Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Comfort Foods That Really Do!

(Ahem, I borrowed the pix. My photographer daughter has YET to teach me how to upload photos...technologically, I'm challenged. But, not in the kitchen. Amen.)
My mom's Molasses Spice Cookies were just the ticket that filled my young heart with the joy of forgetfulness. For some reason we called these "Joe Froggers". But, when I went through my mom's (majorly huge) collection of snipped and clipped recipes last year I found another recipe for Joe Froggers. That particular recipe didn't appeal to me at all. Mom handed me this recipe and said,
"This is what you're looking for." I don't know where the mix-up in the name happened. But, when I followed her recipe I realized...these beauties were indeed just what I was looking for. Oh, the childhood memories flowed.

Rod's dad had a nasty fall last Thursday. Meals On Wheels called us saying that he was covered with blood from the bridge of his nose to his knees. He wouldn't let them in and he shut the door in their face. Not like Kert at all. So, Rod went right over. After a four day stay in the hospital and many tests and prayers the decision was made that Kert needed to move from his home-alone situation into Assisted Living. My husband (and his sister) are both shocked and emotionally worn out from these last days turn of events. Kert's joyful disposition in his new home has eased a lot of the guilt. I hate to say these cookies could help also, but I have to.

But, there's more, too. We can't live on sweets alone. (Unfortunately.) So, this recipe is my solution to the need for additional comfort. My sixteen year old is my greatest testifier about this soup. Last year I made this chili recipe one morning while she was at school. I waited at the bus-stop for her and the minute she got in the car she said, "You made White Christmas Chili, didn't you? I can smell it on you. Can I have some when we get home or do I have to wait for dinner?"

If you are in need of some other kind of spicy comfort, this is it. I think this is one of my very favorite recipes. I got it out of the Southern Living November 2002
issue. My family is a bunch of cilantro-shy folks. Not me, I love, love, love it. If you like cilantro use it, if you don't...skip it (your loss).

If you're in need of comfort: these foods do the trick!


1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter (PLEASE do not ruin your cookies with anything else)
1 1/2 cups sugar (1/2 cup for rolling cookies in)
1/4 cup molasses (I use Grandma's brand)
1 egg
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

MELT butter in medium saucepan over low heat, set aside to cool to room temperature.

STIR 1 cup sugar, molasses, and egg into melted, cooled butter.

SIFT together flour, soda and spices.

ADD to butter mixture and mix well.

COVER dough and chill in fridge 45 minutes.

PREHEAT oven to 350.

SHAPE dough into 1" balls and roll in remaining 1/2 cup sugar.

PLACE 2" apart on UNgreased cookie sheet.

BAKE for 8 minutes until cookies are deep golden brown and crackled.

COOL on wire racks and keep yourself from eating every single one of them.



4 boneless/skinless chicken breasts
5 cups water
1 large onion (I use yellow, less tears), chopped and divided
2 Tablespoons butter
2 celery ribs chopped
3 16 oz. cans Great Northern Beans (I actually use two of GNB and one of Chili Beans)
3 4.5 oz cans green diced green chilies
1 cup chicken broth (canned or boxed)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon salt
dash cayenne pepper
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

TOPPINGS: sour cream, shredded colby jack, tortilla chips, salsa, MORE CILANTRO!

BOIL chicken and half of onion in five cups of water over medium-hi heat for about 18 minutes. Remove and dice chicken into bite sized pieces. SAVE the BROTH!

MELT butter in skillet, add celery and onion. Saute' til tender.

STIR chicken, celery mixture, 2 of the cans of beans, and next six ingredients into the broth.

COOK at medium-lo for 1 hour, stirring frequently.

PROCESS remaining can of beans in food processor, scrape down sides, until smooth.

STIR bean puree into soup and mix thoroughly.

REMOVE Bay leaf and discard.

THROW in CILANTRO (if you have no pickie-younies in your home), otherwise use it as an optional topping.

SERVE with toppings. I pray God's wondrous blessings on you and yours as you enjoy!


  1. Hey Jen,
    We're praying for Kert and hoping he's
    doing better. I will definitely try
    both of these recipes.

  2. It's always so hard to put someone in assisted living, isn't it? It was so hard with my grandmothers. They didn't want to go. We didn't want them to go. They were okay with it after awhile, but it's so hard at first. Your recipes sound so delicious. I love the name. White Christmas Chili sounds so festive and good!