How Do Moms Know All The Cooking Answers?

Why and how do mom’s know everything when it comes to cooking? I don’t understand how my mom always knows the answers to my cooking questions. She’s like Google, but for cooking. I mean, did she spend her post Penn State years til the time I was born learning how to cook or was she always good at it?  I know she didn’t learn from her mother, because my grandmother (though I miss her desperately) was a terrible cook.

This sort of perplexes me.

Anyway, the one thing I always remember making with my mom was Christmas cookies, specifically chocolate chip cookies. I wrote about my attempt to make “healthy” chocolate chip cookiesa few months ago, but decided to stick with my standard, regular, not-good-for-you, but oh-so-delicious oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. My friend Lynn was cat sitting for me when I was in D.C. last week, and I promised her baked goods in return. She wanted chocolate chip cookies.

And I don’t need to call my mom about this recipe. I made them with her so many times that I practically have the whole recipe memorized. This idoesn’t get me out of my rut of cooking the same things over and over, but who am I to refuse one of my friends? (Besides, I kind of could go for a few cookies myself)

And who could resist my adorable cat?!

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

(From my mom’s Aunt Bess)

1 cup shortening (2 sticks of butter or margarine)

3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 white sugar

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp hot water (I don’t know why it says hot, and I don’t think it really matters. But who am I to argue with the wisdom of a great aunt)

2 cups rolled oats

2 cups chocolate chips

Optional use of  chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and spray cookie tray with cooking or baking spray.

Cream shortening, brown sugar and granulated sugar. Add eggs and mix thoroughly. Combine the baking soda, salt and flour and add to the mixture.

Add oatmeal and chocolate chips and stir until well blended.

Drop by teaspoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet. Bake for 12- 15 minutes depending on your oven.


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