Friday, December 11, 2009

The Scent of the Holidays

Like everyone, we have certain holiday traditions. Many of the sounds and scents that provoke holiday smiles, reminiscences and laughter originate in the kitchen. That’s right, we like to cook, bake and eat—and our holiday memories are a testament to the fact!

We’ve had some funny kitchen times…

One afternoon I filled a new lasagna pan in order to accommodate the crowd, never realizing the pan was twice as deep as the one I customarily used so it would need double oven time. The crowd waited, nibbling antipasto and teasing me about my cooking snafu. By the way, the lasagna was super!

Then there was the Christmas Eve that I set the kitchen ablaze. It was just a small blaze, mind you, but it is seared into memory. Oh, and just in case you were wondering…well, let’s just say it’s never a good idea to put the pot holders in the oven after you’ve taken the roasting pan out. I know, I know…and, before you ask, no, I don’t know what I was thinking!

We still laugh about the year early in our marriage when we decided to bake cookies for nearly everyone on the planet. I am not kidding; our cookie list was so long we baked for days. By the time we had delivered all the tins of goodies and gone back home, neither of us could stand to look at a cookie. We had pie for dessert on Christmas that year. The leftover cookies thawed nicely in July, and were well appreciated by then!

Anyhow, you see where some of the most heartwarming holiday magic comes from in our house.

We’re in full baking mode again this year—on a smaller scale but we’re baking. Yesterday was a snowy, cold afternoon so we spent a few hours whipping up a batch of cookies. We laughed, talked about years gone by and smiled by the glow of the tree. Yes, the kitchen is so central in our house that we have a tree in there, too. It’s not a big one but it sure is pretty.

Where do some of your holiday memories come from? Are you kitchen folks, or do you perhaps associate more fun and laughter with a different location? I’d love to hear some of what makes your holiday happy!

Thought you might enjoy the recipe we used yesterday. These are easy to make and taste oh-so yummy! Enjoy!

Chocolate Sugar Cookies

1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt1
1/2 cups sugar
1 1/4 sticks softened butter
1 egg

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Cream butter and sugar. Add egg. Then add the flour, cocoa, baking soda and powder and salt.
Drop rounded spoonfuls of batter onto lightly-greased baking sheet. Flatten slightly. Bake for ten minutes.


margaret blake said...

I would love to be sitting in your kitchen, Sarita, it sounds like fun and good food too.

Kathleen said...

A scent certainly can take you back. I love the smell of cinnamon. Hope you didn't lose power in the storm, Sarita.

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