Wednesday, February 16, 2011

MOM'S Old Fashioned Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal Cookies and a little History on our Family

I have to tell you something about Italian recipes that has always had me thinking. Mom never use to measure anything. For those of you looking for authentic recipes, stop looking.  just remember, most of them come from those who still live among us, unfortunately all of our family has long since past that came from Italy that learned from their mom's and grandma's. When they lived in those Italian Regions they grew up with their versions of recipes. My parents were both born here in the early 1900's. Mom being born in America learned  her families way of cooking, Italian, and from the Region, Bari. She got her cooking expertise from her mom that lived in Bari, then later on, her motherinlaw, that came from Rome, Italy .No cookbooks back then, no two cooked alike. To this day, I cherished her penmanship she left behind although just ingredients no amount. It was all assumed measurements. The Region she was born in Italy, Bari, was very different than my grandmother who lived in Rome, Italy.  Aunts from Calabria, and many many other Regions all made things differently. For instance we have cousins that put raisins in their meatballs, mom put boiled eggs in lasagna. Was it wrong? No, not wrong, just different style,  to the kids that grew up in those different households and families that grew those additions were the only way to eat these foods and nothing else compares to mom's. We continue to recreate what their legacy and traditions were, however, it's a bit impossible to duplicate anything the same, just give you guide lines of what we were used and the close similarity of what we can reproduce since the creator isn't here critique it. There is no Authentic anything,  it is certainly an opinion of the original origin here. Years change what was once first created adapted and perfected. I can't possibly get the fresh chickens, eggs and meat they had, mom was a butcher too, so the meat was 100% better tasting back then so we can't produce the same ingredient in some cases either, that taste can't be reproduced without them.   I can't be an authority on Italian cooking by Authenticity, I didn't live there or that time period. I just the love her simplicity of the recipes that once was created, we will try and recreate as close as possible, adapt and hope to make a recipe close to the same.. my mom made great cookies, cakes, and fabulous recipes of foods for dinners, that never got written down...here on this site you will find my best guess and the closest resemblance of my dearest memories of her, that has long since past.. I have never tried to suggest its exactly like  hers, similar, as I could never replace the original which is long gone and by far in my eyes the best!
So enough about my feelings on mom's, grandma's, and originality, she lives on through her teachings and cooking, it's as  close to what some remember as we can get here, keep looking its out there somewhere, and kept experimenting you'll get there~ for the love of family and cooking!... Thanks for reading~
Her cookie recipe:

Mom use to tell me the trick was to start out soaking the raisins in hot water till they plump before adding them. This time I did it, they actually seem to keep the cookies fresh longer, soft and chewy, these were delicious.
A simple easy cookie I always think why not for breakfast it's healthy there's oatmeal in them!
When I was a kid I actually hated raisins, so she cut this batch in half and added chocolate chips to one half and raisins in the other.. if you have picky eaters, like I was, you won't be sorry these are an awesome cookie!


Old Fashion Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal Cookies
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/3 cup molasses
2 eggs
2 cups quick-cooking oats
1 2/3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins( place in a bowl with hot water for around 1/2 hour then drain optional)
or 1 cup chocolate chips
Heat oven to 375°F. In large bowl, stir together sugar, butter, molasses and eggs. Stir in remaining ingredients except raisins until well blended. This is where you can split the batter into two bowls, add chocolate chips to one and raisins to the other. Stir in preferred blend. Even split I add a cup of each.
Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls about 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 9 to 10 minutes or just until set. Cool 1 minute; remove from cookie sheets.
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