In the 1930s, producers of a popular radio program called Jake and Lena invited listeners to write in for this recipe. My mother changed the name from Jake and Lena Cookies to Poor Man's Cookies because they contained no eggs, milk or nuts. Despite the name, the cookies are rich in taste!
- 1 cup shortening
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 2 cups rolled oats
- In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in water and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Fold in oats.
- Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto greased baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to stand 2 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool. Yield: 3 dozen.
Originally published as Poor Man's Cookies in Reminisce May/June 1992, p35
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