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Sour Cream Cookies

Nancy’s 2016

Cream   1 cup sugar

            1 cup shortening

            1 egg

Add      8 ounces sour cream

            1 tsp vanilla

Cream the mixture

Add      4 ¾ cups plain flour

            1 tsp baking

            1 tsp baking powder

            ¼ tsp salt

Cream the mixture and chill for at least 1 hour.

Roll out the dough (small amount) to 1/8 thickness and cut with cookie cutters.

 Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes. (Don’t brown)

Cook on the pan and then remove to cooking racks.

(I use parchment paper and slide the paper onto the kitchen counter for cooling)


Mix      ¼ cup butter

            4 ounces sour cream

            1 box powdered sugar

            Enough milk to make a spreading consistency

Ice and decorate cooled cookies.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Brenda’s recipe  1995

Plump 1 cup raisins in hot water.

Cream  1 cup butter

            1 cup white sugar

            1 cup brown sugar

Add 2 beaten eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla and cream.

Sift together       2 ¼ cups plain flour

                        1 teaspoon salt

                        1 teaspoon soda

Blend into creamed mixture.

Stir in 3 cups oats

Drain the water from the raisins and stir in the raisins.

Optional:  add 1 cup nuts or coconut, instead of raisins- or in addition to

Shape the dough into rolls.  Wrap in wax paper and chill in the refrigerator.

(chilled dough will keep in the refrigerator about two weeks)

Slice and bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes.

Cool on the pan for about two minutes and then on a cooking rack.

ULTIMATE Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 3/4 C. (175 mL) Crisco® Golden All-Vegetable Shortening – Butter-flavor
  • 1/4 C. (300 mL) lightly-packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 mL) milk
  • 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 C. (425 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. (5 mL) salt
  • 3/4 tsp. (3 mL) baking soda
  • 1 C. (250 mL) semi-sweet chocolate chips — use milk hocolate chips
  • 1 C. (250 mL) coarsely chopped pecans — optional
  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF (190ºC).
  2. Cream shortening and brown sugar in large bowl at medium speed of electric mixer for 2 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
  3. Add egg, milk and vanilla, beating for 1 minute, or until thoroughly blended.
  4. Combine flour, salt and baking soda. Add to creamed mixture gradually, beating on low speed for 1 minute, or just until blended.
  5. Stir in semi-sweet chocolate chips and pecans.
  6. Drop dough by heaping spoonfuls (2 tbsp/30 mL) on ungreased baking sheet leaving about 3 inches (7 cm) between cookies.
  7. Bake at 375°F (190°C) for 8 to 10 minutes for soft cookies (cookies will still appear moist when baked – DO NOT OVER BAKE) or 11 to 13 minutes for crunchy cookies. Cool in pan for 2 minutes, then remove to cooling rack.—COOL on aluminum foil

Dried Apple Stack Cake

Old Fashioned Stack Cake Recipe

from National Sweet Sorghum Producers and Processors Association Clinton, Tennessee

Directions expanded by Susan R Ray

½ cup sugar

½ cup butter

1 cup sorghum

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 eggs, well beaten

6 cups all-purpose flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon soda

¾ teaspoon salt

½ cup cream

Sift together dry ingredients.

Combine sugar and butter.  Add sorghum, vanilla and eggs and mix well. 

Add the cream and dry ingredients alternately to the creamed mixture to make a stiff dough.

Divide the dough into seven balls.

Place a ball of dough onto a lightly floured piece of parchment paper, sized to fit a cookie sheet.

Gently roll the dough to ¼ inch thickness or less – the thinner the better.

Cut a large circle by placing a dinner place upside-down on the dough and cut around the plate.  Place the cake layer on the parchment paper on a cookie sheet.

Bake at 375º F for 7- 8 minutes until lightly browned. 

Leave the cake layer on the paper and cool on a flat surface.

Combine the ‘scraps’ of the dough and roll thin.  Cut and bake small cookies.  Use two cookies filled with dried apple filling for a mini-apple cookie treat.

Dried Apple Filling

1 pound home dried apples

1 cup granulated sugar

½ cup light brown sugar

½ teaspoon nutmeg

2 teaspoons cinnamon

½ teaspoon cloves

Cover apples and with water and cook on a low to medium temperature until the apples are tender and most of the water is absorbed.  (About 30 minutes.) Mash the apples enough to spread evenly. Use a potato masher or a hand mixer set on low.  Add remining ingredients and mix well.  Spread the warm apple mixture between cake layers and on the top layer.  Let set overnight.

I make Dried Apple Stack Cake several days before serving, wrap it in plastic wrap (stick toothpicks in the top so the filling doesn’t stick to the wrap) and store it in the refrigerator. 

The very best piece is the last one eaten.

Susan R Ray        

November 2022

Mom’s Sweet Pickles

Sweet Pickles in Crock Churn – Mom’s recipe from 1960s

*denotes notes I’ve added – Susan Ray

For about 4 gallon cucumbers

1.______Dissolve 4 cups of coarse salt in 2 gallons of cold water. 

Wash whole cucumbers and place in a stone or crock churn*.  Cover with salt water and soak for 7 days.

(*Slice the cukes in thin pickle slices before placing in churn.  It’s much easier to slice raw pickles than ones that are slimy after being in salt water and the quality is the same.  Place saucers on top of the cukes to keep them covered with salt water.  Cover the churn with a cloth or plastic covering after each step.)

2._______Drain and wash cucumbers in cold water.  Slice and put back into churn and cover with cold water, in which 2 or 3 oz of powdered alum has been added.  Soak 2 days.

3._______Drain well, put back in church.  Cover with one of gallon cold cider vinegar for 1 day and night.       

4.______Drain.  Pour all cucumbers out of churn.  Do not wash with water.  Put 1 or 2 boxes of pickling spices in a cloth bag and place into the bottom of churn.   Put a layer of cucumbers and a layer of sugar until all is covered.  About 10 pounds of sugar. 

5.______In 24 hours, a sugar syrup will cover the cucumbers.  Shake a bit, if needed to dissolve the sugar.

Leave in the churn and use as you like.

Never Fail Pie Crust – makes 2 crusts

From Mom’s 3 x 5 recipe card file (from Onita Windle)

3 c. flour

1 T. salt

5 T. tap water

1 ¼ cup shortening

1 egg, well beaten

1 T vinegar

Cut shortening into flour and salt. Combine egg, water, vinegar. Pour liquid into flour mixture all at once. Blend with spoon just until flour is all moistened.

This is an easy crust to handle. Can be re-rolled without toughening. Will keep up to 2 wks in refrigerator.

Susan’s notes: plain flour. Crisco shortening. White vinegar.

Added to blog November 21, 2018


Cornbread – Like Mom Made

 County Style Corn Bread From Martha White Foods from the 1960s

This recipe looks the closest to Mom’s recipe to anything I’ve found, except she added a beaten egg.   Anything in parentheses I’ve added to the recipe as I remember Mom’s cornbread.

2 cups Martha White Self-Rising Corn Meal

¼ teaspoon soda

¼ cup bacon drippings

1 ½ cups buttermilk

(1 beaten egg)

Heat oven to 450 degrees.  Great and heat a skillet.  (Mom put the ¼ c. bacon drippings plus another tablespoon in the skillet to get hot.)  Mix the dry ingredients. (Stir together the egg and buttermilk.)  Stir together the dry and wet ingredients.  Add the hot bacon drippings and stir to blend.  Pour the batter into the hot skillet.  Bake 20 minutes or until golden brown.

sray  July, 2014


Corn Light Bread baked in a black skillet

From The Nashville Cookbook

1 cup plain corn meal

1 cup plain flour

½ cup sugar

½ teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 egg, beaten

1 ¼ cups buttermilk

1 tablespoon cooking oil

Heat over to 400 degrees.  Heat and grease a round iron skillet.

Mix all dry ingredients.  Add beaten egg and oil to buttermilk and stir.  Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and combine.  Turn batter into the hot skillet.

Bake about 25 minutes.

sray   July, 2014


Blondie’s 2, 2, 2 Cornbread

2 cups of Martha White Self-Rising Buttermilk Cornmeal Mix

2 eggs

2 cups of buttermilk

Combine and mix well.

Heat oil in a black skillet and in a 450 degree oven.  I put my iron skillet in the oven when I turn it on at 450 degrees with about 1/4 of a cup of vegetable oil.  Get it really hot then take it out and pour 1/2 of the oil into the meal, eggs, and buttermilk mixture.  Stir it in really well and then pour it into the skillet.  The oil in the skillet will cause it to sizzle up and probably go over the top of the batter.  Bake for about 20 minutes.  The crust will be nice and brown thanks to the hot oil that was left in the pan.  Your children will think it’s cornbread cake.


Tommy Sue’s Corn Light Bread baked in a loaf pan

2 cups self-rising cornmeal

1/2 cup self-rising flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon soda

2 cups buttermilk

1/4 cup oil

Combine all ingredients and place in a greased loaf pan. Bake at 400 degrees for 40 to 50 minutes, depending on oven.


Broccoli Cornbread

2 box Jiffy cornbread mix

2 sticks melted margarine

Combine these two ingredients.

In a different bowl mix together the following ingredients:

4 eggs, beaten

1 cup cottage cheese

1 cup chopped onions

10 oz. chopped broccoli (bought frozen and thawed)

Pour egg mixture into the cornbread mix mixture and stir well.

Pour into a 9 x 13 oiled pan.

Bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Recipe from United Methodist Women’s Fall Luncheon

Cookeville, TN

Old Fashion Caramel Cake

As written by Allen’s Aunt Ruth. She brought it to a family gathering at Aunt Bill’s and Allen asked how to make it.  (My notes in parentheses.)

1 c. butter flavored Crisco

1 ½ cups sugar

1 c. milk (whole milk)

4 eggs, beaten

2 c. self-rising sifted flour (2 c. plain flour + 1 ½ tsp baking powder + ½ tsp salt, sifted)

Mix sugar and Crisco, blend well. (Use mixer on low.) Add eggs, beat well. Add vanilla, milk, sifted flour; alternately beginning and ending with flour. (Combine vanilla and milk and alternate that mixture with flour into the sugar, Crisco, egg mixture) Mix well. Grease (2 round layer) pans with butter flavored Crisco. Bake 30 to 40 minutes at 350 degrees.

Caramel Frosting

2 c sugar

½ c sugar

1 small can Pet Milk

2 sticks margarine (butter)

Mix 2 cups sugar and milk together. Caramelize 1/2 cup sugar. Add to milk mixture and cook 10 minutes. Add margarine. Stir until ready to spread. Remove from heat before adding margarine.(Caramelize ½ cup sugar by pouring it into a heavy pan. Add 1 tbsp water and 2-3 drops of lemon juice. Place pan on low to medium setting and stir with a wooden spoon until the sugar liquefies. Continue cooking, but do not stir, but you can swirl the mixture using the handle of the pan for 8-10 minutes until the sugar becomes a caramel color. Add the milk and sugar mixture and cook 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Add butter, cut into thin slices so it will melt quickly, and beat with a wooden spoon until the frosting becomes firm* enough to spread on the cake.)

Mine never got firm after 15 minutes of beating: I started timing as soon as I added the milk and sugar mixture. I think I should have timed after it began to bubble. So I added some powdered sugar and using a hand mixer, beat it until it was spreading consistency.   The frosting didn’t get hard, but was smooth firm icing and delicious!

Thanksgiving with the Ray’s         November, 2014

Hot Mulled Cider

½ cup brown sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

2 quarts cider

1 tsp. whole allspice

1 tsp. whole cloves

3 inches stick cinnamon

Combine brown sugar, salt, and cider in a pan. Tie the spices in a small piece of cheesecloth (or any white porous clot) and add. Slowly bring the liquid to boiling. Simmer, covered for 20 minutes. Remove spices. Serve hot. Serves 10 -12.

Used Thanksgiving 1988              Capshaw Cookie Swaps                 Collectors’ Club 2014


White Chicken Chili (6 servings)

From Bush Beans label

1 medium onion, finely chopped

3 T olive oil

1 (4 oz) can chopped green chilies, drained

3 T all purpose flour

2 teaspoons ground cumin*

2 (15.8 oz) cans Bushes Great Northern Beans

1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth

1 ½ cups finely chopped cooked chicken breast

Optional garnishes:

Shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Sour Cream


Directions: In a large skillet, cook onion in oil for 4 minutes or until transparent. Add chilies, flour and cumin and cook and stir for 2 minutes. Add beans and chicken broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer for 10 minutes or until thickened. Add chicken; cook until hot.

To serve, garnish as desired with cheese, sour cream, and salsa.

*I use 1 teaspoon cumin









8 Responses

  1. Saw your article in the H/C and the recipe for the Broccoli Cornbread caught my eye! SOUNDS YUM!! Would it be possible to get it? Thank you!


    • Pat, I added the Broccoli cornbread recipe to the Recipes page. Hope you enjoy it. Come to the UMW fall luncheon at First United Methodist Church and enjoy the bread and a bowl of soup. Thanks for reading my column!


    • Found the recipe for White chicken chili. Read to my husband and he asked if I was making it tonight!! Thanks for telling me how to get the recipe.


  2. […] Recipes […]


  3. Wow! I love family recipes!! I compare them to mine to make them better


    • I just saw the dried apple stack cake in the paper today and that is my very favorite cake of all. Thanks for the receipt. I don’t know when I will have dried apples but maybe soon.


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