Lebkuchen from Luzern Switzerland

2 dl Fresh cream
80 g Pear molasses; (1) (*)
60 g Pear molasses; (2) (*)
150 g Sugar
20 g Candied lemon peel; diced
20 g Candied orange peel; diced
1 pn Ground aniseed
1 pn Ground cinnamon
1 pn Ground nutmeg
1 pn Ground clove
20 g Baking powder
500 g Whole meal (or white) flour
2 dl Warm milk

(*) Pear molasses also known as treacle

100 g = 3 1/2 oz
1 dl = 3 1/2 fl oz = 2/5 cup
180 Deg. C = 350 Deg. F
2.5 cm = 1 inch

The story:
This specialty is the "gourmand cake" of the St. Nicholas Festival celebrated annually on the 6th of December. Presided over by the Bishop of Myra, the feast day assumes an air of solemnity in Lucerne itself, culminating in a procession through the town. "St. Nicholas" is preceded by two heralds and is escorted by frightening "Schmutzli" who, according to tradition, are thought to punish children who have misbehaved during the year. Only well behaved children receive presents from St. Nicholas on this special day.

The recipe:
Whip the cream and mix with molasses (1), spices and salt. Add the baking powder, flour, warm milk and diced peel, mixing thoroughly until smooth.
Pour the mixture into a greased and lined sponge ring and bake for 45-50 minutes at 180 Deg. C.
When baked, brush the top with the pear molasses (2) to glaze.
Source: Culinary Art and Traditions of Switzerland, Pro Gastronomia

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