Having baked and handed out so many cookies, I have learned a few things about cookie preferences. First, chocolate chip cookies really are the best cookies. They just work.
Second, oatmeal and peanut butter are both more popular in cookies than I expected. Not everyone likes them, but I just had the impression that more people were pickier than they are.
Third, contrary to the first point and building on the second point, sugar cookies and snickerdoodles are the most universally palatable cookies. Almost everyone likes chocolate chip cookies, but there are a few chocolate holdouts. Assuming you don’t have any dietary restrictions, though, the snickerdoodle may be the safest bet.
My last batch of snickerdoodle involved grinding cinnamon sticks by hand, but I wasn’t going to do that again, so I took this recipe from America’s Test Kitchen.
I like that my ATK cookbook is a binder. Also I feel very clever for thinking to put the page in a ziplock bag for protection.
The dough uses a mix of butter and seasoning but otherwise starts normally: cream it with the sugar, then add eggs.
The one interesting ingredient is the cream of tartar. My understanding is that it gives snickerdoodles a bit of that tangy flavor, though I suspect that it was an acquired, not designed part of the recipe. I think cream of tartar was just included originally as part of the chemical leavening.
The dough came out thicker and drier than most recent recipes, but it was nothing to be worried about. This time, I actually baked all in one go as well rather than chilling before baking.
The recipe called for 2 tbsp balls, but I just used my 1.5 tbsp scoop, then rolled it in the cinnamon sugar. Since the dough was so thick, I actually didn’t have as many issues with sticky fingers.
The cookies baked and kept a very cylindrical shape: the edges at the top were about even with the edges at the bottom. I also chalk this up to the thick dough that didn’t spread much.
Overall, these snickerdoodles came out fine. They were chewy and kept the texture for the following days. My only issue is that they weren’t very spicy, which is entirely my fault. I have an old Costco-sized container of cinnamon that isn’t very potent anymore.