THE COOKIE FACTORY

December 24, 2011

Peg Bracken, noted cook and cook book author, claims the best way to keep cookies is in a can marked Rat Poison. I wouldn’t go that far, but it is tempting to save your favorite ones for a later time when you can savor them the more.

Doug arrived first and we made room for his tins. He has several to deliver to the neighbors since I’ve given over the cookie baking to the kids.

Then Laurie unloaded her stash of tins and bags until there was no room.

But, somehow, we stacked tins and Virginia unloaded her treasures.

The many types are the result of Doug trying to out-do Virginia and Vice-Versa. Laurie brings the family favorites and adds something new each year, which happened to be gluten free almond chai cookies and marzipan stollen, so the list goes on and grows. With 22 different kinds of cookies, Virginia wryly commented, the ratio of cookie bakers to cookie eaters is out of kilter with four cookie eaters missing. She was referring to Daughter Kristannne, her husband and two boys who were unable to come for Christmas because of their son Alec’s work schedule.

The cookie factory started years ago when I made cookies with the kids, and sometimes the neighbor kids, allowing them to cut and decorate sugar cookies with paint brushes and bowls of colored frosting.

We traded painted cookies each year with the Evans/Dollar family and one year Joanne Evans said enough, and brought a variety of yummy cookies that didn’t have to be decorated. A nurse, she worked full-time,  often with duty hours during the holidays.  So, the cooky factory got started with more and more different types of cookies, easier to make and better tasting.

It is hard to pick a favorite, but, you might try this one:

1 8oz. package dates chopped., 1/2 cup firmly pkd. brown sugar, 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup orange juice, 1 tsp. grated fresh orange rind. Cook first five ingredients over low heat, stirring until slightly thickened. Remove from stove and cool a bit.

Beat in two eggs, 2 1/4 cups flour that has 1 tsp salt and 3/4 tsp. of baking soda mixed in it. Add a 16 oz. package of chocolate chips, and 1 cup chopped walnuts and stir.  Drop by rounded spoonfuls  2 inches apart on ungreased sheets. Bake at 375* ten minutes. Remove at once to cool.ing racks.  Makes 3 dozen. If you cool the ingredients a lot, the chocolate chips stay chunky. If you leave the batter quite warm, the chips get melty. I like them melty.

Ciao!

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