An old-fashioned favorite said to have originated in Colonial New England, this spicy, chewy cookie is full of chopped fruits and nuts. It's usually sweetened with molasses or brown sugar. It's said that hermits were named for their long keeping qualitiesthey're better when hidden away like a hermit for several days.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.