These craggy biscuits are equally at home on the dinner table (particularly with stews) or at breakfast (served with Flavored Butters). Either way, if you eat them as soon as they come out of the oven (which is when they’re at their finest), be prepared to eat too many. And don’t be tempted to shape these: they’re best when handled as little as possible.

Continue reading

Peanut Butter Oat Cookies

These are one of the rare cookies that taste best after they’ve cooled. If you can stand to wait that long, it’s well worth it. If someone in your house is allergic to peanuts, these are equally delicious made with another nut butter, like cashew or almond.

Continue reading

Mexican Wedding Cookies

The first time I tried these cookies, I used walnuts but thought they’d be even better with almonds or pecans. However, while both versions were first-rate, neither compared with the walnuts, which remain my favorite. These are great cookies to make when you have a few minutes to spare: the dough can be made up to 2 weeks ahead and refrigerated. Additionally, once baked, the cookies keep fresh for at least 3 days.

Continue reading

Maple Cookies

I decided to make molasses cookies one night after putting the kids to bed, but I was out of molasses. So I decided to substitute maple syrup. These cookies turned out to be just what I was looking for: crisp on the edges and chewy in the center.

Continue reading

Chocolate Chip Cookies

I spent literally years and hundreds of dollars coming up with what I think is the perfect chocolate chip cookie. Perfect for me, I should say. I was looking for something that was like the cookie dough I used to slice and bake as a kid and something that was like the kind of cookie that my grandmother’s cook, Delia, made. So good, in fact, it made no difference if you left the chocolate chips out. To me, these are the ideal cookie: crunchy, not too sweet, lots of nuts. If you’re looking for soft and chewy, keep looking.

Continue reading

Joey Steinberg’s Cookie Dip

One Valentine’s Day, I called my friend Nancy to check out the amount of parsley in her friend Joan Goldberg’s dip. She wasn’t home, and when I asked her husband, Steve, for a dip idea, he suggested I ask his 5-year-old son, Joey. Here’s Joey’s dip. I am sorry I don’t have the ability to reproduce the conversation, replete with Joey’s at-once serious and exasperated tone.

2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter (Jif)
½ pint ice cream (“maybe vanilla or chocolate or both”), softened in the microwave till it’s mushable
Small splash of milk (“I use whole milk,” says.)

“Put everything in a bowl and mush it all together,” instructs Joey.
“What would you dip in it?” I ask.
Cookies,” he says, a bit irked, as if it’s obvious. “Christmas cookies.”
“What if it isn’t Christmastime?” I ask.
“Well, then,” he says, “big, medium, and little hearts. Or stars, for nighttime. Paint them with a little frosting,” he adds. “Pink for Lauren [my daughter] and blue for Ben [my son].”
“What about for you?” I ask.
“Yellow for me.”
“And what about for Charlie [Joey’s brother]?”
“Blue. Charlie likes blue too. Okay, bye.” And he hangs up.
Serve immediately.

From Party Dips! 50 Zippy, Zesty, Spicy, Savory, Tasty, Tempting Dips (The Harvard Common Press, 2004)