Cookie of the Week: Prayer Bars

December 16, 2009

Isn’t this a sweet little picture? Three small girls, formerly human popsicles, warming up together in the bath after a frolic in the December snow?

Sweet little picture, my ass. Because you know what happened in that bath? As we were drying off with warm towels, the cute pig-tailed child, Britt, pointed to a couple of spots on her leg and told my mom, “These bumps are getting really itchy.”

“Oh, boy,” Mama said, knowing full-well that a chicken-pox epidemic was blazing it’s way through North Dakota schools. “Well, since the girls have already been exposed to it, I guess you can stay and play. Might as well get it over with.”

My sister was wicked excited to get the chicken-pox. Getting the chicken-pox meant one thing to her: loafing on the couch, watching Josie and the Pussycats, skipping school.

My sister stuck to Britt like glue for the next couple of hours, instructing Britt to breathe on her every few minutes. I wasn’t yet four years old, had no idea what the chicken-pox meant, and was deeply jealous that my sister got to attend school. Because, of course, anything I couldn’t participate in yet seemed like The Shit.

We did, indeed, get the chicken-pox. However. My sister got about 7 little bumps total on her body. The girl who deliberately and gleefully contaminated herself got the mildest case of The Pox the world has ever seen. She was back to school within a week, sullenly swinging her lunch box as she left.

Moi? How interesting that you ask. I was absolutely riddled with itchy, red, oozing, miserable lesions. They were everywhere. And by everywhere, I mean everywhere. Did you know that you can get a pretty poxy bump on your eyeball? No? Well, let me assure you that you can. Inside the folds of your little lady bits? Yeppers. ‘Tis true. Between your toes? Check.

I had the most ferocious case of The Pox that our doctor had ever seen. I spent the holidays slathered in Calamine Lotion, soaking endlessly in baking soda baths. Mama resorted to making me wear socks on my hands, so I couldn’t pick or itch my bumps; it was harrowing. Pox in your hoo-ha? Seven kinds of wrong, people!

Not surprisingly, there aren’t a lot of pictures of me that holiday season. You can thank Britt for that.

You can also thank her mother, Nikki, for this awesome cookie recipe. This cookie is so rich that it’s almost like candy, so cut these into tiny squares. While Toffee Cookies may be my Waterloo, my Mama favors these. We had them every year, and she’d swear at herself later for making them. Irresistible little morsels, these guys.

And a lot more pleasant than a holiday with The Pox.

Prayer Bars

First Layer:
1/2 cup butter
4 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 beaten egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped nuts
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup shredded sweetened coconut

Second Layer:
1/4 cup butter
3 tablespoons cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons dry vanilla pudding mix
2 cups powdered sugar

Third Layer:
1 giant bar German’s Sweet Chocolate (7 oz. bar; any sweet chocolate will do)

1. Melt butter and stir in cocoa. Add sugar, egg, and vanilla. Mix in nuts, graham cracker crumbs and coconut. Press into the bottom of a 9×13-inch pan. Chill at least one hour.

2. Melt butter, cream, and vanilla is a saucepan. Add pudding mix and cook, stirring constantly until thickened slightly. Remove from heat and add sugar. Blend well and spread over first layer. Chill at least one hour.

3. Melt chocolate bar and spread over bars. Chill well.

Let cookies come to room temperature before cutting or else they will crumble. Once cut, store in refrigerator.


And now, drum roll, please!! The winner of the Whimsical Wednesday contest is J. Harker!! I love his nerd humor and snark and the hideous examples of student papers…but most of all, I am wondering whatcha gonna do with this, Cowboy?—Congratulations, J. Harker, you are now the proud owner of: Chubby!

And that’s the reason I had to do such a fast contest–because J. Harker can sell Chubby for, like, 10 times his worth on Ebay tomorrow if I Fed-Ex the little fucker. I know, I know, try to contain your excitement! J., gimme your address and you’ll be getting your Zhu-Zhu on in no time! Hi-five and a Herky!

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