Friday, December 30, 2011

An Attempt at Aunt Lou's Molasses Cookie Recipe

If you are a loyal reader of baked, you know that this blog is less about stoner food, and more about celebrating desserts, and honoring loved ones and the recipes they have shared with us.  I suppose if you do find yourself reading while influenced by a certain substance, you are welcome to be inspired and enjoy these recipes too - though i may not recommend operating an oven!

Right before Thanksgiving, I found myself reflecting on desserts, and then the desserts that i have learned from my family, i mean the recipes that my mom has shared with me, and many of those are recipes that she was taught by her mother (Honeybunch) or Aunt (CioCia Katie).  I got to thinking about all of the tasty treats that i have inhaled throughout my lifetime that reminded me of my loved ones, and suddenly realized that there is a major void when it comes to the tasty treats from my dads side of the fan!  All credit goes to mom when it comes to creating these tasty treats, but it was my dad who taught me that you can never have too many cookies and milk.

While i was home for Turkey Day, I asked my dad about the recipe that i remember the most: Aunt Lou's Molasses Cookies.  Funny because i was fairly young when i had these treats, though the memory is so vivid!  I had to have been three years old when we would go and visit her at the farm house in Adrian, Michigan.  Her kitchen wasn't fancy by todays standards, but it always smelled good! and hidden behind the pantry door where she kept a bunch of stuff - but most importantly was the jar of cookies!  she only had molasses cookies.  i hadn't had them before, and i haven't had them since, So when my dad brought out his moms recipe box and we found Aunt Lou's Molasses Cookie recipe in there, i was totally geeked!

Here goes the first attempt, er two.  not exactly what i remember... but its a start.  And in true baked form, we are sharing the successes and the flops with you:

don't you love a recipe card?!?!?  until you actually start to read it and try to follow it.  holy molasses, this ones going to need some time to figure out!

all ingredients lined up and ready to go!

Sour milk!? yes.  pour 1tbs on lemon juice into measuring container, and then fill to the 1/2 c. line with milk 


molasses

molasses + sugar

molasses + sugar + sour milk

.... + dry ingredients

mix it all together

add butter and blend.
no i don't think it is supposed to look this way.
or smell this way.

poo,  i think i did something wrong.  cookie dough is not supposed to look like this.  
start over.... with all the same ingredients, though this time we are only going to do a half recipe.  AND we are going to use all of the common sense we have from years of cookie making that says you are supposed to CREAM the butter and the sugar together, and then add eggs and spices, and then alternate flour and milk.
this is what it SHOULD look like!

though, the recipe card didn't say how much flour to add... read it again... " enuf flour for soft dough - roll out".
and with Molasses being a thick sticky viscous substance, with butter and lots of milk, this was a very moist batter.  so i started adding flour in 1/2 cup increments.
after 4 cups, the dough still looked like this, but common sense said stop.  

because they are supposed to be roll out- sugar cookies style cut out cookies, we had to refrigerate the dough.
and because i have been traveling all over the Midwest for work during the month of December, hosting a HUGE work event, preparing for a huge work related exam, AND speed clicking through online shopping this year, this dough didn't get made until 2 hours before we were supposed to leave the windy city for t-town.  call me a procrastinator.
its a good thing the dough needed to be chilled..
though in reality this dough really was chill in in the trunk of the honda civic.  


and now to the fun part!  roll out dough.

select favorite cup (in lieu of 3.5" diameter circular cookie cutter)



place cutouts on cookie sheet

sprinkle sugar on top

add more sugar... memory says these were crusted in sugar!
wah wah... ok so the picture doesn't make them look all that bad.  they were more cakey than we remembered, and they were too light in color.  BUT their flavor brought back memories!


round 2.  instead of rolling our dough, we rolled them into balls and then rolled them in sugar, and then pressed with our fingers to flatten


they came out like this... not the right caramel color, but they started to get the cracked surface.... we are getting somewhere!


couldn't have upset dad though... he loved having them.  or at least he said he did. :)

the search continues.... I'm determined to find a recipe that gets me closer to the cookies we ate 25 years ago.

got a molasses cookie recipe to share?  id love to hear what you are baking!



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