Saturday, December 22, 2018

The Great Minnesota Cookie Book Review

Trio of Chocolate Cookies
Most states have magazine, newspapers, or websites that highlight the uniqueness of their cuisine. The Great Minnesota Cookie Book: Award-Winning Recipes from the Star Tribune's Holiday Cookie Contest are from the newspaper that serves the Minneapolis/St. Paul area but is also an influential state publication. Given that these are winners of a holiday cookie competition and I was looking for some good cookies for my family's annual holiday party, I decided to pick three recipes from three different categories and try them out for that party. I'll include both my feelings about the recipes and how easy it was to follow them as well as my family and our guests opinions about the final cookies that we ate at our party. I won a free copy of the soft cover edition of this book via Goodreads without expectation of my giving a review; I did a review on Goodreads, Amazon, and, of course, you are about to read our review right here on The Chocolate Cult. No other form of compensation was received in exchange for recipe testing and writing about this cookbook in a fair and honest fashion.

The book has 6 categories of cookies -- Drop, CutOut, Refrigerator, Rolled, Bar, and Other. I picked the Refrigerator, Rolled, and Bar because they were types of cookies I do not often make yet I have experience with each type.


The Refrigerator Cookies recipe was "Korova Cookies" which are basically a dark chocolate cookie with semi-sweet chips in them. The most difficult part of this cookie was rolling them into the long thin logs that had to set in the refrigerator. The cookies are crispy and very intense in terms of chocolate. I loved them! My hubby loved them, too, but guests and other family members needed to really like darker chocolate because these do have a slightly bitter edge. Our guests... I think they wanted a softer cookie or maybe less bitterness but we did warn them.




The Rolled Cookies recipe was "Chocolate Peppermint Cookies" that are dark cookies with a peppermint frosting and peppermint candies on top. I am not sure why these were in the "rolled" category because there is no rolling involved at all. The recipe was easy to follow but it took some time to go through all the steps but hey, this was for a party, I gave it an afternoon and it was done! The resulting cookie was softer but as dark as the previous one but with the frosting and candies there was a good deal of sweetness. The candies and frosting was a bit sticky so laying them out was a challenge. Everyone at the party who tried them seemed to like them and my family liked them a lot.



The Bar Cookies recipe was called "Kit Kat Christmas Bars" which is three crispy layers separated by a caramel-like sauce and all topped with a frosting. I'm not sure why this is called "Kit Kat" but it tastes nothing like the candy bar so I didn't tell my guests that it was called that or they would have been disappointed because they would have had a specific expectation of flavor and texture. It was very tasty, a bit of a challenge to cut, and easy but time-consuming to make. Sadly the recipe didn't say how to lay out the crackers but I figured it out. My family and I loved these. This was the cookie of the trio that got the most compliments and questions at our party. I'm glad enough were left for me to enjoy the next day because they were my favorites, too.

The quality of the recipes varied and there were some errors I found in categorizing some recipes but otherwise this is a good addition to my library of cookbooks.


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