Thursday, February 10, 2011

thursday and etc

today I made the bourbon balls.

One is supposed to let them keep for a week before eating. I am tempted to send them to friends in San Francisco where we will join them in about a week and enjoy them while vacationing. Nice plan, I think.

Then I made date bars. They are good.

I'm actually bordering on exhausted at the moment so I will not elaborate. Also, Pickles is whining nearby, anxious to cuddle up on couch with me.
I would like to cuddle too.

Don't forget to brush.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Rainy, Snowy, Icy Saturday

Last night Roma came over and acted interested as I spoke to her about my blog and cookies, etc. I asked her to pick the cooky I would make next and she picked two: the Brown Butter Cookies, featured from 1961 and the fabulous bourbon balls from 1980. The bourbon balls sound delicious but the only ingredient I have on hand for that is bourbon. Since I don't have raisins, chocolate wafer crumbs, pecans or ground ginger, I opted for the brown butter cookies since for those you merely need butter, sugar, vanilla, flour and baking powder and then it calls for a blanched almond stuck in the middle.

I've never browned butter before but with DbR's help, I did so successfully and then I was thwarted because the dough didn't beat to a "smooth dough" as described. I added more butter, not browned.

In recipe notes it does say "the dough is very crumbly, must be kneaded to make it come together in a smooth mass; do not be gentle" but I never got to reading that until after I was grumpily rolling out the crumbly dough, pressing them and putting the nut in. I used praline coated pecans cut in half instead of the almond.
It says bake in a slow oven for 20 minutes. When I took them out after 19 minutes, they were over done. They do taste nice, though.

Don't forget to brush.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Brandy Snaps from July 1949

This is what the Brandy Snap is supposed to look like, or actually, it should be even lighter and thinner than the above. Only four out of 20 of my cookies ended up looking like this. I'm not sure why but they ended up mostly like this:

The recipe calls for one to cook up the ingredients in a saucepan and then add the flour. One then drops the dough, which is supposed to be liquidy, onto the pan and cooks it slow for about ten minutes or so. When it comes out of the oven, one is supposed to be able to roll the cooky around a dowel of some sort and make an ultra thin cone/roll shape.

The first pan's worth, I guess, was still liquid-y enough to spread and become a consistency which was able to be rolled. After that, the dough's consistency hardened up and the cooky came out of the oven kind of hard and crumbly. Not able to be rolled...

__ok, its a snow day right now and I'm typing this up while watching the first Smoky and the Bandit and I just laughed out loud at the sound of Paul Williams making a pony sound as he counted out a stack of money for Burt___

...into a nice cone shape. The second pan's worth quickly turned rigid and crumbly. The third pan I gave up on, for the most part, and after they came out of the oven I wrapped them up in foil and hopefully later I will be able to enjoy a soft-ish molasses cooky (because I have had enough cooky for now).

Don't forget to brush.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Scotch Oat Crunchies-January 1943

Don't forget to brush.

I'd rather be embroidering

Sometimes when I make food or cookies or anything, especially if it is a new recipe, I don't usually taste it as well as I would like. I'm distracted by the event of creating and presenting and then the ordeal of clean up and I am very poor at tasting and enjoying calmly. If I am entertaining, FORGET it!

So last Sunday when I made those cookies with the walnuts, I liked them okay, enough to enjoy them and mark the enjoyment, especially with walnuts. We did bring them to the show that night and people liked them, mostly hippies who hadn't eaten dinner. I had one during the night's event and noted my enjoyment then but I was distracted by my EggEggs embroidery project, the people and the music.

Monday I woke up having barely slept. The insomnia struck again and really put me off. Coupled with a minor low blood sugar event in the early a.m., I was feeling sorry for myself enough to call in sick. I got my eight hours sleeping until noon and dragged myself downstairs around 1:30 feeling out of sorts, kind of hungry, kind of not. I drooped around a little, poured myself a cup of coffee, thought better of it and after pouring it down the sink, I turned to the walnut acorn cookies which had evaded being packed up for the night at Feeding Tube Records and gobbled one down, followed by the remaining four acorn cookies.

I've never appreciated walnuts. I don't like a nut cookie. I enjoy the occasional thumbprint rolled in walnuts but that was my only oh, wow, walnuts pleasure moment. Monday afternoon I had my "wow-walnuts!" moment for reals. The time I took carefully mincing the cup and a half of nuts without them mushing into nut dust was worth the slightly sore back. David had described how the walnut flavor was deep and long-lasting and he was right. Even though the taste and the mouth feel bordered on heavy, the substantialness was perfect for me at that moment in the kitchen. Hearty, not mushy but soft enough not to be a crunchy trouble. The flair of the melted chocolate and nut dip wasn't needed but a happy accent.

I didn't appreciate this cookie the day I made it but the day-after gobbling has convinced me to go back to the wow-walnut neighborhood.

Don't forget to brush.