It’s Day 7 of our 13 Days of Christmas Cookies, and it’s my turn to share a recipe: Minnie’s Oatmeal Cookies. This one has special significance for me, as it comes from a cookbook compiled of family recipes that go back generations. “Feeding The Flock, History and Recipes of the Rathmann and Fieker Family” was compiled by Elizabeth Brazeale and David Hutchison and published by Morris Press Cookbooks.
My mother was a Rathmann and this expansive family cookbook celebrates the recipes of her grandmother, great aunts and a multitude of beloved cousins. The book is dedicated to my great-great grandmother, Karoline Marie Elisabeth Klohts Rathmann, who immigrated with her family from Germany in 1918.
This recipe for Minnie’s Oatmeal Cookies is from great aunt Minnie Rathmann Jung. Several lessons were learned when making several of these recipes from many generations back. Remember, they had no finely sifted flour, lard was often used as shortening, and they may have even baked using a wood-burning stove. So some adjustments were in order.
Note: the prep time for this recipe does not include the one hour of chilling. You can also prepare the dough and freeze some for later as it makes up to 4 dozen cookies, depending on how big you roll them.
A special thanks to my baker (and niece) Rebekah Green.
- 1 cup shortening
- 1 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 cup white sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup raisins (that have been soaked in hot water and drained)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda (dissolved in 3 tablespoons hot water)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1-1/2 to 2 cups dry oatmeal
- 1 Preheat oven to 375°F.
- 2 In a mixing bowl on medium speed (or by hand with a wooden spoon) cream shortening and sugars. Continue to blend, adding eggs and vanilla. Blend in raisins and soda that has been dissolved in water. Next, add flour, baking powder and oats.
- 3 Chill for one hour. Drop by spoonfuls onto lightly greased (or un-greased, non-stick) cookie sheet.
- 4 Bake for 10-15 minutes, watching the bottoms to ensure they don't burn.
- 5 Allow to cool, then plate and serve.