Tuesday, December 20, 2005


“MAGENBROT” is a kind of spice bread hailing from Switzerland which is made during the Christmas period. It is of the same family as the French “Pain D’Épice” or the German “Lebkuchen”. At the origin, it was baked with honey, but nawadays the use of sugar is well-spread and very common.

“MAGENBROT” is very spongy, light and has a crunchy icing coating to die for. With it’s yummy blend of spices this Christmas bread will beautifully perfume your apartment while baking. “MAGENBROT” has a taste that will bewitch you totally and get you addicted to it's splendid aromas. And, don't worry, you can eat it (or gobble it) without an ounce of bad conscience as it’s totally lacking the usual amount (high) of calories that are contained in such festive treats!…

This recipe is based on that of Betty Bossi and was modified slightly to meet my personal taste...

500g Plain white flour or rye flour
1 Tbs Baking Powder
2 1/2 Tbs Chocolate powder or cocoa powder
2 Pinches salt
1 1/2 Tsp Ground cinnamon
3/4 Tsp Ground cloves
1/4 Tsp Ground nutmeg
450g Castor sugar
150ml Water
150ml Milk
1 Tbs Kirsch
100g Dark cooking chocolate (60-70%)
20g Unsalted butter
100ml water
250g Powder sugar
1/2 Tsp Ground cinnamon
1/3 Tsp Ground cloves
1/4 Tsp Ground nutmeg

1. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
2. In a bowl, mix all the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, cocoa, salt, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and sugar) together.
3. Add the water, milk and kirsch. Beat until you get a smooth batter.
4. Pour the batter into a rectangular brownie tray (25X30cm) lined with baking sheet.
5. Bake for about 20 minutes in the inferior half of the oven.
6. Set aside for a very short time and turn onto a rack.
7. Remove the baking sheet and let cool.
8. Cut slices (2X4cm).
9. Place in a big bowl.
10. In a pan, melt the chocolate with the butter and water. Set aside.
11. Add the powder sugar and spices. Mix well.
12. Pour the icing/coating mixture over the slices and mix very gently until they are all evenly covered/coated.
13. Place on a rack and let dry for about 1 hour.
14. Keep in a tin for 1-2 weeks.

Instead of kirsch, you can use any distilled alcohol such as Brandy, Cognac, Bourbon or Rum, etc…
Spread the batter with a wet spatula; it will then be easier.

Serving suggestions:
Serve with a good cup of tea (ex. Earl Grey).

(Magenbrot -Pic by http://de.wikipedia.org)
(Dalpe -Pic by Christian Mariotti www.trekearth.com)


  1. hi rosa - lebkuchen is also called lekach in yiddish and reminds me of the honey cake we make at rosh hashanah. my mother makes magenbrot but i never really liked it for some reason. i think i didn't like things with all those spices when i was younger. i'll have to try the one you put here and retry it. ;p

  2. I love Magenbrot and buy it every time I visit CH. I am delighted to finally have a recipe I can make in New Zealand. Thank you for listing it. Su

  3. "And, don't worry, you can eat it (or gobble it) without an ounce of bad conscience as it’s totally lacking any kind of fat!…"

    Not true.

    Cocoa and chocolate have fat and so does the 20g of butter that goes into the icing.

  4. LINDA: You are right! I wrote that long ago and didn't realise that it was inaccurate :D....

  5. Who cares about fat or sugar, it's christmas! It's a type of cake, of course it's not like eating a carrot!
    Anyhow, Rosa, these are excellent, I'm going to make some for my grandmother for christmas :)

  6. ANONYMOUS: Right ;-P!!! But, it is still a lot less hatmful than certain other treats... I hope your grandmother will like them!

  7. Your receipe is great! I added also 3/4 Tsp of Sternanis. I offred to people here in Korfu, they love it!

  8. MERI: Thanks for passing by and for leaving a comment! I'm glad you liked that recipe and your people in Korfu enjoyed it too!