When dad first moved our family to California we lived in a rented house. Mom was pregnant with our brother Jim and we were as poor as dirt – whoever he is. Dad was a salesman , the door to door kind, and it was always dicey as to what we’d have for supper.
Anyway . . .
Down the street lived a family who had kids our age and we played with them all the time. One afternoon Pete and his sister Sandy came to our end of the street with a handful of peanut butter cookies – each. My sisters and I were gob smacked (like we’d been hit in the kisser). Let me repeat – Pete and Sandy EACH had a handful of cookies. In our house we got one apiece. If Mom made cookies at all. We also had to split our packs of Twinkies and break our popsicles in half to share. I could barely wrap my eight-year-old mind around the concept of more than one.
I think that’s when cookies began to loom large in my mind as a symbol of wealth and abundance. Why am I mentioning this now? Because it’s cookie baking time. Right after Thanksgiving the Baking Bug comes knocking and I’ve made a ritual of the process of getting the baking done in time for platters and tins and general munching.
I grab my Christmas CD’s or turn on the All-Christmas-All-The-Time radio station, put out my cooling racks, fire up the oven and I’m off. Sometimes it’s cold and snowy out and then I’m in Heaven. And here’s what I bake.
Sugar cookies – From a recipe in an old BHG cookbook that I’ve had for 40+ years. I know, you didn’t think I was even that old yet, right? I freeze these without frosting so the grandkids can help me do that on our special cookie day which, this year, was last Sunday.
Jam Thumbprints – Same old cookbook and I fill them with homemade jam. After I bake them. The jam flavor is more intense that way. Hubby’s faves.
Lemon Meltaways – These are tiny cookies that melt in your mouth while the tart lemon butter frosting is making your tongue seize up. Mwwwwaaaa! So good.
Choco Caramel Delights – These babies are like mini candy bars. Chocolate cookie, dipped in crushed walnuts, baked, cooled then filled with caramel and drizzled with melted semi sweet chocolate. My family will not let me not make these. Labor intensive but decadent and so worth it.
There are others I’ve tried, but these are the ones of myth and legend. And if you come to my house while I’m in the midst of all this wonderfulness, you may certainly have more than one. You can thank Pete and Sandy for that.
Enjoy your traditions this season which I hope God blesses with love and abundance.
Image: Mr. GC Free Digital Photos