Last week my family spent a sweltering, humid, and wet week at an old fashioned Camp Meeting. I spent quite a bit of time trying to get together food that would travel and potentially last a little while. I knew that in additional to some banana and zucchini bread I would have to make one (or several) batches cookies. I figured that tall man would need things to grab in between all the meetings.
I made a family favorite Anzac Cookies from Alice Medrich’s book Chewy, Gooey, Crispy, Crunchy, Melt-in-your-mouth-cookies. They are really crispy, coconuty and known for being able to last for a while.
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon water
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp cream of tartar
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 cup unsweetened dried shredded coconut
Place oats in a food processor. Process just until the oats are coarsely ground but not powdered; set aside.
Combine the butter, sugar, water, and honey in a large saucepan and warm over medium-low heat until the butter is melted. Remove from the heat and add the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, coconut and oats all at once and stir until the flour is completely incorporated.
Divide the dough in half and form two 8 by 2 inch logs. Wrap in parchment paper and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Put racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven.
Remove dough from the refrigerator and slice it into 1/4 to 3/8 inch thick slices with a serrated knife. Place the slices at least 1 inch apart on lined or greased cookie sheets.
Bake for 14-17 minutes (rotate the sheets from top to bottom halfway through baking), or until golden brown all over. Transfer cookies to racks an cool completely before storing in an airtight container.
The second type of cookie I brought for the first part of the week were these Brown-Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies from Joy the Baker. I made them without the nuts due to the kiddos. I doubt that I will ever make chocolate chip cookies another way again. Robert took one bite and said “wow, outstanding! What is different about these?” Brown-butter baby!
The last batch of cookies I made on a quick trip home mid-week to do some laundry and get some sleep. I first say these Mexican Chocolate Snickerdoodles in a Better Homes and Garden Christmas Cookie Publication. I’ve adapted the recipe more for our tastes (less sugar more cinnamon in different varieties).
I’ve mentioned in times past that I have 3 varieties in cinnamon in my spice area. I buy my cinnamons from Penzey’s Spices. My “general” cinnamon is their China Tung Hing. It is nice a strong cinnamon without being over-powering. When I’m cooking any Latin American based dish or dessert with chocolate I use the “Latin American” cinnamon or Ceylon cinnamon. It has some citrus notes and was the type of cinnamon I had in chocolate dishes while living in Guatemala. My final cinnamon is a recent addition for that real cinnamon kick which is their Extra Fancy Vietnamese Cinnamon. It is considered the strongest cinnamon available in the US. If you don’t have all these varieties of cinnamon use what you have you just may not have the complexity of these (if you were one of those who asked me for the recipe when tasting them).
Mexican Chocolate Snickerdoodles
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp China Tung Hing cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp Ceylon cinnamon
- 1 tsp cream of tartar
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon ( I used 1 tsp China, 1 tsp Ceylon, 1/2 tsp Vietnamese)
In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer for 1 minute. Then add sugars and beat until fluffy. Add cream of tartar, baking soda, salt and 1/4 tsp China cinnamon and 1/4 tsp Ceylon cinnamon and beat until combined (scraping down bowl as needed). Beat in eggs and vanilla until combined. Add cocoa powder and flour until combined (try not to overbeat, mix in by hand the last little bit if needed.) Cover dough and chill in refrigerator for about an hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl stir together the 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon (the blend or just one type). Shape dough into 1 inch to 1 1/4 inch balls. Roll balls in sugar mixture to coat them. Place on parchment covered baking sheets.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until edges are set and tops are cracked. Cool on cookie sheet for 1 minute. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.