Category Archives: Favorite Cookie Recipes

Can’t Beat Peanut Butter and Chocolate for the Long Holiday Weekend

An ice cream sandwich that you don't need an ice cream machine to make.

An ice cream sandwich that you don’t need an ice cream machine to make.


As a native San Franciscan, I’m proud to say that my first encounter with an ice cream sandwich was with the It’s It, the iconic treat invented here way back in 1928.

In our freezer at home, my Dad would often stash a few of those big-fisted oatmeal cookie sandwiches filled with vanilla ice cream and dunked in chocolate. As a kid, I couldn’t even eat an entire one at one sitting.

I’ve been a sucker for ice cream sandwiches ever since.

So when a review copy of “Ice Cream Sandwiches” (Ten Speed Press) landed in my mailbox recently, I leafed through it with the utmost nostalgia. The book is by Donna Egan, founder of the Buttercup Cake Shop, London’s first cupcake bakery. After opening in 2006, the bakery added ice cream sandwiches to its repertoire five years later and has never looked back.

The book features 65 recipes for all manner of ice cream sandwiches. The “Peanut Butter Dream” caught my eye because, well, who doesn’t love chocolate and peanut butter together?

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Best-Ever Browned Butter-Pecan Shortbread Domes

Buttery shortbread with pecans and plenty of browned butter.

Buttery shortbread with pecans and plenty of browned butter.


Your honor, I can’t say I’ve sampled every pecan shortbread cookie in the world. But this one sure does pose a strong case for being the best, as it so claims.

Let me call my first witness — the cookie, itself.

Here you have the melt-in-your-mouth, crumbly evidence. It’s chock-full of pecans, then crowned gloriously with one perfect pecan half.

What makes this cookie even more decadent is that you coat the chopped pecans that get stirred into the dough in two stick of butter that you slowly and ever so carefully melt on the stovetop until the butter turns deeply golden and fragrantly toasty.

Then, add all the other ingredients straight into that pot to finish making the dough — all without a mixer. How easy is that, your honor?
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Apple Brownies? You Bet!

Not your usual brownies. These are made with apples.

OK, technically, “Apple Brownies” are not brownies at all.

For one thing, there’s no chocolate in them.

But there are plenty of apples in a tender crumb that is suffused with cinnamon.

Plus, just like the best brownies, these bake up with an irresistible crackly texture on top. So much so, that just like brownies, you will be grabbing for the corner pieces first just to get as much of the sugary, crisp edges as you can.

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Dahlia Bakery’s Chocolate Truffle Cookies

You won't believe how much chocolate is in these cookies.

You will lose yourself completely to these cookies. Resistance is not only futile, it’s not even in the dictionary any more. Not when it comes to these cookies.

Just imagine: 2 pounds — yes, pounds — of chocolate in these cookies.

They don’t call these “Chocolate Truffle Cookies with Crackly Crust” for nothing.

The recipe is from the new “The Dahlia Bakery Cookbook” (William Morrow), of which I just received a review copy. The book is by Seattle superstar Chef Tom Douglas and Shelley Lance, his former pastry chef who’s now his chief recipe tester.

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Dark and White Chocolate Chunk Cookies with Ginger

Dark chocolate, white chocolate and ginger make up the trifecta of flavors in this fudgy cookie.

Consider this the ménage à trois of cookies.

You have the complimentary duo of dark and white chocolates — then throw in racy ginger for an even spicier time.

Are you getting all hot and bothered yet?

Your taste buds sure will in the best of ways with these “Dark and White Chocolate Chunk Cookies with Ginger.” The recipe is from “Bon Appetit Desserts” (Andrews McMeel) by the magazine’s former editor-in-chief, Barbara Fairchild. Ever since receiving a review copy of this 686-page cookbook two years ago, I’ve been slowly baking my way through its extensive collection of 600 recipes.

These cookies bake up soft and fudgy in texture. They boast craggy dark tops with striking big chunks of white chocolate that get a little golden on the edges like toasted marshmallows.

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