Make Ahead


November 29, 2016
5 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Makes about 60 cookies
Author Notes

Plan ahead! Once mixed, the dough needs to rest and develop flavor for 1 to 2 days before it's baked.

Reprinted with permission from Dorie's Cookies (Houghton Mifflin, 2016). —Dorie Greenspan

What You'll Need
  • For the cookies
  • 2/3 cup (160ml) honey
  • 1/2 cup (100g) sugar
  • 1/2 cup candied orange peel, homemade or store-bought, finely chopped
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (287g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup sliced almonds, unblanched or blanched
  • 2 tablespoons kirsch, Grand Marnier, or dark rum (optional)
  • For the glaze
  • 1/2 cup (60g) confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon kirsch, Grand Marnier, dark rum, or water
  1. To make the cookies: Pour the honey and sugar into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring just until the sugar dissolves. Stay close—once the honey boils, it can easily bubble over. Remove the pan from the heat; stir in the candied peel and lemon zest and scrape into a large bowl. Set aside to cool to lukewarm, about 30 minutes.
  2. While the honey is cooling, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and spices.
  3. Using a sturdy flexible spatula or a wooden spoon, stir the almonds and the kirsch (or other alcohol), if you're using it, into the honey mixture, then gradually add the dry ingredients. You're going to end up with a very heavy dough, so be prepared to put some muscle into the mixing.
  4. Scrape the dough out onto a piece of parchment paper dusted with flour and shape it into a square. dust the top with flour, sandwich it with another piece of parchment, and roll it into a 12-inch square. Don't worry about precision, but do try to get the dough a scant 1/2 inch thick (I actually aim for 1/3 inch, but I don't always make it). Slide the sandwiched dough onto a baking sheet, wrap the setup in plastic wrap, and refrigerate it for 2 days or keep it at room temperature for 1 day.
  5. Getting ready to bake: Center a rack in the oven and preheat it to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  6. Peel the parchment away from the top and bottom of the dough and place the dough on the lined baking sheet. Bake the leckerli for 13 to 15 minutes, or until it is golden and puffy; it may crack, but that's fine. Press on the dough lightly, and it will be soft. Slide the leckerli, still on its parchment, onto a cooling rack.
  7. Meanwhile, to make the glaze: Put all the ingredients in a bowl and stir until smooth.
  8. Using a pastry brush, brush the glaze evenly over the entire surface of the warm leckerli. If some drips dow the sides, that's fine. Allow the leckerli to cool to room temperature.
  9. Carefully slide the leckerli off the parchment and onto a cutting board. Working with a chef's knife or other long knife, trim the edges and cut the leckerli into 3-inch-wide bands. Cut each band into 3/4-inch-wide cookies.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Sipa
  • judy
  • Arrxx
  • Amy Merin
    Amy Merin
With the publication her 14th book, Baking with Dorie, New York Times bestselling author Dorie Greenspan marks her thirtieth anniversary as a cookbook author. She has won five James Beard Awards for her cookbooks and journalism and was inducted into the Who’s Who of Food and Beverage in America. A columnist for the New York Times Magazine and the author of the xoxoDorie newsletter on Bulletin, Dorie was recently awarded an Order of Agricultural Merit from the French government for her outstanding writing on the foods of that country. She lives in New York City, Westbrook, Connecticut, and Paris. You can find Dorie on Instagram, Facebook, Bulletin and her website,

6 Reviews

judy November 29, 2022
this is a great recipe! I halved it. when I got to the rolling part, instead I pulled it into a log. wrapped it in plastic wrap and then refrigerated. There are only two of us. So I cut them off the log like refrigerator cookies and baked about 6 at a time. Made a water and sugar glaze, or sometimes orange juice and sugar and spread over the top when they were warm. So good, I made a version of this as a kid from The Joy OF Cooking: Liebkuchen. They were in the Holiday cookie section of the cookbook. I remember how hard it was to mix and roll out. The honey made the recipe. They were really good. This version reminds me of the same. I find the I make a lot of cooked dough into logs, so that I can refrigerate and bake a few at a time. With only two of us, this works great. I usually have a few different varieties in the fridge to choose from! Thank you.
Mary December 27, 2022
Thanks for the tip. I'll try the log method!
Arrxx December 11, 2016
What is the final texture of these supposed to be? I made them and the ends I cut off are crisp while the center portions are soft and chewy. Just curious. The crunchy bits are good.
Sipa December 4, 2016
In cooking school we dipped the unglazed parts in tempered dark chocolate. They tasted great that way and A very longer shelf life.
Amy M. December 4, 2016
How long will these last in an airtight container at room temp? Do they freeze well? If so, glaze before or after freezing? Thanks!
mela June 11, 2017
Amy, did you freeze them? Wondering how that worked. Thanks.