4th Grader’s “Yellowhammer” Cookie Declared State’s Official Cookie | “Sweet Home Alabama Just Got a Little Sweeter”
Who doesn't love cookies? We live in a world of diverse assorted cookies—from chocolate chip to gooey jam-filled cookies to peanut butter ones and the healthier version of oatmeal and raisin cookies. They are mass favorites and make brilliant gift options during festivals, celebrations and otherwise. But there is one specific type of cookie that you haven't yet heard of.
This cookie is not just a food item, but it now represents a whole state, courtesy of a 4th grader. Yellowhammer cookies got designated via legislation by Gov. Kay Ivey on Friday, June 2, 2023. The state of Alabama now has its own official cookie prepared by a young girl named Mary Claire Cook who is a student at Trinity Presbyterian School in Montgomery. This signature cookie was whipped up as a winning recipe, which included pecans, peanut butter and honey. Quite a flavorful choice of ingredients! But how did they think of having their own state cookie? Well, students at Montgomery's Trinity Presbyterian School came up with the idea.
During a lesson on Alabama's history, the students learned about national emblems and symbols, including a state vegetable, nut, amphibian and spirit. So, why not a state cookie, right? The school immediately thought of proposing it to the state officials. Kathryn Bandy, the college counselor at Trinity told WSFA-TV, "We figured Alabama doesn't have a state cookie but other states do." However, it was a surprise of fate to the 4th grader as her cookie was chosen to be the state's official one. The school's seniors had the task of choosing the winning recipe. They crowned Cook's Yellowhammer cookie.
It was also the seniors' responsibility to choose the unique cookie name and they were the ones who pitched the idea of a state cookie to GOP Rep. Reed Ingram. They shared the reason for choosing this particular cookie from a bunch of entries. Trinity senior Russel Powell told the outlet, "We selected the cookie because it has three ingredients that really encapsulate the state of Alabama with pecans from Mobile and Baldwin counties, nuts from the Dothan area and oats from Central Alabama." The hidden symbolism of the state in the cookie is admirable.
Reed Ingram (Alabama State Representative) fancied having a cookie exclusive to the Alabama state and sponsored the bill to name the Yellowhammer the state cookie. "This gave us the opportunity to put all the stuff that they read about in books and we really got to see it come in real life here on the floor today," said Bandy.
A bill was passed in the House and Senate that called to make Yellowhammer a state cookie. At the signing ceremony, the 4th grader who created the original recipe appeared in front of the Senate with a batch of her cookies (of course). The governor, Ivey taste-tested the now-famous cookies before officially declaring them the state's cookies. "Sweet Home Alabama just got a little sweeter!" Ivey said.