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Cookie stories

December 14, 2008

 My Mom always worked, as far back as I can remember.  At Christmas time she would come home from work and set up a TV tray and start working on her Christmas cards, writing long elaborate letters.  She also baked her repertoire of cookies and candies that were the same every year.  My favorite cookies were the simple sour cream cookies that she made.  They weren’t too sweet and almost were like crackers and the best part was that she would open up the drawer that contained all her cookie cutters.  🙂  She had cutters for every holiday, lots of animals, and since socializing at that time included lots of card games, cutters for the suits too.  I always liked playing with the cookie cutters and it seemed like it was easy to pick out too many shapes for the dough recipe.

I think I liked this recipe though, because my Mom always told me stories of getting to help her Mom make these cookies.  Her mom had purchased a new Crisco cookbook when my Mom was 10, and these cookies came from that book.  The recipe fit in well on a farm too, because if you have a dairy cow, sour cream is always at hand.  They probably were easy on the pocketbook too, being not so sweet, therefore making more cookies with the same amount of sugar as other recipes.

When I made these cookies today, I discovered I still have the same problem as when I was a kid.  How could I possibly pick out which cutters to use.  I have since added cookie cutters that suit my interests.  Which to choose?  I decided to tell a story with my cookies today like I did when I was little.  I eat my m & m’s in color order, so using cookie cutters really appeals to my OCD.  (which today might mean Obsessive Cookie Disorder) 

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Vintage and not so vintage cookie cutters. 


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My Grandmother’ Crisco Cookbook – A Calendar of Dinners, with 615 Recipes.  published by Crisco, 1921.  First printing 1913. 

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The Story of Crisco.  (Insert gagging sound here)


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White Cookies           (sounds boring huh?)

White Cookies  

2 c sugar
1 c Crisco (my Mom always used butter, I do too)
1/2 c thick sour milk or cream  (you can use a teaspoon of vinegar or lemon juice to sour sweet milk)
2 eggs, beaten
1 t baking soda, mix with sour milk
1 t salt
1 t vanilla
1/2 lemon extract (my Mom always used almond)
5 cups flour

Cream Crisco and sugar together, add eggs well beaten, milk and soda mixture, salt, extracts and flour.  Roll very thin, cut with cookie cutters.  Bake on Criscoed tins, in a moderately hot oven for about 5 minutes.  When cooled place in tins and these will keep for weeks in a cool place.  Recipe sufficient for 90 cookies.

Modern notes:  preheat oven to 350F, bake for about 6-8 minutes, switching cookie sheets from top to bottom and end to end halfway through the baking time.  I bake with parchment paper, so a greased cookie sheet is not necessary.  I baked mine in the cookstove today, so times will vary depending on your fire.  It just takes practice and a watchful eye.

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Silly cookie story depicted like stumpwork embroidery.  (scale not important) 

 One December day a little girl (not shown)decided to go to the woods to gather some holly for decorations.  She also wanted to pick out a Christmas tree.  She gathered her axe and a dog treat for her two dogs.  It was  a dark winter day, she was almost sure she could hear coyotes howling at the moon and the stars, how would she make it through the shamrock colored forest to find a tree?  Well eat the coyote of course!  And then chop down the tree! 

Told you I was weird 😉

15 Comments leave one →
  1. December 15, 2008 12:12 am

    Love the pictures of the cook book and I’m glad to see you still have it. Talk about OCD, a day in my live would drive people crazy, or at least it does me. Great post and great looking cookies. You are weird and I like it.


  2. December 15, 2008 6:04 am

    Love the story, which totally sounds like something I’d do, and the cookies sound delicious (with butter, of course), as I’m a fan of less-sweet cookies. Of course, I like to frost them with a nice tart lemon glaze, too, and make zany decorations. I may have to try them, although I was trying to resist cookie making this year….


  3. December 15, 2008 6:43 am

    When my sister and I were teens, every year we’d make a batch of sour cream cookies and decorate them. I miss my sister this time of year, since she moved to Florida and I to West Virginia. I’ll be making the cookies this year, and it won’t be as much fun without my sister, but now I have the children, and I’ll let them decorate a few for themselves and then I’ll do the rest for the gifting cookie bags.

    Your recipe is similar to mine I think, I’ll have to compare, and it also makes a large batch. Can’t remember where we found the recipe– a catalog or magazine or something.

    I like your story, I would have done something like that, too! :o) and the m&m’s? I eat them in color order, too!

  4. December 15, 2008 7:56 am

    O, loved the cookie story and the shapes! Is the axe new or vintage? And that coyote…Love it!

  5. December 15, 2008 8:25 am

    They sound like the Bossman’s grandma’s sugar cookies. That’s one thing I don’t own is a cookie cutter. I’ve used either a glass (I’ve a special one that’s the right size) or a jar lid for years.

  6. December 15, 2008 8:37 am

    What a neat story! I love the cookbook, and the memory and your make believe! Oh, I forgot and the recipe.


  7. December 15, 2008 8:53 am

    What a great story! I can completely relate, I loved my grandmother’s cookie cutters, she used to keep them stored in a box that was from a bottle of scotch, I think. Funny the things we recall. I love my cookie cutters too and always have a tough time deciding which to use as well.

  8. December 15, 2008 11:15 am

    Everything I just read made me smile. I’m so happy I’ve found your blog.

  9. December 15, 2008 11:31 am

    I thought I was the only one who had an order to how she ate her ‘Smarties’ (M&Ms were not invented when I figured out the ‘order of things’ on the living room carpet at age 5)!

    Dark brown, light brown, yellow, green, red, then one pink, one purple, until they are gone (I could never decide which color I liked more for the final sweet bite). Needless to say blue smarties had not come on the scene yet either.

    I’m going to try these cookies today–been looking for a good ‘sugar cookie’ type cookie and these sound perfect! Thanks mom.

  10. December 15, 2008 2:26 pm

    I should have had my mom bake some cookie when I was home. You should be a natural for this weeks Sunday challenge… 🙂

  11. December 15, 2008 4:19 pm

    Those look great. I love the vintage cookie cutters. I have a few of my grandmother’s- including a fabulous camel. My Mom makes sour cream cookies. I recently posted the recipe I use for cookies- it was one I found in my grandmother’s recipe box. It tells you they will keep well for weeks in a stone crock, covered. Now, if only I had a stone crock….

    Oh, and I eat my M&Ms in color order too. I even did it with froot loops when I was younger and used to eat them for snack (yellow, orange, green, blue, pink, purple) Who knows…My hubby says I’m OCD about how I hang laundry as well….

  12. December 16, 2008 5:49 pm

    LOL I wonder what the story is when it comes to eating the heads off of chocolate easter bunnies?? lol
    Those cookies look delicious 🙂


  13. December 18, 2008 12:04 am

    Great old cookbook! But what really got me was the Scotty Dog cookie cutter– I have one too! And the Horse, and the Leaf. They were our canonical cookie cutters growing up in the 60’s in New England, with a donut/biscuit cutter to make round ones.

    Love yr blog, came here from Honest Meat via the TLC Ranch newsletter. Grew up on a small homestead in NH, then Maine, now in urban heck but gardening anyway. We had goats, and your barn-to-fridge milk article really brought back memories too. So great to know other folks grew up the way I did, and even better, are still living that way and raising kids to it. YAY.


  14. December 18, 2008 11:08 pm

    Chris, thanks, us weirdos have to stick together right?

    Ali, I was trying not to bake too much this year too. Luckily most of my baking has been going out the door. I don’t need anymore personal insulation! 🙂

    Jenny, I don’t have the patience to make a bigger batch, or even decorate them. But, I wouldn’t mind eating them, that’s for sure.

    Now all the closet “in order” M&M eaters will come out. :O

    Gina, I ate the tail off the coyote first and made him into an Australian Shepherd. hehe The axe is vintage, I love it!

    Linda, I use a cheese glass on my biscuits, but I can’t resist these cookie cutters!

    Linda, thanks, the book has quite the meal planning section. It looks like it was never used.

    Kathie, love the Scotch box storage method! I have to make more just to use the different cutters…

    Titus, thank you so much.

    HDR, I thought M&Ms were older than that! You must be younger than me? I eat my least favorite colors first: yellow, orange, red, tan, brown and then finally green. Now with blue I’m all screwed up – and I have a reaction to the blue dye. 😦

    Of course, I would like to re-enact all this wearing my candy necklace and smoking a candy cigarette while eating my M&M’s. Personal note: it is open season on almond m&m’s, I eat those in any order! 🙂

    Ed, arrgh I missed the christmas light challenge, but I hope to get a food pic!

    Judy, we have a camel too, about the same age as the axe and scotty with the little handle. I’ll have to get to your post about your grandmother’s recipe box, it sounds very interesting.

    My hubby and I both are OCD on the laundry thing, it drives our teenager crazy. You know matching holes and elasticity(or lack of) in socks 🙂 I think my wierdest eating thing was Campbells Vegetable Beef soup – first the peas, then carrots, and then the beef, how weird is that!

    Robbyn, you should have seen the real story – I was a coyote eating fool – chocolate bunnies don’t stand a chance around here. Insert dastardly laugh. We just watched The Dark Knight too, so you can imagine the antics around here. Cabin fever, sinister movie, lots of sugar – baaaadddddd

    Strata, my mom loved Scotty everything! I have a set of antimacassar’s with Scotties in filet crochet that she made. Gorgeous! I got the horse, and a camel too that are the same age. I’m guessing from the 40’s or early 50’s. There are so many I could do a post just about cookie cutters!

    Thanks for the kind comments. Gardening is hard to give up isn’t it? Thanks for stopping by.


  15. carole permalink
    December 28, 2011 7:24 am

    i have the same cookbook ; it was my stepdad’s uncles cookbook

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