The fictitious school in Bees In The Butterfly Garden is "Madame Marisse's School For Girls." My heroine, Meg, would have received a special cookie recipe awarded to each graduate, meant to be given to whatever staff the wealthy heiresses would oversee. Although this recipe doesn't appear in the book, this is what I imagine it might have been:
Madame Marisse's Morsels
1/2 Cup Oleo*
2 1/2 Cups of Flour
1/2 Cup butter
1 Cup Powdered Sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons extract of Almond
1 teaspoon extract of Vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
Mix all ingredients thoroughly. Using a teaspoon, shape 1 inch sized balls and place on baking sheet. Press lightly with thumb.
Bake in 375 degree oven for 9 minutes, until lightly browned on the bottom.
Dust with more powdered sugar if desired.
*Note from Madame Marisse: although Oleo will be hard for your staff to find, especially without the added unpalatable pink coloring that competing butter manufactures demand must be added, it is well worth the extra tax if your staff can acquire it. If they cannot find Oleo, they may use Lard instead. An entire Cup of butter is discouraged; using half Oleo or Lard along with flavorful butter will allow your cookies to maintain a softer consistency and not entirely flatten.
*Note from Maureen Lang: Oleo is margarine and we no longer have any trouble finding it—or any added taxes or coloring other than yellow to make it look like butter. Oleo (margarine) or lard really does provide cookies with a softer consistency than using all butter.