Posts filed under ‘cookies’

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies.

Big, fat, chewy oatmeal raisin cookies.

Big, fat, chewy oatmeal raisin cookies.

So far, I’ve been baking stuff that I particularly enjoy (I mean, duh right? Why make what you don’t want to eat?)… and oatmeal raisin cookies are one of my absolutely favourite. Actually, the oatmeal raisin cookies specifically from Subway are the ones I really, really like. So here I was on a hunt to find MY perfect oatmeal raisin cookie since recipes abound by the dozens on the net. 

Finally settled on this particular one from Big Oven that had pretty good reviews. Well they turned out nice, thats for sure. But I’m still on the lookout for one that’ll give me as shiok (satisfying) a feeling as the Subway ones.. (more cookie dough!) 

Pretty dry cookie dough!

Pretty dry cookie dough!

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies 
adapted from Big Oven 

1 1/4 cups Butter
1 teaspoon Baking soda
3/4 cup Brown sugar
1 teaspoon Salt
1/2 cup Sugar
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
1 Egg
1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
1 teaspoon Vanilla
3 cups Oats quick or old-fashioned
1 1/2 cups All purpose flour
1 cup Raisins

DIRECTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Beat margarine and sugars until fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Add combined flour, baking soda, salt and spices; mix well. Stir in oats and raisins. 
  • Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. 
  • Bake 8-9 minutes for chewy; 10-11 minutes for crunchy cookies.
  • Cool 1 minute on cookie sheet. Remove to wire rack.
  • Store tightly covered. 

The batter gets really dry once you put in THREE whole cups of oats. The biggest problem I had with this recipe was the amount of butter in it. 1 and 1/4 cups is total overkill. Everyone who ate them could distinctly taste the butter which wasn’t quite the effect I was gunning for.

Rating: 3.5/5 
Would I bake this again? Am still on the hunt for the perfect oatmeal raisin cookie!

July 22, 2008 at 12:00 pm Leave a comment

Behemoth Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake.

MONSTAAR!

MONSTAAR!

Okay, this is one photo that speaks for itself. You should check out the original, it looks far more superb than how mine turned out. 

 

 I love Julia’s site (dozenflours.com) because everything always looks good on it and her own invaluable comments makes it easier for me to decide if its a recipe worth trying. 

Well. About this behemoth cake, not only was it behemoth in size (and as heavy and daunting as Julia said it would be), it was also a behemoth task to BAKE. 

The whole process took me about 6 hours, not including going to Bedok to get supplies. But including the interlude in which I ran out of Vanilla Extract (down to my 3rd bottle in 3 weeks) and had to drop by Cold Storage to buy (where the lil’ old lady at the counter curtly told me it was BYOB day).

One thing I hadn’t realise about the cake is how aesthetically scary it is. Especially when your frosting turns out wrong and starts drooling all over the place, effectively making your cake look more like a monster burger from Carls’ Junior thats dripping sauce and meat in 360 different directions. In fact, given its size and girth, Carls’ Junior would be an understatement. 

And I haven’t been able to call it anything ‘The Monster Burger’ because scarred in my mind, thats all it resembles to me. :O

 

This cake was actually intended for Charmaine’s birthday (Penne had an outing yesterday, more on that later) but it was so totally hideously ugly that I couldn’t bear having to use it. 

And, notes on why it turned out so bad:

The entire process was fine UP TILL the frosting. Why? Because Liz decided to try and save money (cheese is not cheap!) by buying cottage cheese instead of cream cheese (so much for that since it turned out cottage cheese was only $.50 cheaper per box!). So instead of creamy, yummy cheese, I had cheese that was dotted with lots of curds. ( Which was basically bad for spreading. And the texture of nutella turned the nutella layers REALLY watery and basically all it did was moosh and squish down the sides of the ‘cake’ to my disgust and horror. The peanut butter layers (given the consistency of good, sticky, creamy peanut butter) were perfectly fine. But basically the frosting ruined any semblance of prettiness that I might have hoped to achieve. Lesson learnt. Use the best ingredients (even if it means you’ll be counting calories till kingdom come) and never try to substitute key ingredients. *nods*

Well the fugliness of the cake made me quite depressed and Weili (whom I was periodically chronicling my baking journey to on MSN) was SO VERY UN-ENCOURAGING about it. 

Well its royal ugliness made it clear that there was no way on God’s green earth I was going to put that thing in front of Charmaine for her birthday. So to comfort myself that it probably tasted better than it looked, I cleaned it up and cut a slice for myself. 

 

Tasted it and because I had been smelling cookie layers and frosting for the WHOLE afternoon, I could barely taste it on my tongue anymore. Nice or not – I also don’t know. So I just decided to bring most of it, sliced up (since it would probably be impossible to slice later on) for the rest of Penne to decide for themselves if it was edible. 

The feedback went mostly along the lines of ‘good’, ‘okay’, ‘not bad’ and ‘nice’ so at least that proved it’s edibility. I did bring quite a chunk back (because everyone was too full from dinner and there was another cake AND muffins), which mysteriously disappeared this morning. Either my parents actually ate it up (because it wasn’t in the dustbin so it clearly wasn’t thrown away), brought it to work, or tossed it somewhere I couldn’t see. Hee. But Mom and Dad WERE intrigued by the scary mass in their fridge and actually ventured to try it even before I came home last night. They both said it was not bad but Mom didn’t fail to point out that it was quite ugly.

But it was all, my bad. Ugly it was, but everyone who tried it thought it was yummy. So.. Well, I guess I’m going to have to work on aesthetics!

Behemonth Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake
adapted from Dozen Flours

4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs, plus 2 egg yolks
3/4 cup heavy cream
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Cream Cheese Filling – Plain
4 8oz packages of full fat cream cheese, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups confectioners’ sugar

-or-

Frosting Variation – Peanut Butter and Nutella – 
3 8 oz packages cream cheese
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1.5 cups confectioners’ sugar
3-5 spoonfulls peanut butter (or more to taste)
3-5 spoonfulls nutella (or more to taste)
If you have a Silpat mat: Trace an 8 inch circle on a piece of parchment paper using a thick pencil. Place it face up on a cookie sheet. Place your Silpat mat face up on top of the parchment. You should be able to see the circle you drew peeking beneath the Silpat. If you don’t have a Silpat mat, flip the parchment paper face down on the cookie sheet.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Put butter and brown and granulated sugars into mixer bowl and mix on medium until well combined (it will look very dry and not fluffy at all). Mix in vanilla, eggs, and yolks. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in 2 batches, alternating with the cream. Stir in chocolate chips.
For each of the 5 layers, drop 1 level cup batter + plus a little extra onto center of a baking sheet lined with parchment (I used about 1 and 1/4 cup of batter per cookie. I measured out 5 separate cups and then divided the rest of the left over batter evenly). Keep unbaked dough refrigerated while the other dough is baking. Using a small offset spatula, spread into an 8-inch circle, or as close as you can get it.

Bake until edges are pale golden brown, about 12 minutes. Remove from oven. Use offset spatula to reshape circle.(Here’s an alternative approach – I used the frame of my 8.5 inch spring form pan. I very carefully coaxed the undercooked cookie inside the buttered pan. I then returned the cookie and the pan to the oven to cook for the remaining 8 minutes. You could just bake this in a spring form pan but if you do that, the edges of the cookie will bake up high and cake like. I prefer the uneven cookie like edge.) Return to oven; bake until edges are golden brown, 7-9 minutes (DO NOT OVER COOK! Remember you’re going to have to cut through all 5 cookies. Slightly under-cooked cookies is what you want. Transfer to wire rack; let cool. Can be stored airtight up to 1 day.

Frosting (both Plain and PB & Nutella) – Mix cream cheese, vanilla, and confectioners’ sugar in clean mixer bowl on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy. Original – Divide into 4 separate equal portions and spread onto 4 cookies. (I reduced this from 5 8oz blocks to only 4, but after I made this and I watched people eat around the massive amounts of frosting, 3 blocks might be better. It looks pretty to have lots of frosting in between the layers, but it’s a bit of overkill in my opinion.) 

Variation – Divide frosting into 2 bowls. Add 3-5 spoonfuls of peanut butter to one bowl and 3-5 spoonfuls of Nutella to the other and mix until well blended. Spread half of the peanut butter frosting on one cookie, top with another cookie and spread half the Nutella flavored frosting. Repeat with remaining two cookies. 

Stack cookies onto a cake board or platter, placing unfrosted cookie on top. Refrigerate until frosting is set, at least 20 minutes or overnight. Serve at room temperature.

 

Looks somewhat better inside.

Looks somewhat better inside.

Well, overall it was an interesting experience trying to bake this fella. 

Rating: 3/5
Would I bake this again? Probably not. The 5 individual cookie layers had to be baked one by one for about 20 mins each. The frosting.. well that was my bad. And after scrutinizing the two examples of the cake I’ve seen on the net (dozenflours and the martha stewards site), I’ve decided that even if it went perfect, it’s still not very pretty (Liz likes pretty things) and unless I find someone madly in love with chocolate chip cookies enough to prefer it over a real cake, I doubt I’ll be wanting to attempt it again.

July 17, 2008 at 12:45 am Leave a comment

Green Tea Sweets.

Heart-shaped green tea sweets.

 

Tried the well-heralded, Lovescool’s Green Tea Sweets which have been featured on at leastfive recipe blogs I frequent. The recipe has been said to taste fantastisch so of course I must, MUST try it. It TEMPTED me (a massive consumer of all green tea products) for long enough! Except for the bit where I actually had to procure green tea powder from somewhere. But apparently, quite a number of baking shops in Singapore do sell it (like Phoon Huat, as overpriced as some of the stuff there is…). 

So I trooped down to Phoon Huat in Bedok to pick up that tiny 20g bottle of Bakable Green Tea Powder for $2.57. (!!!!) 

Bought a cute multi hearts cookie cutter (its this device that has 4 hearts attached so you can just chop out 4 biscuits at one go… very fun, like play-dough.) to create the above shortbread yummies (yes they’re actually shortbread). And they tasted as delicious as all the enthusiastic blog reviews (and here I am adding yet another to the collection). It is a really really yummy recipe. I’ll definitely do it again. 🙂 

Green Tea Sweets
adapted from Lovescool

Ingredients
Yield (2” leaf shape): Approx 25
(clearly, I made FAR smaller, bite-sized cookies… feedback from a friend said I ought to make them bigger to retain the green tea flavour better though)

3/4 cup (2.25 oz) Confectioners sugar
5 oz Unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1 3/4 cup (8.5 oz) All-purpose flour
3 Large egg yolks
1.5 TBS Matcha (powdered green tea) (I added up to 2!)
1 cup Granulated sugar (for coating)

DIRECTIONS

  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  • Whisk the confectioner’s sugar and green tea together in a bowl.
  • Add the butter and green tea/sugar mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix until smooth and light in color.
  • Add the flour and mix until well combined.
  • Add the egg yolks and mix just until the eggs are fully incorporated and a mass forms.
  • Form the dough into a disk and chill in the refrigerator until firm (about 30 minutes).
  • Roll the dough out to ½” thickness.
  • Cut the dough with a leaf cookie cutter.
  • Toss each cut cookie in a bowl of granulated sugar to coat.
  • Place the sugar-coated cookie on a parchment lined pan. Bake at 350F for 12-15 minutes, or until slightly golden around the edges.

 —

I might be biased towards green tea just because I absolutely LOVE anything related to green tea, but the reputation and success of this recipe has been well circulated enough to stand credible on its own. 🙂 

You know you want them! 

Rating: 5/5
Would I make these again? ABSOLUTELY!!! In fact, I did!

July 6, 2008 at 11:54 pm 1 comment

Chocolate Chip Meringue Cookies.

This was an almost failed attempt. Fortunately, even though I made it twice and it still looked devastating both times, everyone found it yummy (or in some cases, too sweet). Which was good. Else I’d be stuck with heaps of failed meringue. 

 

Failed meringue! Not rising yo!

Failed meringue! Not rising yo!

BUT. It is honestly a good recipe.

Chocolate Chip Meringue Cookies
adapted from Dozen Flours 

4 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon cream of tarter
1 1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 1/3 cups mini chocolate chips
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted (optional)

DIRECTIONS
Lightly grease a cookie sheet or line with a Silpat mat. Preheat oven to 300F.

In a medium mixing bowl with whisk attachment bowl, beat egg whites on super high speed until soft peaks form. Add cream of tarter and vanilla and mix again. Scrape bowl. Return on high speed and add sugar 1 or 2 tablespoons at a time (I measure the sugar into a 8oz glass then slowly pour the sugar a little at a time into the meringue. I find the glass easy to grip and less messy).If you want cocoa flavored cookies, add the cocoa now(I recommend it!). Fold in the chocolate chips.

Drop mixture by rounded teaspoons 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes or until firm and the bottoms of the cookies are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let them cool.

 

This is how your meringues should NOT look.

This is how your meringues should NOT look.

 

 

UPDATE: Despite having failed twice (I now know its due to my insufficient beating of egg white, excuse the n00b baker!), my 3rd attempt (Chocolate Mint Meringue) turned out so beautifully that I knew for sure I’d got it right at last! 

Rating: 4/5
Would I make these again? Yes! I love meringue, and these are really easy to make and a really good recipe to turn to when you’ve been using too many egg yolks for something else and need a relatively fuss-free way to turn those remaining egg whites into something yummy.

June 29, 2008 at 12:06 am 1 comment


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