Christmas just isn’t the same for me without sugar cookies cut into all kinds of festive shapes. My mother has a huge old cookbook she got as a graduation gift, and she just keeps stuffing recipes written on cards and random slips of paper into it. This cookie recipe is one copied by my great-grandmother onto a faded sheet of stationery and as children we always lit up when we saw the familiar sheet of paper emerge from the big yellow cookbook. Over the years, the recipe has been updated by various family members (no more lard!!), but we still love to make and decorate these cookies. Something about them just says Christmas! Continue reading
When I was growing up in Nebraska, my Irish grandmother made fruitcake for the family. It was gooey and sticky, and steeped in liquor, the only liquor little kids were allowed to have. Even the egg nog was non-alcoholic for the kids. But the fruitcake was oozing with liquor. Unfortunately, I never got the family recipe for the fruitcake from her, but I distinctly remember what it tasted like.
When I got married, I discovered my husband also likes the most maligned of holiday cakes, and we searched to find our own recipe for it. Now forty years later, my husband and I still make our Christmas fruitcake on Thanksgiving weekend to give to our family and friends.
We originally bought a copy of From Julia Child’s Kitchen for the onion soup recipe, another culinary delight we found we shared. But rummaging around in the book, we found Julia Child’s Sticky Cake, which once we tasted it became our holiday staple. Continue reading