Simply Divine

St. Benedict sisters bake blessings

German heritage is abundant in Southern Indiana, but the Dubois County town of Ferdinand may have one of the most delicious slices of regional Deutsch history.

In addition to community service, guest rooms, and event space, the Sisters of St. Benedict have added a flavorful layer to their legacy. The abbey traces its roots back to 1860s Germany, when four sisters immigrated to Ferdinand to teach at a Catholic settlement there. The heavily German area celebrates Christmas with a traditional Christkindlmarkt, and the sisters joined in by baking stamped springerle cookies.

Popular demand led the sisters to add their own recipes for almond-flavored almerles and spiced Hildegard cookies, the latter in honor of the 12th century Benedictine scientist and healer. Simply Divine Bakery sprang up as a result, adding to the sisters’ income, and was renamed Monastery Baked Goods in 2015.

Treats aren’t limited to sweets: Guests can shop in person or online for soup and dip kits, fruit cake mixes, mint tea sets, pesto bread, and even multi-flavored “prayerful pretzels.” Purchases support the sisters’ mission and ministries in Ferdinand, including housing, hunger, and health care.

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Sisters of St. Benedict
802 E. 10th St., Ferdinand, Indiana

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Jodi Keen
Jodi Keen
Jodi Keen is the managing editor of Evansville Living and Evansville Business magazines.

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