Lace cookies come in all shapes and sizes. Some recipes include chopped nuts or coconut while other recipes make a cookie so pliable it can be shaped into small edible cups or rolled into a cone.
To shape a cookie, first use a recipe such as the old-fashioned lace cookie recipe given below. Bake cookies and let cool slightly. Drape cookie over the bottom of a small glass or shape with your hands. To form a cone, roll the cooled cookie around the handle of a wooden spoon. If cookies become too stiff to work with, return briefly to the oven. Bowl-shaped cookies can be filled with fresh berries or ice cream. For best results, do not fill until immediately before serving. For a delicious treat, dip one end of a cone-shaped cookie into melted chocolate. Place cookies on wax paper to let chocolate harden.
The recipes are for Linda Brown of Baltimore who wanted an "old-fashioned" recipe. John Wipprecht, of Dundalk, said he sympathized with her request -- he also prefers recipes from the past.
Mr. Wipprecht said he found this recipe in the 1948 edition of the "Modern Encyclopedia of Cooking" by Meta Given. Mr. Wipprecht, who has carefully preserved his mother's and aunt's cookbooks and recipe files, said he found this cookbook at a flea market about two years ago.
Old-fashioned lace cookie recipe
1 cup all-purpose flour, sifted before measuring
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light-colored molasses
1 teaspoon lemon extract
Combine flour, spices, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Sift together three times. Set aside. Melt butter with sugar and molasses over boiling water and remove from heat. Add dry ingredients and lemon extract and beat until smooth; let stand over hot water for five minutes. Drop by half-teaspoonfuls onto a greased baking sheet, 3 inches apart. Bake in 325-degree oven for 10 minutes. Watch carefully and do not let burn. Allow to cool for two or three minutes. Remove cookies with a spatula and let cool on a rack. Makes about five dozen cookies.
The cookies should be shaped, if desired, while still warm. If cookies become too brittle to work with or stick to the pan, return to hot oven for just a few seconds to soften.
This lace cookie recipe, from Michele Shaffer of Edgewood, can be made with coconut or very finely chopped nuts. We made this recipe with almonds and it was delicious. This cookie recipe is not meant to be shaped.
1 cup flour
1 cup coconut OR 1 cup finely chopped nuts
1/2 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Combine flour and coconut or nuts. Set aside. Mix together corn syrup, brown sugar and margarine and bring to boil over medium heat. Immediately remove from heat. Gradually stir in flour mixture. Then add vanilla extract. Drop by teaspoons onto foil-lined cookie sheets, about 3 inches apart.
Bake in 350-degree oven for eight to 10 minutes. Cool three to four minutes before removing from pan. Cookies are cool enough when foil easily peels off. Let cookies finish cooling on a cake rack covered with paper towels.
Evelyn A. Jones of Catonsville said her recipe was given to her by her mother and is a family favorite. The cookies are wonderful, but were not meant to be shaped.
Oatmeal lace cookies
1 egg, beaten
1 cup oatmeal, not instant
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
3 tablespoons sifted all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Mix all ingredients together, stirring well to combine. Cover cookie sheet with aluminum foil, bright side out. Drop batter by teaspoons onto foil, placing them well apart because they will spread. Bake in 350-degree oven for 10 minutes. Slide foil and cookies off cookie sheet. Let cool for five minutes.