The name of these cookies really doesn’t give you any idea what they are. I am the cry baby when it comes to these cookies. My family LOVES them, I can’t stress how much they LOVE them. Then there is me, who makes them. I can’t stand the smell of molasses, but I endure for my family. My grandfather even has me make a big batch so that he can freeze and ration them between when I make them next.
This is no joke. You should ask him.
I set to making these as close to Christmas as possible, so they are fresh and ready to go. Also so that I suffer through the least amount of molasses as possible. Sorry, co-workers there is not test batch of these for you.
I actually found this recipe a few years ago. Well… I should probably give credit to my mother. We were looking for a molasses cookie recipe to make for my grandfather who had been that we making him some for years. My mom set to scouring her old church cookbooks and came across a recipe that seemed to fit out needs just perfectly. Like all good church cookbooks, they list out the city and name of the person who submitted the recipe. Both our jaws dropped when we read “Stella Neiwind”. This could not be?! Oh it was, my great-grandmother, my grandfather’s mother had submitted this recipe 30 odd years earlier. She has since passed, 20+ years ago, which made it all the sweeter.
We had struck gold with this recipe. Nothing could compare to making my grandfather molasses cookies, which he always raved about having as a kid, but to make his MOTHER’S recipe! Done. You have me sold. I set out to make these cookies immediately.
That Christmas when I placed the cookies out on the counter, my grandfather was the first to snatch one. He was in heaven. Then my mom dropped the bomb…. “Dad you know who’s recipe that is? Stella Niewind’s”. He was in shock and even more overjoyed.
I love those moments. When you see someones eyes light up from something as simple as baking them cookies. Cookies with so much meaning.
I am currently off to bake batch #2 of these so that my grandfather can store them and ration them for a few months 🙂
- 1 cup shortening
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup molasses
- 1 egg, beaten
- ½ cup hot water
- 1 teaspoon lemon extract
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons soda
- 5 cups sifted flour
- In large mixing bowl, cream together shortening, molasses and sugar with an elexctric mixer. Add eggs, lemon extract and hot water; continue mixing.
- Sift in flour, salt, and baking soda; continue mxing. The batter will be thicker.
- To roll out, start with a clean work space, and sift flour on to work space in a large circle (about the size of a 9" round baking pan). Next, scope 1/3 of cookie batter onto floured surface. Sift more flour lightly over top of dough.
- Roll dough out to desired thickness, normally 1/8"- 1/4". The cookie will puff slightly while baking.
- Cut out any shape cookie. Pick each cookie up and pass between each hand to brush off excess flour. Lightly blow away large amounts of flour. Place on baking sheets.
- Pull together scraps of dough and re-roll out, repeating steps 4-6. Once finished, start at step 3 again for remaining 2/3 of dough.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes, or until edges are firm.
- Remove from pans imediately and cool on tin foil.
- Store in air tight container. Frost with powdered sugar or white frosting, if desired.
**These cookies freeze very well unfrosted stored in an air tight contianer.
Recipe from the collection of Great Grandma Stella Neiwind