Saturday, November 29, 2008

Mom's Sugar Cookie Recipe

Mom made these cookies every Christmas for as long as I can remember. To be honest, they weren't my favorite, because they were very hard. However, since they were the only sugar cookies I had ever eaten, I asked Mom for the recipe. The first year of my marraige, I made the cookies, but instead of using margarine, as Mom always did, I used butter. The difference it made in the recipe was phenomenal! In fact they were so good, I was grateful that I lived 4000 miles away from Mom. I didn't want her to taste my version, because she took such pride in her own recipe, and frankly, mine were SO much better, that I didn't want hers to be overshadowed. Every year I would make them I would say to her, "Well, Mom, I made the sugar cookies, but they just don't taste like yours." I never told her that I used butter, and she would quiz me as to what I might have done wrong. I'd tell her that there was no way that I would be able to bake them like she did. I think she took some pride in being the "Sugar Cookie Queen". Having said that, I have to admitt that my Mom's potatoe salad was absolutely THE BEST! I couldn't come close to reproducing or improving it. She just had the touch, and she certainly didn't pass that one on to me, or any of my sisters. Mom passed away 7 and 1/2 years ago. I really miss her, and would give anything to sink my teeth into her sugar cookies one more time., even if they were a little firm. These cookies are absolutely delicious, very moist and flavorful, and they are especially good after a week or two, once the flavor of the neutmeg really becomes pronounced. This makes about 5 dozen cookies, or about 2 1/2 dozen double cookies. I make double cookies which are a round cookie on the bottom, and a cookie of the same circumference but with a small hole in the centre, into which I put a dab of raspberry jam. To give you a word to the wise, these bake up quite large, and need to be watched so that they are baked sufficiently , but are not over-done. Anyway, here they are in all their glory, but take my advice and use butter!

Mom's Sugar Cookies

Cream together: 2 cups sugar
1 pound of butter
4 eggs (room temperature)

Combine and then add to the above mixture: 5 cups white flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon nutmeg

Roll into a large ball. Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate until firm to make rolling easier. Roll out 1/4 inch and cut into designs. Bake 350 degrees F. six to seven minutes.

Of Blogging and Christmas Cakes

Greetings Dear Readers:

Today I have embarked on two monumental tasks. First of all, after certainly no malice, and hardly any aforethought, I have decided to enter the world of blogging. Along with my dear friend, Silken Purse, I am entering this "brave new world" to post my thoughts, my ideas, and my flights of fancy. Who knows the heights to which we will ascend? The world is just a-flutter with possibilities!
Secondly, with liquid Christmas cheer to my left and a sharp knife to my right, I am combining the various candied fruits and nuts for what I hope will become my annual Christmas cake bake. Ah yes, 'tis the season! With Christmas just over three weeks away, and barely enough time to properly age my culinary creations, I will pop the dark cake into a slow oven tomorrow morning, after the fruit has had time to marinate in fragrant Napoleon brandy. Today I will concentrate on the light fruit cakes which don't require the pre-soak, along with a recipe entitled "Wexford Raisin Cake" given to me by a most obliging voice student of my husband's. After tucking the cakes away to rest until the Yuletide, I will immerse myself in my annual tradition of cookie creating; Mom's Sugar Cookies, made with a hint of nutmeg, Whipped Butter Shortbread and finally, delicious Gingerbread which will this year. take the shape of snowflakes, as I was fortunate enough to procure a set of incredible snowflake cookie cutters! I would love to share with you my Mom's delicious sugar cookie recipe, and I will do so tomorrow or Monday, when I have a bit more time at my disposal. Hopefully I will also be able to post some photographs of my much-anticipated Christmas Cakes., and other delicacies. I do hope they turn out well! New recipes are always a bit risky. Do you have any recipes you would like to share; ones that have been tested and tried by you?
Apart from baking, I enjoy entertaining, attending Christmas-themed concerts like Handel's "Messiah", and directing and performing in dramatic readings of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol". So, dear reader, what are some of your Christmas preparatory traditions? I would dearly and sincerely love to know. Whatever you do during this blessed time of year, I hope and pray that you and yours will find peace and joy in remembering Him who is the Reason for the Season.


Scone Queen