Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Danish Pebernodder - Peppernuts

I'm back again with another Christmas cookie recipe.  This time we are going to Denmark to make one of my family's favorite traditional treats.....

My Grandma Jorgensen was an excellent cook and baker.  She came to America as a new bride when she was 19 years old.  She and my Grandfather settled in Ellensburg, Washington, a farming community that had lots of Danes back then.  Grandma made these pebernodder every year for Christmas.  When she passed away in 1992 I had gathered most of her recipes but this recipe was not included.  It took me a few years of experimenting with different doughs.  This recipe comes the closet to Grandma's recipe.

This dough needs to be mixed and let sit overnight in a cool place.  Don't worry about letting the dough sit at room temperature as there are no eggs in the dough.  The dough will be stiff but it will easily roll out to be cut into small pieces.  So without further delay, here it the recipe.....

3/4 cup dark karo syrup
1/4 molasses
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon cardamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves (I left this spice out since I don't like cloves...)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon mace
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
3 1/2 cups flour

In small saucepan, mix karo syrup, molasses, butter and sugar.  Bring to a boil, stirring, over medium heat.  Remove from heat and let cool.

Mix all spices and baking powder together in a small bowl.  In large bowl, place flour and mix in spice mixture until well blended.  Gradually pour in warm syrup mixture and mix with a wooden spoon until blended.  Be careful as the dough may be a bit warm.  Dough should mix up and form a ball but not be too sticky.  Gather dough in ball and place in tightly covered container and let sit on the counter overnight.

Take a piece of dough and roll into a rope shape....

Roll the ropes in flour....

Cut ropes into small pieces.....

Places pieces of peppernuts on a greased cookie sheet...don't let them touch each other.....

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 15 to 17 minutes until lightly browned...

Remove from cookie sheet and place on a brown paper bag to cool...

There you go - you will now have a large container of Danish pebernodder. But, I must caution you...this cookie is rather hard.  Place one in your mouth and savor the flavor for a minute before you bit into it.  

I wish you each a blessed holiday season.  If you like reading this post, you can sign up to receive updates from my blog.  Just fill in your e-mail address at the right or follow via Bloglovin!

Wish you the very best during this magical time of year,



  1. Fantastic. Love these. Your recipe is very similar to the Norwegian pepperkake. We too have to leave the dough over night. I have never made this Danush version but feel I need to. Thanks for sharing x

    1. Thank you Selma. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas holiday :)

  2. Pat, this is a very interesting recipe! Remarkably are stored when a family traditions and customs of the country! But I do not know all of these ingredients :) For example 3/4 cup dark karo syrup, I do not know what it is :))

    1. Thank you so much. dark karo syrup is a thick, sweet syrup made from corn. Maybe you have "golden syrup"? Any thick, sugarly syrup should work but decrese or omit the 1/2 cup sugar in the recipe if the syrup is super sweet. I hope this helps :)

    2. Thank you for your reply and explanations :)

  3. This is something new to me. Sounds scrumptious!


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