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Sweet treats from the kitchen

By Staff | Nov 9, 2012

ALICE JONGMA IS preparing to make a batch of her favorite cut out cookies.



HAWARDEN – Alice Jongma thrills her friends and neighbors with special sweet treats from her kitchen.

Whether she’s baking specially decorated “T-shirt” cookies for her grandchildren’s ball team, or making family favorites for their annual summer reunion, this farm cook routinely whips up something special.

“Growing up there were six girls in our family,” Jongma said. Three had to help outside, she said, while Jongma was one of the three “fortunate ones,” as she tells it, to learn to cook from their mother.

SOME OF ALICE Jongma’s favorite cookie cutters.

And Jongma is touted by others as a great cook.

“When we have a family reunion each summer with up to 40 people to cook for,” said Ardith DeJong, of Orange City, Jongma’s sister, “she works circles around the rest of us.

“She amazes us all, but we really enjoy her creations.”

Jongma said she enjoys taking her turn at entertaining and feeding family. Her specialty is decorated cookies for holiday events and other special occasions.

She’s been known to donate her cookie bouquets to area bake sales and church auctions.

Recently, she held a cookie decorating contest for family who arrived to help celebrate her father’s birthday. The cookies the family decorated were fish shaped, due to her father’s love of fishing.

The family used Jongma’s frostings and fondants in their creations.

In the end there were no winners, except for those who enjoyed the cookie creations the next day during coffee time at church.

“The recipes I use are both old and new,” Jongma said. “My apple pie bar recipe comes from my mother, but I am clipping new recipes constantly.”

Jongma and her husband, John Jongma, moved to the Hawarden area in 1983 from Orange City. They reared two children on their farm.

Daughter Mandy Viet and her husband, Jim Viet, have two children and farm the Jongmas’ land. son Mike Jongma lives in Seattle, Wash., and is a law enforcement officer.

Christmas cut out cookies

2 cups of butter1 cup of sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 egg

4 1/2 cups of flour

Mix together in above order.

Roll out and cut out cookies. Bake at 350 degrees until slightly brown

“When I roll out my cookie dough,” Jongma said, “I like to use a mixture of about 1/2 flour and 1/2 powder sugar rather than all flower. I have a pumpkin and a turkey cutter that I like to use in the fall.”

Fondant recipe

1 16-ounce package miniature marshmallows

4 to 5 tablespoons water

1 2-pound package confectioners’ sugar

1/2 cup shortening

In large microwave-safe bowl, combine marshmallows and 2 tablespoons of water.

Microwave, uncovered on high for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes or until melted, stirring every 30 seconds.

Stir in three-fourths of the sugar. Turn onto a work surface coated with 3 tablespoons shortening.

Knead until smooth and pliable, gradually adding remaining sugar and shortening.

If necessary, moisten with remaining water. It is ready to use or one can add coloring.

Flatten it into a round disk, add color of choice and knead it into the fondant.

Put powder sugar on work area and roll fondant thin and cut with the same cutter used on the cookies.

Brush cookie with water or corn syrup, then lay fondant on top and smooth with finger, may use wet paper towel to remove excess powder sugar.

Apple pie squares

2 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoons salt

1 cup shortening

2/3 cup milk

Mix like pie dough and roll out half of the dough and put in a 10-by-16-inch pan. Sprinkle 1 1/2 cups of crushed corn flakes over crust.


8 medium-sized tart apples, pared and sliced (enough to fill pan)

1 cup sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

Cover crust with apples and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon mixture.

Roll out other half of dough to cover apple mixture. Prick crust with fork.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. While still warm, frost with a thin powdered-sugar glaze. Cut into bars.

Pumpkin cream cheese swirl bread

1 8-ounce package cream cheese

1/4 cup sugar

1 egg.

Mix well and set aside.


1 3/4 cup flour

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1 cup canned pumpkin

1/4 cup butter, melted

1 egg

1/3 cup water

Beat together and save 2 cups of the batter.

Pour remaining batter into a bunt pan, put cream mixture on top then remaining 2 cups of batter.

Cut though batter with a knife for swirl effect.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until done.

“This bread freezes well,” Jongma said. “I like to use butternut squash in place of the pumpkin.”

Easy caramel apple dip

1 14-ounce package caramels, unwrapped

1/2 cup butter

1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk.

Combine all ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl and melt together in microwave till smooth.

Triple berry lemon trifle

1 14-ounce can fat-free sweetened condensed milk

1 cup fat-free reduced-sugar lemon yogurt

1/3 cup lemon juice

2 teaspoons grated lemon peel

1 8-ounce carton reduced-fat whipped topping, thawed, divided

2 prepared angel food cakes (8 to 10 ounces each), cut into 1-inch cubes

1 cup sliced fresh strawberries

1 cup fresh blueberries

1 cup fresh raspberries

2 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted

In a large bowl, combine the milk, yogurt, lemon juice and peel. Fold in 2 cups whipped topping.

In a 3-quart trifle bowl or deep salad bowl, layer a third of the cake cubes, a third of the lemon mixture and all of the strawberries.

Repeat cake and lemon mixture layers and top with blueberries.

Layer remaining cake cubes and lemon mixture and sprinkle with raspberries.

Spread remaining whipped topping over berries; sprinkle with almonds.

Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours.

Yield: 16 servings.

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