Article

Chocolate Tahini Shortbread Cookies

pen_and_palate_chocolate_tahini_cookies

Illustration: Tram Nguyen

 

I try not to post too many cookie recipes on here, because cookie recipes = cookie testing = cookies lying around the house, and frankly I have no willpower in the face of freshly baked cookies. I am not one to deprive myself of treats, but I suspect it is less than healthy to eat a full batch of butter/flour/sugar/chocolate in a single sitting by oneself more than, say, once a month, and recipe testing usually requires making lots of batches of something in relatively short order. Because my version of restraint is by most standards, uh, pretty modest, I do my best to not tempt fate too often.

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Article

No-Snow Day Cookies

snow-day-loop

Illustration: Tram Nguyen

 

When I was growing up, my family had a term for food so junky it was not technically allowed in our house: Nut Googies. This phrase was apparently coined during my mom’s childhood—something about my grandfather misunderstanding “Nut Goodies”—but by the time I rolled around it was used as a place-holder for any dessert that was just disgusting enough my siblings and I were all dying to try it: ice cream blasted with several types of candy; brownie bars with crushed-up Oreos in them; anything involving marshmallows. My parents were pretty health-conscious, so this kind of “food” made only the rarest appearances in our household. Among these special occasions, however, were snow days.

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Article

Christmas Mocha Cookie Crisps

christmas mocha cookie crisps

illustration: tram nguyen

 

What is up with America’s national obsession with “Christmas cookies”?

It only recently occurred to me to wonder. I was discussing this with Tram, like, “duh, we should do a Christmas cookie post,” and she was like, Okay, sounds good! “So… can you explain to me what the deal with Christmas cookies is? Is there a religious reason?” (Ha! As if any Christian holiday traditions are based on religious reasons.)

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Article

Chocolate Chip Ginger Cookies

illustration: tram nguyen

illustration: tram nguyen

 

Back in college, I worked at this very magical scone shop called Kim’s Kitchen. Kim’s was a tiny place in Evanston, Illinois, where college kids and high school youths came together in the late afternoon hours to gossip and bake. It was a cozy, familial place on a leafy suburban street, and the proprietress was a stern but maternal woman who taught her young staff things like how to chop an onion and which brand of boxed wine is the highest quality. Kim also taught us to bake, sort of, but mostly she just gave us a recipe and told us not to mess up. Which we usually did anyway, because we were very busy gossiping.

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