Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Mary Lois' Snickerdoodles

It just wasn't working out to make cookies for a Cookie Tuesday, so I'm giving it up, and cookies may appear on any old day.

My blogging friend in Hoboken sent me this recipe, so I'm naming the cookies after her.

Mary Lois' Snickerdoodles

1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup milk

3 cups flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

1 tablespoon cinnamon mixed with 3 tablespoon sugar

Beat the butter with 1 1/2 cups of sugar until creamy.
Add eggs and vanilla and beat until fully incorporated.
Add milk and stir.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, soda, salt, cream of tartar, and nutmeg.
Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and stir thoroughly.

Chill this dough for at least 2 hours.

Heat the oven to 350º.
Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Shape dough into large, walnut-sized balls and dip tops into cinnamon-sugar mixture.
Place about 3 inches apart on baking sheet and bake for about 12 minutes.
Cookies will appear undercooked when removed from the oven; the centers will be very moist and light. As they cool, the cookies will firm up and be delicious.

My notes: I didn't chill the dough. Frankly, I couldn't wait to make them, and they sounded enough like two other kinds I've made that didn't require chilling - Irish Ginger Snaps and Cinnamon Sugar Cookies that I thought they'd be fine, and they were. I'm not positive how many the recipe made because my son and his friend stopped by, and ate some and brought some home, but I'd say several dozen, depending on the size you make them.

I used the KitchenAid mixer.

I didn't use parchment paper. I sprayed the cookie sheets with cooking spray, and this worked fine.

The young woman who came by today was surprised to learn I'd never made snickerdoodles before, and now, thanks to Mary Lois, I've got a new recipe for cookies that I simply love. I'm going to have a plateful, and some cold milk right now.


  1. We love snickerdoodles! This recipe looks a little 'healthier' than mine, so I'll try it next time.

  2. How does it look healthier? :<) I didn't even mention that I used 1 cup unbleached white flour, and 2 cups whole wheat flour - both organic. Did you read my mind, JoAnn??

  3. Oh yes, Nan...I had a feeling that you used organic flour ;-)

    My recipe calls for 1/2 cup shortening in addition to 1/2 cup butter (there is no milk). The other ingredients are basically the same, so my recipe is much higher in fat...but it sure is good!

  4. JoAnn, I've never used shortening. :<) I'm a dairy girl from way back. Can you get Kate's Butter over there? From Old Orchard Beach, Maine? Thanks so much for writing.

  5. I've never seen Kate's Butter here, but I will look for it. Just checked their website and I love the label!

  6. I had snickerdoodles when I visited the American Museum in Bath and I have longed to make some. Thank you for the recipe - if I hadn't made 5 trays of your chocolate chip and toffee cookies today I would be trying it out tomorrow. I look forward to making some next week.

  7. JoAnn, I'm very pleased you checked it out!

    Maureen, I can't believe you made the cc and toffee bits cookies. I'm so delighted. Is it hard to do the conversion thing??

  8. Nan, I bought a set of measuring cups so that I could try your recipes!

  9. Maureen, you should see me. I'm just turning my head back and forth in wonder that you would do such a thing. You make me feel like a queen.

  10. Well, Your Majesty, you can add this little gem to your crown! I made some of the original recipe choc chip cookies you posted a while back and took them to an American friend who is Mother Superior of a convent here. She is about 75 years old and she shed a tear when she tasted them - just like her momma made!

  11. You make me cry, too, Maureen. Not kidding here.

  12. Nan, I should have known you'd put whole wheat flour in this. Some things actually taste better with white flour though! If I were going to add whole wheat I'd reverse the ratio -- 2 to 1 white to whole wheat!

  13. How nostalgic! My mother made these cookies every Christmas. They weren't as elaborate as the Santa-shaped sugar cookies or the apricot stars or rum balls, but they were somehow my favorite!
    Thanks for the memories --

  14. What can I say, Mary Lois - I'm just a whole wheat (mostly) girl?!

    Bookish NYC, thanks so much for stopping by.

  15. Ah! These are only my favorite cookies on Earth! Darn. It's too late to bake now. I will have to wait until tomorrow.
    I always add a little whole wheat flour when I bake cookies. Except I may not tomorrow. I ground some flour yesterday (which I used in muffins tonight) and my shoulder is not happy. Nope, not one bit. Silly shoulder.

  16. Oh, Karin, I have a Regal Kitchen Pro Grain Mill. I bought it from King Arthur but it seems like they don't sell it now. It won't hurt your shoulder one bit.

  17. The cookie page is obviously not exactly the place for a book comment, but I no longer have your e-mail address--we had shared some comments on reading a few months back. Seeing your note on Edwin Way Teale at Codlins and Cream, I wondered if you have read other of his books? "A Naturalist Buys an Old Farm" and "Dune Boy" are two of my favorites.

  18. Cookies are like that...they just don't like to be so organized.

  19. i love snickerdoodles. i wish someone would make them for me. i am not a very good cookie-baker.

  20. Morning's Minion, I haven't read any other Edwin Teale Way, but I really want to. I'd like to take more of his seasonal books and read them as I did Springtime in Britain. And I'd like to read the ones you mentioned. Such a wonderful writer, and he seems like he was a wonderful man as well.

    Hip Chick, I had begun to put the ingredients together and came upon the chilling part, and said to myself what have I got to lose. They seemed strong enough to cook right then so I did. Not many left, by the way. :<)

    Laurie, they were very easy, esp. with the mixer. If you try them, I'd love to hear how they turned out.

  21. These look wonderful, Nan - what is it about them that makes them "snickerdoodles", as opposed to just ordinary cookies?

  22. Jodie, I did a google search and found:

    No one knows for sure. The recipe on this page is a bit different, but the main thing seems to be that cinnamon/sugar topping.

  23. Here's what Christopher Kimball, author of The Yellow Farmhouse Cookbook where I got the recipe, says: "According to James Beard, snickerdoodles were called by many different names, depending on the region of the country the recipe was found. Along the Hudson River Valley they were called schnecken doodles, yet 'snipdoodles' and 'snickerdoodles' were also common names. Kimball likes to call them Snipdoodles. It's fun to explore, but I think people just like to say "Snickerdoodles" as well as eat them--especially little kids! Aren't words and cookies fun?

  24. Thanks, Mary Lois! That's great information. And yes, words and cookies are fun! That would be a great name for a blog! I have a recipe for another fun name- Pfeffernuesse (Peppernuts) that I'll post sometime.

  25. oh my word - talk about nostalgia

    your new banner with bookshelf brought back happy memories for me

    I went to my bookshelf to find my copy of Laurel's Kitchen that I hadn't used for quite a long time. Yours look tattered and well used, as is mine.

    Leafing through it (carefully) now to find what we might have for supper

    Looking forward to Pfeffernuesse

  26. I've never heard of snickerdoodles - and reading all the comments I've not just heard of them but learnt lots too.

    I shall bake some tomorrow and those cc and toffee cookies sound irresistible

  27. Next to chocolate chip cookies, these are my favorite! Your recipe is very similar to mine. I have no idea where I got it. Probably The Joy of Cooking! Mine looks like JoAnn's, as it has 1/2 cup of shortening and no milk.

  28. argggg! No desserts till Easter!!
    I'm saving the recipe,though!!

  29. Janice, I love my Laurel's Kitchen not just for the recipes but for the philosophy. I bought a newer (1997) one called Laurel's Kitchen Caring which is supposed to be recipes for if you are taking care of someone who is recovering from an illness, but I just found the recipes were great for well people, too! I think you'll like it. Oh, and you know what, I got the pfeffernuesse recipe from a woman named Janice.:<)

    Paula, I just love it that you read the comments, too. They make a blog a real conversation, a real sharing experience. I still 'owe' you a choc chip cookie recipe, and actually thought of posting that one this snickerdoodle day. Soon, I promise!

    Les, I have a recipe in my folder from that Karen in Scotland. I'll make them sometime and call them "Karen's Snickerdoodles." Just a smidgen different. They sure seem to be a hit with many people. I can't believe I've never made or even eaten them before.

    Pamela, they can be your reward!

  30. Snickerdoodle Day! What a great idea! Could it be that we've started a regular event here? An annual day to celebrate? Can we have it often?

  31. Lots of response, eh wot?! Thanks again so much for the recipe, Mary Lois!

  32. Hey, I'm excited, just came back and saw the comment on Laurel's Kitchen...I've got one! First published in the UK in 79, which is when I bought it. Fancy that. I agree, the philosophy behind it (as well as the recipes) is great.

  33. Paula, isn't it just great that both you and Janice have this wonderful book from the past. I love it!


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