Swiss Bratzeli Cookies

One of Pam’s former students brought these Swiss bratzeli cookies by for her.

The student told her that when her great, great, grandfather immigrated to the United States he was only allowed to bring a few things with him. One of the possessions that he was able to bring with him to the States was a bratzeli  iron. This iron is used for making the cookie and gives the cookie it distinctive design. He brought it to the US so that his family could continue to make bratzeli  cookies together.

The student’s family’s tradition has been to gather together before Christmas and bake bratzeli cookies together. Originally they did this on the great, great grandfather’s iron. Eventually they special ordered a new iron (I assume to keep the great, great grandfather’s iron in shape) but they kept the tradition going. Such a wonderful tradition.

Serves as a reminder for me that so many of the traditions and norms that we think of as “American” were started by bringing them over from an “old country”.  We were and still are a country of immigrants and wonderful new traditions like Pam’s student’s family’s tradition (my that is a lot of possessives in a row) are being developed all around us.

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