There is one kitchen tool that I find gets very little attention; the lowly rolling pin. At minimum I feel that anyone who does a variety of cooking and baking needs at least two. I have three at present.
The top one is from Martha Stewart and is the 'French Style' . I bought this one on a whim during a clearance sale and absolutely love it. It is made of a nice firm wood, not pine. This is generally my rolling pin of choice.
The middle rolling pin is made of marble. Great for rolling more fragile pastries on warm days. The pin is quite heavy and it does most of the work for me. I have had this one since my university days and have bought a few to give to friends.
The bottom one is the newest. Even though I have had it at least 5 years I have not used it. It is for making pretty little cookies. There are three rows of carved squares. I know that you roll your cookie dough with a regular rolling pin and then the final step is too roll over with this pin. Problem is, it didn't come with a recipe and I had not seen one before except in a cookbook illustration.
This is where I need your help. Do you know what this pin is called ? Do you have a recipe that would work with it? Probably a dough that doesn't rise all that much or the impressions made will disappear when baked.
Linda has sent me a link to an interesting article about rolling pins at croppingcooks.com. She suggests that my pin might be a springerle.
Old hand-carved wooden rolling pins with grooves cut into their barrels were used for making cookies, particularly the Springerle, a typical anise-flavored Christmas cookie from Austria and Baveria (Springerle is German for little knight or jumping horse). The designs on these pins were the quaint figures of animals, fruits, and flowers, each carved in a square outline.