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Easy cookie recipes can help build confidence in the kitchen

Homemade cookies are a perennial favorite and are often easy to make.

"Cookie recipes typically require basic kitchen skills such as measuring and mixing and provide an opportunity to build skills in the kitchen and learn about food and food safety," said Karen Blakeslee, Kansas State University Research and Extension food scientist. She shared a recipe for a kid-favorite chocolate no-bake cookie from Kids A Cookin' and two recipes from the new 4-H Centennial Cookbook, "Essence of Kansas: Taste Three."

Chocolate No-Bake Cookies

Ingredients:
1-1/2 cups sugar
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup evaporated milk (canned)
1/4 cup margarine
3 cups quick-cooking olled oats
1 cup shredded coconut (optional)

Directions:
Wash your hands. In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, cocoa, milk and margarine. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in oats and coconut until well blended. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Refrigerate until firm and store in airtight container. Yield: 40 cookies. Recipe from Kids a Cookin', an educational program produced by K-State Research and Extension's Family Nutrition Program, funded by USDA's Food Stamp Program through a contract with SRS.

Honey-Roasted Peanut Cookies

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups brown sugar, firmly packed
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups margarine, softened
1 1/2 cups peanut butter
1/2 cup honey
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3 eggs
3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

Glaze:
1/3 cup peanut butter
3 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup hot water
1 1/4 - 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup honey-roasted peanuts, chopped

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine sugars and margarine; beat until light and fluffy. Add peanut butter, honey, vanilla, and eggs; blend well. Add flour, baking soda, and salt; mix well. Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheet. With fork dipped in flour, flatten slightly in crisscross pattern. Bake for 9-12 minutes or until golden brown.

Remove from cookie sheet. Cool 15 minutes. Meanwhile, in medium bowl, combine peanut butter, honey, and hot water; blend well. Stir in enough powdered sugar for desired drizzling consistency. Drizzle glaze over cooled cookies. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon peanuts over each cookie. Let stand until set. Yield: 8 dozen. - Contributed to the Kansas 4-H Centennial Cookbook by Jeff Gleason, St. John, Kan.

Raspberry Chewy Brownie Cookies

Ingredients:
2/3 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 bag (12-ounce) raspberry morsels
Nuts (optional)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a mixing bowl, combine shortening, brown sugar, water, and vanilla. Beat at medium speed until well blended. Beat eggs into creamed mixture. Combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix into creamed mixture until blended. Stir in morsels and nuts, if desired. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto cookie sheet. Bake for 7-9 minutes. Do not overbake. Yield: 2 dozen. - Contributed to the Kansas 4-H Centennial Cookbook by Mary Jane King, Topeka, Kan.

The 4-H Centennial Cookbook includes 500 recipes and is available at local and district Extension offices for $15. The cookbooks also can be purchased by mail from the Kansas 4-H Foundation, 116 Umberger Hall, KSU, Manhattan, KS 66506 for $18 (book plus $3 postage and handling). For more information, call 785-532-5881.

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