What Is The Best Milk To Give 1 Year Old The Lost Sugar Cookie

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The Lost Sugar Cookie

It was a hot, sticky day in Nevada City. My mom and I had stopped by my Great Aunt Kay’s house to visit and pick up some old family photos for genealogy. It was stormy and hot in the small cabin. My aunt’s cat melted into the floor and seemed as if breathing were an annoying fact.

While my mom and great-aunt rummaged through photo boxes and drank lemonade, I asked to go through my aunt’s recipe collection, carefully filed away in a large pile in a Ziploc bag. I was looking for my brother’s favorite – a date pudding recipe that my grandmother used to make every Christmas. But at the top of the pile I found three sheets of plain white paper with the same ingredients listed over and over. The recipe had no title, just a list of ingredients: brown sugar, shortening, 3 eggs, vanilla, buttermilk, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. I pulled up the sheets and asked Aunt Kay what these pages were for. “Oh, the last time Debbie came over, we were trying to remember Mom’s sugar cookie recipe.” My mother immediately perked up. “Oh, I used to love them! I miss them so much! Grandpa and I used to take them with us when we went fishing. Grandma always made them.” I stared blankly at them.

Sugar cookies? They are so…boring. Who cares about sugar cookies? These are clearly not part of the pantheon of family recipes that I know and appreciate, such as date pudding, fudge, fried egg sandwiches, and great-grandpa sandwiches. But after five minutes of listening to their reminiscences, it was clear that these cookies weren’t just in the pantheon, they were our family’s baking Zeus. My grandmother died when I was about six, and my great-grandfather died before I was born. My mother spent summers at her grandparents fishing, playing card games and baking.

Apparently, almost every week, these cookies would be rolled up on my grandmother’s counter and baked, resulting in a soft, brown sugar cookie with a hint of spiciness that remained soft, chewy, and comforting. My great grandfather and mother carried them in their fishing belts and went out to eat dinner. Clearly, important childhood memories for at least two generations of my family were deeply intertwined with these cookies, and the sheets of paper I held in my hand were proof that my great-aunt and her daughter Debbie were desperate to recreate the recipe and capture something tangible. from the past. I could tell by the look on my mother’s face that she wasn’t far behind. Then Kay told us that these were Lillie’s cookies.

We had originally visited my great aunt so that she could help us fill in some additional gaps in our family tree. We had been working on it all summer and wanted his approval on some of the things we found. Lillie, it turns out, was Lillian Mae Creps, born about 1871 in Ohio. She taught this recipe to daughter-in-law Mildred Shockey when she married, around 1917. This was a family recipe when Lillie taught it to my grandmother, and she passed it down (and possibly tested) the next generation. This recipe is well over a century old in my family, and if we could revive it, I’d be at least the 5th generation to enjoy it. But the recipe wasn’t much help, and Kay’s recent attempts had produced disaster.

I examined each sheet of paper for a clue as to what made these cookies so special. Kay had started with the basics and as I read on I could see that she and Debbie had become increasingly desperate. Replacing the butter with shortening, changing the amount of sugar and finally poaching the eggs! Five batches later, the cookies they produced were no longer remembered. Now memory is a funny thing. It’s entirely possible that we could have had the perfect recipe and the reality would still have crumbled in comparison to the treasured childhood memory. But Kay and my mom had identical memories of big, soft cookies that were rolled with a touch of spice and stayed soft for days. When we got home, mom was trying to bake cookies. They came out like regular sugar cookies, only closer to a café-au-lait color than a traditional sugar cookie.

I stood silently as he frowned over the rack of cooling cookies. “The dough was way too soft! I had to add too much flour to make it roll. I know these aren’t right. The whole texture is wrong. Exactly what Kay said happened to her.” A year passed and the memory of these cookies kept nagging at me. The recipe isn’t completely lost, it looks like we’re just missing a step somewhere. Refrigerate the dough? Is there a measurement error? I wanted so desperately to give my mom, who has next to nothing tangible from her side of the family, something to sink her teeth into. So one day I called her and asked if she had the prescription or what was in her drawer.

I was going to try to recreate the cookies.

It turned out she had two copies made at different times, which I compared to what I had scratched from my great-aunt’s recipe stack that hot summer day. As she read the ingredients, I interrogated each ingredient like it was a cheat. Could it be because the dough was too soft to roll? Was there a copying error in the recipe?

It didn’t take long for us to find the suspect. One of the copies started with three cups of brown sugar. Another started with a pound of brown sugar and labeled “three cups” in parentheses next to it. The third version my mom had last used said three cups. I immediately wondered: how many cups are in a pound of brown sugar? I ran to my bookshelf and grabbed my favorite cookbook. I haven’t actually made anything from this cookbook, which I find odd. I don’t even remember when or where I got it, but I suspect my mom got it for me sometime in middle school or high school at a used bookstore we frequented downtown. Let’s start cooking published in 1966, it has a pink, red and yellow day-glo cover and gorgeous swirly, calligraphic illustrations that remind me of the cookbooks everyone had growing up. But the best thing about this book is its weights and measures table, which never ceases to amaze me and contains the kind of cryptic trivia I always seem to need. Mom waited patiently on the phone while I scanned the chart, then almost laughed with delight. Printed on another chart is “2 1/3 cups tightly packed brown sugar = 1 pound.” You’ll never find that in a modern cookbook.

So now we know. Someone’s kitchen scale must have been loose at some point, or else they were sure that three cups equaled a pound. It does not matter. I was correcting a decades-old mistake and it felt good. I started thinking about the rest of the recipe. Should I use bread flour? It makes the cookies more chewy due to the increased gluten. My mother objected. “No! She used white flour. No substitutions!” Hmm. How about milk? The recipe calls for buttermilk. I didn’t want to let the milk spoil. It just didn’t seem healthy and I’m sure Grandma wouldn’t approve of causing food poisoning.

Once again, Mom had an answer. “Put a few drops of lemon juice or vinegar in it.” Huh, why didn’t I think of that? I went to the grocery store to pick up whole milk (assuming they didn’t use skim in the 50s) and then took one last look at the recipe. Indeed, the whole thing, from the brown sugar, to the shortening, to the consumption of stale milk, shows the frugality and common sense of these everyday cookies, as they used only common household ingredients that my ancestors would have always had on hand. I set out to bake cookies knowing that I wouldn’t know if they were right or not and that I had the weight of my entire family tree on my shoulders. I would have to call my mom back and describe them. I started by reading all the sugar bread recipes I could find.

The method for mixing and rolling shortbread dough is straightforward, but oven temperatures are not and can greatly affect the texture of the final product. The baking temperatures in the cookbooks varied between 350 and 400, with several at 375. I decided to make a sheet at each temperature. After all, this was an experiment and I wouldn’t take anything for granted. I measured, sifted and whipped myself more like a chemist than a baker. I questioned every step. Did they do it this way? The dough was soft and I chilled it for half an hour. I had to add flour to roll it, but my mom had told me that’s how it would be. Still, it was like rolling peanut butter. There was flour everywhere and half a can later, it was still stuck to the board. In the end I had several trays ready. I baked the first batch at 400 degrees, watching them closely. Then I baked the same amount at 375 and 350, thinking each time that I had used too much flour and that if we wanted some flavor from them, maybe we should ditch the rolling cookie tradition and make them drop cookies.

The 350 batch was by far the most puffy and cakey, matching my mother’s memory, the 400 batch second and the 375 oddly third. I called my mom in frustration. “Well, they’re puffy, three inches across, and cakey, just like you described, and a little pink. I added nutmeg because you remembered it, even though it’s not in the recipe. But they don’t taste. much. But they’re kind of tasty. But they’re so simple. You’re supposed to eat them with milk and they don’t taste like brown sugar. And rolling them was horrible!” Mom laughed. “Well, now you know what it was like. We used to have them with milk for breakfast and grandpa with coffee. Maybe we just need to adjust the sugar a bit, but the color, size and texture sounds good.” I sprinkled nutmeg on top of each one that wasn’t yet fried for extra flavor and let out a sigh of relief. A little tweaking and two more cups of flour at the beginning of the recipe and we might just be on to something. If you want to revive a family recipe, here are some tips that may help.

  • Do you want to make a faithful reproduction or a healthier version? Older recipes may contain butter, baking powder, whole milk, etc. If you lighten the recipe, you may be able to enjoy it more often, but it may not be exactly what you remember.
  • If you are trying to be as precise as possible, avoid changing the ingredients and method. Did your great-grandmother have a stand mixer? Does using one affect the texture?
  • According to ancestry.com, genealogy is second only to gardening as the most popular hobby in the United States. If you are researching your family tree and recording family history, ask about the recipes: where they came from, who made them, and any memories associated with them. It makes your family history and taste richer.

Lillie’s Sugar Cookies (aka Mildred’s Cookies or Heirloom Cookies) in the late 19th century. 2 1/3 cups brown sugar 3 cups flour 1 cup baking powder 4 teaspoons baking powder 3 beaten eggs 2 teaspoons baking soda 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 teaspoon salt 1 cup whole milk 1 teaspoon nutmeg 1/8 teaspoon lemon juice Recommended changes: Add one and a half or two cups flour, if you want to roll them, add an extra teaspoon of vanilla and at least a teaspoon of nutmeg. Or try cookies with no changes, but they won’t puff up or be as cakey. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Add lemon juice to milk, set aside. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg into a medium bowl and set aside.

Mix brown sugar and sugar in a bowl. Mix on medium until combined. Add eggs and vanilla, beat on medium speed until smooth. Add the milk over low heat, stirring to avoid splashing. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, beat on medium until the mixture is combined. Cover and chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Flour a cutting board, a rolling pin, and a round cookie cutter (about 3 inches in diameter). Put baking paper on cookie sheets. Roll out dough to 1/2 inch thick, using as much flour as necessary to achieve this (adjust recipe). it is highly recommended to add flour at the beginning). Cut with a cutter and put six cookies on baking paper as a plate. Bake at 350 degrees for seven minutes until puffed and lightly browned on the bottom. Remove from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack. Yield 3 dozen.

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