If you are from the US and Canada, cookies refer to a small, flat and baked treat. It is usually mixed with flour, eggs, sugar, butter, oil and often added with raisins, oats and chocolate chips. For other English-speaking countries, cookies are known as biscuits .
Why do the Americans refer it to cookie instead of biscuit? The term “cookie” was introduced in the English language from the Dutch in the 18th century. Dutch and English immigrants brought the cookie to America in the 1600s. While the British called it biscuits or tea cakes, the Dutch called it the koekjes for small koek (cake) and in the early 1700s koekje became known as “cookie” and became an American term .
The oldest known cookies are the Italian wafer cookies called pizzelles. The name came from the Italian word “pizze” meaning round and flat. These cookies were served to mark a celebration during the ancient times. The first pizzelles irons were baked bearing a family crest .
In the US, the first commercial cookie was the Animal Cracker which was introduced in 1902 . In the late 19th Century, England imported animal-shaped cookies to the US and became a big hit and demand domestically increased to the extent that bakers had to produce it locally.
Typical shapes in the Animal Cracker are animals that are often seen in zoos- lion, tiger, bear and elephant. Crackers are light-colored and slightly sweet and also come in chocolate or frosted variety .
The best-selling cookie in the 20th Century is the Oreo which was developed and manufactured by Nabisco, an American company in 1912 . The Oreo were concocted with the British in mind and were named “Oreo Biscuits” and was later renamed “Oreo Creme Sandwich” in the 1940s and was later changed again in the 1970s to “Oreo Chocolate Sandwich Cookie” .
In 2012, statista.com statistics that the Top Ten Cookies in Terms of Sale in the US are the following:
1. Private Label
2. Nabisco Oreo
3. Nabisco Chips Ahoy
4. Nabisco Oreo Double Stuff
5. Little Debbie
7. Little Debbie Nutty Bar
8. Nabisco Nilla
9. Nabisco Newtons
10. Pepperidge Farm Milano
The famous Mexican wedding cake is not actually a cake but a cookie. The cookies that are served during weddings are similar to the Russian tea cake which is made of ground nuts, flour, butter, sugar, however in Mexico they are rolled into balls or crescent shaped and dusted with confectioner’s sugar .
The State of Massachusetts of the USA in 1997 recognized the chocolate chip cookie as their official state cookie in remembrance of its founding in the Tollhouse Restaurant in Whitman, Massachusetts in 1930 .
The State of Pennsylvania has been held up for several years whether to choose chocolate chip cookie or the Nazareth sugar cookie as the state cookie. In the 2003-2004 legislation highlighted the importance of snack production as the biggest industry and the importance in acknowledging the loyalty of the people in the state to the chocolate chip cookie .
In 2002, Bruce Willis bought his daughter’s (Tallulah) 12,000 boxes of Girl Scout cookies to send to the US troops. The cookies were distributed to the sailors of USS John F. Kennedy and other troops stationed in the Middle East during that time .
Matthew Cutts, then working for the ads engineering group and SafeSearch for Google, was known as the “Cookie Porn Guy”. He gave homemade cookies by his wife to anyone in the team who can provide examples of porn in the search results .
The US Military has published a 26-page government document- MIL-C-44072C to mass produce chocolate-covered oatmeal cookies and brownies for the Department of Defense for operational rations purposes .