This weekend has been a flurry of cookie baking. I have three or four cookie trays to make up for neighbors and friends and a tin to ship to friends who live farther away. I used to bake cookies every year—and not just one or two kinds—more like ten! Then I hit a rough patch in my life—sick parents, then dying parents, moves and job changes—and for a few years I couldn't deal with Christmas. I did it but it felt like going through the motions. And baking seemed like too much work.
But this year I'm back and I made some of my old favorites—my grandmother's raisin cookies and layer bars, linzer cookies with strawberry jam in the middle, peanut butter with Hershey kisses, and ginger nuts. I tried a new almond sugar cookie recipe that sounded good, too.
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
3 tablespoons molasses
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon water
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground ginger
Preheat oven to 375°F. Beat butter in mixer bowl until smooth. Continue beating, adding sugar gradually, until mixture is light and fluffy. Beat in molasses and egg.
Dissolve baking soda in water; stir into butter mixture. Gradually stir flour and ginger into mixture. Continue stirring until dough is smooth and stiff.
Form dough into walnut-sized balls, using 1 tablespoon dough for each. Place 2 inches apart on lightly greased baking sheet. Bake until bottoms are light golden brown, about 15 minutes. It's normal for them to crack on top so don't worry about it. Cool cookies on wire rack and store in airtight container.
Even with all this activity I managed to fit in a quick trip to the local indoor flea market where I scored a bunch of vintage buttons, rickrack, and old glass Christmas ornaments! Pictures to come. Hey, I think I have a Thrift Thursday contribution this week :)