Cooking From Memory ~ A Recipe Journal

Peanut Blossoms

Posted in Cookies,Thanksgiving and Christmas Recipes by Paul Gauche on December 20, 2010









Ingredients ~

  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon soda
  • Pinch salt
  • ½ cup Crisco
  • ½ cup Peanut Butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Method ~

Roll into 1-inch balls and place on a baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 8 minutes, remove from oven and top with a Hershey’s Kiss, pressing downs gently. Bake 2 minutes longer. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Or just eat them all whole their warm.

About 4 dozen cookies


Wild Iris Cookies

Posted in Cookies,Desserts by Paul Gauche on August 22, 2010


The town of La Connor is nestled in the heart of the spectacular tulip fields of Skagit County in northwestern Washington State. Built on the banks of the Swinomish Channel, the town of La Conner is home to just under 1000 people, but welcomes over a million visitors each spring for the annual Tulip Festival. The main street–a mere three of four blocks long boasts numerous art galleries, restaurants and clothing shops.  In and among all of that is the Wild Iris Inn and Bed and Breakfast–the first stop among many in a week-long trip to celebrate our 28th wedding anniversary.  While the Inn itself was beautiful and very comfortable, the two cookies that were delivered as we arrived completely stole the show, and when we left the next morning, two more cookies were packaged in cellophane and tied off with a ribbon. Such a deal! Anyway, a few days later and a couple e-mails to Lori Farnell, the gracious Innkeeper or the Wild Iris Inn, and the wildly ambrosial cookie recipe was mine! Thanks to Lori for the permission to share!


  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 ½ tablespoons water
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 ½ cups coconut
  • 1 ½ cups dried cranberries
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 ½ cups granola


In a small mixing bowl, blend the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until creamy. Add the eggs, vanilla and water. Mix until well blended.

In another much larger bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda, then add the white chocolate chips, chocolate chips, coconut, cranberries, walnuts, rolled oats and the granola. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and blend well.

When well mixed, shape into golf ball sized balls and place on an ungreased parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Bake at 325° for 10 minutes or until just turning brown around the edges. When you pull the cookies out of the oven they will look like they are not quite done—and they will be flat and spread out. Take a spatula and gently round them out. After a few minutes, remove them from the cookie sheet and place them on a cooling rack. At this point, give them another “rounding” with the spatula which will give them some height. Let them cool to set.

Dark Pfeffernüsse

Posted in Cookies by Paul Gauche on December 5, 2009

Photo Credit: Paul Gauche, Dark Pfefferneusse

My grandmother used to bake these and give them to her grandchildren.  I remember Christmas after Christmas as she would hand me a small coffee can, lined with foil and filled with Pfeffernüsse. The mild anise aroma and flavor was mystical to a 7 year old boy.

Her recipe–and this one is straight out of the 1963 edition of Betty Crocker’s Cooky Book, page 45.

Ingredients ~

  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter
  • ¾ cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup Dark Molasses
  • 3 drops of pure anise extract mixed with 1 Tablespoon hot water
  • 3⅓ cup white flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves

Method ~

Heat oven to 350°. Mix shortening, sugar, egg, molasses and anise mixture. Blend dry ingredients. Mix in gradually with hands. Knead dough until right consistency for molding. If dough seems too soft, refrigerate until firm. Mold into ¾ inch balls, place on greased baking sheet. Bake about 12 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom.

Cookies harden on standing. When firm but still warm, roll in confectioner’s sugar. A handy method is to place about a cup of confectioner’s sugar in a gallon size zip lock bag. Add 8 – 10 cookies and gently roll them around to coat.  Take them out and place in and airtight container with slice of apple to mellow them.


Almond Glazed Sugar Cookies

Posted in Bars & Cookies,Cookies by Paul Gauche on July 14, 2009

Almond Galzed Sugar Cookies 

These sweet treats appear each year in early December.  With the wind blowing outside, perhaps some snow, the thought is that we’d “spend a day baking cookies to last the whole holiday season.”   Well, these little creations are so good and they go down se easily with milk–even without the frosting and the almonds, that we’re usually looking at a second baking day.  Oh, well.

Cookie Ingredients ~ 

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • ¾  cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½  teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Glaze Ingredients ~

  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 4 to 5 teaspoons water 
  • Sliced almonds  

Method for Cookies ~

Heat oven to 400°F.

Combine all cookie ingredients in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy.  Roll dough into 1-inch balls; place 2 inches apart, onto ungreased cookie sheets.  Flatten balls to ¼ inch thick with bottom of buttered glass dipped in sugar.  Bake for 7 to 9 minutes or until edges are very lightly browned.  Cool 1 minute; remove from cookie sheets.  Cool completely. 

Method for Glazing ~

Combine all glaze ingredients except almonds in small bowl with wire whisk.

Decorate cooled cookies with glaze and sliced almonds as desired.