Something to ease the back to school blues

Kristy Dean Cole  Confession of a Baking Queen
Kristy Dean Cole
Confession of a Baking Queen

Most of us can’t help but feel summer is almost over. We took whatever vacation we had planned or we hit the pool so much, it feels like a chore to do so now. School supplies fill the shelves at stores, and yes, school will be back in session for most of us. If that statement made ya’ sad, cheer up, I have the perfect treat to stuff in those lunchboxes.

My stepdad, Rudy, has an old cookbook that looks like it has seen better days. In that tattered mess, is a collection of his favorite recipes. Some are scribbled in his handwriting, substitutions or his on improvements from his experience. When he and my mother first married, I think he felt pressure to wow us with his skills. For starters, I remember when he cooked with oil. I probably was a little overdramatic about it, but I grew up on lard. Yes oil is the healthier of the two, but warn me first before you make the change!

I remember when he first made these oatmeal raisin cookies, they were huge and moist. He put them in an antique cookie tin, lined with wax paper. This old recipe of his, makes the perfect after school snack or a great addition to your cookie platters during the holidays. Share a recipe, just email

Rudy’s Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

1 c. firmly packed brown sugar

3/4 c. vegetable shortening

1/2 c. granulated sugar
1 egg

1/4 c. water

1 tsp. vanilla

3 c. oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)

1 c. all-purpose flour

1 c. raisins
1 tsp. salt (optional)

1/2 tsp. baking soda

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In large bowl, beat brown sugar, shortening, granulated sugar until creamy. Add egg, water and vanilla; beat well. Add combined oats, flour, salt, and baking soda; mix well. Fold in raisins. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Remove to wire racks, cool completely. Store tightly covered. This makes about 5 dozen but if big cookies are desired use tablespoon fuls and it yields bout 2 1/2 dozen. Variations: Add 1 cup of any one or combination to any of the following ingredients to basic cookie dough mix: chopped nuts, chocolate chips, or shredded coconut.