Snickerdoodle bars

I adored my grandpa and learned so many lessons from him over the years, whether it was the importance of following the Golden Rule, always paying your debts and not being wasteful.

That last one was most clearly illustrated when I was 5 years old and had an outpatient surgery. We bundled into my grandparents’ station wagon for the trek from Wimbledon, N.D. to Fargo. When I woke up in the recovery room, the first thing I did was ask the nurse when I could eat – especially since I’d been without food for about 15 hours. The nurse chuckled, saying I could leave the hospital soon but couldn’t eat much because I might get nauseous.

Challenge accepted.

I begged my grandparents to take me out for the biggest meal I could think of: a steak at Bonanza. And not the junior steak from the kids’ menu, either, but a grown-up steak with a baked potato.

“Look at that kid eat,” Grandpa said as I dove into my food. But a few bites in, I knew I’d made a mistake. Feeling a little green around the grills, I pushed my plate aside.

“I paid for that steak,” Grandpa chided. “You’re gonna eat it.”

“Don, she just had surgery!” my grandma chimed in. “Don’t make her eat if she’s getting sick.”

My grandpa – big teddy bear that he was – didn’t force me to finish my meal. But, by golly, someone was going to. He leaned over and stabbed my steak with his fork, adding it to his own plate. He also grabbed my baked potato and ate everything but the aluminum foil it was wrapped in.

Then, to our horror, he reached for the cup of melted butter that accompanied the potato. “I paid for this,” he said, before tossing it back like a shot of whisky. He finished by grabbing the curly-leafed parsley garnish from my plate and popping it in his mouth. “Paid for that, too.”

This memory pops into my head frequently, including recently when I signed up for a free trial of a recipe app and forgot to cancel before I was charged for a subscription. Thus, nearly ever recipe I’ve tried in the past two months has been from that app because I’m determined to get my money’s worth.

This is one of those recipes. I love almost anything snickerdoodle, and this is an easy way to get my necessary snickerdoodle cookie fix. The recipe is definitely a keeper, and good thing, too. Because I paid for that.

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