Serinakaker are easy to make Norwegian Christmas butter cookies decorated with either pearl sugar or slivered almonds on top.
Christmas holidays are highly celebrated in Scandinavia, each of these countries having their own great recipes.
Serinakaker resemble a little like our Greek Kourabiedes, which have butter, flour, sugar and almonds but differ in taste as traditionally in Greece we usually use ewe’s and goat milk butter, icing sugar instead of crystal sugar and the almonds are roasted and added in the dough. When baked they are coated with icing sugar.
See also another Christmas Cookie I made, similar to kourabiedes, called Vanillekipferl, from Hungaria.
I make kourabiedes every year but this year I was looking for something different to try and if you are also looking for a good Christmas cookie for this holiday season, I strongly suggest these!
They are easy to make, crunchy on the outside and cakey inside.
These cookies are delicious with a cup of coffee, tea or or milk, any time of the day.
Serinakaker – What does it mean?
Kaker, in Norwegian means cake. The origin of the name Serinakaker is obscure, but most seem to think they were actually just a cookie made by a woman named Serina that happened to become popular.
Ingredients needed to make Serinakaker
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Unsalted butter
- Granulated sugar
- Vanilla sugar
- Egg white
- Cane sugar
- Blanched almonds or pearl sugar
Let’s see how I made the Serinakaker
To begin with I used a small food processor to blend the flour and butter together until it looks like coarse meal.
This procedure can also be made by hand by rubbing the butter into the flour, until it is absorbed.
When I made them, I cut the butter into smaller pieces (about 50 grams each) and added 2 – 3 heaped tablespoons all-purpose flour in the food processor and blended it gradually, until all the butter and flour was used.
When doing the above, at some point, while blending the flour and butter, I also added some of the crystal sugar, and added the vanilla sugar, the salt and the baking powder. Each batch I transferred it in a large bowl and when done, I mixed them again with a spoon.
Then I added one whole egg and one egg yolk. The egg white will be used at the end to glaze the cookies.
I then kneaded the dough by hand until the dough came together. In case your eggs are smaller add some of the reserved egg white, as you will not be using it all.
The dough should be soft but it should not stick on the hands.
The dough was wrapped in cling film and refrigerated for at least half an hour for the butter to firm up again.
You can do this from the previous day but before shaping the balls you should take the dough out of the fridge about twenty minutes before, so that the dough softens a little in order to be shaped.
I then cut small pieces and formed them into small balls. In order to be the same sized, I weighed each ball to be about 30 – 32 grams maximum each.
The amount of this dough yielded 36 cookies.
I lined two baking trays with parchment paper and put the balls in one of them.
I then pressed each ball with my thumb to make an indentation. If the dough cracks, it’s okay but if you don’t want them cracks, using your fingers try to join them together.
The cookies were divided in the two baking trays and spaced them about 2 – 3 cm. apart.
I whisk the egg white with a mini balloon whisk but this can also be done with a fork.
I then brushed the surface of the cookies with the egg white.
As I did not have any pearl sugar, I decided to use some cane sugar. So, I put the almonds and cane sugar in the food processor and blended them into coarse pieces.
I sprinkled some of these almonds on top.
In the second batch, after brushing them with the egg white, I remembered that I had some blueberry and raspberry jam and I added a little bit of that jam before adding the remaining almonds on top.
The cookies reminded me of my Thumbprint Cookies and the red jam gave them a Festive look. The taste of the jam was absorbed by the cookies while baking and made them even more delicious.
I then preheated my oven, which is a fan forced one to 160o C and baked them for 17 minutes. If you have a regular oven then preheat it to 180oC and bake them around 18 minutes, depending on your oven.
The cookies should look white and will be very soft and look as if they have not been baked. Don’t worry as they will firm up as they cool.
Remove from the oven and cool completely before storing. Store in an air-tight container.
- 500 grams (4 cups) all-purpose flour
- 2 grams (1/2 tsp) baking powder
- 300 grams (1 1/4 cups plus 2 tbsp), softened unsalted salted butter
- 2 grams (about 1/2 tsp) salt
- 250 grams (about 1 1/3 cups) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, divided
- 20 grams (2 tbsp) lemon flavoured vanilla sugar
- 1 egg white, for brushing the cookies
- 10 grams (about 2 1/2 tbsp) cane sugar
- 30 grams (about 1/4 cup) blanched and chopped almonds, for sprinkling on top
- About 1 tablespoon red jam (optional)
- Blend the flour and butter together until it looks like coarse meal.
- Cut the butter into smaller pieces (about 50 grams) add two heaped tablespoons all-purpose flour in a food processor and blend it gradually, until all the butter and flour is used.
- Empty it in a large bowl.
- At some point, add the sugar, vanilla sugar, the salt and the baking powder.
- Put them in a large bowl and mix them with your hand or a spoon.
- Then add 1 whole egg and 1 egg yolk and knead with your hand until the dough comes together.
- Wrap in cling film and refrigerate for at least half an hour.
- Cut small pieces and form in small balls, about 30 – 32 grams each.
- Line two baking trays with parchment paper and put the balls there.
- Press each ball with your thumb to make an indentation. If it cracks, using your fingers try to join them together.
- Divide them in the baking trays and put them spaced apart.
- Whisk the egg white and brush the surface of the cookies.
- Put the almonds and cane sugar in the food processor and blend into coarse pieces.
- Sprinkle some almonds on top.
- In the second batch I brushed the egg white, added a little jam and then added some almonds on top.
- Preheat a fan forced oven to 160o C and bake for about 17 minutes, depending on your oven.
- Remove from the oven and cool completely before storing.
Nutrition InformationYield 36 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 154Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 28mgSodium 95mgCarbohydrates 19gFiber 1gSugar 8gProtein 2g
"These values are automatically calculated and offered for guidance only. Their accuracy is not guaranteed."
Kopiaste and Kali Orexi!