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Classic Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Contributed by: NAPSA

Maiden in Sun Inspired 90-Year Tradition (NAPSA) - One of the world's most recognized icons has its origins in 1915 when Lorraine Collett, then 22 years old, was drying her just washed hair in the backyard of her home in Fresno, California. The sight of the pretty maiden in a red bonnet with the sun shining on it inspired a visiting raisin executive to order a painting of the young Collett holding a tray of fresh-picked grapes.

    Classic Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Changing times and fashions of a well known icon, a maiden in the sun. Clockwise beginning top left, original portrait 1915, circa 1920, circa 1950, circa 1970.
The "sun maiden" also became the inspiration for a play on words about a product that is literally made in the sun. Raisins, those ubiquitous morsels of sweetness that define cinnamon rolls and oatmeal cookies, are made naturally when grapes are sun dried.

"We have 14-month twin boys, and we think they may be in love with the Sun-Maid girl. Whenever they see her beautiful face they smile from ear to ear," said one mom.

The sun maiden image has changed over time, providing a peek into styles of American tastes. During the 1920s the original illustration was replaced with a portrait look and broad, friendly smile. Thirty years later, the Sun-Maid girl had a 50s film star quality with fashionably puffy sleeves. By the 1970s her copper bracelet was gone, a relic of earlier times. Today, she still wears the defining red bonnet in the sun.

After Lorraine Collett died in 1983, her bonnet was donated to the Smithsonian Institution. Her full story, a collectible doll of her likeness and heritage recipes can be found at www.sunmaid.com.

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup Sun-Maid Raisins

Directions:

Heat oven to 350 F. Beat butter, sugars, milk, egg and vanilla until light and fluffy.

In separate bowl combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Add to butter mixture and mix well. Stir in oats, walnuts and raisins.

Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from cookie sheets; cool on wire racks.

Serving Size: Makes 3 Dozen


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