A couple weeks ago I got an intriguing email from Sandy of At the Baker's Bench. I've gotten to know Sandy as I've been joining her in a year of BYOB fun. She invited me to be part of a group baking holiday cookies and posting them during the first 12 days of December. That's right, 12 days in a row, one cookie per day. I thought about it for a bit, since it would definitely be quite a bit of work to bake, photograph and blog all those cookies. But I've been trying to think of ways to get out of my blogging slump, so I decided to throw caution to the wind and jump right in!
So welcome to my first post for the 12 Days of Cookies (a Bon Appetit cookie extravaganza)! I'm baking along with nine other wonderful bloggers (see below for the full list). A bunch of them did the same thing last year with recipes from Gourmet. This year, we're selecting cookies from this list. Part of the fun is that each of us is making our own picks from the 31 options, and none of us knows what the others are baking. So we'll get to have as much fun as everyone else checking out all the different cookies as they're posted.
Once I decided which 12 cookies I wanted to make (and it's still possible the list might change), I had to decide which to share first. Today's cookie actually wasn't the first one I made, but once I thought about it, I realized that it was the perfect one to start off with. After all, it comes from Dorie Greenspan, and today is Tuesday. =) (Just a note, my regularly scheduled TWD posts will resume next week. I didn't make this week's tart--my apologies to Lauren.) So first up is Spice Roll-Out Cookies.
Now roll-out cookies aren't a favorite of mine. I like eating them, and they're pretty, but I just don't have the patience for them a lot of the time. Plus my girls see cookie cutters and colored sugar and immediately want to help. And I don't always have the patience for that. =) But I really like molasses and spice cookies, so I figured I'd give these a try.
The dough was easy to mix together. Lots of spices--ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, and one surprise, dry mustard. Once the dough was mixed, I divided it in half as instructed and stashed it in the fridge overnight. The next morning, I took half out to work with. The dough was actually nice to roll out. I tried to work quickly, cutting out shapes and transferring them to my parchment-lined baking sheet. The dough did soften a bit, though, so I put the sheet pan of cookies in the fridge to chill for a few minutes before I put them in the oven. Meanwhile, I gathered the scraps of dough together into a disc and wrapped it up to put back in the fridge to chill again. I baked the cookies for 8 minutes; next time I think I'll go a bit longer since they ended up a bit soft (and thus a bit harder to decorate). Later in the day, once the cookies were completely cool, I added a glaze. I whisked together a couple teaspoons of cream cheese with a tablespoon of milk and about 3 ounces of powdered sugar. I spread the glaze on the cookies with the back of a spoon and left the cookies on the rack until the glaze was completed dry.
The verdict? These were definitely a hit. Brianna and Gillian both liked them; in fact, Brianna specifically asked if she could have another one in her lunch tomorrow, which is high praise indeed. =) I liked them better with the glaze than without. The combination of spices was nice, but it seemed like the plain cookies needed a bit of...something. I'm thinking that it might be just a bit more salt, so I'm going to try that next time. Meanwhile, I've got half the dough in my freezer so we can bake some more between now and Christmas.
If you'd like to give these cookies a try, you can find the recipe here.
And be sure to check out the other bakers participating in the 12 Days of Cookies to see what they've baked up for today!
Andrea of Andrea's Recipes