The quarterly newsletter for Assumption BVM Church

September, 2016 | Archived Recipes

Deb’s Perfect Chewy Sugar Cookie

If you have ever been to a parish event that our Hospitality Committee was involved in, then it is likely that you have tasted one of Deb Tumpak’s baked goodies.  Deb’s reputation as an expert baker is widely known among Assumption’s parishioners. Deb loves to bake and we are grateful that Deb loves to share.  Deb has always been a fan of chewy cookies and below is her recipe for the “Perfect Chewy Sugar Cookie”.  This recipe hits it right, a bit crisp on the edges, but chewy in the middle.  The chewiness does not fade if the cookies sit for a few days (not likely they’ll last that long).  She also likes that this can be mixed by hand, in fact, Deb says, “I think they are best mixed by hand so you don’t over mix them and end up with tough cookies.”
There is an amusing side story to this recipe, according to Deb…

“One of the many times I baked for an event at ABVM, I decided to make these.  I chose vanilla and coconut as the flavors.  These can be made in many different flavors… I’ve done vanilla, almond, lemon, lime coconut and even snickerdoodles.  Due to my schedule I had to drop them off at the rectory early in the day.  I knew this was a great risk with Fr. Bill’s sweet tooth.  I was in the office with Dot when Father came in, he insisted he had to “quality check” the product.  He took a vanilla cookie and when he found out there were also coconut, he had to come back for one of those.

Thankfully, they survived to be put out at the event and were as expected gobbled up in no time flat.  I’m not sure how people know what I’ve baked but they seem to know and it typically disappears before anything else.
The most amusing part of the story is my getting my container back, it was left in the office with a note from Fr. Bill that said I was not allowed to have the container back unless I handed over the recipe.  It is a recipe I go to time and again because it is pretty much fail-proof and everyone loves the end product.”
If you would like to become part of our Hospitality Committee, please email Nora at

Perfect Chewy Sugar Cookie

Recipe Picture Fall 20162 1/4 C unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp table salt
1 1/2 C granulated sugar, plus 1/3 cup for rolling
2 ounces cream cheese, cut into 8 pieces
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted 
1/3 C vegetable oil
1 large egg
1 Tbsp milk
2 tsp vanilla extract (or other of your choosing)

  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together in medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. Place 1½ cups sugar and cream cheese in large bowl. Place remaining 1/3 cup sugar in shallow baking dish or pie plate and set aside. Pour warm butter over sugar and cream cheese and whisk to combine (some small lumps of cream cheese will remain but will smooth out later). Whisk in oil until incorporated. Add egg, milk, and vanilla; continue to whisk until smooth. Add flour mixture and mix with rubber spatula until soft homogeneous dough forms.
  3. Divide dough into 24 equal pieces, about 2 tablespoons each (or use #40 portion scoop). Using hands, roll dough into balls. Working in batches, roll balls in reserved sugar to coat and evenly space on prepared baking sheet, 12 dough balls per sheet. Using bottom of drinking glass, flatten dough balls until 2 inches in diameter. Sprinkle tops evenly with 4 teaspoons of sugar remaining in shallow dish (2 teaspoons per tray), discarding any remaining sugar.
  4. Bake, 1 tray at a time, until edges are set and just beginning to brown, 11 to 13 minutes, rotating tray after 7 minutes. Cool cookies on baking sheets 5 minutes. Using wide metal spatula, transfer cookies to wire rack and cool to room temperature.  (The baking one tray at a time is crucial, I’ve tried doing both trays together and the cookies have never come out the right way.)
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