Jammin’ Cookies

This is another holiday favorite of mine.  I can’t remember not having this recipe, where I got it is lost in the fogs of my mind.  I really should write these kind of things down! (pictured here with Million Dollar Fudge)



3/4 cup confectionary sugar
2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (a bit more, I always let it overflow a bit)
2 cups unbleached flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (approximately guessing at) of strawberry or raspberry jam or preserves.

1/3  cup sugar (to roll dough in)


Pre-heat oven to 350.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and confectionary sugar.  Add the egg and vanilla, mix well.  Add the flour and salt, mix until combined.

Roll the dough into approximately 1 inch balls. Roll each ball in the sugar to coat.  Place on an ungreased cookie sheet and using your thumb or the end of a spoon or the top of an extract bottle to press an indentation in each cookie.  Dip into the sugar first to help prevent sticking.  Using a 1/2 teaspoon, fill each indentation with jam.  Don’t over fill the cookies, you can spread the jam when they come out of the oven and it is still melty, if they need a little help to look pretty.  Overfilling can cause them to bubble over the edge of the cookie while they cook and be messy.

Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes or until golden on the bottom.  Let cool in the pan for a few minutes, spread the jam for any cookies that need a little help looking good, then remove to a rack to cool completely.

Note:  the uncooked balls can be frozen, then pulled out and defrosted completely before baking.  Although it would be very hard to not cook them right away!


Hot Oatmeal for Cold Mornings

I love oatmeal.  I mean real oatmeal, not that instant powdery stuff (although that is handy when you want to eat now because you should have been out the door 10 minutes ago) but the kind you have to cook in a pot.  It reminds me of a farmhouse breakfast and happy childhood mornings when my dad would make this for everyone.  I didn’t live on a farm, but I still think of one when I think of bowls of oatmeal : )


I have a variety of things I like to put in my oatmeal, apples or dried cranberries are real good, blueberries are wonderful.  Today I ate it without additions, since I was fresh out of those and just topped it with brown sugar (maple syrup is fabulous too).  It tastes real good with a little bit of butter melting on top, adds a bit of richness that I am sure my doctor would think cancels out all the healthiness : )  I pass on that now a days.

I thought I would share my recipe because I use a different ratio than what is on the container, I like mine to be thick with a bit of chew still in it.


Makes 1 serving

1/2 cup old fashioned oats
2/3 cup 2% milk (you can use 1% or skim, if that is your thing.  Remember whole milk?  That would make a rich oatmeal.)
pinch of salt
a bit of dark brown sugar or maple syrup
a dash or 2 of cinnamon, if you like
a splash of vanilla is nice too
diced apples or dried cranberries or any fruit you like, if you have it


In a small sauce pan on low-ish heat (I have a gas stove, hard to judge exactly), combine the milk and oats.  Add in the salt, and the cinnamon and stir frequently.  Don’t get carried away puttering about and forget to stir, milk can burn quite quickly.  Add in your chopped apples or dried fruit so it can cook and soften a bit.  Keep stirring until most of the milk is absorbed and it is getting pretty thick.

Spoon it into a bowl, top with dark brown sugar or maple syrup and enjoy the warmth!

Million Dollar Fudge

Another of the things I love to do is cook, so I decided that I would start to share some of my favorite recipes now and then.  This is one I have had for about 30 years and it is a well loved recipe.  I hadn’t made any in years and came across it again when looking through my recipes for Christmas. It makes a lot, but you will be glad it does because it disappears quicker than you would think!



12 ounces evaporated milk
2 tablespoons butter
4 1/2 cups sugar
12 ounces semi sweet chocolate (I used chips)
12 ounces german sweet chocolate
8 ounces marshmallow fluff
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups chopped walnuts or other nuts (optional)

variation: add pistachios and dried cranberries or cherries


Grease a 13″ x 9″ pan with some softened butter.  Chop up all the chocolate.  In a very large bowl, mix together the chocolates, the marshmallow fluff and the salt.  Set aside.

In a large saucepan bring the evaporated milk, butter and sugar to a boil, stir often while it heats.  Once it reaches a boil, reduce to a simmer and set a timer for 6 minutes.  Stir often as the mixture simmers, rub the sides now and then to mix in any sugar that sticks.  Once the 6 minutes is up, remove from heat and pour over the chocolates and fluff mixture.  Stir and beat with a spoon until it is evenly mixed and smooth.  Fold in the walnuts.

Spread into the prepared pan and cool completely before cutting.