We had to look it up, too. This German cookie is certainly worth celebrating!

The holidays look different around the world. Different countries and cultures have their own traditions for the season. Regardless of culture, many holiday traditions are birthed in the kitchen and enjoyed around the table.

According to National Day Calendar, December 23 is reserved for National Pfeffernusse Day. Pfeffernusse is a German spice cookie. The cookies are fluffy and soft ... made with spices and ground nuts. Traditionally, the cookies are covered in powdered sugar.

"The exact origin of the cookie is unknown. However, the Dutch believe that pfeffernusse (or pepernoten) are linked to the feast of Sinterklaas, which is celebrated on December 5 in the Netherlands and December 6 in Germany and Belgium. This holiday is when children receive gifts from St. Nicholas, who is partially the inspiration for the Santa Claus tradition." 

Recipes have differed over the years. Traditionally, the cookies include nuts such as almonds and walnuts and are sweetened with molasses and honey. Some newer recipes omit nuts completely, probably due to an increased number of nut allergies. Still, other recipes glaze the cookies with a thin icing rather than covering the cookies with powdered sugar.

Ideas to Celebrate National Pfeffernusse Day

Holidays, especially surrounding something edible, are so fun to celebrate! Try these ideas to make today special ... with pfeffernusse.

  • Respond with, "Gesundheit!" anytime anyone mentions pfeffernusse. I mean, it is a German response...
  • Try your hand at making a batch of pfeffernusse. Recruit a family member or two to join in the fun.

Have you tried making pfeffernusse cookies? Tell us what you think in the comments below.