Beginning at age 5 or so, if you asked me what my favorite food was, I would respond with noodle pudding (kugel). Today, I still give the same answer. It’s actually shocking that I’ve never shared my mom’s recipe on Cupcake Project. Kugel comes in many forms, but my mom makes it as a casserole of egg noodles, cottage cheese, cinnamon, apples, golden raisins, and whatever other dried or fresh fruit she chooses to add to it on any given day. Kugel is typically served as a sweet side dish, but I eat mine as a main course, often cold, although I enjoy it hot as well.
These kugel cookies have the flavors of my mom’s kugel (cottage cheese, golden raisins, apples, and cinnamon) in a soft, gnarly, golden Chanukah cookie. They are a comfort food transformation that anyone who grew up on holiday kugel will appreciate and enjoy.
I was drawn to the cottage cheese cookie recipe from 1962. This quote from The Gourmet Cookie Book about the cottage cheese cookies gives you a sense of how each cookie in the book is described:
This is not just the best cookie Gourmet published this year: it is the only one. Since the beginning of the decade, Americans were jetting to faraway places much more frequently than they ever had before. This was reflected in the pages of the magazine, which spent more time covering European destinations and less time on nostalgic articles about the past. But although the magazine gave cookies short shrift, when it did come up with a recipe, it was a winner. Cottage cheese in cookies might sound strange, but it is much like ricotta, lending a subtle tang that mellows a sugar cookie into something nuanced and very lovely.
It’s hard to believe that the magazine just published one cookie recipe that year and it was cottage cheese cookies – it’s a surprising choice.
My kugel cookies are my adaption of Gourmet’s cottage cheese cookies. Enjoy!