My Top 5 Vintage Christmas Cookie Recipes – Tested And Tom-Approved!

Posted on Dec 14 2011 - 6:18am by RetroRuth

This is it!!! It’s COOKIE TIME, People!!! I am really, really, excited. Really. In fact, I am so excited, I am posting about cookies this week. And not just any cookies, but GOOD cookies. Tested cookies that I make every year and that Tom wolfs down just as fast as they come out of the oven. So let’s do this!

1. Lena’s Christmas Cookies

These cookies are amazing. This recipe was originally given to me my fellow NPR writer Sara  in AZ, and I am so thankful she sent it in!  They are very soft and fluffy and are SO tasty when frosted. I literally had to watch Tom like a hawk after these were  done. He would snag one every time he walked past the cookie table!

Lena’s Christmas Sugar Cookies

1 3/4 Cup Sugar

1 Cup Shortening (1/2 Butter and 1/2 Crisco)

3 Eggs

1 Cup Sour Cream

4 Cups Flour

1 Tsp. Baking Powder

1 Tsp. Baking Soda

1/4 Tsp. Salt

Vanilla (no amount was given, so I guess just a dash?)

Blend together Sugar, Shortening, Eggs, Sour Cream, and vanilla

Sift together Flour, Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Salt and then mix into Sugar mixture

Roll out and cut the cookies. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake 8-12 mins. at 350.

 

*Note: Sara even included this amazing picture of her Grandma Lena on her wedding day!

 

Sara's Grandparents

Thanks, Sara!

2. Elevator Lady Spice Cookie

This recipe was originally sent in by Reader Barbara, and I am so glad she sent it! It is a great, classic spice cookie from the hilarious Peg Bracken from her I Hate To Cook Book.  This is a great cookie for Christmas or anytime!

The book’s intro to recipe:
“Once, in an elevator en route to my office, I was eating some spice cookies which I had made from a recipe in my big fat cookbook.
I gave one to the Elevator Lady, and she tasted it.
‘My,’ she said reflectively, ‘I can sure make a better spice cooky than that.’ So she brought me her recipe, and she was quite right. This is a short, rich, ginger-snap sort of a cooky, and the recipe makes plenty.”

Elevator Lady Spice Cookies
From Peg Bracken’s I Hate to Cook Book

Mix together:
¾ cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 egg, unbeaten
¼ cup molasses

Then sift together and stir in:
2 cups flour
2 tsp soda
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
¾ tsp powdered cloves
¾ tsp powdered ginger

Now mix it all together, and form it into walnut-sized balls.
Put them two inches apart on a greased cooky sheet
and bake at 375 degrees for ten to twelve minutes.

3. Jim Dandies

This is a GREAT cookie. It is from Pillsbury’s 10th Recipe Contest, and Tom and I have made these for a couple years now. The cookie is a nice, soft cookie and tastes great with the fudgy frosting. Yum!

 

Best002

This cookie was a total winner. In fact, I am making it again this year!

Soup Cookies 076

4. Coconut Top Hats

It’s not Christmas at my parent’s house unless my mom makes a batch of Coconut Top Hats. Seriously. The base is a crisp butter cookie and is topped with a chewy coconut macaroon-type topping that is amazing with the melted chocolate and the cherry. I LOVE these!

Coconut Top Hats

Cookie Dough

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup brown sugar, packed

1 egg yolk

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 cups flour

1/4 tsp salt

Cream butter, add sugar gradually and then beat in yolk and vanilla. Blend in flour and salt. Shape dough in 1o inch roll and wrap in wax paper. Chill overnight.

Coconut Topping

2 cups chopped coconut

1/2 cup powdered sugar

1 egg white

1 Tablespoon water

Combine above ingredients. Chill.

Cut chilled cookie dough into 1/8 inch slices. Shape 1 tsp coconut mixture to fit cookie. Baked 375 degrees for 10 minutes. Cool.

1 cup chocolate chips, melted

Marachino cherries, cut in half

Remove cookies from pan. Place 1 tsp melted chocolate on top of cooled cookie. Decorate with cherry half.

5. East End Bars (or Nanaimo bars)

I literally CANNOT make these bars more than a couple of times a year. Tom goes crazy for them, and can eat an entire 9×9 pan in one sitting. While these may not be a great cookie tray item, since they need to be stored in the fridge, they are a GREAT Holiday treat for your family!

Tom LOVES these!!!!

Do you have any classic cookie recipes that you make every year?  Feel free to share!

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I love everything retro, vintage, mid-century, kitsch and all things atomic! A 21st century housewife just trying to fit in...to the 50's. I have a passion for vintage recipes and an enormous vintage cookbook collection that I keep testing, even though by now I should know better. Creator of Mid-Century Menu (www.midcenturymenu.com), No Pattern Required (www.nopatternrequired.com), and I Ate The 80's (www.iatethe80s.com).

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8 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Sara In AZ December 14, 2011 at 9:45 am - Reply

    Wait, you actually MADE Lena’s cookies?!?! I never knew that! Huh! Glad you liked them girl, and Tom too! :) I always remember her having a big cookie jar full of them whenever I went over there. She made her own doughnuts too — which were awesome!

    I will totally have to try all of the other cookies you have on here. I am definitely in a cookie mood now!

    • RetroRuth December 14, 2011 at 9:49 am - Reply

      Two years in a row, now! They are so good! :)

      • Sara In AZ December 14, 2011 at 11:13 am - Reply

        Awwwwwwww, thanks for saying that Ruth you just made my day! :)

  2. Beverly December 14, 2011 at 1:02 pm - Reply

    So many cookies…so little time!!! I’ll try a couple of these. Thanks, Grandma Lena!! My old people might like these next week.

    • RetroRuth December 15, 2011 at 10:02 am - Reply

      Let me know how they go!

  3. Barbara December 14, 2011 at 8:08 pm - Reply

    Damn, now I have to make the Elevator cookies. I always forget about them, and then when I’m reminded, I have to have them. Thanks a lot!
    :)

    • RetroRuth December 15, 2011 at 10:02 am - Reply

      Ha ha ha! Happy to be of service! :)

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