Monday, August 30, 2010

Sour Cream Sugar Cookies

I had some sour cream to use up and wanted to do something different than my usual sour cream coffee cake, and I am very glad I did!

Normally with cookie dough I have a bit more control, but with these, I used a measuring cup(!) to scoop out dough instead of just licking the beater. The sour cream brought a tangy flavor and made the dough a bit more airy. The finished product was just as delicious! The cookies are light, puffy and soft. They're not too sweet and have no sour cream flavor. This is a winner!

Do you have any cookie recipes with unique ingredients?

1 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Butter
1/2 cup Sour cream
1 Egg
1/2 teaspoon Baking powder
1/2 teaspoon Baking soda
1 1/2 cups All purpose flour 

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the egg and mix.
Alternate adding the flour mixture and sour cream the butter mixture, mixing after each addition. Start and end with flour.
Drop by teaspoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheets. Sprinkle the tops with sugar. 
Bake at 425 degrees F for 8 minutes. Cool on a rack.

Yields 24 cookies (30 if you don't eat too much dough!)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut- Take 2

My first post of white chocolate macadamia nut cookies offered a thin, crispier cookie. When I saw The more than occasional baker's post for a thicker version, I was excited to give it a try. This recipe created a thick and cakey cookie. If you are craving a more traditional white chocolate macadamia nut cookie, this wouldn't satisfy you (not chewy enough), but overall it was a delightful cookie that I am excited to pass along!

This recipe is made by weight, and it was my first time baking like this. I have included the volume equivalents. What do you think about baking by weight? Do you think it yields better results?

1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup macadamia nuts, chopped


Preheat the oven to 375F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
Beat the butter and sugar together in a large bowl until pale and creamy.
Add the egg and vanilla extract and stir to combine,
Combine the flour, baking powder and salt together in a separate bowl and stir into the butter mixture until just combined.
Fold through the chocolate chips and macadamia nuts.
Place heaped tablespoonfuls of the mixture on the baking sheet, leaving a little space between them to allow for spreading. 
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly golden.
Allow to cool on the sheets for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack and allow to cool completely. 
Yields 12 cookies.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Knott's Berry Farm Bakery

One of the many things I like about Knott's Berry Farm (I'm a huge Peanuts fan, by the way) is the cute shops and eateries they have outside of the park at Knott's MarketPlace.

Attached to Chicken on the Go is a small bakery (Berry Farm Bakery). Of course, I had to sample some cookies after my chicken! I tried the double chocolate jumbo cookie and the pumpkin cookie.
Unfortunately the double chocolate cookie broke on the way home, so my picture doesn't indicate its true size (about 5 inches in diameter). The pieces were tasty, though! The cookie was very chocolaty and was soft and chewy. I wish there were more chocolate chunks, though. The pumpkin cookie was excellent. It would have been better without the sugary frosting which took away from the cookie's light flavor. The cookie tasted like pumpkin bread and had a cakey texture. The walnuts mixed in provided a perfect balance.

The smaller pumpkin cookies are $0.95 each. Large cookies are $1.50. Oatmeal raisin, chocolate chip, and peanut butter jumbo cookies are also available. For more information, visit

Knott's Farm Bakery on Urbanspoon

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Hummingbird Cookies

We recently found a hummingbird nest in our backyard and have been enjoying watching the hummingbirds grow up. They have inspired me to make a hummingbird cookie! I took the flavors of hummingbird cake and turned it into a cookie.

Banana was the overwhelming flavor, so next time I will add more pineapple juice and perhaps even chunks of pineapple for a truer hummingbird cookie. Like a hummingbird, this cookie was light and airy and very much like a muffin top. Young children would absolutely love this cookie for its softness and light flavor.

1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup margarine, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 banana, mashed
1/4 cup pineapple juice

Preheat oven 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, mix flour, baking soda, and salt and set aside.
Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy.
Add in egg and vanilla and beat. Mix in banana and pineapple juice.
Gradually mix in the flour mixture.
Drop spoonfuls of dough on to the cookie sheets.
Bake for 12-15 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack.
Yields 12.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Tully's Coffee

I recently visited Tully's Coffee and tried their Chocolate Chunk Cookie. For $1.75, it was a decent value compared to other menu items. I was disappointed that cookeis and brownies weren't included in their 1/2 off afternoon pastry special, though.

Until I looked more closely at the cookie, I did not see that walnuts were mixed in. Even though there were very few, it would have been nice if it was reflected in the name. I did enjoy the mix of chocolate chips AND chocolate chunks. The cookie was a little too soft, and with all of the chocolate, it is more likely to satisfy a chocolate craving, not a cookie craving.

If I'm in need of chocolate and don't want to go anywhere else, I would buy a Tully's cookie again, but otherwise I will stick with their coffee and 1/2 off breakfast pastries for an afternoon treat.

Tully's Coffee on Urbanspoon

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Levain Bakery Copycats

After seeing the "Cookies" episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay on Food Nextwork, I had to try these cookies. California is a long way from NYC, so I searched for a suitable copy and found one on the blog Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drives.The Levain Bakery website actually provides links to copy cats as well.

I have not tried the real Levain Bakery cookies, so next time I'm in NYC I will be sure to since this copycat was not as good as I had hoped. The cookies were too buttery for my taste. I liked the puffiness and will keep in mind the "secret ingredient" of cornstarch to keep buttery cookies from spreading.

Have you tried the real thing or have a different copy cat recipe?

2 sticks ‘cold and cubed’ unsalted butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
2 eggs
2 3/4 to 3 1/4 cups AP flour
1 teaspoon table or fine sea salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 cups good quality semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup walnuts (Toast the nuts for more flavor, if desired.)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In bowl of electric mixer fitted with paddle, cream together butter and sugars until well blended and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time.. and beat until well incorporated.
Add flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder and mix until just combined. Gently fold in chocolate chips/chunks and nuts.
Transfer dough to clean work surface and gently mix dough by hand to ensure even distribution of ingredients. Divide into 12 equal portions, **about 4 oz each
Place each on sheet pan lined with parchment paper and bake in the preheated oven 15-20 minutes depending on how gooey and raw’ish’ you like the interior, until very lightly browned, taking care not to overbake. Let cool on rack and store what you don’t immediately eat in an airtight container.
Yields 12 servings.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Lime Sugar Cookies

On a hot summer day, these were such refreshing cookies. I made a couple of changes to the recipe from The Cookie Scoop. (Thanks for the great recipe!) I added a total of 3 Tablespoons of lime zest and skipped rolling the cookies in sugar and lime zest before baking. (I let these refrigerate for 3 hours, and I wasn't going to wait any longer!) Also, I rolled the dough into a tube (see picture) before refrigerating so I could cut cookie slices instead of forming them before baking.

The result was a crispy sugar cookie with a blast of lime. I would definitely make these again and will be trying a lemon version, too, maybe lemon sugar cookie sandwiches with a cream cheese frosting filling...

6 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
2 Tbsp. shortening
1 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. lime zest
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt 

Beat butter, shortening, sugar and lime zest in mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt and on low speed, add to the egg mixture until just combined. 
Form the dough into a log and wrap with wax paper. Place the dough into the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 375.
Slice cookies into 1/4 inch thick discs. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
As soon as the cookies are finished, remove from the baking sheet and cool on a rack.
Yields 18 cookies.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

I adapted this recipe from Jessica Seinfeld's book Deceptively Delicious. I made some adjustments to her recipe for oatmeal raisin cookies- adding more banana in place of zucchini puree and swapping chocolate chips for raisins. The result was a very moist, muffin-like cookie. Have you tried any other recipes from her book?

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 brown sugar, packed
6 tablespoons margarine spread
1 1/2 medium bananas, mashed
1 egg white
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and line two baking sheets with parchment.
In a bowl combine flour, oats, baking soda, and salt. Set Aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the brown sugar and margarine. Next add in the mashed bananas and egg white. Stir until just blended.
Gradually add in the flour mixture. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips.
Drop by heaping tablespoons onto the baking sheets. Bake 12-15 minutes.
Yields 18 cookies

Monday, August 2, 2010

M&M's Cookies

I have had a craving for M&M cookies for weeks and finally satisfied it today. The chocolate punch in M&M cookies can't be beat. Plus, I love the rainbow of colors.

Even though this recipe does not produce the most visually appealing cookie (as one of my testers so kindly pointed out!), the result is an extremely chewy masterpiece.

What cookie are you craving today?

1 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup margarine, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg white
1 package M&Ms

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add egg and beat well. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in M&Ms. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. 
Yields 1 dozen.