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4.7 out of 5 stars
Cookies for Grown-Ups
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 3, 2012
Cookies, biscuits or whatever you call them, they can be rather addictive and just one is seemingly never enough. But why should children have all the fun?

Here this book seeks to address that and give a lot of great adult-friendly recipes that can be visually stunning, hopefully tasty and maybe more orientated towards adult tastebuds than store-bought versions. That said, unless you lace the cookies with alcohol, you probably could share these with your children. It is good to share.

The recipes are split into nine distinct chapters, all named with faux-cute titles such as "A Toast to the Good Life". This sort of approach doesn't really gel with this reviewer, generating a sort of little growl and moment of indignation instead of a gasp of admiration and appreciation. Why not use something descriptive at least? Each chapter has its own mini index showing a cookie's name, a brief description and a page number. But again, the cookies have all been given rather icky, faux names like that you would find in a chocolate box. Names such as 'Texture', 'Pesto' and 'Satisfaction'. What does it mean? Even with the descriptions it just feels such a waste.

In any case you can't fault the navigational signposting within this book. Everything is clear, ordered and seeks to direct the reader here and there. In what could be a first (at least for us) is the use of a QR (bar)code too, this is used for directing the reader to a web page on the Internet that has a photograph of the dish and a shopping list of ingredients. Assuming that the page doesn't disappear over time, this is just an extra useful, positive sign of thoughtfulness.

The recipes themselves give mixed feelings - and that is probably a good indication that they have something for every taste. Some of them look rather luxurious, grand affairs whilst some of them appear to be a sloppy mess on top of a biscuit. But once it is in your mouth it is the taste, rather than the look, that matters and in the aforementioned sloppy example, the ingredients all point towards a rather tasty sensation.

One interesting little feature is the pairing suggestion for each cookie, whether it be a cup of tea, a glass of merlot or even something stronger!

There are a LOT of recipes here so plenty to browse through (which is just as well, thanks to the rather odd naming used throughout). The end of the book is given over to an index of cookies by name as well as a thoughtful index by key flavours - now THAT is something else that other publishers could introduce.

So a bit of a mixed bag. Here is certainly a great book of different cookies suitable for many different occasions where adult company might crave something slightly more sophisticated than teddy bear cookies. A whole new angle has been considered and executed rather well. A few irritating issues that we can write down to personal taste. Certainly many more plusses than minuses. The recommended price tag might be a bit too high, but booksellers will inevitably discount this down anyway. The author and publisher has certainly found a good niche to fill and has made a good attempt in the process.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 14, 2012
I have already given this book as presents to the bakers in my life. All of them have found the recipes to be most interesting with spices used in creative combination. The presentation is fresh, including shopping lists for each recipe, and the pairing suggestions are helpful to create interesting fare for parties with friends. This book is a great addition to any cook's collection.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 15, 2012
Purchased the book for an engagement gift. Thought this would be fun for the newlyweds. The book has a great look and quality to it. Can't wait for them to see it and start baking together. Decided to buy one for myself. Tried two recipes so far and am happy with the flavors and the pairings are spot on. What a fun and inventive cookbook.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The title, cookies for grown-ups, doesn't even begin to describe what recipes lay within its pages. Ingredients ricotta cheese, peppers, rum and spices are used, where peanut butter or chocolate chips use to be called for. Each recipe is very "grown-up", with unique and savory ingredients used in them. However, most all of the ingredients are still familiar enough that one should be able to find them at the local grocery store.

What really stood out to me about Cookies for Grown-Ups was the way each recipe was laid out in the book. Not only did every cookie have a photo, a list of ingredients and detailed direction on how to make it, but also a QR code for ever recipe. Those small square boxes you see on items you can scan with your smartphone and get additional information, there is one for each recipe. So with just a scan of your smartphone, you have the entire ingredients list saved to your phone, no need to even write it down! Every cook book should have this feature!

In addition to how to make each cookie, a beverage is suggested that would pair well with it. Sometimes it's a wine, sometimes a tea, or occasionally something else altogether. So far, my two favorite cookies are "A Sweet Moment and a Salty Tongue", because I love anything with caramel and sea salt, and "Afternoon" and Earl Grey and Lemon infused prune topping a cookie. I love tea, especially Earl Grey. And I had to try that recipe first, just to see what it would taste like.

The recipes in Cookies for Grown-Ups are like nothing you've seen before in other desert cook books. They are one of a kind, and will definitely be a topic of conversation anywhere or anytime you serve them.
A review copy was provided by the publisher for an unbiased review.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 1, 2012
Before this book was published, I discovered some yummy recipes on the author's blog -- and I couldn't wait to try them out. Both "Familiar Memory" and "Delectable" are scrumptious! Not only are these cookies delicious, but the two recipes I've made so far have been very easy to follow.

The title may say "grown-ups", but my children and their friends have begged me to make them again. In fact, I'll be making a couple of batches of "Familiar Memory" cookies tomorrow -- one as a gift for a young teen and another as a hostess gift to bring to a grown-up party.

This year I won't have any trouble finding a special gift for my friends -- I'll be giving them this book, "Cookies for Grown-Ups", along with freshly baked Grown-Up cookies.
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When I stumbled on this title I was instantly intrigued. I'm a geek for all the weird cupcake trends out there (I make a pretty tasty Bacon Peanut Butter one my friends constantly ask me to make for social occasions) so a book with cookies made in unexpected combos sounded right up my alley.

Cooper's concoctions are definitely not your granny's classic staples so don't expect to see a lot of oatmeal, chocolate chips, or raisins in this collection. From liqueurs and fresh herbs to cheeses and meats this unexpected series of recipes is not for the unadventurous baker.

While I found the overall tone of the recipe inspirations and explanations of each cookie dull and unmemorable, the recipes themselves are mind-blowingly clever. Each recipe also includes a beverage pairing that is equally inspired. Think of this book as the perfect gift for your friend who loves to throw cocktail parties or your secret weapon for New Year's Eve.

My favorite recipe from the bunch was the effervescent 'Man Cookie'. Made with beer, sunflower seeds, lime zest, and chopped Slim Jims it sounded like the perfect one to test on my Sunday night TV guests. While many of the recipes require a lot of work or fresh herbs (which are costly in my area) the most difficult part of this one was zesting the limes. My guinea pig guests, husband, and even my kids (thank goodness the alcohol cooks out lol) all thought they were surprisingly good. My husband even smuggled some to work to share with his crew who shared in the sentiments of them being 'weird but good'. I will definitely be making them again with another type of beer just to see the results.

The great thing about COOKIES FOR GROWN-UPS is that there's something for just about everyone. From the wine drinker to the tea drinker, the chocolate fiend to the not-so-sweet-tooth, chances are you'll find something creative and fun to try. As with the strange cupcake trend this book lends itself to being an idea book. While many incorporate things that wouldn't go over well in my home (rotten tree nut allergies) the recipes have served as inspiration for experimentation of my own. Many could also be adapted and Cooper offers many suggestions for ingredient switches.

I highly recommend this as an idea book for the advanced baker seeking inspiration and those seeking something memorable to bring to holiday get-togethers. I think many of the cookies themselves would make awesome homemade gifts for friends and co-workers, I'd even gift the book itself to a pal who thinks baking is just for ladies. Gentlemen, this book has plenty of Monday Night Football friendly treats that won't get your mancard revoked.

Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 3, 2013
Kelly Cooper has elevated cocktail party fare to a new level with Cookies for Grown-ups. Surprise family and friends with these unusual and delicious creations---each paired with a drink: coffee or tea or beer or wine. A great holiday gift!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 15, 2013
Familiar Memory Cookie (banana, brown sugar, lemon and pecan)-great way to use your ripe bananas. Incredible burst of banana flavor. Fun to make with a friend. Try this in lieu of banana bread-a little more effort, but worth the reward.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 17, 2013
This book is a must have for anyone who entertains. With new and different flavor combinations, the recipes elevate cookies from after school snacks to elegant bites to pair with your favorite cocktail.
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on August 20, 2013
I love this cookbook. I have seen a number of "cookie" cookbooks that tend to be all very similar. This one is unique, in the cookie flavors and recipes. For example, as soon as we got the book, my husband (not a real cookie lover) opened up to the masa, chorizo, raisin, and pine nut cookie, and exclaimed "Oh my god, you have to make these." I had the privilege to try the dark chocolate and thyme cookie, as well as the jalapeno, cornmeal, and cream cheese cookies while Kelly was on her book tour through Spokane. Both of these cookies were delicious, especially the jalapeno and cornmeal one, which I was surprised at how much I loved it. I am thrilled to try a number of savory cookies. One of my favorite features is the scan codes on each page that you can scan into your phone to give you a complete shopping list. Also on each page a feature called "smart cookie" which has helpful substitutions, or other options for each recipe. I would recommend this cookbook to anyone looking to try something new and delicious.
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