Christmas is a bittersweet holiday for me.  My grandma always made so many cookies and homemade donuts for Christmas.  When I was old enough, I helped her with the cookies.

My two favorites are Springerles and German Sour Cream Twists.  However, I didn’t always like Springerles.  When I was a kid, I tried one and they were hard as a rock and tasted funny.  I thought maybe they were little bars of soap and I wasn’t supposed to actually eat them.  As I got older, I learned that the strange flavor is anise, which is similar to licorice, and that Springerles harden if you don’t keep them in a cookie tin.

German Sour Cream Twists are the family favorite.  They are more like a biscuit than a cookie, but they are buttery and sugary and taste delicious!  Grandma always added food coloring to her sugar and would change the color depending on the occasion.  Christmas yielded red and green cookies, shaped like wreaths and candy canes.  Easter yielded blue and yellow cookies, shaped like, well, they were supposed to be eggs, I think, but they kind of looked like wreaths, too.  And for Star Wars Day, Grandma got fancy and made them into lightsabers for us.

I bake the Springerles and German Sour Cream Twists, now.  I enjoy baking them because it brings back all of the memories of Christmases past and all of the memories of baking with my Grandma.  I feel close to her still, any time I cook or bake.

Do you have any holiday traditions?  If not, maybe baking is a good way to start some.  Check out these holiday cookbooks!