For many McGill students, St. Patrick’s day means green beer and an excuse for a little Irish mischief. It’s the one day a year that everybody and their dog claims ancestry from the Emerald Isle, because being Irish means one heck of a good time come March 17. But think back to the days before Irish “carbombs” and pints of Guinness; remember the innocent childhood celebrations filled with green beads, the music of the Irish Tenors, and ridiculous novelty hats that most of us wish we still had. Irish Lace cookies were a staple of my childhood celebrations, and are paired equally well with plush shamrocks or Irish Coffee. Whether you’re two, 22, or 82, these delicious treats are sure to delight your taste buds and bolster your Irish pride.
You will need:
½ cup of unsalted butter
¾ light brown or brown sugar (brown will give you a richer, stronger taste)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ½ cups old-fashioned rolled oats (leave out about 1/4 cup if you want a softer consistancy)
1. Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Farenheit). Soften the butter in the microwave (time will vary; ideally the butter should be soft but not melting when you take it out). Cream the butter with the brown sugar until the two are completely integrated, and the mixture is reasonably light and smooth.
2. Beat in the flour, milk, and vanilla, and mix until the mixture is fluffy and without lumps.
3. Stir in the oats until they are evenly distributed within the batter, and drop rounded teaspoonfuls onto an ungreased baking sheet, making sure to leave at least 3 inches between each one (they expand more than you would believe).
4. Bake for 10-12 minutes, but take care to keep an eye on them because if they’re left baking for too long they will melt into one giant cookie blob.
5. Take the baking sheet out of the oven and let the cookies cool completely before you try to remove them. Make sure not to move the cookies too soon, because they fall apart easily. Lying flat, the cookies look almost like a lace doily — hence the name.
6. Eat and enjoy!