.

This is a nice soft lebkuchen cookie with lots of good spice in it and a nice glazed top
This is cut into strips instead of round.

Go here for the recipe for Elisen lebkuchen


Chocolate Lebkuchen

This Lebkuchen has chocolate mixed right in with the dough and a thin orange frosting.


Our Family

from a
German Grandma

Browse Through Our Book Here

Comes with 28 Bonus Step by Step Recipes with color pictures.

Whole List of the bonus Recipes


Orders automatically bumped up to 2 day priority mail
free of charge for Christmas

Could be the
Perfect Christmas Gift?

I would love to be a part of your Christmas with our Gift Wrapped Cookbook that includes or
Special Goodies Package seen above, (Bonus Recipes CD, postcards, vanilla beans and vanilla sugar),
Let me personalize it by signing it to you or someone special.

We send it out 2 day priority mail !
same day you order to get there for before Christmas.
There is still time, I get it out the same or next day!


We send it out 2 day priority mail !

To order just the cookbook alone go here




Cream of Wheat Dumpling Soup


My Grandma use to make these dumplings for us particularly when we were sick as
they were easy on the tummy and tasted warm and good in chicken broth. In Germany it is called
Griessnockerlsuppe. Griess (the cream of wheat) ...Nockerl is a style of dumpling ....and suppe is soup
The word Nockerl has connections to the Italian word Gnocci which is a style of pasta or dumpling in Italy.

Why Use Cream of Wheat for Dumplings?

Flour is much cheaper but
I want to share a little history here because I think many of you will have a hard time relating to
using a breakfast cereal for a heartwarming dumpling soup or meal and even other foods like desserts.

First of all what is Cream of Wheat?

The Cream of Wheat web site says this special coarse ground flour is
from the first milling and is the source of flour of the highest grade. 
Thomas Amidon the head Miller called it “Cream of Wheat"
and his family loved to make a nice porridge out of it.

In 1893

Thomas Amidon of the Diamond Mill Flour Company in Grand Forks, North Dakota thought this might be marketable as the company's sales were down and they needed to do something to stay afloat.

Grand Forks, North Dakota , around turn of the century.
There is a great deal of our German brothers and sisters here.

This same flour is often referred to as Semolina or Farina both are Italian words for flour and has been used in Germany for ages and
is called Griess . It isn't pronounced like the English ...Grease but roll the "r" a bit. The word Griess comes most likely from the Germanic word ...griss ...that means grind.



This is Durum Semolina which is very popular for pasta. It is a hard winter wheat so it gives a nice chewier texture to the pasta.




Words that are close to Griess are
Grütze..(pronounced Gruzzi) or as we say Groats are related words which are large kernels of grain, such as wheat, oats or barley, and in the southern United States they use the word grits for their famous side dish that is made from corn.

Oat Groats are often referred to as Steel cut oats, pinhead or Irish oats





Not only has the words intertwined with different cultures but also the style of these dumplings.
Using the two spoons to make them is a real French tradition for making fancy dumplings which they call Quenelles.


Go here to make Cream of Wheat Dumpling Soup (Griessnockerlsuppe)



(German Beef Barley Soup)

To make a soup like this in Germany you very possibly would stop at the market to get some......


When I was in cooking college one of the first things I learned about was a blend of vegetables called the
French cooking term "Mirepoix". It was basically carrots, onions and celery chopped coarse or fine and used to flavor any soup, sauce, ragout, roast you name it. Sometimes it would be strained out after flavoring a clean looking sauce, pureed or even just left in.
In Italian cuisine it is called Sofrito.

In Germany celery was not always available so they opted for using celeriac or celery root that could stay in
the root cellar with carrots all winter. Leeks are a very hearty vegetable that grows in tough climates as well.


In Germany you can find these vegetables packaged with some herbs that is enough
for a family meal making life easier for the Hausfrau or whoever is cooking.
Learn more about Suppengrün here

Go here to make Graupensuppe or German Barley Soup with Beef


Also Cold Canning Soup

I have been doing this for some time now. I make a big batch of soup and I know it won't get eaten and spoil. Waste and more work
to throw it out and clean the moldy mess. This way the soup stays good for a month or more. by sealing it in a hot jar you reduce the oxygen
in the space between the lid and the soup to very little and so the lid will suck down and keep a nice tight seal.

Go here for directions on how I do Cold Canning or Jarring Soup



Other Links,


A taste of Austria Griessnockerlsuppe


Define Grütze or Groats

The History of Cream of Wheat




German Music Selection



Lasst uns froh und munter sein


Toni Unger -
Lasst uns froh und munter sein

Let us be happy and cheerful

More music from Toni Unger

Volksweise aus dem Taunus
Traditional song from the Taunus region


Lasst uns froh und munter sein
Und uns in dem Herrn erfreu'n!
Lustig, lustig, tralera-lera,
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!

Dann stell ich den Teller auf,
Niklaus legt gewiß was drauf,
Lustig, lustig, tralera-lera,
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!

Wenn ich schlaf, dann träume ich:
Jetzt bringt Niklaus was für mich.
Lustig, lustig, tralera-lera,
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!

Wenn ich aufgestanden bin,
Lauf ich schnell zum Teller hin.
Lustig, lustig, tralera-lera,
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!

Niklaus ist ein guter Mann,
Dem man nicht g'nug danken kann.
Lustig, lustig, tralera-lera,
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!
Bald ist Nikolausabend da!
ENGLISH (lit. prose)

Let us be happy and cheerful
And rejoice in the Lord!
Jolly, jolly, tralera-lera,
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!

Then I put the plate out
Nick'll surely put somethin' on it.
Jolly, jolly, tralera-lera,
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!

When I sleep then I dream:
Now Nicholas brings me something.
Jolly, jolly, tralera-lera,
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!

When I rise (in the morning)
I dash quickly to the plate.
Jolly, jolly, tralera-lera,
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!

Nicholas is a good man
Whom we can't thank enough.
Jolly, jolly, tralera-lera,
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!
Soon Nicholas Eve is here!



Medley Weihnachtslieder 2003

Mireille Mathieu is Europes sweetheart and for such a small person ( little over 5 Ft ) she has such a big voice . I have seen her twice in live performances and she is great ! Winter in Canada was directed at the German/Canadian community !



Weihnachtslied Alle Jahre wieder...


Angela Wiedl - Süßer die Glocken nie klingen

More German Music Here





More German Music




Get in a Pickle Book

Over 50 great pickle recipes for all
kinds of vegetables, fruit and even eggs.

View List of Recipes Here

My new book to celebrate pickling season.
Get it now for 16.95



Where do we share our German recipes and heritage?
The German Goodies Facebook Page

Also place recipe requests

Join our discussion of German recipes on Facebook
Just hit the "Like" button and you can start posting.




Want to receive our
German Goodies Newsletter?

Name :
Email :

We Keep your email address private

Alles Gute!

Stephen Block