Oh, snap! Ginger

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The Bend and Snap.

Don’t seem too cool and act like you never saw Legally Blonde with Reese Witherspoon. Come on, Beverly Hills sorority girls becoming Harvard-educated attorneys is completely legit…it’s a colliding of the stereotypes. And yet I love that movie. Mostly because my mom and I giggle when we watch it. It’s a flashback to my Gidget phase(s). And I digress…oh, yes, the Bend and Snap!

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Yes, my MIL gave us Gingerbread People Plates for Xmas. Had to use them, even if it IS March! 🙂

The Bend and Snap, that silly dance Reese used to get some boy’s attention…well, it’s kind of like these GINGERBREAD COOKIES. The soft (thicker) ones bend, and the crunchy (thin) ones snap when you bite into them! I used Tartine’s recipe (that fabulous bakery in San Fran…someday I’ll visit), and made a half batch…which still make 55 tiny little flower gingersnaps! Heaven, I must say. Here goes:

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Gingerbread Cookies

Almost completely straight from Tartine Bakery

Dough:

  • 1 5/6 cups All-purpose flour (9.25 oz)
  • 1/2 TB cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (8 TB or 4 oz.), room temperature
  • 1/3 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup blackstrap or other dark molasses
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup

Glaze:

  • 1 cup confectioners’ (powdered) sugar (4 oz)
  • 2 tablespoons water


1: Dough and Go:: Stir together the flour, cocoa powder, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl and set aside. Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment (or your bulging biceps by hand), beat the butter on medium-high speed until it gets creamy. Slowly add the granulated sugar on medium speed until mixture is smooth and soft. Stop the mixer, scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula, and add the egg. Mix well.

2: Make it Creamy:: Add the molasses and corn syrup to the mixture and beat until all mixed together. Scrape down the sides of the bowl again and add the flour mixture. Beat on a low speed until a dough forms that pulls away from the sides of the bowl and the dough becomes, well, dough! Remove the dough from the bowl and flatten it out on a large piece of plastic wrap into a rectangle-ish about an inch thick. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. (I know, I know, who is that patient? But you need to let this magic dough rest for at least 8 hours; trust me, waiting is SOOOOO worth it!!)

3: And for Bfast the Next Day, Hee:: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Unwrap the dough, place it on a floured surface (don’t forget flour!), and roll out the dough between 1/4 and 1/3 of an inch thick. (Thick=Soft, Bend=Snap) Cut out the shapes with a cookie cutter or fancy plaque with a fun design or, hey, use an upside-down drinking glass if we’re getting real here. Place your doughy shapes on a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat or parchment paper. (Give them a little space in between…they do spread a bit in the oven.) Bake for 7 to 15 minutes. (I know, that a BIG range, but for little 1-inch cookies like mine, 7 minutes was plenty; for bigger, “playing card” size, 15 minutes is needed.) Bake until they are lightly golden along the sides but still soft to the touch in the center.

4: Glaze and Go:: While you’re waiting for the magic dough to bake, make your simple glaze with the confectioners’ sugar and water. Remove the cookies from the oven, let cool in their pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes; then, brush on the glaze (right on top) when the cookies are still warm. Mmm, yum. You can keep them in an air-tight container at room temp for up to 2 weeks! Makes a great gift. Goes well with coffee or warm milk or wine…not gonna lie.

Hope you enjoy one of the top 3 cookies I’ve ever made! Thanks to Tartine Bakery (& Elisabeth and Chad) for such an awesome approach to beautiful baked goods with out any snobbery at all. 🙂

Bananaberry Cookies

Monday! Need a cookie!

So far, today has been fabulous. After a weekend with Matt (the first Friday and Saturday in a row that we’ve both had together…and not working…in a LONG time…maybe ever), I am off today and living it up. Workout with a friend, wandering around a mall, very relaxing. I’ve noticed (and Matt has, too) that having a job {at a church} that I love, living in a lovely neighborhood, and feeling sunshine most every day has really livened my spirits. Life is too short to be unhappy or just be content, and I’m very thankful that this is a season in my life where things are pretty darn awesome. You know what I mean? Life has ups and down, of course, so I’m trying to relish in the moments when there’s a lot to smile about. I hope that for you, too.  

Here are a couple of fun photos:

Waldport, OR

Our front yard

See Mt Hood in the middle?

Front yard again

Rose Garden in Portland…no roses yet, but these cuties are blooming!

Our side yard…granted, we live on a church campus, so we take NO CREDIT for the gorgeous flowers!

Now on to butter, strawberries and bananas. To be honest, cooking/baking bananas is a pretty weird concept to me, but usually tastes good. These cookies are pretty tasty. For those who aren’t obsessed with chocolate, these are a nice alternative–quick and easy, too. This is my cousin Cindy’s cookie dough base recipe, and I’ve tweaked it a little to allow for the strawberry and banana.

Bananaberry Cookies!
Makes 15-18 medium-sized cookies
 
1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup white sugar

1 stick butter or margarine, softened

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup chopped strawberries (about 4 large)

1/3-ish cup chopped banana (1 small banana)

step one: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix first four {the dry} ingredients together in a medium bowl. In a second bowl, combine butter through vanilla.
step two: Pour dry ingredients into wet ingredients and combine until lumps are out, but don’t stir forever. Fold in strawberries and banana.
step three: On a nonstick baking pan, scoop 1 tablespoon worth of dough and space apart by an inch or two (they spread a little). Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until non-jiggly and a little brown on top. Let cool for 2 minutes or so before transferring to a cooling rack or before devouring. Enjoy! 

Happy eating!
Laurel

~Laurel~

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Happy Monday!

Okay, so Mondays usually remind me of the Boomtown Rats song that Tori Amos later covered. I (usually) don’t like Mondays. It is the death of the weekend and all of that. But I made cookies on Sunday and, seeing them on the kitchen counter the next morning, I instantly felt like today would be good. What can be bad when you have cookies with sprinkles!?

Chocolate Chip Cookies
makes 20 cookies

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup white sugar
1 stick butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips (I use semi-sweet)
1 TB sprinkles (optional)

You’ll need: 2 medium bowls, 1 large spoon, 1 teaspoon, baking sheet, nonstick spray/baking mat, oven

step one: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine first four (dry) ingredients in a bowl and set aside. In the second bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, egg and vanilla. 

step two: Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and stir until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips and sprinkles. Using both spoons, form balls about the size of a golf ball and set on the cookie sheet. Repeat until 12-15 dough balls are formed. 

step three: Bake for 8-10 minutes at 375 degrees. Remove from oven, let sit for 1-2 minutes, then transfer cookies to a cooling rack or a cool plate. Yummm. 

By the by, check out my Recipage (link at the top right) to see some of my recipes by category/ingredient/etc. I’m adding more each day! Happy Monday!

~Laurel~

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