It isn’t December without cookies, is it?
One of the things I appreciate most about holidays (of all sorts) are those most surprisingly transcendent of traditions, the ones that have persisted through the ages, across cultures, and between generations.
Holiday traditions tell you a lot – they’re symbols of family, heritage, values, and that makes them feel essential to the human experience.
When it comes to rituals, cookies – minute though they may seem – stand firmly at the forefront, which makes me love them all the more come wintertime. Europe really kicked off the holiday cookie thing in the Middle Ages, and later settlers brought the practice to America (thank you Germany, for the iconic gingerbread man).
Now, each December, so many of us still gather to do the same things we’ve been doing for centuries: stirring bowls of butter, flour, and sugar, shaping delicate dough into beautiful renditions of the season, huddling around ovens in anticipation of the final results. The expert chefs, the sticky-handed kids, the person who hasn’t turned their home oven on in a whole year… everyone bakes cookies this time of year. We share the confections with family, friends, even strangers (and, of course, always leave a few for Santa on December 24).
Here at QC Exclusive, we made it our mission to try holiday cookies from all over the city, and to ask the bakers what cookie most essentializes the season to them. We got eclectic and classics, modern twists and inspired updates. And, as we’ve been eating holiday cookies since September, now we feel confident in recommending you bring home each and every one of these, from Justin Burke Samson’s Cardamom Ginger Cookies to Sweet Girl Cookie’s perfect chocolate chip. Share the goodness with those you love, and savor the (literal and figurative) sweetness of Charlotte’s take on the yearly custom.
Stay tuned all this December for our collection of favorite cookies, from Suarez to Sunflour to Justin B. Samson and Bar Cocoa.