One of the fondest memories of my childhood is when my maternal grandmother, Nonny as we grandkids called her, would come and read to my class in elementary school.
A gifted storyteller, she would bring characters in the form of stuffed animals that she herself made to help act out the stories.
While this was definitely a highlight of these visits, one thing that stood above all of the rest was the platter of tea cakes that she brought with her, an after-story treat made from her own personal recipe, that paired rather well with the Kool Aid she also brought.
These sweet little discs were a huge part of my childhood, and I would not hesitate to request them at family gatherings, although I would alternate the selection between them and her chocolate pie, but that’s a story for another column.
Now though, they are nostalgic. Nonny lost her battle with cancer in July 2020, but she left a legacy behind in her recipes.
My mother has her tea cake recipe, and for that, I am eternally grateful.
My mom learned to cook from my grandmother, and she learned well, so it makes for a delightful combination.
I love to sink my teeth into one of these cookies not only for the delectable taste, but now, for the memories attached to it.
Nonny and I were always close, and she actually babysat me for the first few months of my life while my mother worked.
As I grew older, I maintained that relationship with her, and I was even the one who gave the eulogy at her funeral.
I say all of this to say, these are more than just cookies to me, they are a memory, one that can’t be forgotten as long as there is a recipe to follow.
1 Cup softened butter
1 Cup sugar
1 Tsp vanilla flavoring
3 Cups self-rising flour
■ Heat the oven to 375 degrees.
■ Cream the softened butter and the sugar together.
■ Add in the egg and vanilla flavoring and mix well.
■ Stir in the self-rising flour.
■ On a floured surface, roll out the dough to approximately ¼ inch thick and cut into the desired shape.
■ Bake them on an ungreased cookie sheet for 8-10 minutes (Cook times may vary).
■ Cookies are done when they are slightly brown around the edges.
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