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Recipes

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Vinegar Cookies

 

 

This buttery sugar cookie has a little distilled white vinegar in the dough -- but no one will ever guess the secret ingredient.

 

1 cup butter or margarine (2 sticks), softened

1 cup sugar

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

 

1. In large bowl, with mixer at low speed, beat butter with sugar until blended. Increase speed to high; beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. At low speed, beat in flour, vinegar and baking soda, occasionally scraping bowl with rubber spatula, until mixed. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate dough 1 hour, or until easy to handle.

2. Preheat oven to 350 F. Drop dough by rounded teaspoons, about 2 inches apart, onto ungreased large cookie sheet. Bake 17 to 20 minutes, until cookies are set and edges are golden. Let cookies remain on cookie sheet 30 seconds, then with wide spatula, transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough. Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

* Each cookie: About 65 calories, 4g total fat (1g saturated), 0g protein, 7g carbohydrate, 0mg cholesterol, 50mg sodium.

You’ll find more great recipes like this one in the “Good Housekeeping A Very Merry Christmas Cookbook” (Hearst Books).

 

 

 

 

 

 

ANTIQUE AND COLLECTING

By Terry and Kim Kovel

 

Christmas Tree Stand


All the early Christmas trees were freshly cut from a nearby forest. By the 19th century inAmerica, the fresh trees were brought into a church or home and decorated. But it was a problem to keep the tree upright, and without water it quickly dried out and lost its needles. In 1876, a man inPhiladelphiapatented an iron tree stand, and by 1919, a cone-shaped tin stand weighted with sand or water was being sold. But the stands were not large enough to hold all the water needed, and that is still a problem for stands. The stands had to be heavy to keep the tree from tipping, so they were made of cast iron. Many were made with three legs that looked like tree branches. All had large screws that pierced the trunk to hold the tree in place.

Collectors search for the iron stands made in unusual shapes -- a Santa Claus, village scene or even a group of reindeer. They sell today for $250 to $900. An unusual tree stand made of concrete shaped to look like a Santa Claus head was sold at a Bertoia auction in 2015. It was made to hold a feather tree and had a small concrete cylinder attached to the back to hold the trunk. No water was needed. The 11-inch-high stand, painted white and red as expected, sold for $118.

***

Q: I have a cube puzzle titled “The Night Before Christmas” made by McLoughlin Brothers inNew York. It consists of 20 cubes, 2 1/2 inches on an edge, that depict various Christmas scenes based on Clement Moore’s poem. Santa is shown in a green coat with a red belt and fur trim. The puzzle is 4 cubes by 5 cubes. The copyright date reads “18--.” The last two digits are obscured. What is the copyright date? The puzzle has been enjoyed by four generations of children, and it shows. It’s in good enough condition so that all six scenes are shown in detail. What is the approximate value?

A: The copyright date is 1889. The pictures made by assembling the cubes are from the children’s book, “The Night Before Christmas,” published by McLoughlin Brothers. This Santa Claus cube puzzle sells for more $2,000 in almost perfect condition.

***

CURRENT PRICES

Advertising tin, Smith’s White Fruit Cake, A Delicacy from Dixie, round, yellow and red, woman, fruit basket, Gordon Smith, 8 x 3 inches, $20.

Christmas ornament, green grapes kugel, brass cap, hanger, cluster, iridescent,Germany, 1800s, 6 inches, $350.

Silver Hanukkah lamp, menorah, eight oil fonts, detachable servant light, crown-shaped backplate, marked, Bezalel, c. 1910, 5 x 6 inches, $980.

 


 

 

 



NOW HERE’S A TIP


By JoAnn Derson


* Since you know it’s coming anyway, take the opportunity to clean out the fridge a day or two before a big family dinner. It’s a good idea to eat up any leftovers for dinner the day before. You’ll have plenty to replace them on Thanksgiving, right?

 

* In the fridge, it takes 24 hours of defrosting for every 5 pounds of turkey. When defrosting in water (only birds in a leakproof plastic wrapper), allow 30 minutes per pound and change the water every half-hour.

 

* “When setting the table, my mom would put note cards face down under the place mats. On the note card was written an after-dinner, but before-dessert chore. Someone would be responsible for packing up leftovers; another would load dishes and flatware into the dishwasher; still another would wash or dry the servingware, and pots and pans. We all chipped in, and it was fair, since it was based on where you sat. She changed them every year. We had lots of fun trying to guess where the easiest chore card was.” -- C.C. in Georgia

 

* If you’re considering new furniture, take this into consideration: Experts say that open storage is more likely to keep clutter to a minimum, since there’s no hiding your junk. Closed storage tends to collect clutter faster.

 

* Much like a workout buddy, having a money buddy can keep your budget on track by providing accountability for your spending. If you have to justify your purchases, you’re less likely to make frivolous choices.

 

* “If you get razor burn a lot, make sure you save your shaving for the end of your shower instead of right when you get in. The warm water makes it easier on your skin. Get a good shaving cream, too.” -- E.Y. in New York