It’s Cookie Time! Staff Recipes & Cookbooks

With holidays coming up, it’s the perfect time to think about cookies. While you might not be able to hold your usual cookie swaps this year, we thought we would take the time to share some well-loved family recipes from our staff in the hopes that it would inspire you to try out new recipes. Whether you're baking for yourself, your family, or sending goodies to loved ones, let us know what recipes you're making this year. Comment below, or tag us on Instagram at @whiteplainslibrary, or use the hashtag #WPPLcooks on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Below you'll find a list of our staff's favorite cookie recipes, as well as some cookbooks recommended by our resident foodie librarian, Sharon Rothman.

Staff Recipes

Ashley B.: Here's the linzer tart recipe that my family and I like to make together during the holidays!

Linzer Tarts

2/3 cup butter-flavored shortening
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup fruit preserves
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting linzer tarts

1. Cream together the shortening, granulated sugar, milk and vanilla extract until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat mixture for 2 minutes. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt.
2. Add flour mixture to shortening mixture; mix until blended. Divide dough into 2 balls. Flatten and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate several hours or overnight.
3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Roll 1 ball of dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut into cookie shapes, using a 4-inch cookie cutter. In half of the cookies, cut a hole in the center of each with a 1-inch cookie cutter, or the open end of a thimble. Bake cookies for 7 to 9 minutes.
4. When cookies cool, spread 2 teaspoons of preserves on each solid cookie. Top with a holed cookie. Dust the tarts lightly with confectioners' sugar. Makes 6 to 8 tarts.

Josh C.: Carlson Half-Moon Cookies (see attached here).

Kathlyn C.: Molasses Triple Chocolate Cookies. These cookies are like a soft and chewy version of ginger snaps, with added chocolate. They have a strong flavor that most people are initially surprised by, but then they keep coming back for more. A perennial holiday favorite at our house.

KD: My suggested recipe is for Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies and is from the book Ovenly: Sweet and Salty Recipes from New York's Most Creative Bakery by Erin Patinkin and Agatha Kulaga (Library Collection / OverDrive & Libby). It is also featured in the book Food52 Genius Desserts by Kristen Miglore. Here's a link to the recipe on the Food52 website. If you don't feel like baking, you can order this cookie online from Ovenly, the Brooklyn bakery, here, where it states “Ovenly’s salted chocolate chip cookies are their number one, best-selling baked good, and is probably the best chocolate chip cookie ever made. Soft and chewy in the middle, and caramel-y and crispy around the edges, these cookies are the perfect balance of sweet and salty…”

Caroline R.: Here is a Persian recipe for Nan-e Nokhodchi (Persian Chickpea cookies with pistachio). This is often made for holidays–especially Nowruz (the Persian New Year celebrated in the Spring). Some of the ingredients can be found in Middle Eastern markets.

Sharon R.: I love the jam thumbprint cookies from the cookbook Barefoot Contessa Family Style (Library Collection / OverDrive and Libby).

Kristen T-D.: My mom always made her best friend's recipe for Mexican Wedding Cookies during the holidays. I thoroughly enjoyed the job of crushing the pecans with a kitchen tool we only seemed to use for this one recipe. My paternal grandmother also made a version called Italian Wedding cookies which didn't include the pecans. I think they're essential for the taste, and also because you can release any holiday frustration while chopping them up!

Cookie Cookbooks

Dorie’s Cookies (2016)
Greenspan, Dorie
Library Collection
Hoopla
OverDrive and Libby
James Beard Award-winner, Queen of Cookies has recipes for all occasions for all levels of bakers. Includes recipes for your familiar and also unimagined cookies.

Cookies are Magic (2020)
Heatter, Maida
Library Collection
OverDrive and Libby
Easy-to-follow instructions for cookies tested over and over by the author. Includes fun facts about some of the cookies.
Martha Stewart’s Cookies: The Very Best Treats to Bake and to Share (2008)
Stewart, Martha
Library Collection
OverDrive and Libby
Organized by texture, each recipe is accompanied by an illustration. Includes tips for gift-wrapping, Martha style.
The Perfect Cookie: Your Ultimate Guide to Foolproof Cookies, Brownies & Bars (2017)
America’s Test Kitchen
Library Collection
OverDrive and Libby
Resource for any cookie envisioned from all around the world. Includes step-by-step illustrations and time-saving tips.
American Cookie: The Snaps, Drops, Jumbles, Tea Cakes, Bars & Brownies That We Have Loved for Generations (2018)
Byrn, Anne
Library Collection
OverDrive and Libby
Not only can you make the cookie but you can learn the historical background behind the 100 different cookie varieties.
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