These cookies get better with age ... if they last long enough.
My mother grew up in Milwaukee and every year since 1928, Wisconsin Electric has distributed a cookbook full of recipes that customers have submitted over the year. Her collection of cookbooks now includes those from her mother, including one from the ‘60s that deteriorates a little more each year as we whip it out for the annual baking frenzy.
One of the family favorites is molasses cookies, and the recipe makes a few dozen with minimal effort. However, a large mixer is required — the batter becomes so thick that a regular hand mixer won’t cut it. The ginger, cinnamon, cloves and molasses meld together for a more complex flavor every day, and they’re perfect for parties or as small holiday gifts.
Soft molasses cookies Makes four dozen cookies Ingredients: 1/2 C unsalted butter, softened 1/2 C shortening 1 1/2 C sugar, plus sugar for garnish 1/2 C dark molasses 2 eggs, lightly beaten 4 C flour 1/2 t salt 2 1/4 t baking soda 2 1/4 t ground ginger 1 1/2 t ground cloves 1 1/2 t ground cinnamon
Instructions: 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 2. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and shortening until well mixed for 1-2 minutes. Add sugar and beat until light-colored and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Mix in molasses and eggs until smooth; set aside. 3. In another large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking soda, ginger, cloves and cinnamon. Gradually mix these dry ingredients into creamed mixture until dough is blended and smooth. 4. Roll dough in to 1 1/2-inch balls. Dip tops in granulated sugar. Place 2 1/2 inches apart on greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for about 11 minutes. 5. Remove from sheets to wire rack to cool completely.
Find other Wisconsin Electric cookie recipes here. Some of the earlier editions of the cookbooks are missing, so the online collection isn’t quite complete.
David Calhoun and Elizabeth “EB” Brooks are the first two employees of Lafayette Central Park Inc., the nonprofit charged with turning Lafayette Consolidated Government’s 100-acre Johnston Street Horse Farm property into a passive public park. Calhoun was named executive director, and Brooks is director of planning and design.
There will soon be a whole lot of shakin’ going on at Benny’s Sportshack Supplement Depot, a new concept by Opelousas native Benny Nele. Located at 2002 Johnston St., the supplement shop, smoothie bar and café, featuring hot off the press paninis and wraps, plans to open in late May.