Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Waiting for Christmas

We like to read the book Waiting for Christmas, to kick off our Advent season. In 1851, the first Advent calendars came into being.  A German man, Gerhard Lang, is credited with making the calendars available to the public.  This book is about this little boy's memories of his mother making an Advent calendar with little cookies called Wibele, a traditional German cookie.

This book is part of a series, Traditions of Faith from around the World.  These books illustrate how Christian holiday customs have evolved around the world.  This one is my favorite.  The illustrations are brightly colored and it is just long enough to read to a group of children.

If you haven't gotten an Advent calendar yet, never fear Mibo is here.  Click here to print off this cute calendar.

If you'd like to make the traditional Lebkuchen that is referenced in this book, here is a recipe:

Yields: 18 Lebkuchen cookies

For the Cookies:
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for kneading
1¼ teaspoons ground nutmeg
1¼ teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon ground allspice
1 egg
¾ cup light brown sugar
½ cup honey
½ cup molasses

For the Glaze:
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
2 Tablespoons water
1 Tablespoon lemon juice

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease two baking sheets or line them with parchment paper.
2. Sift together the flour, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves and allspice. Set aside.
3. Beat the egg and sugar together on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl.
4. Beat in the honey and molasses until thoroughly combined.
5. On low speed, stir in the flour mixture until just combined.
6. Turn the dough out from the bowl onto a well-floured surface. Knead the dough, adding more flour as kneaded, until a stiff dough is formed.
7. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill until firm, about 2 hours or overnight.
8. On a well-floured surface, roll out the dough into a 9×12-inch rectangle. Cut the dough into 18 3×2-inch rectangles. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
9. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack and let cool. Whisk together the confectioner’s sugar, water and lemon juice and brush or spread on top of the cookies.
10. Allow the glaze to firm, and then store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature.

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Shawntele said...

Sounds like a great book; thanks for the recipe.

It Feels Like Chaos said...

That recipes sounds so yummy! Thanks for sharing it!

Shannon said...

We enjoy this book each year too.
Love the blog!

Jerri said...

These cookies sound delicious! Thanks for stopping by my site. Hope to see you Dec 14-18 for the Holly Bloggy Christmas Bash!

Molly said...

I bought molasses this year for the firs time ever...hoping to make these yummy cookies once we start our Christmas break.

Joyful said...

This book sounds interesting and those cookies look scrumptious. Thanks for sharing

My post is here:

mentoringmoments said...

Another Christmas book to add to my shopping list today! Thanks for sharing the recipe, we'll be making these next week.