A Sugar Cookie of Gratitude

I have officially declared this week The Week of Cookies and Gratitude.

Yes, it is official. Why the gratitude?  For you, the one reading this. My gratitude is for YOU... Thank you for reading this!

It frequently occurs to me how much joy your reading brings. Watching that magical blogger graph track the number of people reading the Shoofly... just warms my tender baking heart. Reading your comments lightens any heavy day and keeps me coming back to this here keyboard. So I think it's high time I told you - How grateful I am to have you here! Let's have a cookie!

I figure nothing says a hearty THANKS like a cookie. Right? Goodness yes.
If I could, I'd send you each a few of these homemade declarations of delicious, but alas... time and distance are among us. What I can do is give you a few super amazing recipes and give a few of my neighbors and local readers the results.

Cookie #1:  Keturah's Sugar Cookie. 

The original recipe. No need for a tweak

Anyone who spent a moment of childhood in Keturah's kitchen speaks of these morsels. Sherry, my aunt
who was one of those lucky souls, wrote a descriptive paper for school in 1988...  She chose Keturah's kitchen! Here's an excerpt from the sweet, vividly-written paper...

"During the spring and summer time, she always had her windows open... If Grandma was baking the day that I visited, the aroma of freshly baked whole wheat bread or lemon flavored sugar cookies made my mouth water. Your taste buds were usually satisfied with a sample of her work and a glass of ice cold milk... Her old green glazed cookie jar, with flowers of red and yellow, was always filled with cookies."

The glorious elements that make these sugar cookies memorable: LEMON RIND and NUTMEG.

The two flavors that make a world of difference

With lemon and nutmeg, these are no longer your average sugar cookies which, let's just say it, are all too often overly crisp, overly sweet, and overly unremarkable. Keturah has most definitely not given us your average sugar cookie.

With no further ado. Except for another heartfelt THANKS from me to you....

My Thank You Note

Keturah's Sugar Cookies

Yield: 20 cookies
Time: 30 minutes total

1/4 cup butter, softened to room temperature
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1/4 heaping teaspoon grated or ground nutmeg (more or less to your taste)
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon milk
1 cup sifted flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In medium-sized mixing bowl, combine butter, salt, lemon rind, nutmeg, and sugar. Cream with mixer until the butter appears to be "thrown" against the side of the bowl by the mixer. (This will make sense when you do it.)
Note: I grated whole nutmeg as I envision it's what Keturah did and I wanted the cookie as genuine as possible. 

2. Add egg and milk and mix till thoroughly combined.

3. For clarification (as I always get confused on the whole sifting and measuring bit) - Sifted flour takes up more volume than unsifted flour.  In this recipe, if you don't sift you're going to have too much flour and a tough cookie dough. Pre-sift the flour before you measure it. Then sift it again with the baking soda and powder added.

4. Add these sifted dry ingredients to the cookie dough and stir till flour is totally combined.

5. Drop onto ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 8 to 10 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through to ensure even baking. They are done when the cookie looks set in the middle and edges just start to brown. You want a lovely pale, not a golden brown.

6. Immediately transfer cookies to cooling rack and sprinkle with sugar. Store in airtight container when cool.

I channeled my little inner farm girl and ate the decadent afternoon snack with milk and summer's fruit. Out on the grass amongst my garden and beaming pear tree.

The cookie: Soft pillowy bites. Brilliant flavor profile.
Me: Full of gratitude.

The garden's Tiffen Mennonite Heirloom

Enjoy these morsels of gratitude and do tell... how did they taste?!


  1. These sugar cookies, made with this recipe, are almost exactly like the ones my mother made to sell on market in Lancaster, PA. She got the recipe from her mother, and I baked these cookies more than any other for our family. Wonder if my mother still has the card from her mother? Such a wonderful legacy to leave behind--handwritten cards with ingredients spilled on them.

  2. Shirley, Keturah was from PA also... I'm sure there's a connection there. It's great to know what region is perhaps the origin. They really are amazing... both the cookies and the cards. Makes me wonder about my own recipe collection - a hefty notebook, also full of stains. :)

  3. These cookies look SO delicious...I wish I had an oven to bake them! I can't wait to be back in the states to try out your recipes. Keep them, along with your delightful prose, coming! I really enjoy following you along in your journey.

  4. Wish I could send some to you Katrina! Thanks for reading!!!!
    I had a friend just get back from a few years in Cambodia and according to her FB, she seemed especially excited to be able to bake again. :)
    I'm enjoying seeing photos of your adventures too! Looks like a blast