Over the weekend, I made some really good cookies (and some really bad ones too)

I was supposed to make Super-Sized Ginger Chewies on Sunday (from Big Fat Cookies), but never really got around to it. That was alright, since I had Monday off for MLK. Monday was an extremely productive day. I got all of my homework done for the week, and made (or at least attempted) two batches of cookies. I also did some laundry (which still isn’t put away, making for three loads of laundry folded in my hamper sitting in the spare bedroom getting wrinkles and permanently creased), and did some other small cleaning things.

The second batch of cookies, Fudge-Filled Chocolate Chip Cookie Sandwiches (from Big Fat Cookies), turned out horribly. I made them after dinner, and they just didn’t turn out well at all (which makes two attempts at chocolate chip cookies from that book that have gone wrong). They tasted like cake, which is surprisingly not a good thing for a cookie. I baked a dozen, let test them, and then tossed the rest of the dough. Perhaps the fudge for the filling would have been good, but I didn’t get around to making it. I was complaining to and she said that sometimes when cookies spread out too much (which these and the other ones did), it’s the fault of butter, and I should try margarine. I might have to give another one of the book’s chocolate chip cookie recipes a try this weekend with that suggestion. We’ll see how much energy I have for that. Of course, if it’s still friggin’ cold outside (it’s been below zero or in the very low single digits for the past week each morning – this morning it was -12*!), making cookies sounds like a good way to pass the time. That and getting work done on the new (I know, I know) baby blanket for Danny.

Fortunately for Big Fat Cookies, I had already made a successful batch of cookies earlier in the day, and the weekend prior as well. I spent my afternoon on Monday making Super-Sized Ginger Chewies. Think Gingersnaps without the snap – the author of the cookbook clearly states in the introduction that she likes large, chewy cookies, and supposedly that’s what her recipes make (though as previously mentioned I’ve had some difficulties getting the chocolate chip versions to work). Here’s a little illustrated story for you on that….

I got out all my equipment and ingredients,

Sugar and flour
and the rest of the ingredients,
which included getting out the stepstool to reach the flour (great Ikea purchase if anyone needs one – Bekvam, $15).

I’ve found that getting everything out beforehand really helps me follow the recipe better. Plus, it allows for easier clean-up. I just put an ingredient away after I’ve measured it and the kitchen gets cleaner as I go instead of messier.

I got to use my flour sifter again. I’m really enjoying that small little task, even if it is basically non-essential. (To note, however, my cookbook only sometimes tells me to sift the ingredients together, which, to me, lends validity to the idea of following that instruction.)
While the cookie dough left on the batter is usually one of my favorite things, perhaps Ginger Chewies are not the best way to enjoy that particular treat.
A far less fussy recipe, this one just called for all the ingredients to be mixed together and no extra refrigeration or other steps. The one additional step before baking was essential, and therefore not considered “fussy.” Balls of dough were rolled up and then coated in sugar. These are pretty big cookies, as you can see from the fact that only 6 fit on a cookie sheet. This, of course, meant that I spent basically the entire afternoon making cookies, and washed my hands about a zillion times, between the 14 minutes of cooking time, 5 minutes of cooling time, and then making another sheet….
But it was all worth it, because I had this beautiful result.
See how perfectly they crackled and how the sugar coating did exactly what it was supposed to do? These are perfect cookies! They are slightly crisp around the outside but the inside is chewy. I stored them in Ziploc baggies and now the outsides aren’t crisp anymore, which could be good or bad.
I’ve decided this is my favorite angle from which to photograph cookies.

More of the finished product. They were so good, I almost didn’t let eat one (he didn’t know if he liked ginger cookies or not, and I didn’t want to waste a perfectly good cookie on someone who wouldn’t appreciate it, but in the end he liked it so it’s all good).

I might make up another batch of these over the weekend to bring in for my coworkers, since the fudge-filled ones were supposed to be for them. If I do, I’ll make smaller versions, since I don’t think anyone will want the really big ones. (Or, rather, they’ll complain that I’m trying to make them fat.)