We joke all the time about losing our cookie mojo, usually when we need to design a custom set of cookies and we are lacking a bit in the inspiration department. In my case this past week, though, I actually suspect someone has a baker voodoo doll dedicated to me and they have been sticking those pins right where it hurts!
The week before last, I made about a trillion cookies. No more than I make on a semi regular basis, actually, but for some reason I felt completely burned out. I didn’t even take real pictures of them, I just snapped a few on my kitchen counter, in bad light, and called it a day. The second the last cookie was piped, I was out the door, spending the better part of the next two and a half hours in a dark movie theater, alone with my popcorn, watching the new Star Trek movie. The fact that during the movie I was constantly dropping my popcorn due to the twitching muscle between my thumb and forefinger, made me decide to take a prolonged break. From baking, photographing, posting, even chatting with my cookie friends online or text. And, as a result, I lost my cookie mojo. But not just cookies. I failed at everything I even attempted to bake!
I tried a new twist on my chocolate chip cookie and it didn’t quite work. I actually found a way to rescue it, and it was going to turn out delicious, if not exactly what I had in mind, but I BURNED them! Then the kids and I made a coffee cake for breakfast yesterday. They were so proud of it until I BURNED it! In my defense, the fact that I have missed the oven timer because I was helping a three-year-old in his first week of potty training is probably a decent excuse.
I was getting to the point where I was saying to Bryan that I need to take the summer off. But before I could do that, I have a few decorated cookie commitments in the month of June, and I couldn’t afford to be burning every batch of cookies I made. So this morning, I attempted to change my baking luck and I climbed back in to the kitchen (kind of kicking and screaming). And…. my first attempt was a fail.
These flat little cookie frisbees still tasted good, but I knew they wouldn’t hold up to what I had in mind. So I stopped to think. This is actually a recipe I have been making FOREVER. It’s the chocolate variation of the chocolate chip cookie that I tweaked about ten years ago and I have been making ever since. So why the fail? I went back and consulted the original recipe for the first time in years and it seems like I have been baking them at too low of a temperature! I don’t know at what point I started making the mistake, or why they work sometimes and not others, but I started over and my next attempt was much better.
I took a bunch of pictures and not many of them actually came out. I still need to bring back my photo mojo. And, I need to find the voodoo “klutz” pin and pull that back out before I waste anymore sprinkles.
I did take one picture that I absolutely LOVED. In fact the only editing involved here was a little cropping (and, I’ll be perfectly honest, cloning out the sprinkles that flew into the buttercream when I spilled the bottle, which I didn’t notice until I uploaded the picture).
So there’s hope.
Chocolate Buttercream Sandwiches
(I know these have been done a zillion times, but I found today that sometimes you have to go back to the basics, and double check that recipe you have been using forever.)
- 1 stick of unsalted butter, softened
- 1/3c granulated sugar
- 1/3c brown sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp EnErG Egg Replacer Powder mixed with 2 tbsp water (you can find this in the allergy aware aisles at Whole Foods or Wegmans)
- 1/2 tsp vanills
- 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- pinch of salt
- 1 stick of unsalted butter, softened
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp coconut extract
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 3-4 Tbsp heavy cream (as needed- for thinner icing use less)
- Preheat oven to 375F. Line 2-3 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Make the icing- in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter. Slowly add the sugar, the extracts, and the salt. Add the cream as the mixture becomes too thick to mix. Add just enough cream to reach your desired consistency,
- Scoop the icing out of the bowl and scrape as much as you can off of the beater and the bowl into a separate bowl. Cover and put aside.
- Using the same bowl and paddle attachment (feel free to wash them if you want, but it’s not necessary), cream the second stick of butter with the two sugars. Add the vanilla and egg replacer mixture. When everything is combined, add in the cocoa, mixing until incorporated. Then slowly add the flour, salt, and baking soda.
- Use a tablespoon sized scooper to scoop out balls of dough. Break each ball in half and place on the parchment. Bake for nine minutes.
- Let the cookies cool for a few minutes on the parchment until they firm up a bit then remove to a cooking rack to cool completely.
- Scoop a half teaspoon size scoop of icing onto half of the cookies and sandwich it with the other half. If you want, you can roll them in colored sugar, or sprinkles- if you’re bringing them to a holiday celebration, or maybe a Memorial Day BBQ.
This post is linked up at Party In Your PJs at The Cookie Puzzle and Simply Sweets By Honeybee