Chester sixth-graders homemade cookies runaway hit

By Jillian Risberg 

 

Jonah Weinerman was just a toddler when he started baking with his mom and recently learned how to master it on his own.  

 

“I was like ‘oh wait, these are really good,’” says the 11-year-old, surprising even himself about his creation: all-natural, soft and chewy cookies.  

“We all said that,” added mom Shari. “He wants to sort of spread his wings and make new things but has perfected the chocolate chip cookie.”

 

When it comes to other confectionaries,  she won’t let him sell it until they try it and make sure it’s good. 

 

The Gottesman RTW Academy sixth-grader wants to put peanut butter chips in them so it’s like a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup cookie, but that might create allergy issues. 

 

“Right now his cookies are so good and he’s got lots of customers, I feel like ‘let’s not mess with it,’” says Shari, the cooking specialist at her kid’s day camp for five years. “Jonah used to love to come in when I would bake.”

 

And she bakes at home a lot, challah every Friday night for the family. 

“That’s a big deal around here — and I love to bake cookies, so it definitely rubbed off,” adds the Rodan and Fields executive consultant. 

 

Once they let everyone on the street know of Jonah’s venture, he received a bunch of orders.  And three more from a post in the Chester community page, including: Jeremy, owner of LJ’s Barbershop, Christie ordered for the first aid squad, then another woman texted about her friends going crazy for the cookies she wanted to order an additional platter for Thanksgiving.  

 

“He’s slowly building up,” Shari says, and keeping up with ingredients. 

 

Jonah’s having a blast and gets a kick out of all the love he’s received for his creations.  

 

“It’s been really fun to do it,” says the 11-year-old. “I was sleeping over at my friend’s house and made (chocolate chip) cookies, to the delight of the family.”

 

“To my friends I’m definitely the baker,” Jonah says.

They also deliver; a popular perk among customers. 

 

He bakes a batch, then leaves it to cool for a bit.  

When it comes to transporting, “For Thanksgiving I bought these pumpkin containers at the dollar store,” says Shari, adding if Jonah’s doing more and for holiday time they’ll step up the packaging.   

Otherwise she says they’ve been delivering the cookies in ziplock bags for neighbors on  their street who supported him when he was starting out — and assured them it was totally fine.

 

“Then usually I’ll put a note on top, ‘thank you so much for ordering, I hope you enjoy,’” Jonah says.  

 

He enjoys doing the actual baking and not just giving away a big ‘ole batch of 50 or 60 cookies to his friends and family. Something he looks forward to after school, a great way to relax.  

To establish his own small business, and gain an early sense of entrepreneurship couldn’t be better.  

“It’s a win-win ‘cause I like making them and also get paid for it,” says Jonah, who puts a lotta love into his cookies and calls the feeling of making other people happy very nice.

 

His advice to other kids wanting to start their own cookie or other business: the 11-year-old says even if you get no orders for a month, it doesn’t mean that you just stop.  

 

“You have it there and keep trying,” says the sixth-grader, and word of mouth is also helpful. “You have to wait, it’s patience. I was lucky to start baking young.”

 

When he’s not making a new batch — Jonah started karate this year, plays soccer and baseball soon. 


What’s next for the baker:  More kinds of cookies, other things besides cookies, maybe brownies…

 

Want some of your own? Jonah is taking Christmas and New Years orders. Contact uptownchunkcookies@gmail.com

 

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