December 5, 2007

Cookie monster is creeping in...

I made these cookies quite some time ago, but had delayed posting it as I only made half the batch while I freezed the other half of the dough to try out some others on another day. These cookies yield soft, buttery cookies that melt in your mouth. They tasted almost like shortbread though it is not that powdery and crumbly.















The original recipe was supposed to be vanilla wafers where the dough is to be formed into logs and chilled until firm, about 2 hours, then cut into slices (about 6mm thick). I find that rather boring, so I decided to make several variations using the same recipe, as I had wanted to take this as a trial and error session. During my first trial, I piped the dough into different shapes and patterns. Was quite pleased with the result, both in terms of texture and taste. My friend, whose mum is a good baker, even requested for the recipe so that she can bake and sell during chinese new year!


I took the recipe from Williams-Sonoma -- Essentials of Baking. You would have find me using her recipes quite frequently as this is by far the only baking book I own, not to mention some other chinese recipe books, so wanna try more of the recipes here.


Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (8 oz/250 g) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (4 oz/125 g) sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (10 oz/315 g) all purpose flour

Method:

  1. In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar and salt until smooth.
  2. Add in the egg yolks and vanilla and beat on low speed until blended.
  3. Add in the flour and mix until incorporated and a smooth dough forms.
  4. Divide dough into 4 equal portions. Roll each into a log 7 inches (18 cm) long and 1 1/2 inches (4 cm) in diameter.
  5. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours.
  6. Position a rack in the middle of the oven, preheat oven to 180°C.
  7. Cut each log into slices, about 6 mm thick.
  8. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until the edges and bottoms are golden.
  9. Cool cookies on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer them to wire racks to cool completely.

Recipe Source: Williams-Sonoma

Note: For me, I simply transfer the dough (no need to refrigerate) into a pastry bag and piped into shapes as desired. :)

With the leftover egg whites, I baked some almond crisps; recipe from e's joies. I was surprised that only 2 small egg whites can yield so many crisps, cause' each crisp is so thin. To make these crisp, you got to really spread it until it's very thin. The thinner it is, the more cookies you will get, and the crispier it is! I made some modification to the recipe by doubling the recipe and adding green tea powder. I've came across other recipes that uses butter but I followed Elyn's recipe without the use of butter. The result turned out to be good as well; and I easily gobbled up almost half the batch while I was tranferring it for cooling and storing. :PIngredients :

  • 2 egg whites
  • 50g fine sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 tsp green tea powder
  • 40g self-raising flour
  • Almond flakes for decoration

Method :

  1. Mix egg white, sugar, green tea powder and vanilla essence till sugar is dissolved.
  2. Add sifted self-raising flour and mix well.
  3. Use the back of a metal spoon to apply a really thin layer on baking paper.
  4. Sprinkle a few almond flakes on top.
  5. Bake at 170 degrees for 10 mins or till lightly brown.
  6. Once it’s cooled, keep in air-tight container.

Recipe Source: e's joie

This are half of the other batch which I had saved to be baked on another day. These cookies are rather big so there wasn't enough dough for me to actually bake huge batches. So I only experimented the heart and gingerbread man cookie cutter, and tried some sugar frosting.

I especially like this strawberry sandwich hearts. They are so beautiful, and the combination of jam with buttery cookie tasted very good. You may use other jams such as blackcurrant or raspberry as well. One thing to note is that the dough must be chilled till firm before cutting, otherwise it would be quite difficult to get nicely cut-out heart. I might be considering this for my christmas giveaway, though the original recipe is slightly different. For the centre cut-outs, I sandwiched with nutella!

This is the first time I experimented with sugar icing. However I did not follow an exact recipe as I wanted to make only tiny amounts. I mixed some milk with icing sugar, added some colouring until I get the consistency I wanted. However, I made too little that it was not enough to go into a piping bag! So I merely decorated its hand and feet, abit ugly though. Hehe. :P

9 comments:

BakeNcOOken said...

Hi Aimei,

Your heart shaped cookies are pretty. I was also thinking of trying out something like that some time later.. :)

Happy Homebaker said...

Wow, I love all the cookies you made! I have been wanting to try piping cookie dough! just like those danish cookies! and I have yet to get down to decorate cookies with the kids!

sweet-tooth said...

the heart shaped cookies and the gingerbread man ones are so cute!
i've been wanting to try out baking almond crisps, maybe sometime soon, before school re-opens!
haha

Aimei said...

Thanks bakencooken, happy homebaker and sweet-tooth! :)

HHB, yeah I'm sure you have lots of fun with decorating cookies qith your kids! :)

sweet-tooth, the almond crisps are really easy, do try it. It's a good way to use up your egg whites. ;)

Small Small Baker said...

Lovely cookies! I have not used the cookie cutters that I bought from Daiso. Must start using them soon. :)

Happy Homebaker said...

btw, it's great that you own the book, Essentials of Baking by Willams Sonoma. It's very useful and informative, especially for novice like me. I have just borrowed the book from the library...I love it the minute I flip thru the pages!

Aimei said...

small small baker,

Yeap I used the pink herat shape cookie cutter from daiso. :)

HHB,

Yeah i agree. It's very informative. There are also many good books around I like the info presented here and the pictures. Haha...I tend to go for those with nice pictures taken. :P

esther said...

hi aimei

wow, your baking skill is improving leaps by leaps.
your cookies are so tempting .. drool .......

will give a try to all the recipes u hv posted ;P

Aimei said...

Thanks Esther,

I've seen your blog. You have been making delicious treats! I'm still learning also, let's jia you! :)

Happy Baking and Cooking! ;)