Tiny, crunchy cookies with huge flavor, these pfeffernusse, or "pepper nuts" last for ages and go well with coffee, tea, or a teeny cup of milk.
Pfeffernusse are part of the 6 different German cookies I bake every year, to keep my late mother-in-law's tradition going.
I make these early in the game, because they'll last forever (as long as I hide them from the family).
They're simple to make – just combine ingredients, chill the dough, roll it out to a quarter of an inch thickness, and cut out as many little circles as possible.
Then you let them sit, uncovered, in a cool, dry place (like my pantry, for instance, away from children and cats) for about 12 to 24 hours. Overnight works nicely.
When you're ready to bake them, you just brush the tops with a little brandy and pop them in a low oven for about half an hour. Let them cool completely before removing them from the cookie sheet. Store, airtight, for a long, long time, if necessary.
Of course, you should always sample your baking. You know, just to make sure they're acceptable.
My original post, from 2007, can be found here, in case you're interested.
Or, if you're looking for a printable version, go here.