I missed Menu Monday and Wordless Wednesday. 😦 BUT I am caught up on my laundry and the ridiculous amount of emails in my inbox…for now.

In the quite of the afternoon, while my kids were napping, I pulled up my Itunes Holiday play list and pulled out an old favorite Christmas recipe. I’d like to share this old favorite with you. Shall I?

But first I have to tell you about my mom.

I didn’t know when I was growing up that we were poor. Kids don’t usually notice that kind of stuff. I actually thought the pork chops in the butcher isle that were covered with paprika (to hide the discoloration as they aged) were the BEST, not the reduced-to-sell ones. I remember requesting for them for my birthday dinner.

My mom had a way of protecting us from some of the harsher realities of life. She would see things through a different lens so that they were no longer cast-offs or cheap things but adventures, great deals, or adventures. For example, Dump Cake. I’m sure we’ve all seen some version of this cake/dessert in those church cookbooks. It basically contains a cake mix, a can of cherry pie filling, a can of crushed pineapple, and a stick of butter. You dump everything in a cake pan and bake it. Out comes a wonderful cake that cost less than $3.00 and took less than 10 minutes to prepare! I guess a more fitting name for this cake could be, White Trash Cake :-). Well my mother didn’t find the name “Dump Cake” very appealing so she changed the name….to Elephant Toes. Don’t ask me why, that’s just what she called it. I didn’t learn that Elephant Toes was a common recipe with a different name until I was nearly 20 and saw this cake at a potluck.  I exclaimed, “Oh I LOVE Elephant Toes!”  Yeah, I got some funny looks.

I was thinking about my mom and how a different name or a different perspective can really change the way that people see and receive things. This cookie recipe I am about to share with you is also pretty common. But I doubt most people call it what I grew up calling it. Seven layer bars is not only an uncreative name, but it usually isn’t accurate. There usually aren’t seven layers! So my mom always called this recipe, Hello Dolly Cookies. As a kids, making this every Christmas, as I was pressing the layers together and pouring the milk over it all, I would think of creative stories for the origination of these cookies and their name…most of my stories included Dolly Parton.

So if you make this recipe, I encourage you to think of these wonderful bar cookies not as Seven Layer Cookies but Hello Dolly Cookies. I guarantee you they will taste better. 🙂 And as you are consuming them, think of the other things in your life that, with a little perspective shift, could look a whole lot better.

Hello Dolly Cookies

1/2 cups butter, melted

1 cups graham cracker crumbs

1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

1 1/2 cups shredded coconut

1 cup nuts (optional), butterscotch or peanut butter chips can be subsituted

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1/4 cup sugar

Grease a 9×9 pan and heat the oven to 325 degrees.  Mix the butter and graham cracker crumbs together and spread evenly into the bottom of the pan. Then in alternating layers add the chocolate chips, coconut, and nut (or other goodies) until they are gone. Press firmly. Pour the whole can of milk over the pan. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until brown. Remove from oven and let cool about 10 minutes. When cool, cut into squares. Enjoy.


3 thoughts on “Perspective and Cookies

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