It’s also rather unfortunate that in my family, three of our four birthdays fall within one month (all two weeks apart), so by the time my husband’s birthday rolls around, everyone is “caked-out”, so to speak. (If I ever write a cookbook, I’ll tell you a funny story about one of my husband’s birthday cakes! Don’t tell him I said that, as he doesn’t think it’s funny!)
So when we’re not so happy with cake anymore, I turn back to my college days when I used to make “birthday cookies” for all my friends. I’d either make them with chocolate chip cookie dough or brownie batter in a large pizza pan. Everyone liked them so much better than cake, and there was no need for plates or forks, which are always difficult to come upon when you’re a college student, right?
If you’re wondering how long I’ve been a baking nut, let’s just say it’s been a long time. Without getting into a long story, one of my friends from my college years was very tall with blonde, wispy hair and although his name was Jeff, these features earned him the nickname of Big Bird (actually come to think of it, his name still is Jeff). :) My friends and I delighted in calling him Big Bird, and I don’t believe he was ever given a single birthday card which was written out to “JEFF”. Nope, it was either Big Bird or BB for short; in fact I still have a photo of one of his birthday brownies. You can imagine his reaction when he saw this!
So if you don’t feel like baking a cake or have a cookie lover who’s birthday is approaching, why don’t you make a birthday cookie or brownie, instead? I’ll show you how, and don’t think you have to draw a character on top, because you can make it as simple or as detailed as you like.
As you can see, it definitely is much more forgiving to decorate on a cookie than a beautifully iced cake that will show every imperfection!
A Chocolate Chip (or Brownie) Birthday Cookie
-chocolate chip cookie dough (enough for a pizza pan) or brownie batter
–buttercream icing to decorate edges or to write on the cookie
-any kind of decorations as desired
-large pizza pan
Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C)
Line a large pizza pan with aluminum foil. Press enough cookie dough into the pan to cover the bottom with the dough about 3/4″ thick.
Use the back of a spoon to push the dough.
Continue until the pan is completely even.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the cookie is puffed up and golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
When completely cool, lift the cookie out using the aluminum foil. Remove the foil and place on a serving plate or tray (I happened to have a tray which was the exact same size as the cookie), and decorate as desired.
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