Fig Newtons(ish)


For the fillings

  • 500 g. (18 oz. or 10 large) fresh figs
  • 250 g. (9 oz. or 1 1/4 cups) sugar
  • 1 lemon (juice and zest)
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla extract.

For the cookie

  • 2 1/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 sticks butter
  • 1/3 cups + 1 T sugar
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1 t Vanilla
  • 2 T maple syrup
  • 1 T milk
  • 3 large egg yolks


For the filling

  1. Cut figs into eights
  2. Combine all ingredients into a pot.  Cook until reduced by half, stirring constantly to prevent scorching.

For the cookie

  1. Whisk together the flour, salt, cinnamon, and baking powder to combine.
  2. Combine the butter and sugar and beat until fluffy.
  3. Add maple syrup, milk, and vanilla and mix until combined.
  4. Add the egg yolks one at a time alternating with a third of the flour mixture.
  5. Bring the dough together and flatten into a disc. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for an hour.

Assembling the cookies

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Cut the dough into 4 equal parts. Using one piece, lightly knead the dough to make it pliable.
  3. Roll out the dough into a square of wax paper. (roughly 10″ x10″)
  4. Trim the edges so the square is even, then cut square in.
  5. Add a finger thick strip of jam along the center of one of the halves.
  6. Fold one third of the dough over the preserves. Fold the remaining one third of the dough over that making a log. Transfer the log onto a silpat lined cookie sheet and flatten it out slightly.
  7. Repeat this process with the remaining dough pieces of dough.
  8. Bake the bars for 20 min or until slightly golden.  Cut the freshly baked bars into 2 in. cookies.
  9. Allow the cookies to rest overnight.


Yummy but way too much trouble.  These took two days to make and the cookie dough is fragile and temperamental.


Chocolate Chip – Oatmeal Cookies


  • 2/3 c castor sugar
  • 2/3 c packed brown sugar
  • 2 sticks of butter at room temperature
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/4 t kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 c all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 c rolled oats
  • 1 c chocolate chips
  • 1 c white chocolate chips


  1. Preheat to 350F.
  2. Line two half-sheet pans with silpats.
  3. Combine the sugar, brown sugar and butter together in the bowl of a mixer and beat with the paddle attachment until fluffy and light
  4. Add the egg and vanilla and mix to combine.
  5. Add the flour, baking soda, oats and salt and mix well to just combine.
  6. Finally mix in the chocolate chips.
  7. Use a 2-inch-diameter ice-cream scoop to portion the batter onto the prepared pans.  Bake 18 to 20 minutes.

Holly’s Chocolate Chip Cookies


  • 2 sticks room temperature butter – 1 c
  • 2/3 c castor sugar
  • 1/3 + 1/2 c light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 3/4 c AP flour
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 2 c good quality chocolate chopped into chunks
  • 1 c chopped hazelnuts


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Beat together butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs and beat until incorporated.
  3. Add flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder  –  mix until just combined.
  4. Fold in nuts and chocolate chunks.IMG_4246
  5. Bake in a 375 degree oven 12-14 minutes



Kind of puffy – maybe switch the soda and powder next time.



December 24 – Honoring Alfar

On the fifth day of Yuetide is dedicated to the Alfar, the male ancestors home and hearth. We will remember and try to keep the bargains made to the spirits throughout the year and take a moment to honor our ancestors – – maybe even leave out a little offering for the most well-known of the elves tonight.

Krumkake 2016

My husband’s late grandfather Ivar, traditionally made

Bertha and Ivar

lefse and krumkake for this holiday so today we will remember him by making krumkake.  We would go over to Ivars home on Christmas Eve and enjoy a big supper and lots of stories.  He was always really kind to me and such a gentle soul.  On this Christmas night, the family will gather once more and we will fill the krumkake with fresh whipped cream and enjoy a warm fire and good company, just as Ivar would have liked.

All of my male ancestors have passed, but I hope that where they are finds them by a warm fire, enjoying a strong cup of coffee and a peppermint stick with friends and family that went before them….and I hope they can see all of us and take comfort the traditions they helped to create.

My father Charles
My grandfather Edwin Alexander McDougall. He took in our family and raised me until his death at 92. A truly wonderful man.

Brigittine Chocolate Fudge

There is a long tradition of Brigittine Monastery Gourmet Fudge in Oregon.  At Our Lady of Consolation Priory, the monks quietly go about producing some of the most delicious, rich and creamy fudge in the world.  We didn’t have time to make the drive to Amity this Yuletide, but in a wonderful spirit of giving, years ago, the monastery published a recipe (circa 1987) to recreate their fudge at home.


  • 4½ Cups Sugar
  • 13 Ounces Evaporated Milk
  • 9 Ounces Semisweet Chocolate
  • 9 Ounces Bittersweet Chocolate
  • 7 Ounces Marshmallow Cream
  • ½ Pound Butter
  • 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extractimg_0158
  • 2 Cups Chopped Walnuts (optional)


  1. Combine the sugar and milk to a deep, heavy pot.
  2. Heat over medium bringing the mixture to a boil. Boil for 6 minutes.
  3. Remove the pot from the heat and add the remaining ingredients.
  4. Stir like crazy, until everything is melted and mixed.
  5. Pour the mixture into a well-buttered 9″ x 13″ pan.
  6. Let cool to room temperature and cut into cubes.

*** Whoops – I left out the butter.  I’ve melted 1/4 cup butter and stirred in half of the semi-hardened fudge, then added a 1/2 cup of coarsely chopped filberts.  The other half of the semi-hardened fudge just got the melted butter added.


2017 Update

This year we made one batch, poured about 1/3 into a pan, and added pecans to the pan.  We poured another 1/3 into a second pan and then added (as per Noah’s request) some crushed pretzels to the remainder.  I think this will help with the “fudge until Spring Equinox” problem.

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