My oldest brother’s birthday is this month. He recently got married in June (to a wonderful girl we all adore) and while I usually buy him a nice shirt or fun tie for his birthday, I thought this year I’d do something a little more wedding appropriate. My brother isn’t really much of a cook but I know he appreciates the homemade recipes we grew up with. And since he isn’t much of a cook, I know that he probably has zero recipes from our childhood. So I decided to make him a cookbook compiled with our favorite family recipes.

After doing a bit of research on the internet, I decided to use Blurb to make the cookbook. It turned out to be fairly easy and I am really happy with the end result!

I went with the black and white pocket style and kept mine really simple. It’s 5×8 inches and printed on cream-colored paper. It has a soft, glossy cover and I added a color photo to the back cover. I organized it into four categories: Breakfast, Sides & Appetizers, Dinner, and Desserts. The book ended up being 58 pages and with shipping it only cost $8.48 per book (I ordered an extra for myself and then my mom asked me to order a few for everyone else). I think it’s so fun and hope Ryan enjoys it 🙂

Front cover of the cookbook.

Front cover of the cookbook.

Back cover featuring two of my favorite people, Keith and Carlie, circa 1984.

Back cover featuring two of my favorite people, Keith and Carlie, circa 1984.

An inside look at a recipe.

An inside look at a recipe.

My family has some great recipes that have lasted throughout the generations. Here’s one of my favorites, from my paternal grandma, Gloria. My dad’s parents died 23 years ago this month but it’s been fun to keep their traditions alive. And in my opinion, food is one of the best ways to do that.

Boston Baked Cookies from Gloria Johnson

  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tbsp hot water
  • 1 tsp mace
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 cup chopped raisins
  • 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

Dissolve the mace, nutmeg, and cloves in the hot water; set aside. In a separate bowl, mix flour, salt, and baking soda together; set aside. Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of a large stand mixer. Add in the eggs and beat well. Add the spice mixture and mix well, then add in the flour mixture and mix well. Stir in raisins and chocolate chips. If mix is dry, add in a little water before you scoop. Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes.

Note: I always freeze these cookies after they cool. They are so tasty frozen and that’s the way my grandma did it so that’s the way I do it too.

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