In the United States we know gingerbread at Christmas made into a gingerbread man, a dark cookie sweetened with molasses. But in Europe it takes all kinds of shapes.
It is thought to have originated in Basel Switzerland as Basler Lackerli, a spiced bread sweetened with honey and kirsch and with hazelnuts and spices added. That sounds like a great addition to the Christmas tradition. In France it is known as pain d’epices, or spice bread, and often sold in specialty shops.