Rye Christmas cookies from 1947

A deviation from my routine – today is cookie baking day.

Sweet rye flour cookies

300g rye flour, 150g butter, 200g sugar, salt, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon,, 1/2 egg or 2 tablespoons milk, 1/2 (packet of) baking powder, 1 egg for brushing

Make a short dough, roll it out to twice the thickness of a knife’s back, cut out small rectangles, brush with egg, bake at medium heat.

Bayerisches Kochbuch, Neubearbeitet von Frau Dr. med. E. Lydtin, 18th edition, Munich 1947 (Published under Military Government Information Control License Number US-E-117), recipe #886

I make a habit of baking a variety of cookies every Advent season to make small gift bags and ‘bunte Teller’ for friends and family, and this book has proven my most reliable resource. This particular recipe is a favourite both for its unusual and plesant taste and its frugal interwar charm.

I used Type 1050 rye flour, 200g of sugar, a small pibnch of salt and 5g of baking powder. These were worked into a classic Mürbeteig with the other ingredients, briefly chilled, rolled out, brushed with egg and sprinkled with coarse-grained Hagelzucker. Baked at 175°C / 375°F, the resulting cookies are soft and crumbly, with a nutty rye flavour and a gentle note of cinnamon. The crunch of Hagelzucker adds to their attraction. I heartily recommend them.

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