COOKIES!: Good Housekeeping Favorite Recipes

From the Editors of Good Housekeeping, Author, Hearst Books, Manufactured by, Joanne Lamb Hayes, Text by (Art/Photo Books) . Sterling/Hearst Books $14.95 (256p) ISBN 978-1-58816-276-2

Including recipes from readers and staffers, this collection runs the gamut from familiar Snickerdoodles and Coconut Macaroons to more unusual Sour-Cream Nut Rolls and McIntosh-Oatmeal Cookies. Though the book is aimed at bakers of all levels, advice such as "don't use coffee or tea cups, or tableware teaspoons and tablespoons for measuring" suggests it's best suited to newbies. Illustrated sidebars on how to line a pan with foil (often used in making brownies), produce a marbled effect with two different-colored batters, flatten stiff cookie dough and shape fortune cookies enhance the book, and for each recipe the editors give prep time, bake time, yield and nutritional information. Beginners will want to stick with truly undemanding bar cookies, such as Chocolate-Swirl Peanut Butter Blondies or Cherry-Cheesecake Triangles, or try instant-gratification drop cookies, like Chocolate-Chunk Cookies or Oatmeal Cookies. More experienced cookie-makers will find plenty of ideas in the section on the more challenging but lovely-to-look-at rolled cookies, where they'll find recipes for Linzer Cookies, Rugelach and other works of art. A later chapter focuses on pressed, molded and refrigerator cookies (e.g., Ladyfingers, Madeleines, Pignoli Cookies). The final section, on holiday cookies, is the book's weakest. Although the recipes sound alluring, they're unorganized and often don't seem to correspond to any specific holiday (e.g., it's unclear why Nut Crescents and Hazelnut Cookies are in this section, when the editors don't link them to a holiday). But that's a mere quibble; the rest of this book brims with homey suggestions for delicious desserts. (July)

Reviewed on: 05/10/2004
Release date: 04/01/2004
Genre: Nonfiction
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