So last weekend I was at Cookie School with a guest from Pittsburg. She was very friendly but we all could immediately tell by her accent that she wasn't from around here. She told us that she wanted to be able to make cookies for "The Cookie Table" at wedding receptions. I was immediately suspicious because I have been to a whole lot of weddings and I have never seen a table dedicated to cookies. I explained the significance of the wedding cake and how it features prominently at wedding receptions here in the south. Ultimately she got me all off track because if there is such a thing as a COOKIE TABLE, I certainly need to know about it.
I googled it right there in class. Y'all. It is TOTALLY a THING. Apparently it is prominent in southern Pennsylvania, Italian cultures, and Catholic families. Still, I have been to a lot of weddings and never encountered what she was describing. Yes, I asked her all the questions you all are dying to know. Most of the cookies are baked by family, particularly grandmothers for weeks before the wedding. There are dozens of varieties, some more favored than others. The Cookie Table is the centerpiece of the reception hall. Yes, there is still cake involved but it pales in comparison to the Cookie Table. People who love the couple often bake a recipe or two to contribute. It becomes a sugar sweet smorgasbord regardless of whether the reception involves a sit-down meal, appetizers, or CAKE!
Once I wrapped my mind around what a sweet tradition this is, I immediately wondered why it did not originate in the south. This sounds exactly like something we would do. Think of the cookie you would contribute if the bride was really special to you. Think about how much love is represented on a beautiful table strewn with the most cookies you will find this side of Cookie Con! Think of how much you would enjoy perusing that table at your next celebration. I have repeatedly said that I am glad that every time I got married it was before you had to give every wedding guest a party favor for coming but I am thinking that if the Cookie Table became a southern staple at weddings, a little bag of cookies might be a perfectly sweet, "thank you!" What do you think about this Italian, Catholic, Southern Pennsylvanian tradition? Don't you think it belongs in the south?