These has been and still are traditional Christmas Cookies in Bavaria/Germany and Austria as well. SPRINGERLE are white, anise-flavored cookies, made from a simple egg-flour-sugar-dough, usually rectangular or round in shape and have a picture or design stamped on top. The images are imprinted with specially carved SPRINGERLE-Rolling-Pins or flat molds. After the cookies are baked, the designs are sometimes enhanced with edible food colors, tempera, or acrylic paints if the cookies are to be used as decorations.
The name SPRINGERLE (Spring-uhr-lee) comes from an old German dialect and means ‘little knight’ or ‘jumping horse’. Historians trace these cookies back to the Julfest, a midwinter celebration of pagan Germanic tribes. The cookies were also used to celebrate birth and weddings. Exchanging Springerle during the the Christmas Holidays was a common practice very much like we exchange cards today.
Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or use Silicone Baking Mats to prevent the cookies from sticking. Avoid insulated cookie sheets as they will cause the Springerle to brown during baking. In large bowls , beat eggs on high speed of yout electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add sugar, butter and baking powder; beat at high speed for 15 min, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in anise oil extract. Gradually beat in flour until well mixed. On a lightly floured board, knead the dough a few times, use a standar rolling pin, roll dough into a rectangle about 1/2 inch thick. Use your lightly floured Springerle Rolling Pin , roll slowly and firmly over the rectangle rolled out dough. Use a sharp knife, cut cookies apart and place them on the prepared cookie sheets. Repeat all steps till dough is all used up.
READY TO BAKE:
Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Place cookie sheet one at the time in middle of oven. Bake apprx. 10min until slightly golden on bottom, but white on top. Remove from oven and move to wire cooling rack. Let cookies stand overnight to completely dry before storing.
STORAGE: Keep cookies in tight container for 2 or 3 weeks before using to achieve the best results.
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