Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Eating Hermit Cookies and Wearing a Chicken Mash Apron While Reading The Persian Pickle Club

We invite you to join the free, on-line Quilters' Book Club!  Our book for February is The Persian Pickle Club by Sandra Dallas.  Pick up the book at your local library and begin reading.  If you don't want to miss any of the book club posts, become a follower of my blog or sign up to receive my blog posts through email.  (See the right side of my blog to sign up.  You will need to view the web version of my blog for this.)

On page 20 of The Persian Pickle Club, Queenie Bean says to her husband Grover:   
     "'I've got jumbles and hermits, made with the black walnuts we gathered down on the creek last fall.'
     "'Both kinds.'
     "I took out my plate with the peach-and-plum decal on it and piled it with cookies.  Then I put the pitcher of buttermilk on the table with a glass.  The outside of the pitcher was damp, and little drops of water ran down the sides, forming a wet ring on the tablecloth.  I took off my apron and sat down at the kitchen table across from Grover." 

Queenie Bean's Hermits
1 cup shortening
2 cups brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
1/2 cup cold coffee
3-1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2-1/2 cups seeded raisins
1-1/4 cups broken nuts (black walnuts if you have them!)

1.  Mix shortening, sugar, and eggs thoroughly.  Stir in coffee.
2.  Stir together flour, soda, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon; blend into shortening mixture.  Mix in raisins and nuts.
3.  Chill dough at least 1 hour.
4.  Heat oven to 400 degrees. 
5.  Drop rounded teaspoonfuls of dough about 2" apart on lightly greased baking sheet.  Bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until almost no imprint remains when touched lightly in center.  Makes 7 to 8 dozen 2-1/2" cookies. 
Betty Crocker named Hermits the best cookie of 1880 - 1890.  This recipe came from Betty Crocker's Cooky Book, published 1963. 

When serving your cookies, don't forget to wear a little vanilla extract behind your ears like Queenie does!  If you have other recipes for foods featured in The Persian Pickle Club, please share them with us.

You might also enjoy reading my previous blog post:


  1. I've given up making aprons because they are so seldom worn in this house. Cookies, however, might put me in the mood for reading or quilting or anything else.

  2. Julie, aprons are seldom worn at my home, too, but they make a nice decoration hanging from pegs in my kitchen!

  3. There is nothing more inviting than entering a home with the smell of freshly baked cookies, or anything for that matter. Aprons remind me of June Cleaver but I do like one when I am baking or cooking that might splatter. Alas, I only have tea-towel aprons but hey, that could change. Maybe I could put it on my Christmas list for when the grandkids ask me what I would like to have.

    1. I agree with you, Shirley. There's isn't a better smell than something baking in the oven when you walk in the door. My mother was really good about that when I was growing up.

  4. I made aprons for all 4 grandkids for when they visit and we cook together. Just cut the pattern down a little. I made them "cooking" aprons and "craft" aprons that they keep at my house for when they come visit. Big Hit!
    I love your blog. One of the few I read whenever you post.


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