Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Date, Raisin Cookies

That is what my cookies and my mom's cookies look like.
When I look at a cookie at the store, on a blog or anywhere else; they are flat and attractive.
Mine?  Meatballs. 
Round and soft.  But not flat.

Growing up my mom made everything homemade.
I thought that is what homemade cookies looked like. 
My friends had store-bought cookies.  Which at the time I thought were way cooler.

There were a few cookies my mom baked all the time.
Chocolate Cookies (Italian and only made for special occasions.  Check my blog for those.),
Oatmeal-Raisin and my other favourite....Date Raisin Cookies.

My mom always baked with shortening.
I bake with butter.
One day my mom shared her Date, Raisin Cookie with me and I was estactic.
Until I found out that the measurements were a bit off.  In the recipe she would say, one handful of this and another of that.
What the heck is that??!!!
I can't bake like that!!
I need proper measurements.

I searched the internet for Date, Raisin Cookies and came across this website.
It was pretty darn close to what my mom had stated and what the website stated to do.
So, I went with both of them.

I omitted the nuts because of my kids.
I must say if you are able to use nuts, it would make the cookie better.
My mom used to use walnuts.

I thought of using the butter instead of the shortening but I wanted the texture to be just how I remembered them to be.

The cookie is soft and yummy.
My kids liked it and they hate dates.
Actually when I came home from the store with dried dates they were not impressed.
"What for?" was their response.
To bake with.
(They rolled their eyes).

To learn more about dates, see below.

When I use raisins I use the dark variety.  I don't like the mushyness of the yellow or light-coloured raisins. 
To learn more about raisins, see below.

Date, Raisin Cookies

1 cup brown sugar (my mom used yellow sugar)
1/2 cup Crisco shortening
2 eggs (large)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1  1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
approx. 1/4 cup of boiling water
2 cups dates, chopped
1 cup raisins
1 cup nuts, either walnuts or pecans, chopped (optional)

*In a small-medium bowl, dissolve the baking soda with the boiling water. 
*Once dissolved add in the chopped dates.  The water will be soaked up by the dried dates.
You may add a bit more boiling water to the date-mixture.

*In a medium-bowl, beat the brown sugar and shortening together until incorporated.
*Beat in the egg, one-at-a-time.
*Add the vanilla, and stir.
*Mix in the flour.
*Add the date-and-soda mixture and mix all together.
*Add the raisins and stir all together again.

*Using a 1-Tbsp scoop the dough onto a parchment-paper-lined cookie sheet/pan.
(I use the Sil-Pat on my cookie sheets.  If you do not have either, please grease your sheets/pans).
*Bake at 350F for approx. 10-12 minutes; depending on how big of a scoop you used.

*To freeze, use an air-tight-container.


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