Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Trolling for friends....and recipes!
Cookies part deaux! The oatmeal raisin prompted a request for the snickerdoodle, and I do not mean Handsome Stranger. Altho he is sweet, tender in the middle, and is one of my favorite things...but enough with the foreplay, we be talkin' COOKIES.
When I was a kid, my mom made a few different cookie recipes, and she made them well - I remember Chocolate No-Bakes, Russian Tea Cakes, Peanut Butter with the fork marks in em, Toffee Bars, and Our Favorite Cookie, a no-roll sugar cookie. When you're a kid, you usually aren't too picky...a cookie is a cookie, and they were all good, but I think the sugar cookie was my favorite. I don't know if I recall her making snickerdoodles, but I know my sister did - she gave me the recipe I have had for 31 years, but they just never came out like I wanted them to. My SIL made really good ones too, but I think after a couple hard batches, I just gave up...I was cinnamon-deficient for so many years!
Well, not completely deficient - cinnamon rolls have been a staple....but it's not the same as a snickerdoodle. Cookies are pocket friends...just try it with a cinnamon roll and you'll have a linty pastry and a sticky pocket, both of which you'll still want to lick. What kid doesn't smile when they open their lunch box and pull out a baggie with home made cookies in it? What co-worker won't walk all the way to the other side of the building and then litter their keyboard with crumbs that could attract rodents for a treat that did NOT come from a box or bag? And what kind of gramma doesn't have cookies in a jar or at least rolls wrapped in wax paper in the freezer for a quickie...that's one sad excuse for a granny.
I keep two recipe binders in my cookbook collection, and that is where I glue in clippings from the paper or magazines, hand write recipes that have come to me in many different forms, and even put notes on things like catering guidelines and some fabulous pictures of food for inspiration. There is a tiny little list on one page, and it is titled "My Favorite Cookies"....there is a short list, and it tells where exactly the recipe is for it - I have a lot of cookbooks and sometimes I forget which recipe is in which book. It is my memory index, and it works pretty good - if anyone ever broke into my house and stole my cookbooks, I would most likely wither away and die.....I just had a horrifying thought and am now on the lookout for a fire-proof file cabinet! So yes, recipes are important to me, and this one, even being a fledgling, ranks right up there.
This was another labor of love for Belle and Tommy's wedding, and I put a call out on fb to see if any of my homies had a good one that would produce CHEWY ones, not puffy and soft, not hard and crispy. Lucky for me, Shannon, aka "The Troll" ponied up with this offering, which is now on the very tip top of my FAVE cookies....I have waited for this for YEARS, and her recipe exceeded all my expectations. It's actually not like any snickerdoodle I have ever had, so I am even changing the name - but for once in my life, that is the ONLY thing I messed with on this one...it's utter perfection. And "Thank YOU" Shannon AND your Gramma....think of the smiles you are about to share!
Haha, when I first saw Shannon on fb, I mistook her for a lady I work with of the same name...it was hard to tell because her profile pic was a troll doll. After I friended her, my SIL complained I was "fb stalking" her friends....hence the new name of this recipe!
1/2 C. butter, softened
1/2 C. shortening, BUTTER FLAVORED CRISCO, DUH
1-1/2 C. white sugar
2 large eggs
3 tsp. vanilla
2-3/4 C. flour
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 T. white sugar
2 T. cinnamon (NOT a misprint...it's a lot, but it MUST be cinnamon-ey!)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put parchment paper on your cookie sheets if you got it. Cream together butter, shortening and sugar for about 5 minutes; mix in eggs and vanilla and beat until fluffy. Add cream of tartar, baking soda and salt and blend in, then add flour and mix just long enough to incorporate the flour...too long and they will lose their chewiness (as per Shannon).
In a small round bowl, mix 2 T. sugar and cinnamon. Roll dough into 2" balls (I used the medium scoop and cut in half, that's 2 T. per cookie) and toss in cinnamon sugar mixture. Place a couple inches apart - they will spread so don't crowd - and bake for 8 minutes....and ONLY 8 minutes (according to Shannon's gramma...see what I mean about Gramma's?) Remove to cooling racks as soon as humanly possible - it may be 30 to 60 seconds before you can get them off the sheet without ruining them, but I consider those necessary collateral damage. With milk.
For the wedding I made 120 bee-yoo-tiful cookies out of a triple batch - and as I am an expert at this, didn't ruin any so I had to poke a few with my spatula so they were damaged enough to eat. While I am attempting to modify some of my more heinous food behaviors, I like to eat just the middle, less caloric (just let it go) part of cookies where they are the most tender and delicious, with Handsome Stranger right behind me eating the "point-free" crusts. But alas, this time they were good right to the edge, so he was able to keep his blood sugar at an acceptable level during this round, much to his displeasure.
So for all you grannies out there who are cookie slackers, here's your cue - get off that Rascal, put your Life Alert necklace on, and strap on an apron that is the uniform you SHOULD be wearing instead of that velour track suit with the "Worlds Best Gramma" sequined on the back...it's a LIE. Unless Matlock is on....then it can wait.