Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies
I’m in the middle of baking for our annual Christmas Cookie Extravaganza this year, and I decided to give these cookies a try. I found Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies in the Northpole.com Kitchen Cookbook back in the late 1990s–way before food blogs became a thing. There were several recipes that looked great for holiday baking so I saved several of them electronically over a quarter of a decade ago.
I will admit to you that there was a LOT of trepidation in making this recipe on my part. That’s not usually the case, but this one was different. First off, it was an old vintage recipe without directions. Yes, that is the way recipes were handed down back in the day, but still. When I actually copied the recipe it had no real directions. The grand-daughter who submitted the recipe said she usually mixed these starting at the top and working down. Ha! I actually went back to the site and pulled up the recipe to see if there were any instructions rather than the ones I originally wrote down. They had added some instructions.
Still, I was concerned about using eight teaspoons of baking powder (per batch), YES, I SAID EIGHT TEASPOONS! The recipe also called for the zest of one whole orange. I was really hoping this wasn’t overkill and that the cookies didn’t taste like baking powder or too much orange! 🙁 Nevertheless, I really wanted to give them a try.
I was really glad I did. This cookie is soft, much like a shortbread texture. Believe it or not, it does not have too much baking powder or orange zest. The dough is extraordinarily gooey and must be chilled before using in a recipe. I found that in order to roll the dough into balls, I actually had to keep my hands moist while rolling. But with all those tips, the cookies turned out fantastically.
Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies really puff up nicely while baking. As I stated before, these cookies are soft, not crunchy in texture. I have no idea why they’re called “Log Cabin Cookies.” But they certainly are marvelous cookies to bake up for the holiday season, Christmas Cookie Exchanges, tailgating parties and any holiday gathering.
I was afraid these cookies would just be TOO MUCH! Trust me, they’re NOT too much of anything. They simply have a delightful taste and texture. You can tell the recipe is vintage because it calls for shortening in the recipe rather than butter. But since I was making four batches of this recipe, I didn’t feel like doing any experimentation like changing out the shortening for butter (and adjusting the flour accordingly).
For those of you who grew up in the south (Florida, Texas or California) and had orange trees growing in your own yard, (we did) this is a fantastic way to use up some of those oranges! This Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies recipe is a treasure. I hope you decide to make it for the holidays this year.
Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies are delightful!
You can see the little bits of orange zest in each cookie.
These scrumptious cookies will be gobbled up quickly. Better make a lot!
These are soft, not crunchy, cookies. More like a shortbread cookie than a regular cookie.
Here’s what I did.
I used these ingredients.
Grate an orange on a very fine setting with your grater; set aside. (I was making 4 batches so this picture shows more than a single recipe.)
Combine shortening, granulated sugar and eggs in a mixing bowl.
Beat mixture with an electric mixer until smooth.
Add baking powder (YES, ALL EIGHT TEASPOONS!!!), orange zest and lemon extract.
Mix again with an electric mixer until all the ingredients are well incorporated. (Especially the baking powder!)
Add half-and-half or whole milk.
Slowly work in the half-and-half with an electric mixer to avoid splatters.
Add unbleached flour. Bleached flour toughens baked goods.
Stir to combine. Chill the dough at least an hour. (I chilled the dough overnight).
Roll the dough into golf-ball sized balls. Because the dough is so gooey, you will probably have to keep your hands moist to avoid sticking.
Roll each ball of dough in powdered sugar until it is very well covered.
Place the cookie dough balls on greased cookie sheets.
Bake the cookies at 350 degrees for approximately 12 minutes. Rotate cookie sheets on oven racks after 8 minutes of baking time. (My cookies took 17 minutes to bake completely).
Stack these cookies up and serve!
The orange zest in Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies makes these cookies irresistible.
The lemon extract and orange zest make Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies pop in flavor.
These shortbread-type cookies are soft and plump!
Here’s the recipe.
GRANDMA’S LOG CABIN COOKIES
(Recipe adapted from Northpole.com Kitchen Cookbook, from the kitchen of Grandma Douglas)
Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies
- 3 18×26" cookie sheet pans
- 1 large mixing bowl
- 1 electric mixer
- 1 wooden spoon
- 1 grater or orange zester
- measuring cups
- measuring spoons
- 1 small bowl
- 1 cup Crisco shortening
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 5 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (bleached flour toughens baked goods)
- 1 orange rind grated
- 2 tsp. lemon extract
- 8 tsp. baking powder (YES, THAT'S EIGHT TEASPOONS!)
- 1 cup half-and-half or whole milk
- 1 cup powdered sugar to roll the cookie dough in
- Preheat oven to 350º.
- Combine shortening, granulated sugar, and eggs in a mixing bowl and mix with an electric mixer until thoroughly mixed.
- Add orange rind, lemon extract and baking powder and mix again with an electric mixer being sure to work all the baking powder into all areas of the dough.
- Add half and half and cream the ingredients with the electric mixer until fluffy.
- (I added it slowly to avoid spatters).
- Stir in flour until the dough is very well mixed.
- Chill dough at least one hour so it’s easier to handle.
- Remove bowl of dough from refrigerator.
- Place powdered sugar in a small mixing bowl.
- Pinch off golf-ball sized pieces of dough.
- Roll dough into balls; then roll the dough into powdered sugar.
- Place balls on greased baking sheets leaving room so the balls aren’t crowded.
- Bake approximately 10-12 minutes or until done.
- Rotate cookie sheets on oven racks after eight minutes of baking time.
Recipe adapted from Northpole.com Kitchen Cookbook.
© Can’t Stay Out of the Kitchen
Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies is from a vintage recipe that will cure any sweet tooth craving!
These soft and delectable cookies are terrific for tailgating parties, holiday office parties and Christmas Cookie Exchanges.
Enjoy one of these Grandma’s Log Cabin Cookies on a cold, winter day before a fire in the fireplace for great comfort food.
Enjoy a stack of them while you’re at it! 🙂