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Tuesday
Mar042008

Pretty In Pink: A Sweet History of the Pink Frosted Cookie

 

The Pink Frosted Cookie

Regional Specialties--what's up with them, exactly? Sure, you have the big famous ones--New York bagels, Chicago deep dish pizza, San Francisco sourdough. But what about those not-quite-as-famous ones, existing just a little bit under the radar? Those ever-present little food items that you might even stop noticing simply because they are ubiquitous--it might take a trip or a move from your hometown to raise your awareness. But why is this, exactly? Why is it that kolaches about in Texas but are sparse elsewhere, that black and white cookies reign in the Mid-Atlantic, but don't seem to exist in the Pacific Northwest? Yes, these are the questions that fill our minds and color our days here at Cakespy--and right now, that regional bee in our bonnet is The Pink Frosted Cookie.

 

If you don't live in Seattle, you might not even know about this cookie (while it exists elsewhere, we've never seen it in quite the same proliferation in our assorted travels); even if you do live in Seattle, you might not have stopped to question why it is that this confection is always around--gas stations, delis, grocery stores, drugstores--everywhere! What makes this relatively simple cookie, comprised of a rich shortbread base and a very generous, very sweet frosting topcoat, so popular? Luckily for you, we found out about its history so you don't have to.

On our path of discovery, the first thing we discovered is that the "original" pink frosted cookie was sold under the name Uncle Seth's Cookie--while various takes on it exist (including a company we like, Bite Me, Inc.), this Uncle was the Founding Father. The company (and recipe) was sold to Seattle wholesaler Mostly Muffins in 1996, and this is where we discovered this story:


Uncle Seth’s Cookie was a concept developed from a passion of fun and feeling good. From the high mountain tops of Bali came the inspiration for the feel good cookie. Danny Brown, the originator and inventor of the Original Pink, also known as an Uncle Seth Cookie, found a kindred spirit in a man named Seth. Seth moved from a crazed urban setting better known as the City, to live his dream of peace in the mountains. The namesake of the Uncle Seth Cookie gave tribute to this man named Seth who changed his life for the sake of fun and happiness. To bring a bit of that passion and fun to light, Danny created a cookie that says eat me because you can. This cookie has a good aura. After nine years of hand rolling this Danish Shortbread, Danny too, decided to head for the hills. Mostly Muffins purchased Uncle Seth’s Cookies in 1996 and Danny was off to live in Hawaii!

 

Mostly Muffins now proudly carries on the tradition of fun and feeling good by serving the Original Pink to the entire Northwest community. Eat one of the Original Pink Cookies and you can’t help but smile!

Okay, so it proves that fact can be stranger than fiction--without, of course, explaining why the cookies are so popular, or why they thrived in the Seattle region. Our theory? So happy you asked. In our minds, the first aspect is timing: the cookie got its start being sold in coffee carts just as the coffee business was starting up in earnest in Seattle; naturally, they would appeal for the same reasons that coffee is so popular in the area--the climate just begs for rich treats and coffee during those rainy days that take up oh, eight months of the year. The second and perhaps more important aspect? Duh--The frosting color. there's no secret that pink frosting tastes better than any other color.
See? You've learned something new today! And while the pink frosted cookie itself seems to be a Seattle phenomenon, we do believe that the concept behind the regional specialty is universal, so approach your local treats mindfully; whether it's strange, cute or plain scary, there's bound to be a story behind that confection!

For more information on the pink frosted cookie, visit mostlymuffins.com. Not in the Seattle area but want a pink frosted cookie? We hear you: similar-looking products can be found online here and here, or--even better, we found a recipe which is said to yield a very similar taste to the original Uncle Seth's Cookie, right here at allrecipes.com.
Cakespy Note: Want our Cake Gumshoes to research a particular baked good in your area? Let us know! Feel free to leave a suggestion for us to sleuth in the comments or via email to jessieoleson@gmail.com.

 


 

Reader Comments (56)

Oh, I want one of those RIGHT NOW.

damn they look good.

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

YUM! Sams Club always has pink frosted sugar cookies with colored sprinkles on top. I am unsure of what company makes them though. I will check it out next time I go in. They are damn tasty too.

March 4 | Unregistered Commenterslush

I did learn something new today...and I live outside of Seattle. Though I haven't seen the pink cookie in awhile.

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterPeabody

My husband and I used to live in Spokane and every local bakery made these delicious pink cookies :) I guess they're spreading all over Washington. I'm originally from Georgia, and had never seen cookies like these before moving to Spokane. We had shortbread tea cookies, but none with frosting.

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterKristina

I've been wondering about the pink cookies. Now I'll have to try one! Great work, Cakespy!

If you send me some pink cookies, I'll be happy to talk them up on the East Coast! :-)

The http://experiencespokane.com/rocketbakery/" REL="nofollow">Rocket Bakery bakes pink cookies in Spokane. I learned of them http://www.supereggplant.com/archives/000500.html" REL="nofollow">here. Yum.

March 4 | Unregistered Commenterlulife

what a cool post! I think looking at these cookies is even funner than eating them!

March 4 | Unregistered Commenterbazu

I will have to remember the pink frosting rule. :)

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterKevin

How neat! I love the little bit of history in this. I've seen these cookies around every now and then on the east coast... now I want to go to seattle just to see them everywhere! :)

Excellent story!

I remember seeing those in Seattle all the time... I just never had the urge to buy one, as frosting in plastic-wrap is unappealing... it always sticks to the wrap! Bleh.

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterValency

Never heard of these pink cookies, but I will certainly be on the lookout for them when I'm next in Seattle.

i LOVE these pink cookies:)

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterAnticiPlate

My grandmother used to make bunny cookies every easter and frost the ears pink and sprinkle coconut on them. I love cookies and frosting.

What a fun story! I would love those cookies. You're right, pink frosting does taste best!

I'll have to come to Seattle to taste this pink cookie, looks... sweet!

I adore the big pink cookies! I need to make a vegan version, stat!

That was fun! Unfortunately, I have never see the pink frosted cookie and I don't know if we have any local specialties (we live in somewhere very, very, boring!). Maybe I can make one up?

March 5 | Unregistered CommenterAran

Rainy day or not, I just want this pinky beauty everyday!

March 5 | Unregistered CommenterGattina

Looks delicious and pinky ;-)

March 5 | Unregistered CommenterHappy cook

Now I must have sugar cookies. MUST!!

Oh my...Valley of the Cupcakes is just too funny! Do you ever illustrate using persons rather than cupcakes? Your art is adorable! Let me know.

teaorwine

March 5 | Unregistered Commenterteaorwine

Never knew these cookies and I have to say I'm a sucker for pink food. :)

Even with the Flu, I think I could eat that whole bag of cookies! Mmmmmmm...

Yep, you're right - never heard of the pink frosted cookie. I have a friend in Seattle who favorite color is pink so I'll send her out to do some leg work for me.

In the deep South (Atlanta area), they have boiled peanuts. Texas also has pralines (a gooey caramel with pecans) in every Mexican restaurant. I love the idea of regional specialties! Thank you, dear, for bringing these cookies to our attention.

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