Since Christmas is coming up, I felt that a special Christmas cookie episode was in order. This also provided the opportunity to explore the life, career and cookies of child actress Virginia Weidler. She appeared in 40 films including the classics "The Women" starring Norma Shearer and Joan Crawford and "The Philadelphia Story" opposite Katharine Hepburn.
½ cup vegetable oil
4 oz unsweetened baking chocolate, melted, cooled
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup powdered sugar
1. In large bowl, mix oil, chocolate, granulated sugar and vanilla. Stir in eggs, one at a time. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt. Cover; refrigerate at least 3 hours.
2. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease cookie sheet with shortening or cooking spray.
3. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls into powdered sugar; roll around to coat and shape into balls. Place about 2 inches apart on cookie sheets.
4. Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until edges are set. Immediately remove from cookie sheets to cooling racks.
Danny Miller is a writer, editor and film history expert and has extensively researched the life and career of Virginia Weidler. He also co-authored the book "About Face: The Life and Times of Dottie Ponedel: Make-up Artist to the Stars" by Dorothy and Meredith Ponedel.
As we discuss in the video, Danny originally made Virginia's ginger molasses cookies with the recipe that ran in Photoplay magazine. The results were far less than ideal so he chose the Chocolate Crinkle Cookie recipe instead. We know from the fan magazines and her friends that Virginia certainly loved to throw parties and entertain.
The Final Product
The cookies were delicious, easy to make and would be a great addition to any holiday party.