Scottish vegan cookbook and lebkuchen

It’s lebkuchen time of year which means it’s time to share my recipe. It has become a tradition in our family to make numerous batches of lebkuchen every December. Lebkuchen is a German Christmas dish which translates to “ginger bread” but there’s no ginger in the recipe. I got the recipe from a German friend and then made it vegan, except for the honey but this can be easily switched with a plant-based alternative. The recipe is right down the bottom.

I had to eat lots of lebkuchen to get this next photo. Every photo was blurred or my hair looked bad or too many wrinkles were showing until eventually, I got this but even this isn’t great because it looks like I’ve got fillings in my mouth but actually that’s just uneaten lebkuchen – perhaps that’s worse?

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Here’s the lebkuchen before it went in the oven.

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It’s really thick and sticky and hard to spread on the tray because it sticks to everything. But it’s worth it.

There are so many amazing vegan cookbooks around now. It’s such a contrast to how hard it was 20 years ago to find even one … back then vegans had to make do with vegetarian cookbooks and adapt recipes.

Today I discovered The Scottish Vegan cookbook. Scotland isn’t known for culinary prowess but there are a lot of traditional Scottish foods like Scotch broth, stovies, oatcakes,  bannocks, and haggis and these are all yummy foods (as long as they’re vegan of course!). The Scottish Vegan cookbook has recipes for all of these and more. Tonight we’re having the Scotch broth soup and I made the oat soda bread to go with it. Both recipes are from the book.

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Here’s my bread:

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The nice thing about a Scottish cookbook is it uses local ingredients because this is what people ate before they could fly or ship food into the country. It’s nice to cook with exotic foods sometimes but it’s even nicer and somewhat comforting to make stuff from ingredients that were grown nearby.

Here’s my recipe for lebkuchen:

  • 500g honey (or a plant-based syrup)
  • 375g sugar
  • 3 tablespoons of ground flax
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 15g cinnamon
  • 4g ground cloves
  • 25g baking soda
  • 100g dairy-free butter
  • 250g ground hazelnuts
  • 700g wholewheat flour
  • for the icing: mix 1 cup icing sugar with 2 tbsp water (you can make as much of this as you like, depending on how thick you want the sweet topping)

Heat the honey with the butter, then let it cool down a little. Beat the flax with the sugar and water well. Then mix everything (except icing sugar and water) with the flour.

Spread the dough onto an oven tray and bake for approximately 25 minutes at 200°C.

Spread the icing sugar/water mixture on top immediately after taking it out of the oven. Cut dough in pieces and let it cool down.

Eat and enjoy!