Sunday, July 31, 2011

Chewy Molasses Spice Cookies - Operation Baking Gals

Today, I started my baking for Operation Baking Gals.  I have made three different cookies, so far.  I am hoping to bake another tonight and a few tomorrow so I can ship them out, at the beginning of the period of time.  I usually get there on the last day.




One time when I baked for the soldiers, I used Taste of Home since they have easy and durable cookies.  Other times, it was a random decision.  This time, I am baking Martha Stewart recipes.  The two I made, so far, were good.  One, I loved and the other was OK.


These chewy molasses cookies were fabulous.  Baked correctly, the outer rim is a little crisp and the inside is chewy, a delight to the tongue.
 
Chewy Molasses Spice Cookies -- Everyday Food, December 2005
  • Yield Makes 36

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened  (I cut this down to 2 sticks, 1/2 cup and it was fine.)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup molasses

Method:


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. In a shallow bowl, place 1/2 cup sugar; set aside.
  2. With an electric mixer, beat margarine and remaining cup of sugar until combined. Beat in egg and then molasses until combined. Reduce speed to low; gradually mix in dry ingredients, just until a dough forms.
  3. Pinch off and roll dough into balls, each equal to 1 tablespoon. Roll balls in reserved sugar to coat.
  4. Arrange balls on baking sheets, about 3 inches apart. Bake, one sheet at a time, until edges of cookies are just firm, 10 to 15 minutes (cookies can be baked two sheets at a time, but they will not crackle uniformly). Cool 1 minute on baking sheets; transfer to racks to cool.
When you bake these, take the spacing seriously.  These do spread a lot.






    Friday, July 29, 2011

    Gluten Freedom


    Today is an exciting day, in our house, because, I finally bought gluten-free oats.  For 18 years,  I have baked a few items with oat meal (GF) but I never had the oats for crumbles and cookies and all that good stuff.  Today, I received a shipment of the real thing, rolled oats.

     I baked cookies and my daughter is excited to make an apple crumble and we have so many plans.  This is truly like a new toy, for us.  The problem is that I was not sure what the cookie should be like.  Should it be thick.  Does it spread (oh yes!)  Will it taste good?  ....another resounding YES!!!


     Oatmeal Raisin Cookies  from Dorie Greenspan

    Makes about 40 Oatmeal Raisin cookies

    Ingredients:

    • 3 cups gluten-free old-fashioned oats
    • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
    • 1 1/2 sticks  unsalted margarine, at room temperature
    • 1 (packed) cup light brown sugar
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    • 1 1/2 cups plump, moist dried raisins

    Method:

    1. Getting ready: Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
    2. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
    3. Whisk together the oats, flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and freshly grated nutmeg and keep at hand.
    4. Working in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or using a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar on medium speed until smooth and creamy.
    5. Add the eggs one at a time and beat for 1 minute after each addition and then beat in the vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients slowly, beating only until blended.
    6. Add the dried cranberries or raisins and mix to incorporate them evenly into the dough. (At this point, the dough can be wrapped well and chilled for up to 2 days.)
    7. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of dough 2 inches apart onto the baking sheets or use a medium (1 1/2 tablespoons) scoop. If the dough has been chilled, gently press down on the mounds of dough until they’re about 1/2-inch thick.
    8. Slide the sheets into the oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, rotating the sheets front to back and top to bottom after 7 minutes. The cookies will be golden and just firm around the edges.
    9. Lift the cookies onto cooling racks with a wide metal spatula – they’ll firm as they cool. Repeat with the remaining dough always making certain that your baking sheets are cool.
     One batch was crisp and I cut the baking time by two minutes and then they were chewy and delicious.

    Grocery Cart Challenge


    Thursday, July 28, 2011

    Bake with Bizzy 11

    It is time to explain what I envision for Bake with Bizzy.  I love desserts and I am happy to have the opportunity to add so many, from all of you, to my baking list.  I would love to see more bread and what about a new take on baked potatoes?  What do you bake besides dessert.  Feel free to link both your sweet and your savory.  The only qualifier is that it is baked.

    I am baking for the soldiers again so you should be seeing some new cookies.  I limit myself in what I bake since these are traveling far from my home.  With the heat and possibly rough treatment, I want to give those cookies, the best shot.  It is exciting to send to those who fight for our country and it is even nicer to do it the right way.

    I welcome suggestions for cookies to bake that are relatively simple to make and will not die on the way to our heroes.  I would appreciate it, if you could also link up cookie sites on the Net, that you like so I can find more recipes.  I am selfish and despite my desire for easier recipes, I don't want to get bored.  Thanks for you support in the endeavor.

    If you are interested in baking for the troops, to to Baking Girls or Operation Baking Girls.

    Last week, we had a star, the Wednesday Baker.  Andi Winslow loves to bake cookies and has a striking blog to share these with all of us.



    I grew up on Black and White Cookies and Andi has one that looks more professional than the bakeries and I bet, tastes even better.

    Take a trip to The Wednesday Baker and see for yourself how many recipes, you are going to want to make for yourselves.

    Maybe you will have the most viewed recipe, next week.  I will feature whoever does get those views.  I am doing this, out of desperation.  It is so challenging to select someone, I decided to let the Linky do the work, for me.

    Please do link up     a favorite baked good to inspire all of us.  Thanks for your support in my endeavor to be one of the foodies that brings your yummy food to the foodie masses.