Holiday Cookie Fun Facts!
Here is a little cookie quiz for you during your Christmas holiday weeks! Are you a cookie genius, or just a good taste tester? FIND OUT! Write down your answers and see how you did! (answers are at the end of the quiz)
1) What is the most popular type of home-baked cookie?
2) When baking at home, which of these is NOT an explanation for tough, hard cookies?
Too much butter
Too much flour
3) Which cookie was invented first?
4) Which cookie is traditionally used to make the layered dessert, “Tirimisu”?
5) What does the word “Biscotti” mean?
6) What type of cookie is traditionally made with egg whites and ground almonds or coconut?
7) What brand uses animated elves in its advertising campaigns?
8) Where were fortune cookies invented?
9) Why is gingerbread dough perfect for constructing houses?
The cookies stick together right out of the oven
The cookies hold their shape when baked
The dough contains a small amount of cement mix
10) Mexican wedding cookies, aka Russian tea cakes, and Pecan Butterballs, are sprinkled with what before serving?
1) Chocolate Chip
More than 50% of cookies baked at home are of the chocolate chip variety. Chocolate chip cookies were invented at the Toll House Inn in Massachusetts by proprietor Ruth Wakefield around 1930.
2) Too Much Butter
If you add too much flour to the dough or overmix the batter before baking, the result will likely be a hard, tough cookie. Adding too much butter to the dough will result in a greasy cookie.
The first animal crackers were produced in the United States by Stauffer’s Biscuit Company in 1871. Nabisco’s Barnum’s circus version hit the market in 1902. The modern version of the Fig Newton was created in 1891 and is named for the city of Newton, Massachusetts. And lastly, the Oreo cookie was invented in 1912. All three of these cookies are currently produced by Nabisco.
Ladyfingers are used in tiramisu because the cookies so readily absorb the sweet syrup and liqueur used to make the traditional Italian dessert. These delicate cookies are made from sponge cake batter that’s been piped into long, finger-shaped cookies and dusted with sugar before baking.
5) Cooked Twice
While Italians use the word “biscotti” to refer to all types of cookies, Americans think of “biscotti” as the long, dry cookies that are served with hot drinks for dunking. The name is derived from “bis,” meaning twice, and “cotto,” meaning cooked. Baking the cookies twice results in their hard, crumbly texture.
These dense, moist cookies were traditionally made with egg whites, sugar, and almond paste, but in North America, they are often made with shredded coconut instead of almond paste. Italian Jews adopted this cookie for Passover, because the chewy sweets have no flour or leavening.
The Keebler elves, led by Ernie the Elf, became the mascots of the Keebler Company in 1968. The elves worked in the Hollow Tree Bakery, creating “uncommonly good” products in their “magical oven.”
The Japanese have been making their original version of fortune cookies since the late 1800s. Some speculate that Japanese immigrants who owned Chinese-American chop suey restaurants in California in the 1950s introduced these folded cookies to the American dining public.
9) They keep their shape when baked
Gingerbread cookies contain a fragrant mix of molasses, ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. The cookies hold their shape when baked, making them ideal for gingerbread houses. You can measure and cut the dough, and be assured the pieces will be the same size and shape when they come out of the oven.
10) Confectioner’s (powdered) Sugar
These buttery shortbread cookies incorporate ground nuts in the dough and are always sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar, giving them a festive, snowy appearance.