Butter Cookies from Cherries in Winter

In honor of the release of Suzan Colón’s memoir Cherries in Winter, three members of our Doubleday team and self-proclaimed “Team Cherries in Winter” gathered at one of our tiny apartments to bake Suzan’s famous Butter Cookies. These cookies have become legendary in our offices because Suzan is always sure to bring a bag of these delicious treats when she stops by for a visit. Any time cookies are in the office, someone asks—”Where’s Suzan?”

With Suzan’s “How-To” video as our guide, we got to work—no more than two at a time in the small kitchen space!

Fortunately, like all recipes in Suzan’s book—ingredients for her Butter Cookies are very inexpensive and easy to find. You probably already have all of them in your kitchen! Ingredients are as follows:

1 1/2 sticks butter at room temperature
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup light brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
A pinch of salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

We split up the duties of mixing the wet and dry ingredients as suggested in the preparation steps:

1. Sift baking soda with flour and salt.
2. Separately, beat egg and sugar until light.
3. Add butter and vanilla to egg and sugar.
4. Combine with flour mixture. (You may also add ½ cup of coarse walnuts.)
5. Divide dough into two parts and roll in wax paper.
6. Keep in freezer overnight.
7. Slice and bake 10-12 minutes at 350?
Yields: 2-4 dozen

Stephanie, our assistant editor for the book, had the task of mixing the butter mixture, and Jillian, the marketer for the book handled the dry. Stephanie had the harder task! Note: if you’re a big fan of vanilla like Stephanie, you can add a little more than the suggested one teaspoon allotment.

Sonia, our online marketing guru then had the grand task of mixing all of our ingredients together. Without an electric hand mixer, Sonia really had to work her arm muscles to evenly mix the dough.

The next challenge was to divide our cookie dough into two separate dough logs for overnight freezing. Stephanie made sure to add a little extra flour to the logs to help give them some nice shape while forming the logs in the paper.

After freezing, Sonia carefully sliced all the logs into even segments and placed them on an ungreased cookie sheet.

Recommended baking time is 10-12 minutes. We found that we needed to stick with a little bit of a longer bake time—closer to 12 minutes.

And voilà!

Ours didn’t come out as perfectly even and round as Suzan’s (she truly is a butter cookie master!) but wow! did they taste good! It might be embarrassing to admit, but a couple of cookies may have accidentally fallen to the floor (when all three of us tried to be in the kitchen at once!)—and we may have eaten them anyway. Five second rule anyone? These cookies are just too good to resist/waste! So eat them we did!

As Suzan states in her video, these are both delicious and inexpensive cookies to give as a gift or to make for the holidays. You can even jazz them up with walnuts or even chocolate chips. They’re sure to bring smiles wherever they go! They barely lasted five minutes when they made it to our office the next day! They’re just that good!