Yuletide Tales and Eggnog Cookies

I know I have been MIA on the blog for a while, but that’s because I have been working on it. You are now visiting http://www.theappalachiantale.com!! I originally started with a .net site and acquired my .com a while back. The first thing I wanted to do after grabbing up my .com was to build a bigger and better site. It is still in its early stages, but I try to work on it all I can. This time of year may not be the best time to start a big project, but then, when is! I hope you take some time to look around, sign up for notifications of new blog posts and recipes, follow me on Instagram (that’s where you will find me most), Facebook, Pinterest (could someone please explain this to me? I still don’t get it, but I have lots of boards and people keep popping up as a pin-twin. That concerns me a little. Who are these people?), basically just get all you can stand of me! There, that is out of the way.

Christmas has always been a favorite time, which I know it is for many. While the presents have come and gone, the one thing that has always been consistent is sharing time with those we love. When I was a kid, that meant that on Christmas Eve, there was going to be someone at the house. At first, it started with strangers that Dad would bring home that needed a place to go for a few hours. I remember one couple who got stranded and he brought them home until it was time to take them to catch a bus in the next town. Then there was a family that we took food to on Christmas Eve to secretly leave it at their door for them when they got home. After a few years, we began a tradition of having folks over for treats and drinks. We would set out a huge spread on the kitchen table and people just dropped in and out throughout the evening. There could be as many as a couple of dozen or just a couple of people visiting at one time. It was always fun and always loud, but then everyone would go home and we would open presents from granddaddy and grandmaw Edge. Grandmaw usually made us something and we would call them up while we opened them. There were a few years when they lived close enough that we would go to their house for Christmas for a few days. I honestly can’t remember much of what I got for Christmas, but I remember the people that we spent it with.

On those Christmas Eve’s that we spent at home, and after everyone was gone, Mom would sit in the living room with just the tree on. She would have one more cup of coffee. She could drink coffee anytime and go straight to bed after. But, she would just sit there and look at the tree. Sometimes we would have music on low. You could tell she was just taking it all in and enjoying the moment. I would like to think that she was looking back on all the Christmases we had enjoyed there. I have been looking for a picture of the first Christmas they spent there, which would have been my first Christmas. They built the house and moved in just a month before I was born.

On Christmas morning we would get up really early to see what Santa had brought. There were times that Santa left each of us a pile of our own in a chair or corner of the room. Santa’s presents were never wrapped, but he did write our name on a note with each pile so we would know who’s was who’s. Now anyone can get a wrapped present from Santa, but to have him write your name was huge! As the years went by, we would sleep in longer and longer until it got to the point that mom would wake us up. We had to have our presents opened and get cleaned up so we could get to grandmaw Barton’s in time for lunch. She made a huge meal for all the holidays. I think that’s something else I get from her. We have all of Mick’s family over for the holidays and we make more food than we can eat. Everyone leaves with plates of food and we still have leftovers for several days.

I told you before about the sugar cookies that we would always make with mom and the mincemeat pie that only grandmaw Edge and I enjoyed, but there has always been another treat at Christmas that I love and that’s eggnog. I bought some the other day at the grocery store and drank a warm cup last night. I only warmed it up, I didn’t put any firewater in it. Tonight I decided to make an Eggnog Cookie. I took a basic cookie recipe and thought about the flavors of eggnog, such as the nutmeg and cinnamon. I began playing with it and wrote a new recipe. I felt it was fitting to make it the first post on my new blog site. I think they taste just like Christmas. And, they made the whole house smell like Christmas!

Eggnog Cookies 

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups plain flour 
  • 3/4 cup corn flour (or use 2 teaspoons cornstarch with enough flour to make 3/4 of a cup)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup full-fat eggnog at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons Rum – optional, but it is eggnog after all
  • 1/2 stick butter – melted
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • Spiced sugar for coating cookies – 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl sift together the flour, cornflour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. In a large bowl mix well the eggnog, vanilla, Rum, melted butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar. Slowly stir the flour mixture into the eggnog mixture, a little at a time. The dough should come together firmly, but not hard. Do not over mix. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour. After chilling, with a teaspoon, scoop out enough dough to roll into a ball about 1 inch in diameter. Roll each ball in spiced sugar and place on a parchment paper lined pan, 1 – 2 inches apart. When the pan is full, you have the option of leaving the cookies as they are to bake or you can press the down with the back of a spoon to flatten them. The cookies left round will be more tender and the flattened cookies will come out a little crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. It is up to you which you like. Bake for 14-15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cookies cool for about 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack or clean towel to cool completely. Prepare the next pan while one is in the oven and repeat until all are baked. It will make approximately 5 dozen cookies.

Roll dough into balls about 1 inch in diameter and roll in spiced sugar
Leave as balls when baked and they will be very tender on the inside
Flatten with the back of a spoon and they will bake up crispy on the outside and tender inside

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The Appalachian Tale

Memories, recipes, and Tales of an Appalachian Boy.

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