I made these cookies a week ago with my kids. Lately it seems like I can only manage one major activity per day, and then I'm out of oomph. It was a Sunday and date cookies seemed like a better use of my energy than laundry. (Of course, the darn laundry still didn't wash, dry, and fold itself!)
It's a recipe that comes from my mom, so between the cookies' origin and their yumminess, they're great comfort food for me.
Boil filling gently until thick:
1 8-ounce package of chopped dates
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
While filling cools, prepare the cookie batter:
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup butter
3 cups flour
1 tsp. soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
Heat the oven to 350°. Cream the sugar and butter, then beat in the eggs and vanilla. Add the sifted dry ingredients. You may need a bit of extra flour; I added nearly another half cup.
Drop batter on non-stick or greased cookie sheet. Indent dough with a teaspoon and fill with about 1/2 teaspoon of the sticky, gooey date mixture (too much will just overflow and make a mess). Cover the filling with a little cookie dough and bake about 8 minutes. Cookies are done when they are just light brown; you don't want to overbake them (says my mom's voice in my head). I had to decrease the temperature to about 325° for my cranky old oven.
Makes about five dozen cookies.