Baking is my love language.
Cooking a close second. I enjoy feeding people and when you’re down, sick, stressed, celebrating, or I want to say ‘thank you’, I bake/cook for you. So I guess it’s my love language.
A person near and dear to my heart has had a rough year (I know a lot of people could say that about 2020, but this seemed exceptionally so for her…), with losing her grandmother at the top of the list of woes. The way the year had played out it broke my heart that I didn’t feel I was the friend I should/could have been, not being physically present made things difficult/different to say the least.
Anyway, on facebook I saw she had made a comment about her ‘Gigi’s raisin filled cookies’ being her favorite. I had never eaten, seen, or even heard of these ‘raisin filled cookies’ before but I knew I wanted to make them for her. I just prayed I could do them justice.
I didn’t want to ask for the recipe and ruin the element of surprise. I researched them and compared many recipes, until I came across a recipe by one of my favorite bloggers. Brown Eyed Baker had a recipe that was her grandmother’s that sounded like a winner.
The dough is a sweet sugar cookie like dough, very sticky consistency at first. The raisin filling gets cooked on the stove top and then carefully sandwiched between two cookie dough rounds. The Brown Eyed Baker said they’d self seal and no need to pinch shut but being the old school cookie that they were, I pictured my friend’s ‘Gigi’ crimping them shut with a fork, so that is what I did.
My daughter, Lila helped me with this labor of love. I explained to her how special I hoped this would be for my friend and how excited I was to give them to her. She became nearly as excited as I was and she was also a big help! For the first time in all my years of Christmas cookie baking, I had help this year…Lila for the first time was not just a kiddo causing more mess in the kitchen but someone who was lending a helping hand, learning along the way and actually helping things move along more quickly. Anyway, the help and bonding time were both a blessing.
I don’t like raisins and I don’t eat cookies and I had nothing to even compare these cookies to, so all I could do was hope and pray they were at least close to Gigi’s. As soon as they were done baking I messaged my friend to see if I could swing by the next morning; it took all I had not to tell her what I was bringing her I was so excited. I wanted to bring her a little slice of her Gigi this holiday season and as much joy as a baked good could bring.
Because she’s a special person who is there for me every day of the year. Good days, bad days, and all the days in between. I didn’t see her much over this stupid pandemic, but I am hopeful our time in 2021 will be back to shared family vacations, sledding parties, holiday meals, birthday celebrations, church, and all the adventures we (I anyway) took for granted.
So credit for the recipe goes to Brown Eyed Baker (because I didn’t change a thing!), and thankfully they were friend approved -with tears and confirmation that they taste like Gigi’s; which was all I needed to hear to make me tear up as well. I love to bake and I love it even more when I can bring someone joy or a blessing by sharing it! Super thankful for my ‘love language’ (and the special people in my life).
You may have someone in your life that may appreciate these old time cookies (I think my step-dad appreciated a sample as well, as he said a friend’s mother used to make them for him when he was in college). You can find the recipe here. Again, I wouldn’t change a thing- use the margarine, not butter!
Enjoy! And share with someone else who will enjoy too!