Photo iStock
Photo iStock

The Navy’s 1945 recipe for soft sugar cookies was posted on YouTube by the Naval History and Heritage Command in April, as part of its "The History Galley" video series.

The series host and public affairs specialist Thomas Frezza told Fox News that he started making the videos during the coronavirus pandemic.

"I have a few different editions of the U.S. Navy's Cookbook and it was during quarantine, I was looking for something to do and something that we could share with the general public," Frezza said. And, well, at the beginning, everybody was cooking at home and I figured, why not break out the cookbook and actually try some of these recipes and make some videos that we could share with the public and see what people thought and make it so that they could make these at home, as well," he added.

He said he chose the soft sugar cookie recipe -- one of several sugar cookie recipes -- because it’s "probably one of the easier ones to make."

Photo US Navy
Photo US Navy

In fact, that’s probably why Navy cooks would make sugar cookies for dessert.

Frezza has also made apple dumplings, a baked bean sandwich, salmon cakes, bean soup, wheat griddle cakes, chocolate chip cookies, tapioca cream, simmered frankfurters and rice pudding with raisins, among others. Frezza’s videos can be found on the Naval History and Heritage Command’s YouTube channel.

The Navy’s 1902 General Mess Manual and Cookbook has also been digitized and posted on the Naval History and Heritage Command’s website.

Photo US Navy
Photo US Navy

How To Make Soft Sugar Biscuits?

Original Ingredients

1½ gallons flour

5 tablespoons baking powder

2 tablespoons salt

7 tablespoons nutmeg

1½ quarts shortening

2¼ quarts sugar

12 eggs

2 tablespoons vanilla

1⅜ quarts milk

Scaled-down Ingredients

2½ cups flour

1½ teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons nutmeg

½ cup and 1 tablespoon shortening

1 cup sugar

1-2 eggs

½ teaspoon and ¼ teaspoon vanilla

½ cup and ¼ tablespoon milk

Scale the ingredients into the mixing bowl. Mix at medium speed to a smooth dough.

Make-up: Drop dough on greased baking sheets.

Baking: Bake at 375F for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove cookies while warm from pan.

How Different is the Navy’s WWII Era Sugar Cookie Recipe?

The recipe itself will look familiar, as the ingredients are all pretty standard to this day. You’ve got your flour, eggs, sugar, milk, shortening, salt, vanilla, and baking powder. All ingredients are available at any grocery store.

Photo Outsider
Photo Outsider

The only peculiar thing, however, is the amount of nutmeg called for in the recipe. According to Thomas Frezza, it overpowers the cookie.

“The recipe itself uses nutmeg and nutmeg can be kind of powerful. I probably would switch it out for like cinnamon, or something,” Frezza said. “You know, just something that’s a little bit — a less powerful spice than nutmeg.”

If you want to make the recipe yourself, the exact measurements and techniques are included in Thomas’s video below. The procedure is pretty straightforward, but it always helps to see how something is done.

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