Saturday, October 31, 2009
A Special Birthday Tribute
October 24 is my best friend Rachel's birthday. She used to have this really strict daily diet that she adhered to like nothing I've ever seen. It basically consisted of eating only super healthy food every day of the year except her birthday. I'm talking serious, no exceptions or cheating. This girl was good. When her birthday rolled around every year, it meant a day of serious eating and since it was such a celebration I would generally take part too :) It was pretty hard to keep up (since I did eat junk food other days of the year) and I usually wimped out by lunch, but we would make quite a dent in a well-stocked supply of specially purchased birthday junk food eating everything from pretzels to candy corn to pasta. We did things other than eat on Rachel's birthday (like watch wonderful movies) and the day was so fun that I began to look forward to it more than my own!
Another awesome thing about my friend Rachel was her dog, Snicker Doodle (two words, very important!) who was "the best dog in the whole world." Snicker Doodle was an amazing dog and so loved by Rachel that these Snicker Doodle cookies always remind me of her (and Snicker Doodle, of course). If you've never had a Snicker Doodle cookie then you must make them immediately! Some people swear that Snicker Doodles are just sugar cookies rolled in cinnamon and sugar, but I beg to differ. They have a distinct flavor of their own and the coating of cinnamon and sugar makes them utterly delightful. I prefer to make them into pretty large cookies so that the center remains soft while the edges get nice and golden, providing a variety of textures in one cookie.
For the highest level of enjoyment, these cookies should be devoured in the company of a best friend, possibly while watching (and singing along badly with) The Sound of Music.
Snicker Doodle Cookies
recipe from smittenkitchen.com
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 t. cream of tartar
1 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
16 T. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 3/4 cups sugar, plus more if needed
2 T ground cinnamon, plus more if needed
2 large eggs
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
Whisk together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl. In a large bowl, combine butter and 1 1/2 cups sugar. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add eggs, and beat to combine. Add the dry ingredients, and beat to combine. Smitten Kitchen recommends chilling the dough at the point (which I did because I had something else in the oven), but I did not find it necessary in order to handle the dough.
In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the ground cinnamon. Form small balls of dough (about 1 1/2 inches) and roll in the cinnamon/sugar mixture. Place about two inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until the cookies are set in center and begin to crack, but are still soft in the center, about 10 minutes, rotating the baking sheets after five minutes. Transfer the sheets to a wire rack to cool about five minutes before transferring the cookies to the rack.
Also, I wanted to mention a contest going on at Love and Olive Oil (a blog that I cook from a lot). Its a contest for some local chocolate and its super easy to enter, so anyone who reads this blog (the few of you) should definitely enter! If you read my recent post on chocolate cookies, I'm sure this local chocolate would be perfect!