Norman Rockwell’s Oatmeal Cookies

plate of Norman Rockwell's Oatmeal Cookies

So, I wanted to do something special for you for the upcoming Independence Day holiday here in the U.S. Last year I shared a frozen zabaglione with strawberries and blueberries. And there’s certainly no sane reason not to make it again this year. Or every year for that matter.

But as it happens, I was browsing through the cookbook section of our local used bookstore and found a new volume to adopt and bring home, Maida Heatter’s Cookies. She’s been called the “Queen of Cake” with nine baking-focused cookbooks and a James Beard Cookbook Hall of Fame award.

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Classic Peanut Butter Cookies

classic peanut butter cookies on a plate

When I was a kid and someone offered you a peanut butter cookie you pretty much knew what to expect. Not that everyone made the same exact cookie, but they were close. Most likely from a recipe on the back of the peanut butter jar.

Even the grocery store cookies tasted like the ones from home, but for a modest fee they made them in-store for you and packaged them for your purchasing (and toting) convenience.

I wanted to recapture some of that but with modern adjustments. So I started with James Beard.

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Banana Bread, Revisited

Slice of banana bread on a plate with a loaf and some butter in the background.

As you may remember, I wrote about my previous banana bread making adventure roughly a year ago. Needless to say, that adventure hasn’t ended (and possibly never will).

Over the last year, I’ve read literally hundreds of banana bread recipes and – you probably know this already but I wasn’t specifically aware – there are entire books published with nothing but dozens and dozens of banana bread recipes!

And I’ve learned some things.

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Classic Shortbread

Classic shortbread is as easy to make as 1-2-3. How can something this delicious, easy to make, and affordable be so good? Visit to learn more.

A while back, I wrote about making lemon curd and a couple of people asked, “That’s nice, but what about the shortbread?”

If you’re looking for a quick cookie fix, something to go with fresh fruit perhaps, or you’re caught off guard again by the kid’s bake sale who forgot to tell you is due tomorrow morning, well, this might be your cookie.

As easy as 1-2-3.

Read more…Classic Shortbread