Monthly Archives: March 2015

The Logic of Snickerdoodles

LeanneLast night, my son Jack was using such aggressively persuasive “logic” to get his older sister, Caroline, to make cookies for him that she said she felt she was being forced to bake at gunpoint! Well, yes, she did end up baking cookies, and not surprisingly, she made Snickerdoodles. When you haven’t planned to make cookies and you end up making them anyway, the Snickerdoodle is handily created from basic pantry staples. Nobody is really sure where the name “Snickerdoodle” came from. The Joy of Cooking claims that it’s German in origin, and that the name is a corruption of the German word Schneckennudel (“snail noodles”), a kind of cinnamon roll. However, upon further investigation, it’s also possible that it’s simply a nonsense name made up by New Englanders who were fond of naming their cookies with, well, silly names. The thing that distinguishes Snickerdoodles from a traditional sugar cookie rolled in cinnamon sugar is the cream of tartar, which lends that characteristic tang. It’s also responsible for the chewiness, because of the way it reacts with the sugar while baking. Here’s our favorite family recipe for Snickerdoodles. Why not bake some up right now?

Snickerdoodles

1 cup butter, softened
1½ cups, plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2¾ cups unbleached flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon

In a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer, beat butter, 1½ cups sugar, eggs and vanilla until well mixed. In another bowl, whisk together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt.

Shape dough by rounded teaspoonfuls into balls. Combine cinnamon and remaining sugar. Roll balls in cinnamon-sugar mixture and place them 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.

Bake in a preheated 400°F oven 8 to 10 minutes, or until very slightly golden and set. Remove from baking sheets and let cool on wire racks. Makes about 5 dozen cookies

Categories: General Blogging, Kitchen with a View, Recipes | Leave a comment

Up in the Sky

LeanneA good cocktail can make you feel sort of special when you’re sipping it—an icy, perfectly balanced concoction served up in a frosty little glass. I especially love the Prohibition era drinks because so many of them feature gin, which just happens to be one of my favorites. For Christmas, I received a lovely book from Karan our BSC graphics wiz, called Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails by Ted Haigh. I highly recommend it for not only the adventuresome recipes but also for its highly entertaining history of cocktails.

The cocktail recipe I’m sharing with you today, however, is not from the aforementioned book. The first time I had the Aviation it was at the Swing Bar in Olympia and I thought it was the most perfect jewel of a drink I had ever had. They make the earlier version of it, containing Crème de Violette, and my cocktail book has the later version, which did away with that particular liqueur in the mix. The Crème de Violette gives it a beautiful pale sky blue color and I love the floral note. So here it is, in all of its glory. Please note that Maraschino liqueur tastes nothing like the bright red “fruit” you buy in a jar. Also, buying two special liqueurs can be expensive, but the bottles are very pretty for display in a liqueur cabinet and they last forever. That is, unless you like this drink a lot!

Aviation Cocktail

1½ ounces good quality gin
½ ounce lemon juice
¼ ounce Crème de violette or Crème Yvette
½ ounce Maraschino liqueur

Add all ingredients into cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well and long, and strain into cocktail glass. Garnish with a cherry. Makes one cocktail. Note: I usually make two at a time.

Categories: General Blogging, Kitchen with a View, Recipes | 2 Comments

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