Peppernuts or Pfeffernusse are coin-sized cookies that pack a lot of punch. Spicy notes of cinnamon, anise and black pepper hit your taste buds with a ton of flavour. The smell of these little treats alone bring me back to christmases of my childhood. My grandma made them every year at Christmas…the time she spent in her kitchen had to have been unreal! They are crunchy and sweet and delicious.
The recipe for these German-mennonite cookies is easy to follow. Although a bit tedious they are fun to make and share. Fill up mason jars, coffee mugs or dessert tins and pass them around this Christmas. I love them with a steaming mug of black coffee or tea.
Here’s the recipe:
- 1 cup butter
- 2 cups corn syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tsp ground star anise
- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 Tbsp baking soda
- 1 Tbsp canilla
- 8 cups + flour
- In your mixer or with an electric beater, cream the butter and sugar. Add the syrup and spices along with the vanilla. Add in the flour and baking soda gradually until a soft dough is formed (much like a sugar cookie dough).
- Roll into ropes (the thickness is up to you, I rolled mine 3/4-1 inch thick). Cover with plastic wrap and freeze.
- Slice into thin coins while still frozen and bake on parchment lined baking sheets at 350* until golden and crisp. Let cool (they’ll crisp even more) and store in airtight containers. (This recipe makes 6-7 pan full, I’ve halved it many times as well when I’m not as energetic for a full batch!!)