Friday, October 23, 2009

Grandma Violet's Spice Cookies

In our family these have always been known as Grandma Violet's Cookies after my husband's grandmother who always had a batch to pull from the freezer when we stopped by. On my yellowed index card, in Grandma Violet's distictive handwriting, they are called Aunt Myra's Cookies. I think some day my grandchildren will call them Bama's Cookies, since it's a special treat each time I make them for the family. Whatever they're called, they don't last long! I always bake a double batch and have been known to take them to booksignings as a treat for my special readers.

Grandma's Spice Cookies

1 cup sugar
1 cup lard or butter
1 cup molasses
2 egg yolks (save the whites for frosting)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp baking soda dissolved in
2/3 cup boiling water

Use enough flour for a stiff batter -- about 5 cups.
Mix and chill dough for a few hours.
Roll out thin and cut into shapes with a cookie cutter.
(Grandma Violet always used a rectangle-shaped meat can so she didn't have to re-roll as much dough.)
Bake in 375 degree oven for about 10 minutes. Watch closely because they will burn easily.
Frost when cool.

Boil 1 1/2 cup sugar in 1/3 cup water until the liquid reaches soft ball stage. (You will know when a drop in a glass of cold water forms a soft ball.)
Pour slowly over beaten egg whites and beat until stiff.
Add a pinch of baking soda and 1 tsp of vanilla.
Add 4 large marshmallows and stir until dissolved.
Spread quickly over cookies, making even edges.
Will harden as it cools.

After they're cooled, layer frosted cookies between sheets of waxed paper in an air-tight container.
These freeze well and will appear and taste freshly baked when thawed.

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