Grandma Wicken’s Sugar Cookies

Welcome to the April 2013 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Family Recipes

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants are sharing their recipes, their stories, their pictures, and their memories.


There are lots of food related memories from when I was growing up, some of which have carried through into my adult life.

I still dream of my mother’s turkey dinners (she makes a mean gravy!), but with a vegan husband and a small family of our own there’s no real need to cook a turkey as I’d be eating it by myself for weeks. I’ve come to terms with the fact that holidays are no longer synonymous with turkey dinners.

One of my favorite dinners when I was growing up was homemade bran muffins. The table would be laid out with butter, cheese, and jams. We’d get to add our own toppings to hot out of the oven muffins. It was simple and fun, and gave us an element of control over what we ate. I’m excited to be able to do the same with Silas.

My strongest memory, however, is my Grandma’s Sugar Cookie. My mom made them several times a year. At Christmas they were your basic sugar cookies with green or red sugar crystals, in trees and bells and stars and and santa clauses. At Halloween, they were black and orange, in pumpkins and bats and ghosts. I remember them with rainbow sprinkles and in my lunch at school (the Halloween ones made me feel the coolest).

It’s not just the cookies that I have a major association with, it’s also the cookie cutters. My mom had a whole series of copper coloured metal ones with backs and little tiny handles to use to push down and pull up. I have a large sentimental streak through and have been collecting them from vintage and antique stores since I was in university. Thinking about them inspired me to go through my cookie cutter jar and pull them out so that you can share my cookie cutter love. And looking at the picture, I apparently have NO Halloween ones, oh dear. This will have to be rectified.

Christmas cookie cutters

Grandma Wicken’s Sugar Cookie Recipe

Makes approximately 3 dozen cookies.

  1. Cream together
    1. 2/3 c shortening
    2. 3/4 c white sugar
    3. 1 tsp vanilla
    4. 1 egg
    5. 4 tsp milk
  2. Add
    1. 2 c flour
    2. 11/2 tsp baking powder
    3. 1/4 tsp salt
  3. Chill dough for (at least) 1 hour, wrapped in waxed or parchment paper
  4. Roll dough out 1/8 in. thick on a lightly floured surface
  5. Grease cookie sheet (or use parchment paper)
  6. Bake at 375F for 6-8 min until done [Grandma was from the Prairies. When I cooked these in Ontario, I needed something more like 350F for 10-12 minutes in order for them to be done.]

I have made these vegan for my husband, substituting a nut/soy milk for the milk and chemical egg replacer for the egg (I find the other egg substitutes like flax or banana to be too over powering for this recipe). I have to admit though that I much prefer making them traditionally, even if it means that he can’t eat them, as making them and eating them is tied so closely with childhood memories. When I want sugar cookies, I want the sugar cookies that my mom baked when I was little.

grandma wicken's sugar cookiesEven though I’m not currently close with my family, I’m really looking forward to being able to share family recipes with Silas. Hopefully he loves sugar cookies as much as I do.

p.s. I’ve also made these with whole wheat or gluten free flour, brown sugar, they can be semi-healthy/not totally bad for you as well.


Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

  • German Red Cabbage: A Family Tradition — At Living Peacefully with Children, Mandy shares her favorite dish and a part of her family’s history.
  • Rotisserie Chicken Recipes for Meal Planning — Becky at Crafty Garden Mama shares a new recipe that is in her family’s meal-planning rotation. Check out how she uses a rotisserie chicken to get through the week.
  • Grandma Wicken’s Sugar Cookies — Jana Falls at Jananas talks about how special her Grandma’s sugar cookies made her feel.
  • Recipe: Seed and Bean Burgers — ANonyMous at Radical Ramblings shares one of her favourite frugal recipes that is also super-healthy and totally delicious.
  • PULLING Dinner Together For the Kids – Crockpot Pulled Pork — Lisa at The Squishable Baby PULLS dinner together for the kids.
  • The Best Banana Muffin Recipe (Gluten Free & Vegan) — Dionna of Code Name: Mama’s adventures in gluten free baking have not been 100% successful. But today she is guest posting at Fine and Fair to share a banana muffin recipe that will knock your socks off!
  • The Pierogie Mama Whips Up Strawberry Pierogies! — Bianca at The Pierogie Mama shares her family’s recipe for strawberry pierogies…a sweet, summery version of the Polish dumplings that she affectionately named her daughter after.
  • Mom’s Cookbook — Tree at Mom Grooves digs into the big book her mom created for her six daughters and shares a favorite family recipe.
  • Crispy Duck Confit — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama takes the liberty of starting a family recipe tradition with this super simple, totally delicious crispy duck confit.
  • Stovetop BBQ Chicken — Amy at Me, Mothering, and Making it All Work shares a yummy BBQ chicken recipe that you can make on the stovetop in less than 25 minutes, fridge to table!
  • Twice-Baked Sweet Potato Casserole w/Bacon — Martine at Whey Beyond the Naked Truth shares a naked food twist on an old family favorite!
  • Strawberry Panna Cotta — KerryAnn at shows you her favorite dessert, a quick and easy Strawberry Panna Cotta that she enjoys so much, she had it instead of a birthday cake this year.
  • Special crepes for a special day — Mikko at Hobo Mama is learning to cook his grandma’s signature holiday meal alongside his dad.
  • Three Favorite Family Recipes: To Eat, To Wash, To Play — Kristin at Intrepid Murmurings is back with three family favorites: gluten-free vanilla orange sugar cookies, DIY powdered laundry detergent, and something fun for the kids: homemade “Flubber”!
  • Black Bean Soup Forever — Mercedes at Project Procrastinot shares a soup recipe that’s been around forever.
  • Do you want to know a secret? — SRB at Little Chicken Nuggets lets go of her mac and cheese recipe, a comfort food favourite for friends and family for years.
  • Creating Our Own Family Recipes — Emily at S.A.H.M. i AM shares how she’s trying to create meals that her girls will want to pass down to their own children some day.
  • Vranameer Chicken: A Family Recipe — Luschka at Diary of a First Child shares a recipe that reminds her of childhood and more specifically, of her mother. It’s a South African take on sweet and sour chicken and what it lacks in healthy it makes up for in tantalising to the taste buds.
  • One Recipe, Three Uses: Dishwasher Liquid Detergent, Dish Soap, and Hand Soap — If you love saving money and time, you’ll love this green recipe from Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama, guest posting at Natural Parents Network.
  • Our Family’s Favorite Pies — Abbie at Farmer’s Daughter shares recipes and tutorials for the quintessential American dessert.
  • Deliciously Easy Crock Pot ChiliLactating Girl shares her crock pot chili that is not only quick and easy, but awesome.
  • All-Purpose Crock Pot PorkCrunchy Con Mommy‘s simple “recipe” for cooking perfect pork in the crock pot is for whatever mood her family is in!
  • Family Rules: A Recipe for Harmony — Cooped-up kids + winter weather + frazzled parents can all blend together into a recipe for disaster. Dionna at Code Name: Mama shares what brought back the peace in her house.
  • Favorite Healthy Family Recipes — Deb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now shares her family’s healthy eating experiences along with links to free printable vegetarian recipes that her family has created with love.
  • Grandma’s Banana Bread — Megan at The Boho Mama has early and fond memories of her grandma’s banana bread. It’s love in a loaf!
  • Family Comfort Food — Jorje of Momma Jorje shares a recipe handed down that moms have made for their kids, for regular meals as well as to comfort.
04.09.2013    10 Comments    baking, jana, life, vegan