Possibly the nicest things ever invented, no? Cookies and books? Here's my contribution to Jenn's Awesome Virtual Cookie Exchange: my Aunt Cindy's Saucepan Cookies.
Aunt Cindy, for the record, is my great-aunt, and her real name is Cinderella. I am not kidding.
These yummy morsels aren't really holiday cookies, but I love them, and they're easy (no baking!), and with oatmeal and peanut butter as the main ingredients, you can eat them for sustenance while you're making Christmas cookies.
I couldn't actually find my copy of Aunt Cindy's recipe (Hush! I just moved in!), but I googled "oatmeal peanut butter saucepan cookies" and found several identical recipes. This one is from About.com (and I didn't know that bit about making sure it boils hard for one minute, so aren't you glad I Googled?):
No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies
There's just one trick; you have to make sure that the sugar mixture boils hard for at least one minute, otherwise the cookies will be sugary instead of creamy.
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup cocoa
- pinch salt
- 1/2 cup butter
- 3/4 cup peanut butter
- 3 cups oatmeal
In large saucepan, combine sugar, milk, cocoa, salt, and butter and mix well. Bring to a boil and cover saucepan to allow steam to wash sugar crystals down sides of pan. Boil mixture for 1 minute. Then remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until smooth.
Add oatmeal and mix well. Drop mixture by spoonfuls onto parchment lined baking sheets or Silpat sheets.* Let cool until you can touch the mixture; then reshape the cookies to make them more a ball shape. Let cool completely; store at room temperature. You can also pour this mixture into a 9" square pan that has been greased with unsalted butter, let cool, then cut into squares.
*We always dropped ours onto waxed paper.
As for the books, I thought new readers might like a look at the "Books We Love" series I ran on Bonny Glen last year. Lots of gift ideas there, which ties in with the "Best Gifts for Homeschoolers" thing I've been doing.
And don't forget to drop by Jenn's Journal for a list of all the other Cookie Exchange participants!