Springerle – Germany
Springerle is a South German cookie or biscuit created by pressing a mold into rolled dough and letting the impression dry before baking; the impression is left to dry to preserve the surface pattern’s fine details. Springerle’s origin can be traced back to at least the 14th century based on one of the oldest Springerle molds stationed at the Swiss National Museum in Zurich. The molds also suggest that springerle was native to Swabia and surrounding areas in Southwestern Germany.
The literal translation of the word “springerle” is “little jumper” or “little knight” and might refer to the common image of a leaping horse in the mold or refer to the dough rising or “springing up” during baking. Although historical molds demonstrate that the Springerle was prepared for religious and secular occasions all year round, they are most frequently connected to the Christmas season today.