Tag Archives: Better Homes and Gardens Cookies and Candies

Remarkable Fudge

1971 edition

There are 2 theories about fudge making (that I know about). One is what I think of as the old-fashioned kind: a little grainy and thin, the kind my mother made.

The other is the marshmallow cream kind, which is what my husband prefers and has made every Christmas season for over 30 years.

Both are wonderful. My mother’s recipe is the one that I make. It’s not the instant kind (with powdered sugar), but it’s a lot faster to make than Joe’s. He allows 2-3 hours from start to finish.

It’s called Remarkable Fudge and it is indeed. We had the last pieces from this year’s batch with coffee yesterday morning and I miss it already.

Because of the the time and attention required, it probably takes a serious cook or at least one who is serious about fudge to undertake the endeavor, but it really is wonderful. Candy shop fudge has never been as good to me since we discovered this recipe.

The size of the flame.

Last year we realized our candy thermometer was broken and I forgot to replace it.  So he used the old standard soft-ball test and it worked just fine.  Joe ices down the water for the test.

This is what it looks like after cooling down.

For something this time consuming, it pays to use real butter and vanilla.

I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

This post is linked to Food on Friday at annkroeker.

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Filed under Books, Christmas, Cookbooks, Cookies, Family

Gingerbread Men

Better Homes and Gardens Cookies and Candies, 1968 edition

My friend Merrily gave me this cookbook when I was 16. She was one of the best cooks I knew, and certainly the best cookie maker. The recipe for my sour cream pound cake came from her.

We have literally worn the cover off of this book over the last 39 years. Joe’s luscious fudge is in this book, and this is the only gingerbread man recipe I’ve ever used.

Better Homes and Gardens Cookies and Candies, 1968

Notes:

* If rolled thick, this recipe makes a soft cookie, which is what my family prefers. However, with the last bit of dough, I roll them thinner for a crunchy cookie which goes well with morning coffee.
* Plan ahead and chill the dough. It does make a difference. I’ve tried doing it in a rush and it just doesn’t work. The dough is sticky and then I add too much flour.
*I’ve never used shortening, I’ve always used vegetable oil (canola, etc.).
* Make sure the cookie cutters are well floured before each cutting, or you’ll start losing arms, heads, etc. that don’t want to separate from the cutter.
* Keep a pastry brush handy. Flour is needed to dust both the rolling pin and the rolling surface, but you don’t want that floury taste on the bottom of the cookies. It’s a hassle, but dust them off before placing them on the baking sheet.
* Parchment paper gives the best result. For years I Pammed the sheet, but the pp results in a better cookie.
* Press raisins into the cookie after they’re on the sheet. Frozen raisins work better. Soft, room-temperature ones don’t want to press in and will likely fall off.
* Sprinkle sugar over the tops before baking.
* Bake one sheet at a time, although it isn’t as important with this recipe as it is with chocolate chip type cookies.
* Turn sheet around half way through baking.
*After baking, let set for about 5 minutes before transferring to cooling rack.

I store the finished cookies in a clear jar on my counter-top. If left out on a plate in humid weather for a long time they stay soft, but not as nice. Besides, it’s way too easy to pick up one from a plate everytime I pass by.

My grandsons love these. In fact, they asked me to make paper gingerbread men for them to play with last summer. I used my larger sized cutter for a pattern and we had the plain, regular gingerbread man, plus Gingerbread Batman, Gingerbread Robin, Gingerbread Joker, Gingerbread Superman. Construction paper was cut out to make their clothes and their faces were done with Crayolas.

This post linked to Food on Fridays @ annkroeker.

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Filed under 1960's, Baking, Books, Christmas, Cookbooks, Cookies, Cooking, Food, Recipes