The Cookie Recipe That Launched a Thousand Cheesecakes

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Paul Verano is the master of cheesecake in Seattle, having recently opened a second location for his popular shop, The Confectional, on Capitol Hill to supplement the throngs of people who visit his tiny store front in Pike Place Market. Now, with Halloween over, he and his staff can concentrate on creating holiday flavors like eggnog, gingerbread, and cranberry white chocolate with cardamom. Today, however, Verano shares the recipe for the first thing he ever made: no-bake cookies.

"This is my sister's recipe," says Verano. "My very first solo kitchen endeavor when I was about four-and-a-half-years old. It wasn't long before my first batch of peanut butter cookies (also my sister's recipe) then chocolate chip cookies and eventually chocolate cakes. I was never satisfied with recipes. I had to alter them from a very early age because 'I know how to make it better'."

"Growing up in a household of little to no sugar products we were only allowed sweets if we made them. So being an adolescent without sugar you'd imagine it was simply always a craving. Learning to make my own treats early on was the only way I got through childhood, (and a friend's house where I first tried Fruity Pebbles). To this day my mother completely takes credit for my baking abilities, and, you guessed it, she is one of The Confectional's biggest fans."

Vickie's No Bake Cookies

2 c. sugar

3 Tblsp. cocoa

½ c. milk

1 stick butter

½ c. peanut butter

3 c. quick cooked oats

1 tsp. vanilla

Directions:

In a sauce pan: add sugar, cocoa, milk and butter. Boil the four ingredients for about one minute. Turn off heat and stir in remaining ingredients: peanut butter, quick oats and vanilla. Spoon out onto wax paper using a tablespoon. Cool and enjoy!

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