24. A’s Soldier Kisses Cookies

My great grandmother is rather direct; she is originally from Finland and spent years as a missionary before marrying my great grandfather. I remember my childhood visits to her as being punctuated by many desserts and at odd hours: one morning, my mother awoke to find her own grandmother and her two children gleefully eating bowls of ice cream for breakfast with brownies on the side.

When I called her to talk about some changes in wedding plans, she told me that there was a word in Finnish that meant determination but was literally translated as “willing to walk through snow.” She said matter-of-factly, “That is what you need for a marriage to work.” I thought about the piles of snow I see in the winter and how uninterested I usually am in soldiering out; this seemed a slightly unforgiving view of marriage. Still, I was glad to have someone be a realist instead of asking variations of the question “Are you sooooo happy?” It seems important to get that real-world advice, the need for determination, before a wedding. It feels like the wedding is less of a fairy tale and more my actual life.

She gave me a recipe for one of the many sweets we ate as children, a fluffy pecan merengue cookie that she called “Soldier’s Kisses.” I thought they weren’t going to set up well because I used one egg white and it just seemed a bit soupy, but when they came out of the oven, they were rich and sweet, chewy in the middle and crisped on the outside, and perfect as a part of breakfasts in honor of all the time we spent being unhealthy as children.

I would probably modify them to include a second egg white, just to have more umph to the merengue, but the below recipe worked.

A’s Soldier Kisses

1 egg white
1 cup brown (light) sugar
2 cups pecan pieces
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp vanilla.
Beat egg white and sugar; add other ingredients slowly while mixing. Drop in spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until the edges are done. (I’ve also seen online that some folks just preheat the oven and then leave the cookies overnight in the oven to harden; experiment and see what you get both ways!)
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15 comments on “24. A’s Soldier Kisses Cookies

  1. I loved this tale to go along with a a meaningful recipe! I would love to share this on my blog. I do what called a Sunday Share and I would love to share this with of course credit and a link back. Would that be alright?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Stella says:

    All Finns tend to the very direct. I suspect the word was “sisu”.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Angie says:

    Yummy looking cookies. I’m certainly going to make these before Christmas. I think they will make a wonderful addition to the rest of the cookies on the plate.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Rebecca says:

    Wonderful story! My grandmother used to spoil me all the time with dessert breakfast as a kid, especially on cold days like today. I can’t wait to try out this recipe. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hazzieandsof says:

    I just wanted to leave a commented first to say Grandmas are the best and I love that definition of determination.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. lajuani says:

    Such a lovely story and I really will try baking those delicious looking cookies. Thanks for sharing the recipe with us! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Jon says:

    Looks like good cookies!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. karen says:

    Lovely story. My grandmother said marriage wasn’t always a bed of roses. Luckily, I’ve been married 30 or so years and it hasn’t ever been like walking through snow. Thanks for sharing 🙂 x

    Liked by 1 person

  9. What a lovely evocative name for a biscuit !

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Great advice on marriage, from your grandmother.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Beautiful story, and the recipe sounds delicious. Thank you for sharing both. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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