In Germany this past Christmas, I irritated the hell out of Certain Someone looking for Springerle molds. Surely the Christmas market in Cologne would have some. His mother and other woman I asked laughed and said no one makes Springerle anymore. It was outdated. If anything they used them as wall decorations. I though how sad it was the art was fading. Staring at my edition of Martha Stewart Living didn't help. She had a section devoted to cookies and crafts made with Springerle molds from a company called House On The Hill. Come to find out House on the Hill is a local one for me, and Springerle isn't just for Christmas. I received the catalogue and there are so many mold in so many sizes for all occasions. They can be very pricey too for just replicas. A lot of intricate detail goes into these molds which manage to convey a story for every occasion.I settled on a minimum investment of a Easter egg at around $21. The irony is I had to come back home to find these!
One could use it for marzipan or cookies. I am really eyeing those cake toppers. Springerle requires Anise oil , lemon, or orange oils and Bakers Ammonia. You could use a sturdy sugar cookie recipe, but I decided to keep it authentic. A little recipe book came with my order of the Springerle stater kit. What I though would be easy is a little more complex. I began to see why the art is dying off. But if your are patient, beautiful cookies can be had. The key is to letting your dough , after molding dry for about 24 hours.
Even after following that, some of my impressions faded( cookie was to thick in width perhaps) and some of the dough seeped out of the dried crust and ruined the shape. The recipe yields a lot and could easily be cut in half. Although these cookies keep for months in airtight containers. I even saved the duds in freezer to use for a cheese cake crust. House on the Hill had recipes for chocolate cookies as well. Maybe one day I can take a class up there. The Springerle molds can be used for paper crafts as well. So the investment pays off. Here is the link to recipe. Be sure to put aside a day before you bake these.
My ambition was greater than my technique. I mixed my colors with vodka and brushed them on the finished Springerle. I also used metallic luster's. There was to much imperfections with the finished product to make it as perfect as I wanted. Cracks and such. But I'm always learning and they did not go to waste. I'm also seeing details vary by molds as well. Not one to give up I will be revisiting this with marzipan's and cake decorating.