Did cookies play a role in our holiday foods?
This is a real mystery to me – both the answer to the question and the fact that I really cannot remember whether we had special cookies (or any cookies at all) for Christmas.
Because food is one of those vital subjects – you know, like grudges and embarrassing things your kids did – that I never forget. Of course I don’t remember day-to-day menus, but a good dessert tends to “etch itself in my memory.”
Perhaps we never did have cookies at Christmastime. Or perhaps they were overshadowed by their flashier cousins, cakes and pies. I suppose the moist sinfulness of Tunnel of Fudge cake or the hours of wrist-breaking labor involved producing fruitcake could cause me to forget a modest batch of sugar or oatmeal cookies.
Possible, but not likely.
However, my family and I do make cookies for Christmas these days. They are also a “consolation dessert” for my husband, who does not get to share in eating any of the fudge-and-oatmeal snack bars I make (the recipe is in the GeneaBloggers’ Cookbook) because he is allergic to nuts (I make a separate batch of the cookies below without pecans for my husband.)
So, here is one of my recipes for the humble cousin in the Christmas dessert group, the Christmas cookie:
Super Good Oatmeal Cookies
1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar, firmly packed
1 t. vanilla
1 c. all-purpose flour
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1 c. quick-cooking rolled oats
1 package (6 oz.) semi-sweet chocolate morsels
1 c. chopped pecans
Approximately 1 T. sugar (for flattening cookies)
Start heating oven to 375 degrees. Put butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, egg and vanilla in large mixing bowl. Beat with electric mixer until mixture is creamy and well blended. Add flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda and salt to butter mixture. Beat until well blended. Add oats, chocolate and pecans; mix just to distribute throughout batter. Roll 1/4 c. dough into ball. Place ball on ungreased baking sheet. Put one T. sugar in small bowl. Dip bottom of glass into sugar, then press dough ball with sugar-coated bottom of glass, into flat circle approx. 1/2” thick. Repeat, placing dough circles at 2” apart, about six circles to a sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes. Cool cookies on wire rack.
(You may want to double this recipe.)