I’m heading to Rhode Island tomorrow to do some clamming and have a little fun in the sun. Actually, I will not do any clamming at all. I’ll sit on a little strip of “beach” with my sister-in-law and watch as our husbands disappear into the horizon, rake and net in hand, to search with their feet for those poor little mollusks. (So much work!) After several long hours, they return smiling; dragging their catch alongside them. Their excitement heightens in anticipation of slicing through the stubborn shells, squeezing on a few drops of fresh lemon, and sucking those clams right into their mouths. I’m sure the wives of aborigines would shriek with delight. Linda and I say nothing.
My husband is not a huge fan of cookies or cake. He prefers pies. Blueberry pies. But there is one particular cookie that he is especially fond of, and it was upon his request that I baked Jam Sticks.
This recipe is a specialty of my mother, Josephine. She brings these cookies to every gathering, and they disappear in a heartbeat! It’s no secret why….they are so light and buttery, and filled with delicious raspberry jam. Here’s the treasured recipe! (good thing Josephine doesn’t own a computer)
1 1/2 cups confectionery sugar
1 cup butter (two sticks)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 12 oz. jar seedless raspberry jam
Stir flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar together. Set aside. Cream sugar and butter in mixer. Mix in egg and extracts. Add flour mixture. Pipe through desired cookie press plate. Bake at 375 until lightly browned. Line one flat side of cookie with raspberry jam and place flat side of another cookie on top. Melt semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate in microwave. Dip one end of cookies in chocolate and add sprinkles if desired.
Cook’s note: If you’re not inclined to eat Jam Sticks immediately after raw clams-on-the-half-shell, enjoy them with a good friend and a cuppa joe!
As our reward for spending hours in sand chairs and beating off black flies as we play our little game of “let’s guess how many they caught”, Linda and I will enjoy a cooked seafood dinner at our favorite restaurant in Stonington, which overlooks the harbor. I will order shrimp.