By Kevin Williams
Regular readers here may remember that I’m not a huge fan of raisins, although I am coming around on them slowly as I get older. But I don’t think I’ll ever approve of someone ruining a perfectly good chocolate chip cookie by sticking raisins in them. No, no, no. A chocolate chip cookie cannot be improved upon (except maybe by adding peanut butter). S0, if I don’t like raisins that much, why did I like these raisin puff cookies so much? The pillowy “puff” of a cookie surrounding them is so soft and sweet that the raisins seem like a chewy complement that add just enough of a nugget of density that the combination works well. Raisin puffs are popular in Amish kitchens and cookbooks because the ingredients are very basic, ones most have in their pantry already. Raisins are something that, historically, most Amish-owned bulk food stores would have stocked for shoppers.
So enjoy these raisin cookies. The recipe is pretty much the same from place to place (this recipe says to boil raisins in water until the water is “gone”, so be careful not to scorch your raisins…I’d do it in a small saucepan on medium and remove as soon as water is gone). The photo shows cookies from an Amish bakery in Maryland, the recipe comes from Chouteau, Oklahoma’s Amish settlement (the two communities are very much alike philosophically, etc, but that is another post)
Serves: 3 dozen
- 1½ cups raisins
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup butter
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 1½ cups sugar
- 3¼ cups flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- cinnamon and sugar for rolling
- Boil raisins in water until water is gone.
- Then add the butter and baking soda.
- In another pot beat together the vanilla, eggs and sugar.
- Add to raisin mixture and stir. In large bowl, combine raisin mixture with flour and salt, mix well. Flour hands, roll dough into 1 inch balls then roll balls into a cinnamon-sugar mixture.
- Bake at 350° for 10 mins.
- Makes 3 dozen.