Cookies 101

Baking American-style confetti cookies for your next party is easier than you might think! Crispy around the edges but soft in the middle, they are simply irresistible. Here are some tips for baking some yourself at home.

Use a recipe for soft baked cookies: any one of our mixes will do. It will ensure that the ingredients are portioned just right for soft baked cookies.

 

Know your oven. Many ovens have hot spots (where a part of your oven is hotter than the rest). A convection oven or hettelucht oven uses a fan to circulate the hot air within the oven. This ensures the heat is spread evenly throughout the oven.

We find that a convection oven (or hetelucht oven) is best for baking cookies. However a conventional (no hot air circulation, heat comes from both the top and bottom of the oven) will also do the trick. You may just need to place the rack in a different part of your oven, away from the hot spot.

Tip! A good rule of thumb is to place your cookie sheet in the very center of the oven. To ensure even baking, turn the cookie sheet half way through the baking time.

Use your senses. It may seem silly, but the key to baking cookies well (and this goes for anything you bake, not only cookies) is to use your senses.

  • Watch the cookies bake: Always set the timer for 1-2 minutes less than the time called for on the recipe. When the timer goes off, look through the window of the oven and add 30 seconds as needed. Your cookies are ready to come out of the oven when the edges are just starting to brown. (Even if only one edge of your cookie is brown, it's time to get them out of the oven.) The centers will look very soft and underbaked, but this is ok. The cookies finish baking on the cookie sheet as they cool. (Yes, keep your cookies on the cookie sheet to cool them.)
  • Listen to what's happening inside the oven: Can you hear the little air bubbles popping out of the dough as they bake? You'll hear less sizzling when your cookies are finished baking.
  • Sniff the air: Can you smell the cookies? That delicious aromatic smell tells you that the cookies are almost finished baking. Isn't it wonderful? The smell of cookies always gives me such a warm feeling...to me, it smells like home.
  • Touch the edges: Be careful, the cookie will be hot, but gently touch one of your cookies when it comes out of the oven. You'll know your cookies are finished soft-baking when the edges feel crispy and the center feels very soft but not mushy. 
  • Taste!: This is the best part! We recommend allowing your cookies to cool on the cookie sheet for at least 5 minutes before tasting...it takes a lot of self-control but it is worth the wait!

Tip! If your cookies come out of the oven a little oddly shaped, use a spoon to reform the hot cookies as soon as they come out of the oven. Just gently nudge the parts of the cookie back into place so that they are "perfect" little circles.

 

Want thicker cookies? Do not flatten your cookie dough balls!!!! Form your cookie dough balls taller than wide (cylindrical / cilindrisch). Then chill your "tall" cookie dough balls for at least one (1) hour in the refrigerator before baking.

taller cookie dough ball formation for thicker cookies
Make your cookie dough balls tall for thicker cookies.

 

Tip! Freeze the dough balls for freshly baked cookies in a snap! After your cookie dough balls chill for at least one (1) hour in the refrigerator simply put the cold cookie dough balls into a zip top bag and place them in the freezer. When you're ready for a freshly baked cookie, put the frozen dough balls straight into the oven (no need to thaw!), add a minute to your recipe's baking time, and BOOM: hellooooo freshly baked cookies in a snap! Now, who doesn't love convenience?

 

 

Cookies are fun to bake and there are so many varieties! You can never go wrong with a cookie. Have fun making your next batch!