Mary Beth’s Kitchen: A Holiday Treat — Jumbals

December is here, which means it is time to begin planning for the Christmas holiday season! So today I am going to give you a cookie recipe from my favorite American president, George Washington. This recipe, called Jumbals, is from the 18th century, and the flour they used then was fresh-ground whole wheat berry (this is also the flour I use; it only retains its nutritional benefits for 72 hours).

This is one of President Washington and First Lady Martha Washington’s favorite holiday cookie recipes. President and Mrs. Washington would welcome their visitors with warm hospitality and simple food. Guests could help themselves to cookies, candies, tea, cake, coffee and lemonade. 

At night, President Washington would go to his bedroom to pray and read his Bible by candlelight. Even in battle, his men would see the shadow of him kneeling in his tent to pray. His mother was a widow and a prayer warrior, and her daughter prayed with her. Washington believed that their prayers and the letters they sent to him were what saved him in each battle.

I have learned so much about prayer from Washington’s mother and sister (and from him, too)! My hope is that I could be as faithful in prayer for our country as President Washington and his mother and sister were.

May God bless you!

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing,
give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is the will of God
in Christ Jesus for you.”
— 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18


1 cup organic butter 
1 cup organic brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Grated rind of one organic orange
1 organic egg, beaten
3 cups fresh-ground whole wheat flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar, salt and orange rind until light and fluffy. Beat in egg. Add fresh ground whole wheat flour, working it thoroughly into dough. Roll the dough on a lightly floured board, about 1/4 inch in thickness. Cut into rings with a doughnut cutter. Bake on a greased cookie sheet until brown (about 10-15 minutes). Cool on rack. Yield: 5 dozen cookies.

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