DEAR SUN SPOTS: I’m looking for a cookie recipe for this holiday that will really wow my family. We usually do sugar cookie cutouts, but I think it would be fun to do something with more flavor and holiday chutzpah. Can you recommend one or two? — No name, Auburn

ANSWER: Our family goes crazy over Christmas cookies so we have a cookie exchange every year. Each person makes a big batch of one or two of their favorites and we share them at a swap that includes some snacks.

Our favorites are peanut butter blossoms, chocolate crinkles, ginger snaps and Russian Tea Cakes.

I would love it if readers shared their ideas and recipes. Meanwhile, here’s the Chocolate Crinkle recipe: With an electric mixer, beat together 1 cup cocoa powder, 1½ cups sugar, and ½ cup vegetable oil. Beat in four large eggs, one at a time, and 2 teaspoons vanilla.

Whisk together 2 cups flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and ½ teaspoon salt. Beat dry ingredients into chocolate mixture. Chill the dough for at least 4 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Pour 1 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar on a plate.

Using a teaspoon, scoop out dough and roll it into 1-inch balls then roll them  in the sugar.

Bake for 10-13 minutes. Allow to cool a minute or two on the baking sheets before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Makes about 50 cookies.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: The Heywood Club on Crockett Ridge in Norway (we sponsor the 7-Mile Yard Sale each year) is selling lights for our Lights of Love Christmas tree in memory or honor of an individual. They are $5 per light and help raise money for our building fund. We will sell these through the Christmas season.

If you would like to help with this fundraiser you can mail a check made out to The Heywood Club, Barbara Townsend, 475 Crockett Ridge Road, Norway, ME 04268.

Our organization was started in 1903 and the building was built in 1905. We want our four corners by the clubhouse to shine brightly this season in memory of all our deceased members who helped shape and continue to do the good work so many have helped foster over the last 118 years. Thank you and we look forward to seeing many of you on Saturday, June 11, 2022, at our next sale. — Barbara, no town

ANSWER: This is such a great fundraising idea. I hope you get lots of lights sparkling!

DEAR SUN SPOTS: Is there a Sun Spots website where one could search for a topic already in your Rolodex? — Sharon, no town

ANSWER: There isn’t a special Sun Spots website searchable by topic, but I have to say that’s a good idea. One problem I can see with it, however, is that this information is often in flux. For example, recommended businesses can close or move.

The best way to look up past Sun Spots columns is to go to https://www.sunjournal.com/lifestyle/sun-spots/.

Each column from June 2009 to the present is listed by date with the newest column at the top of the first page. There are some real goodies in there!

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name. We won’t use it if you ask us not to. Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to [email protected].


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