Sweet Traditions: Confections by Hand

Gingerbread Cookies

When the moon rests high in the dark December sky, a light burns brightly in one Canadian kitchen. Soon, a familiar aroma will drift throughout the house, stirring up memories of home.

Gingerbread Cookies

Practiced hands measure flour, eggs, spices, and the most important component—honey—to form the dough for the traditional cookies Ivana Smulikova has made since her childhood in Slovakia. Eleven years ago, her family of four moved to British Columbia with only eight suitcases among them. Much was left behind, but tucked in her heart was the recipe for her homeland’s classic confection.

Gingerbread Cookies

Known under different names in other European countries (lebkuchen in Germany, taai-taai in Belgium), the cookies, called medovniky in Slovakia, look similar to gingerbread, but rather than molasses and brown sugar, they rely on honey as the sweetener. This natural ingredient also acts as a preservative, keeping the treats edible for several months.

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  1. Being part Slovak, I can innately appreciate this beautiful and intricate art !

    I somehow can’t imagine eating these gorgeous pieces and would want to use them strictly for decorating the Christmas tree, much like Tasha Tudor did.

    Ummm…. I can almost smell the scent of the gingerbread from here!

    Brandon Hartford
    Te Deum Cottage

  2. We are two ladies from Calumet MI, who love ur tea house, cookies, etc. We were wondering if u have a book on the teahouse, cookies, decorating, etc..


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