Cookies

Cookies are undoubtedly one of America’s favorite snacks with an average consumption of 300 cookies per person per year. There’s no one “type” of cookie as cookies can come in many shapes and sizes. Before the 18th century, cookies were typically hard in texture and very dry, making them the perfect food for long journeys due to their long shelf life. Today, we have snickerdoodles, ginger snaps, sugar cookies, whoopie pies, shortbread, and a whole lot more, cookies have textures ranging from crispy to chewy and everything in between.

Cookie Trivia

  • Half of all the home-baked cookies in America on an annual basis is the chocolate chip cookie.
  • The biggest cookie in the world was made in 2003 with a weight of 40,000 pounds and a diameter of 101 feet. This was in North Carolina and was done by the Immaculate Baking Company.
  • Animal Crackers, are a type of cookie and were the first commercial cookies to be mass-produced in the United States.
  • Every year the Girl Scouts sell about 200 million boxes of cookies.
  • Chocolate chip cookies were invented in Massachusetts in 1930. The state adopted the chocolate chip cookie as its official cookie in 1997.
  • The most unusual cookie in the world has to be the Unagi Pie. This is made in Japan using butter, flour made from eel bones, eel extract, and garlic.

Cookie Buying Guide

There is actually no bad way to purchase cookies as the real question you have to be asking is “how many can I finish before they go bad?” Another question that might be on your mind if you’re feeling adventurous and you want to change it up from the usual chocolate chip cookie is, what are all these types of cookies and what do they taste like?

Here are some of the more popular cookie types that you might find on store shelves, bakeries, and farmers’ markets.

  • Chocolate Chip Cookie – Is an explanation really required? Chocolate chip cookies can range from crispy to chewy.
  • Snickerdoodles – The snickerdoodle is a basic drop cookie that is coated in cinnamon and sugar. Snickerdoodles can be crispy or soft.
  • Oatmeal Cookies – This classic cookie is slowly making a comeback due to its health benefits. Best served warm, this cookie is made from fiber-rich oatmeal and is typically cooked with raisins.
  • Gingersnaps – Gingersnaps are crispy and have a “snap” to them when bitten. These are also known as ginger biscuits. The taste dances between the spice from the ginger and the sweetness from the sugar.
  • Shortbread Cookies – These got their name due to the amount of butter in them. The high butter content causes them to not rise as high as other cookies, giving them the “short” name. This is a really indulgent treat and should be consumed in moderation.
  • Whoopie Pies – Yes, these are cookies. It’s a sandwich made from two pillowy cookies (which is almost bread-like in texture) and a marshmallow middle.
  • Sugar Cookies – These is the vanilla ice cream in the cookie world. Everyone likes it, because, well, it exists, but very few will claim that this is their favorite. It’s just a basic cookie.
  • Biscotti – The biscotti is typically served with coffee due to its hardness. It is usually dipped in coffee to soften it up and to absorb the coffee flavor as well.
  • Butter cookies – a cousin of the shortbread, this cookie type has high amounts of butter, as well as flour and sugar, allowing them to rise a bit more and become airier than the shortbread.
  • Snowball cookies – These are more like cake-like in texture so it’s not surprising that they’re also known as Mexican Wedding Cakes, Russian Tea Cakes, and Butterballs.
  • Macaroons – I’ve always thought that macaroons were little cakes, but they’re apparently cookies. These are small coconut-based cookies that have a dense and lumpy texture.

There are dozens of other types of cookies out there that are not listed here. The best way to find out about them? Try them for yourselves! No such thing as a bad cookie.

Cookie Production & Farming in Texas

According to unofficial surveys, the most popular cookie type is the chocolate chip cookie. But not just any ordinary chocolate chip cookie, but cowboy chocolate chip cookies. What’s a cowboy cookie you ask?  It’s a Texas-sized chocolate chip cookie that has pecans, shredded coconuts, oats, peanut butter, and raisings. Sounds like a lot of ingredients just for cookies? Well, you know what they say, go big or go small!

You can find cowboy cookies from many artisan bakers that display in farmers’ markets or you can order them online from many home bakers that post their wares on Facebook.

Preservatives, Chemicals, and Additives:

There are many ways to preserve homemade cookies or those purchased from farmers’ markets, and none of them use the following additives that are usually found in commercial cookie products.

  • BHA/BHT – Butylated Hydroxytoluene and Butylated hydroxyanisole are used on cookies as preservatives and to keep them on the shelves longer. These two chemicals are very controversial as these have been shown to cause tumors in laboratory animals.
  • Sodium Benzoate – This is added to preserve freshness. This is a very common preservative and can also be found in almost any commercially made food item.

Packaging:

Commercially sold cookies are packed on trays and then packed in single-use plastic bags. There may be a separate box used to pack them to easier stacking on store shelves.

Eating Cookies

Cookies are best consumed warm from the oven. This is another reason why it is best to get them freshly baked or from your local specialty bakers so that you can have them fresh.

Storage:

Cookies are best stored in an airtight container at room temperature for three or four days. If you plan to store cookies longer, you can freeze them and reheat them when ready to eat.

For commercially produced cookies, they stay fresher much longer and you have to refer to the packaging for storage instructions.

Make Your Own Texas Cowboy Cookies:

This is a take on the famous Governor’s Mansion Cowboy cookies that were made by Laura Bush.

Ingredients:

Three cups all-purpose flour
one tablespoon baking powder
one tablespoon baking soda
one tablespoon ground cinnamon
one teaspoon salt
one and one-half butter, room temperature (3 sticks)
one and a half cups granulated sugar
one and a half cups packed light brown sugar
three eggs
one tablespoon vanilla extract
three cups semisweet chocolate chips
3 cups rolled oats
2 cups sweetened flake coconut
two cups chopped pecans

Step 1:

While preheating the oven to 350 Fahrenheit, mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a bowl.

Step 2:

In a separate bowl, beat butter on medium speed until smooth. Gradually beat in sugars until combined, after that, add eggs one at a time while continuing to beat. Lastly, beat in the vanilla.

Step 3:

Combine all of the ingredients together and mix until incorporated.

Step 4:

Drop ¼ cup of dough for each cookie and leave at least three inches of space in between each cookie.

Step 5:

Bake in 350 F oven for up to 20 minutes or until edges are slightly browned. Remove the cookies and allow to cool.

Step 6:

Enjoy!

Nutrition

DV%

  • Serving Size: 1 Serving
  • Calories: 137 7%
  • Carbs: 16.3g 5%
  • Sugar: 9.9g 0
  • Fiber: 0.6g 2%
  • Protein: 1.6g 3%
  • Fat: 8g 12%
  • Saturated Fat: 3.9g 20%
  • Trans Fat 0g 0%
  • Cholesterol 19.6mg 7%
  • Sodium 95.5mg 4%
  • Vitamin C 0.1mg 0%
  • Vitamin A 166IU 3%
  • Calcium 10.6mg 1%
  • Iron 0.7mg 4%
  • Potassium 61.9mg 2%
  • Vitamin B6 0mg 1%
  • Folate 9.2mcg 2%
  • Magnesium 15.4mg 4%
  • Phosphorus 28mg 3%
  • Manganese 0.2mg 9%
  • Copper 0.1mg 5%
  • Zinc 0.3mg 2%

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