Thursday, December 23, 2010

White Christmas Cookies

I finally started feeling better around week 14.  (I am 16 weeks now.)  Then I started getting terrible headaches that would last for about 3 days, go away for a couple days and then come back.  Then the weekend before Christmas I got what I thought was a head cold (and still think that is what it started as) and turned into a sinus infection.  And on top of that I had a terrible headache for 4 days.  Luckily I called my doctor and she gave me a prescription for the sinus infection so I could be better for Christmas.  But we need to wait for that to clear up before we can address these headaches.
And so I was in no mood or condition to bake Christmas cookies this year.  So Dave, being the super daddy that he is, bake 4 different kinds of cookies with the boys.  They made snicker doodles, chocolate crinkles, forgotten cookies and chocolate chip cookies with M&M's.  How awesome is he?
Finally on the eve of Christmas eve I felt well enough to make cookies with my boys.  And the only cookie I felt I could eat this year (that's the other thing, I have no desire to eat cookies or much of anything because it makes me nauseous) was my Mammy's (my dad's mother) White Christmas Cookies.  I looked forward to these cookies every year.  I remember after she passed away I gave it a try and my attempted failed.  And so I haven't tried since.  But I have learned a lot about cooking and baking since then.  I'm no expert, but I defiantly know more now then I did about 7 years ago.  From what I gather these are a real PA Dutch kind of cookie.  You cannot buy anything like these unless some old lady at a little church bizarre makes them.  And like I said, I grew up eating these every year.  And so for myself and my family (sisters, brothers and parents), we LOVE them!!!
And for those that don't understand how they couldn't have turned out the first time I made them, I will copy word for word what the recipe card I have says...
 White Christmas Cookies
 4 1/2 Cup flour
2 1/2 Cup sugar
1 Cup butter
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cream tartar
3 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
2 TBL milk

Chill dough - roll & cut
350 degrees 8-10 minutes
That's it, that's all the instruction I have.  When I first made these, I didn't cook or bake much, so... can you imagine what someone with little experience would do with instructions like that?  I'm not sure what I did, but I know they did not turn out well.
This time I mixed the dry ingredients together.  I used softened butter and creamed it with the sugar and then added the wet ingredients and then the dry ingredients.  And it seemed to turn out well.  A recipe I have for sugar cookies says to chill it for an hour, so that is what I did.
I was surprised to find out that the first batched that was rolled out and cut did not turn out as well as the next  batch, when I took the excess and rerolled it and cut out more.  The more it was mushed back together and rerolled the thinner I could roll it and it is the thinner cookies that tasted the most like my Mammy's cookies.
Anyway, the boys had so much fun cutting out the cookies and putting the colored sugar on them.  After they were done they loved to point out (especially Tanner) that they made those cookies.


Funny thing is I have aprons for them, and the aprons are hanging up right behind where they were working and I never thought to put them on the boys.  Oh well, maybe one of these times when they are helping with the food I will remember to put their aprons on.
I'm so glad these cookies turned out!  They were the only Christmas cookies I could eat this year and I did eat.  It just brings back so many memories to smell them and to taste them.  And all of the cookie trays we made had been made and given out before we made these.  So we had all those cookies to ourselves!  But my dad took about half the batch.  He too was also thrilled to have his mother's cookies at Christmas time.  They filled 2 ice cream buckets, that's about how many there were.

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