Spice Drop Cookies
I met The Fellow™ in early November, 2008. We had our first Thanksgiving together shortly thereafter where I spent the day (or rather the Saturday after Thanksgiving) with his mom. Less than a month in to the relationship and I was already meeting family. I won’t go in to great detail about all of what went on (no, there weren’t fights, there weren’t incidents – nothing like that), but I instantly hit it off with his mom and I found myself another mom figure. And like a lot of moms do, she baked. She had lots of sweets and I can’t even remember what else. She was feeding a fleet; there needed to be enough of everything to go around.
One of those sweets was gum drop cookies. They were festive and delicious and just made of deliciousness. I couldn’t stop at one. If you know anything about me, I’m not a fan of chocolate. I prefer fruity treats, or things resembling fruit, or even fruit colored. I will take those over chocolate almost any day of the week (there are some exceptions, however).
Earlier this year, The Fellow’s™ mom sent me her recipe for the gum drop cookies. I asked her if she used actual gum drops (I was thinking of the large, thumb-sized chewy candies) or if she used spice drops. She said she used spice drops and picked out the red and greens to make the cookies. I put off making these for a long time. I was trying to be really good about my “diet” and not incorporating unnecessary treats. After a long time of being without these cookies and them not being at recent Thanksgiving or similar holiday gatherings, I knew this Thanksgiving would have to be different for The Fellow™ and our company at the house.
Unfortunately, I spent 11 hours in the kitchen on Thanksgiving Thursday, doing everything from baking pies, making stuffing (from scratch), doing the potatoes, the turkey, the veggies. Ugh. Talk about a busy, busy day, only to ruin the rolls and not get around to make these cookies. I was so excited to make them, too, considering I had found a bag of “Christmas Spicettes” that were the exact things I needed for the cookies. The bag sat on the dining room table in our little nook for well over a week before I decided it was time to put them to good use.
Even though I had the recipe for a long long time, I never actually paid attention to the ingredients. Coconut, old fashioned oats, orange zest… all things that come together to make this delicious cookie.
The best way to enjoy these cookies are to bake them until the edges are a beautiful golden brown and the centers are inflated, squishy, and cream colored. They may look like they’re under-done, but cooling off solidifies the centers and makes them the perfect combination of crisp and chewy. Letting them bake longer so that the centers are getting darker in color will result in burnt edges. And nobody likes burnt cookies.
Well, The Fellow™ does.
Edited 12/16/13 – finally got around to making these suckers again… a whole year later! Made some changes, mostly in the form of additions. A little cinnamon and a bunch of lemon instead of orange. I think I have another winner!
Spice Drop Cookies
source: The Fellow’s mum
1 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup unsweetened coconut
1 cup spice drops (red and green), quartered
1 Tablespoon lemon zest
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Do not grease.
2. Mix all dry ingredients together well.
3. Incorporate the shortening, vanilla, and eggs, until well mixed. A stiff, but workable, dough will form.
4. Divide dough in to golf ball size segments and press into 1/2″ tall pucks on the parchment sheets. The cookies will spread, so leave about 2″ between each chunk of dough.
5. Bake cookies about 12-15 minutes, or until edges are golden brown and centers are creamy colored and “inflated” (touching them with a toothpick or fork will make them seem very very soft, which is okay). Let sit on the tray for about a minute, then gently move to a cooling rack. The cookies will crisp as they cool.