Thursday, January 19, 2017

A Recipe with a "Story"

Back in August of last year, I flew back to Maryland for part of a week and helped my brother start to clean out my parents house to get it ready to sell. I had my brother store some boxes for me at his house and when we were just in Maryland around the holidays, we put them in the back of our van and brought them back to Michigan. One of the boxes contained two of my mother's recipe boxes. Shortly after the new year, I took a quick look through the boxes and then didn't look through them again until a few days ago. Oh my, I found a  recipe card for a cookie that I thought I had in my "collection," but didn't. Growing up, there was a couple that lived next door to my family that had no children. Their names were Mary Ann and Harold. Even though we weren't related, they were like family to us.  Finding Mary Ann's recipe for "Mom D's Cinnamon Crisps," was like hitting the jackpot!!! I have been looking for this cookie recipe for years and thought it was gone forever. It was written in my handwriting on a pink recipe card. I am pretty sure "Mom D." was Mary Ann's mom. When I was in eighth grade and taking a Home Economics class, I brought this recipe to school and we made these cookies in the classroom! Mary Ann and Harold moved to Iowa after Harold retired. I was lucky enough to visit them a few times in Iowa. They both have been gone a long time, more years than I care to remember, but I still think about them frequently. This is one of the few pictures I have of Mary Ann and I.


Below is the recipe for "Mom D's Cinnamon Crisps," if you would like to make them.They are really yummy!

Ingredients:

3 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups sifted flour

2 tablespoons white sugar (reserved)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (reserved)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and put a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Set aside. In a  large bowl, put the cream cheese, butter, shortening and sugar.  Cream by hand with a large spoon or with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and the flour a half a cup at a time until well combined.  Roll into 36 equal-sized balls and place a dozen at a time on the cookie sheet.  In a small bowl, put the reserved tablespoons of white sugar and cinnamon and mix with a small spoon until well combined. Using the bottom of a small drinking glass, press first in the sugar/cinnamon mixture and then press down gently on the cookie. Bake for about 12 minutes or until slightly brown and then remove from oven. Let them sit five minutes before removing to a wire rack to continue cooling.

I like what I wrote on the back of the recipe card, "these are terrific and melt in your mouth!" Well they do!!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Maintaining a "Connection"



Lauren starts her second semester of her junior year of college this coming Monday! Good grief. That went by SO fast. In the "olden," days (when I was 20), there was no such thing as texting and Skyping to keep connected with family and friends. The "twenty-somethings," of today rely on texting, Snapchatting, etc. I think one of the happiest days of Lauren's life was when I FINALLY decided to ditch my TracFone!!! Yes, I now use an iPhone. Anyways, her winter break has been long and with the hubby and Dominic both going back to work and school today, respectfully, we decided to head out to the local outlet mall. I am so lucky that Lauren still values my opinion and I can be truthful with her. We hit three or four different stores and since the holidays are over, the parking lot/stores were pretty much empty. We got some really, really great deals. Lauren wants to go to law school after she graduates in 2018, so we were over the moon when we found a designer dress that was 60% off! She wants to "intern," and we are working on building a wardrobe full of professional clothes. I think my favorite conversations with Lauren today were on the 1/2 hour drive to and from the outlet mall. We rarely have "alone," time and I really miss that.  I treasure those moments when I have her all to myself, because they are so rare. Thanks my sweet girl for an awesome afternoon!