Everything about cookies

I had decided this week’s column would be about cookies. I was thinking about my cookie cutters to be exact. Then, on Friday I got a call from the hospital to say that I had won one of the baskets. It was the cookie basket.

Cookies have long been part of my Christmas celebration. I learned to bake cookies from my grandmother. I was never allowed to cut them out, but I was allowed to help frost them.

When I got my first apartment I had nothing to bake with so I used some of my Betty Crocker coupons to purchase a set of pans, some measuring cups, and a set of cookie cutters. That first Christmas I made a lot of cookies. I sent some to Grandma and Grandpa – by then she was no longer baking. I also took some of my cookies to my soon to be in-law’s house for the holidays. That year I received a hand egg beater as my Christmas gift and it was really appreciated.

I still have some of those copper colored cookie cutters. Some of them were useless. They had small parts that always broke off when I was trying to frost them. I use the Christmas tree, the snowman, the reindeer, and the holly leaf. That was just the beginning of my collection.

A few years later I invested in some cutters that were tin outlines. That set had some useless ones too but I found I had now had a good selection of small cookie cutters. I have a bell, a small tree, a church, a Santa, and another holly leaf.

I used to pick up cookie cutters at estate sales so I have some of those. One year I found a cookie cutter that rolled and created small round cookies. It is quite useful. If I want plain cookies I use that.

When my grandmother’s house was getting ready to be sold I acquired some of her cutters. I treasure those. Each time I take them out of my drawer I think about grandma and remember the days of baking at her house.

One year when I was teaching school I received a complete set of the 12 Days of Christmas cutters. They have a lot of lines that need to be decorated. That year we quickly mixed up another batch of cookies to try them out. My daughter decorated all of them. I might add that took a significant amount of time. I have now decided that I will not use them again so I passed them on to my daughter. She really enjoys the decorating part.

When we went on our honeymoon we stopped at a little country store. We picked out a big crock that became my cookie jar. The lid has some cracks that have been repaired, but it is still functional. Dick’s cousin dropped the lid but he glued it back together before his visit was finished. I also bought a couple of those outline cookie cutters. I was thinking Easter at the time so I purchased a duck and a chick. My grandmother had some of those.

When I travel I often pick up a cookie cutter or two. They are light and travel well. I purchased one on my last trip in Europe. They are nice reminders of my trips although I cannot be certain where all of them came from. At Chautauqua, I picked up a teapot to remind me of the tea that I attended there. In Amish country, I picked up some gingerbread men to use with my grandmother’s molasses cookie recipe. While in Harrisburg I found a cutter of Pennsylvania. I made cookies to treat my class that year with that one. I had taken a personal day to accompany my daughter to a contest there.

Through the years my granddaughter and I often made decorated cookies to enter in the fair. Each of us won some awards with them. I remember taking a first place with some gloves that I decorated. I also won with my teapots. My granddaughter was only seven years old when she began mixing up the cookies and cutting them out on her own. She was careful not to add too much flour and she kept her cookies close together. I really enjoyed those times of working together. I am hopeful that she will have time to bake cutouts with me again this year. She arrives home this weekend so I have made time in my schedule to bake with her.

Back to that basket that I won. There was a set of cookie cutters along with some decorating tips. There was also a cookie jar and a big platter. The cookies in the basket were delicious. There were some gift bags to use with the cookies that I will give away. There was even a cookie mix. The basket itself is useful. It is with joy that I thank the Hospice Group for their “All Things Cookie” basket. I am really enjoying the things I won.