We moved into the house I grew up in on my 7th birthday. My maternal grandmother just retired from working at Michigan State University, where she had worked as an accountant. My parents built her an apartment into our home and it was in that kitchen that my grandmother Effie started a cookie business. She was known as Aunt Effie the Cookie Lady. People could buy a monthly subscription, in return, they would receive 2 dozen cookies per month. I don’t think my grandmother saw herself as starting a cookie empire like Mrs. Fields, she just loved to bake and my sister and I were her official taste testers. In addition to the cookie business, over the holidays, she would bake 100’s of cookies every year for our family and friends.

I was my grandmother’s shadow, it’s because of her that I love to bake. When I make chocolate crinkles or butterscotch toffee squares I am carried back to her kitchen impatiently standing next to the oven waiting for a hot fresh cookie. When I moved into my first apartment, I brought her rolling pin with me hoping her baking magic would guide me as I rolled out my pastry dough.

Obviously, she didn’t have the convenience of the internet to look up a recipe, besides the rolling pin, another thing I brought with me is her “go-to” cookie book. I love looking through it, there are notes such as “add this” or “skip that” and “my favorites” or “don’t make, horrible, why did they even publish this one.” Many of those favorites made their way into my mom’s cookbook.

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As you can see this book was put to good use, a good investment for only $2.95

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I guess she was concerned about making pretty cookies

I love the pages with comments

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One of my favorites!

In addition to cookies, she made bread, rolls, coffeecake, you name it, and she baked it. As the holiday’s approach, I think about not just her cookies, but her tarts as well. I would pay millions to have just one more of her mincemeat tarts. Over the next few weeks, I will be posting some of those family favorite cookies that made it into the cookbook, as well as a few of my favorites I have found over the past few years. My version of Suzanne’s Table’s 12 days of cookies, hopefully, you might get some ideas for your holiday baking.

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