A rotating exhibit of the things I love most about living in San Francisco.

Pennsylvania Bureau

from the pennsylvania desk, springerle cookies of lancaster county

 

Springerle Cookies, Springerle House, Strasburg, PA

Springerle Cookies, Springerle House, Strasburg, PA

One of the highlights of my food explorations of Lancaster County was the discovery of the springerle cookie, a type of “picture” cookie which traces its origins to Northern Europe where it has been made for over a thousand years. They’re delicious. And they are gorgeous. Using molds that depict scenes of peasant life, nature, biblical stories and more, these cookies were used in part to communicate stories, and reflect a remarkable level of craftsmanship and detail. You’d mistake them for fired ceramic Christmas ornaments, in fact, because they are every bit as intricate. Here in Lancaster County, they’ve been a part of Pennsylvania Dutch culture for over 300 years thanks to the German immigrants who brought the tradition here.

Flavored with anise this cookie is somewhat like a shortbread and is commonly served with tea for dunking. The springerle is not crisp though, rather just cakey enough for a nice chew as one bites into it. You can find excellent examples of these, in anise and other flavors, as well as Christmas ornaments made from the same molds, at a german tea house in Strasburg, PA, where the same family has been making them for over 100 years. The family operates a stall at the Lancaster Central Market as well, so you can find them there, too, on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

Here’s a link to their website. I think they’d make fabulous gifts so check out the mail order options!

The Springerle House

15 East Main Street
Strasburg, PA 17579-1409
(717) 687-8022

the Springerle House, a german tea house in Strasburg, PA

the Springerle House, a german tea house in Strasburg, PA

About Springerle Cookies

For over a thousand years in Europe, hand-carved molds have been used to imprint “picture cookies.” These cookies have been historically used as betrothal tokens, tellers of tales and to celebrate daily life. Springerle molds first came to Lancaster County circa 1710 among the most treasured possessions of the Pennsylvania German immigrants. Our Springerle cookies and ornaments are made from replicas of molds painstakingly copied from original molds in museums in Germany and Switzerland.

We use only the finest ingredients to make our cookies, and follow the traditional European recipe. We offer cookies in lemon, orange, orange vanilla, hazelnut, chocolate, almond, vanilla and traditional anise flavors. Some are accented with edible gold paint. Our ornaments are made of a durable ash/paper pulp mixture and hand painted. We hope you enjoy this taste of the past!

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the honor system is alive and well in Lancaster County, PA

farm on Meadow View Rd, near Marietta in Lancaster County, PA

On a leisurely drive through the countryside I came upon a farm on Meadow View Rd, near Marietta in Lancaster County, PA

happy cows

happy cows. . .

ah, what's this??

ah, what's this??

"For Sale, Baked Goods, Apple Dumplings" . . . time to stop the car!

"For Sale, Baked Goods, Apple Dumplings" . . . time to stop the car!

and what will I find behind the curtain. . .?

and manner of baked goods will I find behind the curtain . . .?

Fresh baked pies, apple dumplings, whoopie pies and . . . a bucket full of money!

Fresh baked pies, apple dumplings, whoopie pies and . . . a bucket full of money!

Umm, the cows are getting closer. Time to make my exit!

Umm, the cows are getting closer. Time to make my exit!

$1.50 bought me one of the best desserts I've EVER EATEN.

$1.50 bought me one of the best desserts I've EVER EATEN.

MMM. even better with a little melty ice cream. . .

MMM. even better with a little melty ice cream. . .


reporting from New Oxford, PA

center square, New Oxford, PA

center square, New Oxford, PA

Getting the Penna. field office up-and-running has been a little slow out of the gate, but here we are! I suppose when you’re in a town sandwiched between the Civil War Battlefields of Gettysburg to the west, and the farmland of Amish country to the east, the need to get things done, to cross items off your list, to move forward, really just isn’t the driver that it is in other parts of the world. There’s something about life in a town that dates back to 1792 that inspires one to appreciate simple gifts, here and now. So, when I am here, I discover that the desire to check email goes away. I forget my calendar. I turn the ringer off on my cell phone. And I grab my camera and get outdoors. . .

autumn in Pennsylvania

autumn in Pennsylvania


MUS-e-YUM heads east to open field office in Pennsylvania

red barn on a sunny autumn day in south central Pennsylvania

red barn on a sunny autumn day in south central pennsylvania

MUS-e-YUM just loves getting back to its roots, South Central Pennsylvania, aka Pennsylvania Dutch Country. So stay tuned for some more posts out of the New Oxford Bureau with all that I love about life in the ‘Woods. The food. The land. The people. And of course, the pictures . . .