Inventing a truly great cookie requires a kind of genius. Baking talent Cindy Mushet shares some of her best Christmas cookies with Food & Wine.
When Jacques Torres opened his eponymous Brooklyn, NY, chocolate factory and store in 2000, he made it his mission to perfect the cookie, using top-quality ingredients and toying with size, baking time and texture.
Nick Malgieri, director of baking at New York City’s Institute of Culinary Education and author of nine cookbooks, is no-nonsense about cooking technique: “I like to eliminate the unnecessary. There’s just so much overcomplicating—it really doesn’t have to be that way.”
A master of classic American desserts, Flo Braker is an innovator who glazes flaky espresso shortbread bars with sticky butterscotch and rethinks holiday flavors (cinnamon, allspice, clove, hazelnut, chocolate) to create a stellar sandwich cookie.
When Baked opened in 2005, Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito made Brooklyn’s edgy Red Hook a destination for homey but modern desserts, like a chocolate cake flavored with malt from a local brewer.