Smør Bullar: The Classic Danish Christmas Cookie No One Has Heard Of

For one writer, the small, buttery Danish cookie her Scandinavian-American family made during Christmas was the taste of the holidays. Turns out, the classic Danish cookie may not be Danish after all.
Appearing on Christmas tables and at winter weddings, smør bullar cookies evoke powdery snowballs. Source: Amy Robertson for NPR

My mother's side of the family is half Danish and my father's side half Norwegian. But at Christmastime, we feel 100 percent Scandinavian. Largely ignoring the English and Scottish bits of our heritage, we fill our Christmas table with treats such as crumbly Danish cookies and piquant pickled herring.

My favorite of all the Danish desserts is smør bullar. Small spheres of butter, flour, powdered sugar and nuts, dusted with more powdered sugar for good measure, these cookies are the flavor of Christmas for everyone in my extended family.

Round, white and powdery — can it be a coincidence that the way my Scandinavian-American relatives pronounce (mis-pronounce, surely) the name, it even sounds like "snowball(er)?"

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