good cookie, bad cookie

Okay, I admit I’m out of practice making cookies.  Except for a few afternoons of cookie-baking with my little friend Sam, I’ve been out of the cookie-baking habit since 1988.


Sam and Claire, December 2018

Claire’s birthday was last week.  Needless to say, the family is practicing strict self-isolation.  So…no party.

I baked chocolate chip cookies and, despite the almost-burned bottoms, they turned out just fine.  So I packaged up a dozen or so and, along a pink box filled with pink Barbie gowns, delivered them to Claire.

How did I have pink Barbie gowns?  Well, my daughters had dozens of Barbie dolls and assorted outfits.  A few years ago I found them all stuffed in a garbage bag, so I picked out the decent clothes, washed them by hand and dried them on a towel in front of fireplace.  Then I packed them in a plastic bin marked “Barbie”.

Which meant I could find them almost immediately when I entered the storage room.  Banjo Man was incredulous.  For Claire’s birthday gift, I picked out all the pink dresses and outfits to put in the pink gift box.  It was a success, according to Claire’s mom.

Last Sunday (Easter) was Sammy’s birthday.  Can you imagine the disappointment?  Not only don’t you have a party, you can’t even visit your grandparents or go to the beach!  I did have some new Matchbox cars put away, along with a New Englands Patriots “Spot It” game, so it was easy to put together a birthday basket.

But I needed cookies.  So I turned to an old favorite, my grandmother’s sugar cookies.  Make the dough, roll them into balls, press them with a fork, sprinkle sugar on top and bake.  Easy, right?  Sam and I had made them before.  I even had fancy sprinkles.


Ready for the oven.



The cookies melted together and turned into a sheet cake.  I had made a double batch so the disaster continued on for a while.  You see them in the bowl?  I had to cut them in pieces to get them out of the pan.  They were buttery and crispy and yummy, but they were too ugly for a birthday gift.

In the midst of all of this chaos, Banjo Man poured himself a glass of milk, sat down at the table and ate six of the bad cookies.

So I started over.   What had I done wrong?  I realized the original recipe called for shortening.  I had used half butter and half Crisco.  BIG MISTAKE.

What on earth was I thinking????

The next two dozen cookies were perfect.


Thick, dry and crunchy.  Not too sweet.

Happy Birthday, Sam!  Next year will be much more fun, we promise.




This entry was posted in family, food, rhode island. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to good cookie, bad cookie

  1. Tom F says:

    “buttery and crispy and yummy” – I think I will try the butter and Crisco recipe.

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