Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Sugar-scented memories

I mentioned yesterday about how one of our friends gifted me with a wonderful vintage cookbook:

My granddaughters have fallen in love with this book, and I don't blame them.  I mentioned earlier how this is the book that I learned to cook and bake from.  Mine was the smaller, but no less wonderful,  1957 edition. 

After school on Monday, the 8-year-old wanted to bake something from the newly acquired book.  She chose to make sugar cookies.  (I pretty much never bake sugar cookies except as cut-outs at Christmas time.  I'd rather spend my calories on something with more flavor -- like chocolate, for instance.  But we had all of the necessary ingredients on hand for these, so that is what we went with.)  Although she has done a good bit of cooking and baking with me and has done some pretty much on her own, the format of these recipes is new to her. 

The cookies are a bit different in that they don't call for vanilla or nutmeg, which are common ingredients in many sugar cookie recipes.  Instead they call for grated lemon peel.  I well remember baking these cookies on my own at home, and how yummy they made the kitchen smell.
Here's the chef with her finished product.  Very pleased with herself and with her cookies.  Her taste test verdict:  "These cookies are delicious!"
Oh, the sugar-scented memories this brought back!  My kitchen smelled just like the one of my childhood when I was baking sugar cookies!  I took a nibble of the taste tester's cookie (saving my calories for chocolate) and yes, they tasted just the same too.

If you would like to try this recipe and are not blessed to own a copy of the book, here it is:

Sparkling Sugar Cookies

Heat oven to 400º.  (We used 375º)
Lightly grease a baking sheet.

Mix thoroughly in bowl:
1/2 cup soft shortening  (we used Land'o'Lakes margarine, softened)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. grated lemon peel

Blend in:
1 egg
2 Tblsp. milk

Sift together:
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
And mix these dry ingredients into the shortening mixture.

The recipe calls for the cookies to be dropped on the baking sheet 2 inches apart and then flattened with a glass.  Our dough turned out too firm to drop, so she rolled it into balls and placed them on the baking sheet.  Then, we greased the bottom of a drinking glass, dipped it in sugar, and pressed the dough down.  My little chef adored this process, which was a new technique to her.

Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until light golden brown.  Cool on wire rack.

Makes 2 1/2 to 3 dozen cookies.

Happy Baking!


  1. I have a copy of this cookbook from about 1972 that my mom gave me for Christmas when I was 6. I still pull it out to get ideas once in awhile. And I think a good sugar cookie is one of the best things in the world!

  2. Oh my gosh! We had on of those cookbooks too! I still have it...apparently I was leaning to write then since I wrote {sort of} my name on almost every page! ;}

    m ^..^

  3. Wow! This brings back memories. I think my old cookbook was a give-away from the sugar company. I loved it! I think you had to send in something cut from the sugar wrap.

    The cookies do look yummy!!

  4. Ladies,

    How neat that each of you has owned this cookbook! I guess I should have known that a lot of people would have it, but I had never seen this particular edition before. As I mentioned, mine was the 1957 one.

    I do also have the 1975 (reprinted in 1978) edition which I got for my own children. Like the older ones better, though!

    Thanks so much for stopping by my kitchen table! I hope you'll stop in again -- and, if you enjoy Christmas, check out my Christmas blog as well!

    God bless,

  5. M-m-m-m makes my mouth water. Good job McK. I still miss your smiling face in Sunday School.

  6. Yes, she did do a great job! She is very capable in the kitchen, and knows her way around in mine as well as I do! Great skills to have no matter the age.


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