This time of the year is the perfect excuse to cozy up and watch all of the great Academy Award nominated films. One of my favorites this year was the film Lion. Based on a true story, it is about a small boy who gets lost on a train that takes him thousands of miles from home. He is eventually adopted by a couple from Australia, and settles comfortably there. It is not until he is at University that he meets other Indian students; the smell and sight of Indian food and culture trigger childhood memories .
This story reminds me of when my Grandma would visit from California, always arriving with trinkets and stories of her travels. While she was staying with us she would always bake. We would place bookmarks in cookbooks, marking the things we wanted her to make the next time she was in town. Food certainly has a way of generating memories, and this is especially true with a particular recipe of hers. She visited one time with a recipe cut out from a newspaper for “Boiled Cookies,” and it became an instant favorite. Not only were they yummy, but we loved that they were called “boiled” cookies. Today, many call these “No-Bake Cookies.” Despite the different names, they are still made the same way, bringing butter, milk, sugar, and cocoa to a boil on the stove before adding vanilla, peanut butter, and oatmeal. The next step is to spoon the mixture onto sheets of waxed or parchment on the kitchen counter, while fighting the willpower not to eat them before they cool.
I know my family now has their own memories of these cookies since they were a regular after school snack. We call these a semi-healthy cookie since they are gluten-free and we make them with organic sugar and oats!
- 2 cups sugar
- ¼ cup cocoa
- ½ cup milk
- ½ cup butter
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- pinch of salt
- ½ cup peanut butter
- 3 cups rolled oats
- Mix sugar, cocoa, milk, and butter in a saucepan. Stir over medium heat until it boils. Remove from heat and cool for 1 minute. Add remaining ingredients and mix well.
- Drop by teaspoonfuls onto wax or parchment paper. Let cool completely before removing from paper.