Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Tradition

I love how recipes become traditions, simply by happy repetition. One woman finds a recipe,  serves it to kudos from her family, and she passes it down (usually) to her daughter, and the daughter repeats it, and so on until it has become something bonding and important and joyous.

That's what Melting Moment cookies are to me - a Christmas tradition that has come down through at least three generations now. They are simple and sweet; it wouldn't be Christmas without them. My first husband's mother, Elna, made these and gave her daughter and me the recipe, and now I am making them with my granddaughter, too. 

Last weekend, I prepared the cookie dough with the splendid KitchenAid mixer My Beloved's girls gave me a couple of Christmases ago (see how even that is becoming a part of the joy when I can haul out an appliance that has love written all over it?) and baked them in my new oven. I was initially concerned that they wouldn't turn out right, as you put them into a cold oven, then turn it on. I was worried that the roaring conflagration that Viking calls preheating would be too violent, but I needn't have worried - I put them into the lower part of the oven and they were perfect.

I took the cookie parts and the icing over to my granddaughter's house and we spent a pleasurable hour coloring the icing and then sticking the cookies together with a generous dollop of pink and green.

My granddaughter loved the whole thing. She loved donning a little apron. She enjoyed choosing just the right spoon and the perfect knife for mixing and spreading. She spread the icing and pressed the cookies together with care, not breaking a single one. That's not as easy as it sounds, as these aren't called Melting Moments for nothing - they are fragile and buttery and melt quite literally in your mouth. When they were finished, she placed each one with delicacy into the tin, arranging each one until she had the perfect ratio of pink to green and showing me a meticulous side to her nature that I had not hitherto suspected.

I'm going to share this cherished recipe here in hopes that it will start a new tradition in your house that will bring you holiday joy, too.

Melting Moment Cookies, thanks to Elna Trenholme

Cookie dough

1 cup butter at room temperature
2 Tablespoons powdered sugar
2 cups flour

Cream butter and sugar together. Mix flour in with a spoon (I used my mixer). Drop by 1/2 teaspoon onto cookie sheet, close together. Put into a cold oven. Turn on the oven to 300F and bake for 30 minutes. 

Icing

2 Tablespoons butter at room temperature
1 cup powdered (confectioner's) sugar
1 Tablespoon milk 
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract (add last)
Food coloring

Beat ingredients together with a mixer, adding the vanilla at the end. Divide the icing into two small containers and color with food coloring. I have tried the yellow and the blue but, honestly, the pink and green are the most appetizing colors.

6 Comments:

Blogger Whiting Hyland said...

I always loved these! Wish you could send some to me.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014  
Blogger Greg said...

cookie!

Thursday, December 18, 2014  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Whiting, make some yourself. Maybe even in collaboration with Sarah, who is a fine baker. Your family will thank you!

Greg, 'this the season!

Friday, December 19, 2014  
Blogger Diane said...

these sound and look delightful. how I love family traditions and having my daughter ask me for a family recipe. it's magic.

Friday, December 19, 2014  
Blogger Katie Zeller said...

I've seen those in my Betty Crocker Cooky Book but never tried them. In our family it's cranberry bread - and lemon bars. I do with I had gotten my mother's fudge recipe....

Saturday, December 20, 2014  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Diane, yes, family magic!

Katie, my mother didn't make Christmas cookies, but I improvised to start my own traditions.

Saturday, December 20, 2014  

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