most important item to come out of Lübeck's long history
as Christmas haven is marzipan - the candy made from almond and
sugar that is carefully formed into delightful animals, fruits,
Marzipan was first a product of the orient, where it was a delicacy of Arab nobility. It was brought through Venice during the crusades and developed into a dessert served at royal tables by the 14th century.
After the European discovery of the new world and the mass harvesting of sugar cane became a world-wide phenomenon, marzipan, which was usually served in bread form, became something of an art form in Europe. Later, during the Industrial Revolution, marzipan factories sprung up throughout Europe.
Today, Germany's most famous and traditional marzipan factories are found in Lübeck, such as Haus Niederegger and Carstens. Both make fantastical forms and figurines out of marzipan - if one can imagine it, they can make it.
And like the beer purity law of Bavaria, marzipan that comes from Lübeck must adhere to the strict standards enacted by the city.
Created by R. Taylor