I have to start by confessing that I was late in giving my mom her birthday gift this year. Yes, I did send a card on time, and I did call her on her special day, but I didn’t send a present. To be honest, I was stumped as to what she would need or want. So, I pondered for a while. . .
As Mother’s Day drew near, I decided the best option would be to give her a two-for-one gift, which meant now I needed a bigger and better idea than the lack of idea that I already had. When my parents lived locally, I know they always enjoyed my cooking and baking. Wanting to give her something bigger, I created a “Quarterly Treat” club for my mom. As part of this present, I purchased an air-tight container that I decorated for her. Now, I needed to figure out what I would send for her first treat.
I’m one of those sentimental sorts, so I thought about the treats from my childhood and remembered a cookie my mom made when I was really young, zimtsterne. These cookies were made from a recipe handed down through my mother’s family. As my younger daughter helped me make them, I was reminiscing about the taste and look of these cookies and hoping mine would be the same.
When the first batch was done baking, I barely could wait to take them off of the cookie sheet to try one. As I bit into the cookie I was amazed at how memory is affected by the senses. Tasting the flavor and feeling the cookie’s texture, I was transported back to being 5 and celebrating Christmas with my family. These seemed just like my mom’s. Even better than that, when my mom received her present she was thrilled with her new club and the cookies.
While I am not proud of my procrastination, I am delighted that my present pleased my mom. I eagerly am planning the next installment of her treats.
3 Tb. unsalted butter
1-1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs (1 separated)
1 tsp. lemon juice
2-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
2-1/3 cups flour + extra for rolling
1-1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 cup walnuts, diced
Preheat oven to 375. Place butter, sugar, 2 eggs, 1 egg yolk, and lemon juice in a large bowl, and mix until fluffy. Continuing mixing, add baking powder, salt, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg. When well combined, add nuts, and stir until incorporated.
Prepare a cookie sheet by coating with nonstick cooking spray. Place a fourth of the dough on a well floured surface, and roll to 1/4 inch thickness. Make cookies using a star-shaped cookie cutter. Place stars on cookie sheet, and brush with remaining egg white.
Bake for approximately 8 minutes, or until bottoms are golden brown.