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77 of 78 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My New Favorite
This is my new favorite baking book. How do I love it? Let me count the ways. First and most importantly, the recipes produce absolutely astonishingly good cookies. Try My Chocolate Chip Cookie to see what I mean. Second, many recipes make use of innovative techniques and ingredients. For example, I was amazed at how using melted butter in oatmeal cookies could...
Published on December 13, 2010 by Ken M. Bleile

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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cookbooks should have pictures!!!
I concur with most of the other reviews in that these cookie recipes are really good, the directions are good, and the book is well laid out. The primary issue I have with this book is the lack of pictures. In my opinion cookbooks, (especially cookie books) should have images for each cookie. Lots of these recipes are unusual...unfortunately I'm literally in the dark...
Published 18 months ago by Suzanne Beaumaster


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77 of 78 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My New Favorite, December 13, 2010
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This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
This is my new favorite baking book. How do I love it? Let me count the ways. First and most importantly, the recipes produce absolutely astonishingly good cookies. Try My Chocolate Chip Cookie to see what I mean. Second, many recipes make use of innovative techniques and ingredients. For example, I was amazed at how using melted butter in oatmeal cookies could produce such a wonderful buttery crisp-chewy texture. Third, the recipes are clearly written with short introductions that evoke food well without being gushy, self promoting, or too cutesy. Fourth, the book is beautiful printed and illustrated. Fifth, you get all this for under $20, an almost unheard of low price among high quality baking books. Who might not enjoy this book: someone looking to learn cookie decoration or a very casual baker wanting something "semi homemade." But for someone who loves baking and for whom spending time in the kitchen is a reward rather than a chore, this book is the year's best find.
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44 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Book has Everything from Traditional to Unusual to Wheat-Free to Weight Watchers-friendly Cookies, December 10, 2010
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This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
The book starts off with an explanation of terms used in the recipes. Then, it moves into a FAQ section covering a variety of topics, such as pan preparation, cookie, storage, and choosing/preparing the ingredients.

The sections in the book are divided by the topics in the title (crispy, crunchy, chunky, chewy, gooey, flaky, and melt-in-your-mouth). At the end, there are a couple of other informative sections. There is a component section with various things like fillings, frostings, cookie icings, and crusts. There are also ingredient and equipment explanatory sections.

Some of the dry ingredients in the recipes, such as flour, sugar, and nuts, are given in both volume and weight measurements. Many of the recipes have an "upgrade" (variation) section following the recipe. There are also mini tutorials throughout the book. For example, there are a couple pages devoted to tuiles. The mini tutorial talks about tuile basics, how to make and use a stencil for tuiles, more efficient tuile baking, and how to make ice cream cones from tuile batter.

There are a variety of recipes in this book. There are a few traditional stand-bys like chocolate chip cookies and snickerdoodles. There are also more unusual recipes, such as honey hemp bars, pebbly-beach fruit squares, breakfast biscotti, spicy carrot masala macaroons, and alfajores. Also, macarons are becoming popular, and there is a recipe, with variations, for French macarons.

One note for people looking for recipes for individuals with food sensitivities or special diets - there is a guide at the back of the book the lists recipes for wheat-free cookies, dairy-free cookies, cookies made with whole grains, and less fat and 2 (Weight Watchers) point treats. Each of the cookies in the point section lists how many cookies you can have for the points. For example, melting chocolate meringues - 2 cookies for 2 points. Other listings include doughs that freeze well, cookies that will keep for at least two weeks, and quick and easy recipes. For some reason, the listings don't have page numbers with the names of the cookies, but the index immediately follows the listings.

There aren't very many pictures in the book - only about 2 to 4 recipes in a chapter are pictured. I find that a little disappointing because I love to see what I'm about to make.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's cookie time!, December 21, 2010
This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
I received this book as part of a cookie class (demo) with Alice Medrich at our local Central Market. The book is beautiful, with wonderful pictures and great organization. I can vouch for the cookies that Alice graciously baked for us during our class time...they were all delicious, as well as the macaroon topped brownies that I made the other day. A great book to have on hand while you do your holiday baking. And if, like me, you missed out on an opportunity to purchase the now out-of-print Cookies and Brownies, you'll be happy to have this collection in its place. The recipes are clear, with great instructions given to complete each step, and weights are provided for the ingredients in addition to the normal "cup of flour" that can lead to varied results between batches even with the same baker at the oven. I'm a cookie hound with a full collection of cookbooks and holiday cookie magazines and I can say that this book is pushing it's way to the top of my favorites based on the first few cookies tried.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Gem From The Expert Medrich, March 27, 2011
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This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
I make no secret of my admiration for Medrich's books. The woman does not put out anything that isn't truly excellent. This book takes many of her previous cookies from various books and updates them as well as giving us a whole new set of delicious recipes. Not only that, she put in weights for every single one! Aside from the precision this affords, it's just that much faster to weigh out everything than bothering with cups. If only all books started including weights!

What I love most about her books is present in this one and that's her excellent palate. This isn't another of the far-too-common books out there that wants to beat you over the head with excess. You know the type --- chocolate-covered-caramel-drizzled-nutty-salty-bacon sugar bombs. I can trust that I'm not going to end up with some cloyingly sweet, overly fatty, inedible concoction. There are already way too many books with over-the-top sweet baked goods. Too many that just seem to tack on more, more, not realizing that sometimes less is more. Medrich goes for textural perfection, for clean flavors. She's not trendy, but she is inventive. With a simple variation, she makes something familiar into something completely new. There's never any filler, nothing thrown in that isn't worth making. And she relies on quality ingredients and proper technique to speak for themselves. No gimmicks.

Now let me get specific because by now you want to know just what flavors and textures I'm talking about. Her coconut macaroons are perfect. They're crispy and caramelized on the outside, chewy within. These will make you forget stale-tasting, tooth-achingly sweet macaroons. They're also very, very easy to make and very cheap, if that's the sort of thing that factors in for you.
As soon as you get this book, you must make the coconut or the sesame sticks (well, you should make both really). They're just perfection. Buttery, crunchy, addictive cookies that nobody can resist. I will say that I found insulating the sheet pans by placing one sheet pan on top of another empty one was necessary for more even baking (so that the bottoms don't brown too much while the tops are still fairly pale), but so far nobody else who has made them has had this be the case. However, if you do have the same problem, well, the solution is pretty simple.
The spicy Linzer bars are chewy, nutty, and perfectly spiced. You can trick yourself into thinking they're not as rich in butter as they are and have them for breakfast. ;)
The coconut tuiles are simply amazing. I really can't wait to make them again. Golden, caramelized, and with a deep coconut flavor. They're like the cookie version of a potato chip.
Her crunchy seed cookies are very hard to stop eating. The fennel seeds in particular keep you coming back for more. The texture is perfect. I've made them twice now.
Hazelnut and cacao nib sables are perfectly sandy, nutty, toasty, and just the right amount of sweetness. The texture of the cookie combined with the crunch of the add-ins really is irresistible. They'll remind you a bit of chocolate chip cookies at times, but so much more addictive!

There are more I could list, but I'll stop because otherwise this review will be unmercifully long. All the recipes are very straightforward and simple. The results belie this simplicity. :)
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, January 8, 2011
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This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
I agree with all of the positive reviews said so far on this book.

The one thing I wanted to add is that all of the ingredients, except for spices or leavening agents & the like, are listed in both volume AND GRAMS! Measurement by weight is such a hard thing to find in cookbooks, and makes ALL the difference in baking. She tells you how much flour, butter, milk, chocolate, cheese, etc to add in each recipe. For this reason alone, if you measure your ingredients by weight, you'll find your cookies made by this book's recipes coming out wonderfully.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My favorite sweets cookbook author, but not my favorite book, May 26, 2011
This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
I love Alice Medrich's cookbooks. Chocolat is my go-to for chocolate desserts, and I've gotten more inspiration out of that dog-eared, dripped-on tome than almost any other cookbook in my vast collection.

I was excited when I got this book for my birthday, since I'm a baker through and through. (My nickname is Cookie!) But though I appreciate the creativity in many of the recipes, I have to say I don't love this book as much as Medrich's others. Don't get me wrong, there are definitely gems: the Bittersweet Decadence Cookies and the Gooey Turtle Bars.

If I were concerned about low-fat or wheat-free diets, I might appreciate this book more. As it stands, when I indulge in a cookie I want to be eating an indulgent cookie. And when I read a cookie cookbook, I want not just to be awed by the photos but to be inspired to grab my spatula and apron and head to the kitchen ASAP. For me, this book just didn't have me raring to get cooking.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty Good Book, September 21, 2011
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This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
There are a lot of recipes in this book, so if variety is what you're looking for, this is a good book. I like that there is an index for specific kinds of cookies; wheat free, Weight Watchers, etc.
It seems like most of the recipes are plan ahead recipes. Many of them require wait/rest time for several hours or overnight. I understand why, but sometimes you just want cookies NOW!
It's still a pretty solid recipe book, with good instructions.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Cookie Recipes EVER, December 9, 2011
This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
I LOVE THIS COOKBOOK!!! I have been baking for 30 years and have a great deal of experience. This cookbook has impressed me so much. It is intelligently written, with a number of options and variations for each recipe, allowing the home baker to adjust according to ingredients on hand. There are gluten-free options as well. Additionally, the recipes are a unique approach to cookie baking. The author has you melting butter before adding it to the batter, chilling batter overnight-- all sorts of technical details that, when explicitly followed, make exquisite cookies. That being said, most of the recipes in this book I would consider as intermediate to advanced-- not "throw together and get it in the oven as soon as possible", but a bit more on the sophisticated side. A bit of forethought is required with most of these recipes. But they are immensely rewarding in the end! I have made several of the recipes so far, a few repeatedly. My absolute favorite is the Macaron recipe. These are incredibly delicious. The brownie recipes, blondies, chocolate chip cookies, fruit squares-- all wonderful. I highly recommend this cookbook to the serious home baker.
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21 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Drop Dead Delicious!, November 14, 2010
This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
I have long been a fan of the now-defunct "Cocolat" Boulangeries from my Berkeley/Bay Area days and Alice Medrich's delectable cookbooks. Her latest book is no less phenominal. Her great talent in articulate foodie writing suceeds in almost allowing the reader to taste the recipe and appreciate it's mouth-feel or texture. I could not ask for more! Her recipes are not merely good, they are exquisite. If the cook follows her very clear directions, they will certainly get rave reviews and recipe requests from their delighted tasters. Medrich's idea of arranging the cookie recipes by texture is a novel idea which is just what cookie lovers will appreciate when they grab (her) cookbook at the end of a hard day, anxious to whip up just the right kind of therapeutic heaven!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Something for everyone, June 16, 2011
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Beth (United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich (Paperback)
Although the book is enormous and absolutely packed with recipes of all types from brownies to biscotti and everything in between I found only a single recipe that I will be making (the Goldies on page 48). Most of the recipes are either slice and bake or roll, cut, and bake cookies (not the bar cookies or brownies, of course). I'm strictly a drop cookie girl, hence the single selection.

Frankly, if you can't find at least one recipe in this compilation that you'd like to try then you're just not looking hard enough. There is literally something for everyone, including quite a few recipes that are wheat free.

Granted, there are not photos of every single recipe, but the important (such as shaped tuiles) ones are visually represented. Overall, fewer than 25% of the recipes are shown, but it's not a huge deal. The book is well formatted for easy browsing and each recipe begins on a left hand page which results in two facing pages being used for each recipe which is infinitely easier for actually baking from the book. Cookie, bar, and brownie lovers will enjoy this book and it would make a lovely gift as well.
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Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich
Chewy Gooey Crispy Crunchy Melt-in-Your-Mouth Cookies by Alice Medrich by Alice Medrich (Paperback - November 12, 2010)
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