The Cookie Porch

When I tell you about my childhood Christmas adventures, when I tell you about the way we would open our presents and hop in the car on Christmas day, heading to up-state New York just in time to get hit by a snowstorm somewhere between Cleveland and Buffalo, when I tell you of the two packed houses, the 6 teenage girls in one room and the piles of presents we affectionately called “the mother load” a product of two ridiculously hard working and generous Grand parents, do not let me forget to tell you about the cookie porch.

My Grandma must have baked for weeks, because every single year their screened in porch was covered in delicious homemade treats. Pie crust cookies from my Grandma’s mother’s recipe , molasses cookies, and the standard chocolate chip. Home made caramels naked and covered in dark chocolate, peanut brittle, butter brickle, and homemade fudge (with and without walnuts). There were fancy cookies like the chocolate ones covered in fudge, a maraschino cherry hidden in the middle, and sugar cookies wrapped around an Andes mint with a mint chocolate drizzle on the top.

The aunts would come and add to the bounty, peanut butter cookies with a Hershey kiss pressed in, or clumps of Chinese noodles and peanuts covered in a mixture of melted butterscotch and chocolate chips. Some family members called them cockroaches, but my grandma insisted good farm girls like her called them haystacks. My mom always brought the sugar cookies in various shapes with colored frosting lines and squiggles. We all made sure we were up for breakfast the day that Aunt Julie’s gorgeous stolens made it into the oven. We hoped we were lucky enough to get a bite of that super gooey center.

In the corner, on the floor you would find a bag with a couple pounds of gummi-bears. Everyone ate them; but they were their for her oldest grandson. I remember the taste of frozen gummi-bears melting in my mouth. I have the fondest memories of sneaking out to the porch with no shoes on to dance on the frozen ground, hopping from foot to foot, as I frantically searched for the treat I was craving before my toes went numb.

There was more than enough for everyone to have their fill for a week, and get sent home with a heaping cookie plate. When I tell you about the abundance of God’s love at Christmas, make sure I use the metaphor of my grandma’s cookie porch.

My Version of Cockroaches Haystacks

Some salted peanuts, some chinese noodles, some butterscotch chips and some semi-sweet chocolate chips.

1.Melt all the chips together in low heat on the stove. when everything is stirred and melted stick your finger in their and then lick it to ensure it is delicious.

2. Dump the peanuts and chinese noodles in and stir it all around. Ensure delicious-ness.

3. Remember you were supposed to put wax paper on your counters. Clear the counters and put the wax paper down. Over estimate the space you will need.

4. Spoon clumps of the goodness in the pot on the stove onto the wax paper. Wait for it to harden and cool. This part takes a long time. This part is my least favorite.

I don’t have exact measurements because it doesn’t matter and it always comes out delicious, my kind of cookie.

This post linked to the cookie exchanges of Leanne Penny and LoveFeastTable. Check them out, this was fun!

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8 comments

  1. Thanks for the memories. Don’t forget the butter brickle that you had to make in an old cast iron skillet or the butter would separate, why I don’t know, but it would unless the skillet was old enough. If the sugar and butter stayed together it was cooled and cover with chocolate and crushed peanuts. Also tell us about all the cousins skiing in a long “follow the leader” line down Gore Mountain snaking back and forth across sun way or cloud or sleigh ride from the top to the bottom of the mountain. The better skiers (the older cousins or those who lived in or near the mountains) slowing down so the younger or less experienced cousins could keep up and ski in the line .

  2. For years I have put my candy and cookies outside on the deck to cool. We have had our share of losses to pets and the like. :) We now live in a house with a screened porch and I love to fill it with all the cookies and goodies I make for Christmas. I hope my five kids will have memories like you posted here. I love it! Blessings!

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