The first time I had a black and white cookie, I was in my first trimester of pregnancy with Andrew.  Ben and I went to have breakfast at a favorite bagel place in our hometown.  Apparently a large bagel and a chocolate milk weren’t quite enough to sate my already heightened appetite, and so I wandered back over to the pastry case.  My eyes immediately zeroed in on a black and white cookie as big as my head…really, I’m not exaggerating.  I bought it and snacked on it on the way back to the car and on the drive home.  The problem was that pesky Ben kept asking for bites when I really just wanted to devour it all on my own.  Eventually I wrapped it up, stuck it in my bag, hid it, and told Ben it was all gone.  (Mature, I know.)  Well, I hid it so well that I didn’t find it again until at least a couple of months later.  (Don’t worry, that wasn’t my regular purse.  Ha!)  When I found it again my knee jerk reaction, instead of the expected disgust at finding a two month old cookie, was major disappointment that I had not finished the whole thing.  It was one great cookie.

I have since been unable to find a black and white cookie that did justice to that fantastic bakery concoction.  And yeah, I know, it was from Indiana and not NYC but I’m telling you, it was great.  I’ve tried a few recipes at home but none have lived up to that infamous giant cookie.  This version, though, is finally one that I deem good enough to make again (and again).  The cookie is really more cake-like than cookie-like in texture, with just a hint of lemon flavor, and the whole thing is glazed with half vanilla/half chocolate topping.  I generally eat them symmetrically but end up saving a little more of the chocolate half for the end because, let’s face it, the chocolate is totally the best part.

One of my best friends, Shanon of The Curvy Carrot, moved away from me this year (::tear::) and though we’re in touch every day via text, email and phone calls, we decided baking together once a month would be a great way to stay connected.  This was our first joint baking adventure and I think we were both happy with the results.  Stay tuned to see what we baked together this month…it’s another good one!

  • Yield about 2 dozen large cookies


For the cookies:
4 cups (16 oz.) cake flour
½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
16 tbsp. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened but still cool
1¾ cups (12¼ oz.) sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
½ tsp. vanilla extract
¼ tsp. lemon extract
1 cup milk

For the glaze:
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped fine
¼ cup light corn syrup
1/3 cup water
5 cups (20 oz.) confectioners’ sugar
½ tsp. vanilla extract
Milk, as needed


  • 01

    To make the cookies, preheat the oven to 375˚ F.  Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.  In a large bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt.  Whisk to combine, and set aside.

  • 02

    In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 30 seconds.  Add in the sugar gradually, increasing the speed to medium-high and beating until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Blend in the eggs, vanilla and lemon extracts at medium speed until combined, about 30 seconds.  With the mixer on low speed, beginning and ending with the flour mixture, alternately add the flour mixture in four additions and the milk in 3 additions just until combined.

  • 03

    Using a ¼-cup measuring cup and a spoon, place six ¼-cup mounds of dough a generous 2 inches apart on each baking sheet.  (The “dough” will seem more like cake batter, and you will probably think you went wrong somewhere.  Don’t worry, it’s supposed to be thin.)  With moistened fingers, gently press each mound of dough into a disk 2½ inches wide and ¾ inch thick.  Bake until the centers of the cookies are firm and the edges are just beginning to brown, about 20 minutes, rotating the baking pans halfway through the baking time.  Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 2 minutes.  Use a wide spatula to transfer the cookies to a wire rack. Repeat with the remaining dough.  Let cookies cool completely before icing.

  • 04

    To make the icing, melt the chocolate in a medium bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water.  Remove from the heat and set aside.  In a medium saucepan, combine the corn syrup and water and bring to a boil.  Remove from the heat and whisk in the confectioners’ sugar and vanilla until combined.  Transfer ¾ cup of the vanilla icing to the bowl with the melted chocolate and stir to combine.  (I found that the chocolate glaze was far too thick so I whisked in 1 teaspoon of milk at a time until it had a consistency similar to that of the vanilla glaze.)

  • 05

    To glaze the cookies, place the cookies on wire racks set over waxed paper or foil.  Use a small offset spatula to spread about 2 tablespoons of the vanilla icing on half the flat side (bottom) of each cookie.  Tilt the cookie and run the spatula around the edge to scrape off excess icing.  Allow to harden slightly, about 15 minutes.  If the icing begins to thicken, stir in milk 1 teaspoon at a time as needed.  Using the offset spatula, spread the chocolate icing over the other half of each cookie, scraping away excess icing from the edge.  Allow the glaze to set at least 1 hour before serving.  The cookies can be stored in an airtight container layered between sheets of parchment paper for up to 3 days.