Usually when people think about sweet treats, their minds are filled with images of gooey marshmallows, fresh gelato, warm chocolate cake, or tasty cupcakes. But on December 4th we should really be thinking about the simple, sweet, crunchy delight known as the cookie! Why? Because it’s National Cookie Day!
Most historians agree that the invention of the cookie dates back to the seventh century B.C.E. in the Persian Empire (present day Iran). Persia was one of the first countries to cultivate sugar, which was first brought to the region from Southeast Asia. During the Islamic invasions of Spain and the Crusades, the techniques used to make Persian cookies spread into the Eastern Mediterranean and northern-most parts of Europe. This led to the development of the spice trade, and later these ideas influenced French cooks in making filled wafer cookies during the latter-14th century during the Renaissance.
By the end of the 1500s, square short cookies baked with spices and egg yolks was a common luxury found in the homes of Elizabethan England’s middle class. They were also found to be the perfect food for travelers, as biscuits called hardtack stayed fresh for long periods of time and were portable. Since then, making and selling cookies has become a booming business for bakers all over the world, with many variations, including American chocolate chip cookies, brownies, fig newtons, and fortune cookies; Italian biscottis; French ladyfingers; Scottish-Australian Anzac biscuits; and more.
So enjoy National Cookie Day, and indulge with a cookie or two!
Stradley, Linda. “History of Cookies.” https://whatscookingamerica.net What’s Cooking America, 2016. Web. 3 December 2016. https://whatscookingamerica.net/History/CookieHistory.htm
By Roma (MYP4)