Easter Cookies (Updated!)

My college roommate Jane sent sent me this recipe. We’re going to try this tonight, and I’ll try and post pictures later, but wanted to post this now so others can use it too. I think our kids are just at the right age to begin understanding the story of Easter, and the hands-on and tasting will really help. Thanks, Jane!

(Updated Note: We did make these- it was a neat time with lots of discussion. I realized how challenging it is for young minds to understand why Jesus was crucified. When we did the vinegar part, Owen and Annie couldn’t understand why, when Jesus was thirsty, the guards gave him vinegar. Annie said, “Mommy, don’t worry! Owen and Annie will take Jesus some water!” I loved their hearts as they worried about Jesus, and look forward to them learning more and more in years to come how much Jesus worries after them.)

Ingredients:
1 cup pecan halves, to be broken
1 tsp. Vinegar
3 egg whites
pinch of salt
1 cup sugar
Also needed:  zipper baggie, wooden spoon, tape, and Bible

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  (This is important.  Don’t wait until you’re half done with the recipe!)

Place pecans in the zipper baggie.  Give children wooden spoons, and let them pound the pecans into small pieces.  Set aside.  Explain that after Jesus was arrested, He was beaten by soldiers.  (Read John 19:1-3.)

Let each helper smell the vinegar.  Then measure 1 teaspoon into the mixing bowl.  Explain that while dying on the cross, Jesus was thirsty and soldiers gave Him vinegar to drink.  (Read John 19: 28-30.)

Separate eggs.  Add the whites to the vinegar.  Eggs represent life.  Explain that Jesus gave His life to give us life.  (Read John 10: 10-11, 28.)

Sprinkle a little salt into each person’s palm, and let each one brush it off into the mixture.  Then they can taste their salty palms.  This reminds us of salty tears shed by those saddened by Jesus’ death.  (Read Luke 23:27.)

So far, the ingredients aren’t very appetizing; but now sugar is added, and you must trust that it will have a pleasant result.  Explain that the sweetest part of this story is that Jesus died because He loves us.  He makes it possible to know Him and belong to Him.  (Read Psalm 34:8; John 3:16.)

Beat with an electric mixer on high speed for 12 to 15 minutes until stiff peaks form.  Point out the pearly white color, the color of purity in God’s eyes for those who have been cleansed from sin by Jesus’ death.  (Read Isaiah 1:18; 1 John 3: 1-3.)

Fold in nuts.  Drop rounded teaspoons of the mixture onto a wax paper covered cookie sheet.  Explain that each mound resembles a rocky tomb like the one in which Jesus’ body was placed.  (Read Matthew 27: 57- 60.)

Put the cookie sheet in the preheated oven, close the door, and turn the oven completely off.  Hand each participant a piece of tape to secure the oven door.  Explain that Jesus’ tomb was sealed.  (Read Matthew 27: 65- 66.)
(One more updated note: Our cookies didn’t cook. We realized that with convection ovens in Japan, they might not hold the heat like American ovens. So this morning we just cooked them. Suggestion would be for those using convection ovens to leave the oven on for just about 4 or 5 minutes, then turn off the oven and leave the door shut through the night).

Time for bed!  Explain that they may feel sad and disappointed to leave the cookies in the oven with the door closed.  Jesus’ death seemed final to His followers, and they were in despair when the tomb was sealed.  (Read John 16: 20, 22.)

On Easter morning, open the oven door and give everyone a cookie.  Point out the cracked surface of the cookies, and then take a bite.  The cookies are hollow!  On the first Easter morning, Jesus’ followers were amazed to find His tomb opened and empty.  He had risen!  (Read Matthew 28: 1-9.)

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