Right in time for Halloween a recipe from Mary Ann Winkowski’s book Beyond Delicious: The Ghost Whisperer’s Cookbook: More than 100 recipes from the Dearly Departed.
An old friend of Mary Ann Winkowski invited her to join her for a Thanksgiving meal with her mother, Flossy. Her mom was living in a nursing home. Nursing homes and hospitals are always full of earthbound spirits. It’s not just the ten people sitting in the community area playing cards and watching TV, to me it’s the ten people plus the ten other people attached to them. That’s a lot of bodies—both physical and not—that Mary Ann would have to try to dodge, because she was not about to start walking through ghosts if she can help it.
To make her friend Fran happy she agreed to accompany her and they had lunch chatting while Mary Ann tried to avoid the eyes of any earthbound spirits for fears of cluing them in to what she could do. They got to talking about holiday cookies, and Flossy asked Fran if she remembered the pumpkin cookies Fran’s grandmother used to make. Fran mentioned that they were delicious and made with actual pumpkin, not just the spices.
They were at a table that seated eight people, and everyone started chiming in about these pumpkin cookies that were like small, cookie-shaped pumpkin pies. Then everyone started wracking their brains for the best recipe, but this being a nursing home . . . well, let’s just say no one could quite remember how these cookies were made. Suddenly, a ghost attached to one of the other guests at the table said that she knew the recipe.
The ghost did not expect Mary Ann to ask her about the recipe, and had it not been for everyone at the table going on and on about how delicious these cookies were, she probably wouldn’t have. The ghost was taken by surprise when Mary Ann asked for her name and the recipe for the cookies. But, the ghost who’s name was Mitzi did give her the recipe. Mary Ann jotted it down quickly while everyone else was still chatting. She offered Mitzi the chance to cross over, but the ghost had no intention of doing so and sort of slunk away from the table,
After the lunch, Mary Ann gave Fran the recipe and told her what had happened. Three days later Fran called her friend and said she’d made the cookies for her mother. Flossy had loved them and swore they were exactly the same as the ones her mom had used to make!
Mitzi’s Golden Pumpkin Cookies
⅓ cup shortening
1⅓ cups sugar
3 eggs, well beaten
1 cup cooked or plain canned pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon lemon extract
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 1/2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins
Cream shortening and sugar thoroughly. Add eggs, pumpkin, flavorings, and the dry ingredients, which have been sifted together. Add raisins, which have been dredged in some of the measured flour. Mix well. Drop by teaspoonful’s onto well-greased baking sheet. Sprinkle with a mixture of sugar and cinnamon. Bake in a moderately hot oven at about 400 degrees for 15 minutes.
For more information on The Ghost Whisperer visit Mary Ann Winkowski’s website.