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THANKSGIVING AND CHRISTMAS COOKIES ARE NOW ONLINE!! PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING IMPORTANT ORDERING INFO !!

Thanksgiving cookie order deadline is Wednesday, November 13th, at midnight.

Christmas cookie order deadline is Sunday, December 1st at midnight.

PLEASE DO NOT PLACE THANKSGIVING AND CHRISTMAS COOKIES TOGETHER ON AN ORDER. They must ship separately, and we must charge shipping for each order. You will need to order Thanksgiving and Christmas cookies on two separate orders.

Old-Fashioned Favorites (pfeffernusse, gingerbread tiles) will only be available for Christmas orders. We do not make them for Thanksgiving, but they will be on the site so you can order them for Christmas. Please DO NOT put them on your Thanksgiving order.

NEW THIS YEAR: we will be offering gingersnaps during the Thanksgiving season, so those can be placed on Thanksgiving orders.

Don't forget the gift messages! If you send the cookies to a loved one, they will not know who they're from unless you type a gift message into that area of the order form.

ALL CHRISTMAS COOKIE ORDERS WILL SHIP BEGINNING DEC. 1 to arrive in time for Christmas. If you place your order early, that does NOT mean you will get it early UNLESS you tell us a "specific ship date". If you need your order by a certain date, please list that date under the "special instructions" part of the order form. If no specific ship date is requested, we will guarantee Christmas delivery.

We do apologize, but we have no way of looking up your order to see when it will ship. Unless you request a specific ship date, we can only say that it will ship between Dec. 1 and Christmas.

AND LASTLY: We would like to sincerely thank you for your order, whether you are a first-time customer or someone who has been with us for 20 years. We truly love what we do, and we love to make people happy with our cookies. We wish you and yours the very warmest and most joyful of holiday seasons.

A Morning to Indulge

posted on February 10, 2015
Blog Banner FPO A Morning to Indulge
Heather Botchlet Springerle Baker

Hi, my name is Heather, and this is my (sometimes daily, mostly weekly) attempt at journaling about my love affair with food, passion for all growing things, challenges & joys raising a 5-year-old in my 40’s, favorite places & things in Lancaster County, PA.

It seems fitting that I start at the beginning, which to me means a nice hot cuppa and breakfast.

Of course, morning priorities dictate getting an exuberant little man to eat breakfast while I pack his lunch, doublecheck his attire for weather appropriateness (no, Jack, you can NOT wear your glow-in-the-dark pajamas to school this morning, even though they’re the “awesomest”!), and inspect his backpack for contraband. Yep, actual contraband, as in, just for example…a dead beetle in a jelly jar. But more about that later: back to breakfast.

Zojirushi hot water heater

This morning I had my usual mug of hot tea – I’m really enjoying Assam lately for its eyes-wide-open hit of fragrant astringency. It’s lovely on its own, but stands up really well to cream. The water has to be hot enough - right off the boil - for its flavor to really “bloom”. After we closed the café in January, my home kitchen inherited some pieces of equipment. One of my faves – and one I will NEVER again be without – is the Zojirushi hot water heater.

This little miracle of modern technology runs on a tiny amount of electricity per day, and keeps your hot water at a constant temperature – you choose from three different temp. settings. One of those is 208 degrees F – spot on for an absolutely perfect cup of black tea. They sell them on Amazon, and my first one lasted me for over ten years before it gave up the ghost. I keep mine on all day long, since I am an absolute tea addict, and they are also great for instant noodles & soup, packets of hot chocolate, instant coffee (perish the thought!) ;) etc.

If you drink as much tea as I do, you really need one of these. You REAlly do. Come on, it’s cold outside, there’s snow on the ground, (at least SOMEwhere), treat yourself. You deserve it.

croque madame.JPG

….So, on those mornings I want to indulge, (with the promise to exercise sometime in the near future) I make one of these. Ladies and gentlemen, meet Croque Madame. She’s regal, she’s decadent, and most importantly: she’s delish. Very simple to make, she is in essence a grilled ham and cheese sandwich cloaked in béchamel sauce, crowned with gloriously-browned cheese and topped with an egg.

What’s not to like? Our version at the café started with the béchamel sauce, laced with French Comte cheese (for a great price on this pricey cheese, I go to Costco!)

Here’s the lowdown on a classic French sandwich:

Bechamel Sauce

  • ¼ cup butter (half stick)
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 2 – 3 cups milk
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • Freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
  • Freshly-ground nutmeg, to taste
  • ½ cup grated Comte cheese

In skillet on medium heat, melt butter – (chop into small chunks first for quicker melting). Whisk in flour until thick paste forms. Slowly whisk in milk a bit at a time, being sure milk is incorporated into sauce before adding more. Season with salt and pepper, nutmeg (if desired), stir in grated cheese, and cook for 3-4 minutes to thicken. If sauce is too thick, add more milk, ¼ cup at a time, to thin sauce as needed. Consistency should be such that it will flow down over the sides of the sandwich, but not be watery.

By the way, this sauce is the foundation for a fantastic homemade macaroni & cheese, as well as the base sauce for fettucini primavera! The sauce will keep for almost a week in the fridge – and microwaves beautifully!

Keep your béchamel handy, and make yourself a nice ham and cheese sandwich – remember to butter the outside of the bread, not the inside. I prefer plain ole’ white bread on this one, with Swiss cheese and just a thin piece of ham so it doesn’t overwhelm the other flavors. Toast in a skillet ‘til cheese is melty. Meanwhile, get your oven broiler heated up. Pop the sandwich into an ovensafe dish (I use a piepan). Be sure that your béchamel is warm, and pour it over the top of the sandwich, completely coating it and letting it cascade over the sides. Top with a piece of Swiss or Comte and broil to a yummy golden-brown. Hungry yet? Keeping an eye on the broiler, fry or poach your egg – the key here is that the yolk remains liquidy, so it can mingle with the béchamel. Pull the sandwich from the broiler, top it with the egg, and voila! Mmmm….

If you don’t feel like using the broiler, and you happen to have a handy-dandy heatgun, they work wonders to melt the cheese to a toasty brown! Just be careful – those things get HOT! (Credit where due: this was my hubby’s idea, thank you Brad!)

Thankyou so much for reading, hope you enjoy your day, and pssssst: kindness matters – pass it on! ;)

Heather (a.k.a. the Cookie Lady)