"Not eating chard. That's what all those weirdos eat at their stupid picnics on the Hungry Ghost lawn." -Nina

March 13, 2008

Recipe For Sophia Smith's Soft Molasses Cookies

Browsing the Smith College archives online, (because archives are fun!) I came across the following recipe for Sophia Smith Soft Molasses Cookies, which was, according to the credit, originally published in Smith College Madeleine, 1972.

Sophia Smith was a resident of Hatfield MA -the daughter of an incredibly wealthy family- whom bequeathed a large part of her estate to establish Smith College in Northampton. There is much more about Sophia and the Smith Family, including her diaries, her will, and other neat stuff, here.

Initially I had hoped to post this recipe with an instructional video, but maybe that will come later. Cooking with Northamptonist!

The recipe makes 7 1/2 dozen (!!) Wow that's a lot of cookies.

1 1/4 c. Sugar
2 1/4 c. Molasses
2 1/4 c. Shortening
1 1/8 c. Sour Milk
3 1/2 tsp. Soda
2 1/4 tsp. Ginger
2 tsp. Cinnamon
2 3/4 qts. Flour

1. Heat molasses, melt in shortening, and add sugar.
2. Cool. Add sour milk and flour, which has been sifted with other dry ingredients.
3. Roll out, about 1/3" thick, and cut.
4. Bake at 350 degrees for 5-8 minutes.

Maybe if any of you attempt to make these, you can let us know how they turn out.

Reading the material contained in the archives, I learned the Sophia first wished to establish a school for the deaf, but changed her plans after another wealthy individual beat her to the punch, and established the Clarke School for the Deaf here in town. Next she considered establishing Smith College in Hatfield, but after much consultation with local men of influence, decided that Northampton was best. One such persons' opinion she considered was John M. Greene, who had written her a series of letters advocating that the town of Northampton to be the location of the college. Residents of Hatfield felt slighted by Sophia's decision, though The Daily Hampshire Gazette was delighted, writing in an editorial at that time, "...as to the location, it must be as readily admitted that in that respect, also, the judgement of the donor could not have been improved upon."

LABELS: smith college, northampton history, food