A sweet concoction called "preacher cookies" used to be a cornerstone of American snack foods because they were fast, low mess and didn't require a heated oven -- which mattered to many people during summers who lived in apartments or homes that were not air-conditioned. But legend has it this chocolate-based cookie got its name because it could be prepared quickly when people looked out their windows and saw the preacher, often unexpectedly, riding up the mountain on his horse. "By the time the preacher arrived, the cookies were cooling," states Hillbilly Housewife. On a day such as Super Bowl, preacher cookies are still something possible to whip up in a jiffy!
Many people believe this recipe is the perfect balance of creamy and crunchy, chocolate and nutty. One person online ever referred to them as "cool as a popsicle and as sweet as a slice of fudge."
The cookie apparently has different names in different parts of the United States. People from the Appalachians call them preacher cookies, but some others refer to them as "cow-patties." People from Texas call them poodgies, pronounced as "pooooooodgies." Others refer to the confection, according to the Winston-Salem Journal, as boiled cookies, chocolate stovetop cookies, peanut-butter delights, chocolate no-bake drops or simply "no bake cookies."
Modern off-shoots of the recipe include ingredients such as hazel-flavored Nutella or dulce de leche. The recipe is pretty forgiving, so one can experiment with it; just keep in mind various ingredients may affect the cookie's ultimate texture.
Following is the basic preacher cookies recipe for purists:
½ cup butter
4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
2 cups sugar
½ cup milk
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 cups quick cooking oatmeal
¼ cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Mix the cocoa powder, butter, sugar, milk, and salt in a double boiler or regular pot. Bring to a rolling boil and boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add the peanut butter, vanilla, and oatmeal-not the instant kind, just quick oats. Mix it all together. Drop them by tablespoonfuls on a plate. (Wax paper is even better if you have it.) Pop in the fridge for a few hours and enjoy.