Let your holiday cakes be cookies (1918)

Original publication: New-York Tribune Date: December 22, 1918
Categories: 1910s, Christmas, Dessert recipes
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When this article first ran in December of 1918, World War I had been over for only a month and a half, and sugar rations were still in effect. But no white sugar? No problem! These six cookie recipes use a variety of sweet alternatives — including molasses, honey, corn syrup and maple syrup.

Let your holiday cakes be cookies

by Margaret Hamelin

“I like anything with molasses in it,” is the universal cry when the boys and girls come home for the holidays. Warm gingerbread served with whipped cream or melted chocolate is a special favorite, and if they know where the cooky jar is kept, they will hardly know when to stop. Homemade cookies, snaps and jumbles can be made without making much of a draft on the white sugar supply.

The girls are partial to the crisp, snappy ones, while the boys demand the thick, crumbly cookies “that fill a fellow up.” Make the cookies and snaps two or three days before serving, but the spiced drop cakes are best when fresh and warm from the oven.

Fortunately, all of these little cakes can be made without either white or brown sugar, and with the strain of getting through the holiday cooking on four pounds of sugar per person per month, it is a great help to find a confection which does not require its use.

Crispy snaps cookie recipe

For the “crispy snaps,” boil one pint of dark molasses, half a cupful of shortening and one cupful of crushed maple sugar for eight minutes. When lukewarm, add a scant tablespoonful of ground ginger, a teaspoonful of ground cinnamon, one level teaspoonful of baking soda and sufficient finely sifted flour to form a dough that will roll very thin. Bake in a rather quick oven.

Thick, old-fashioned cookies

For the old-fashioned cookies, nearly half an inch thick, take two cupsful of molasses, three-quarters of a cupful of shortening, two scant teaspoonsful of baking soda, half a cupful each of sour milk and water, half a teaspoonful of salt, one teaspoonful of ground ginger, one grated nutmeg, one teaspoonful of ground cinnamon and half a teaspoonful of allspice. Mix the ingredients, dissolving the soda in the sour milk until very smooth; then stir in enough carefully silted flour to form a soft dough. Use as little flour as possible. Flour the board and rolling pin, roll and then cut the dough and use a cake turner to remove the cookies to the baking pan. A few chopped seeded raisins may be added to this recipe, as no sugar is used.

Honey nut cookies recipe

Melt a quarter of a cupful of oleo [margarine], add one cupful of strained honey, one tablespoonful of lemon juice, the grated rind of one lemon, two ounces of chopped sweet almonds (blanched), one-quarter of a teaspoonful of ground mace, half a teaspoonful of baking soda and about two and a half cupsful of finely sifted flour. Mix thoroughly and set aside covered in a cold place over night. Roll into a sheet half an inch thick, cut in squares and bake in a moderate oven.

Rolled oat, fruit and nut cookie recipe

Cream half a cupful of oleo and beat in a scant half cupful of corn syrup, one lightly-whipped egg, two tablespoonsful of milk, half a cupful of chopped raisins, one-quarter of a cupful of chopped peanuts, one large cupful each of rolled oats and finely sifted flour, and half a teaspoonful of baking soda. A little extra flour may be required; roll into a thin sheet and cut into rounds. This recipe makes about twenty-five cookies.

Hermits cookie recipe

These are probably the most popular of all cookies. Cream one-quarter of a cupful of clarified beef dripping and add half a cupful of corn syrup (maple syrup may be used if preferred), one lightly beaten egg, half a teaspoonful each of salt and cinnamon, one-quarter of a teaspoonful of cloves and one-third of a cupful of cold water. Sift together one and a half cupsful of wheaten flour and three teaspoonsful of baking powder, and gradually blend with the other ingredients. Beat the batter vigorously and add a quarter of a cupful each of chopped raisins, currants and nuts. Drop by the spoonful on to a buttered sheet and bake in a moderate oven from fifteen to twenty minutes.

(Article continues below)

Prune marshmallow cookie recipe

Beat to a cream one-third of a cupful of any preferred shortening and half a cupful each of corn syrup and maple syrup, half a cupful of milk and half a teaspoonful each of ground cinnamon and nutmeg. Then blend in gradually one and three-quarter cups of finely-sifted flour and three teaspoonsful of baking powder. Have ready a scant half pound of prunes that have been washed, stoned and cut in bits with sharp scissors. Flour these lightly, add to the batter and drop from the spoon onto a baking sheet. When cooked, cover with a thin layer of frosting made from melted marshmallows.


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Source publication: New-York Tribune

Publication date: December 22, 1918


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