Homemade Cookies and Their T's
Classify cookies based on how we get them ready for the oven.
drop cookies, icebox cookies, bar or sheet cookies, spritz
and wafer cookies.
Cookies and Their T's
By Trinh Lieu
Before you say that there is not a single T in homemade cookies, I’d
better tell you that the T’s stand for types and texture. They are the two
prominent features in our favorite sweet. One often can not be without the
We classify cookies based on how we get them ready for the oven.
1. Drop Cookies - If you have ever made chocolate chip, peanut butter, or
oatmeal cookies, you undoubtedly use the dropping method. Any kitchen
utensils such as tablespoons or ice cream scoops can be used to portion
the dough. The trick is to make these portions relatively equal in size so
that they bake uniformly. A variation of this technique is rolling cookie
dough into balls. Drop cookies tend to have a soft and chewy texture.
2. Icebox or Refrigerated Cookies - I suspect that this type of cookies
was invented when someone who did not have time to bake right after
preparing the dough. Instead, she shaped it into logs or rectangles and
refrigerated it. When she had time later, she sliced the chilled dough
into individual pieces and baked them as needed. Many elegant homemade
cookies such as pinwheel and checkerboard are of this type. It allows a
busy home baker an opportunity to show off her creativity. These cookies
usually have a crisp texture.
3. Cut-Out or Rolled Cookies - Dough for this type of cookies needs to be
firm. To minimize scrap, start cutting cookies from the edge of the dough,
working inward as close to one another as possible. Scrap can be re-rolled
but tends to yield tough cookies. Cut-out cookies are often baked on
parchment lined or ungreased cookie sheets to keep the dough from
spreading and loosing its shape. An alternative is to hand-shaped the
dough into spheres, crescents, or other traditional shapes.
4. Bar or Sheet Cookies - It takes almost no time at all to transfer
cookie dough from a mixing bowl to a baking pan. This is the best method
for a busy cookie lover.
5. Pressed or Spritz or Bagged Cookies - The right flour and proper
proportion of ingredients are prerequisite for success in baking this type
of cookies. The dough should be soft enough so that it can be easily
forced through a pastry tip or cookie press. Using eggs as the only liquid
will help cookies retain their small, distinct and decorated shape.
6. Wafer Cookies - Being extremely thin and delicate is a distinguishing
trait of these cookies. They are made from a batter that you pour or
spread directly onto a baking sheet. The cookies need to be molded
immediately into shapes after coming out of the oven.
Generally, cookie dough with a relatively high proportion of fat,
granulated sugar, and eggs would promote spreading and chewiness. High fat
and sugar but low in eggs (liquid) tend to result in crispness. The
opposite condition will add softness to your homemade cookies.
SARAH R. LABENSKY, EDDY VAN DAMME, PRISCILLA MARTEL, KLAUS TENBERGEN. On
Baking - A Textbook of Baking and Pastry Fundamentals. Pearson Education,