THE LIFE OF A COLLEGE BAKER
Saturday May 8th…. Graduation from Indiana University!
Like many college students, baking is not easy to do. I lived in a house with five other girls. Our small kitchen was not equipped for a baker. Mixing everything BY HAND explains it all.
MY task: To bake cookies for our post-graduation party that would be held at our house.
My mom is famous for her homemade "cookie mixes in a jar" that she sends to all of her kids. She puts pre-measured, dry ingredients in bags with the cookie recipes. This makes whipping up a batch of cookies so easy when you don’t have all of the necessary dry ingredients! All you need to do is add the “wet” things like eggs, butter and vanilla. Luckily I had a snickerdoodle cookie mix that she had sent to me. Since I wanted to make sugar cookies, I just doctored the snickerdoodle recipe (since it is basically a sugar cookie rolled in cinnamon and sugar). So I just didn’t roll the dough in a cinnamon mixture. The result = A yummy and chewy sugar cookie!!
CHEWY SUGAR COOKIE RECIPE
(the base is a snickerdoodle recipe that I adjusted to make it into sugar cookies)
- ½ cup crisco
- ½ cup butter, softened
- 1 ½ cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 ¾ cup flour
- 2 tsp. cream of tartar
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- A splash of milk to moisten the dough
-A creamed the butter and crisco and added the sugar and eggs. Then combined the rest of the ingredients until combined. I rolled the dough into balls and placed on a cookie sheet. I pressed down the balls slightly and then sprinkled the tops with sugar. Bake at 350 degrees for about 9 minutes.
MY TRICK FOR THE SOFTEST COOKIE: Take them out when ALMOST DONE! When the edges are JUST starting to golden and the middle is still a LITTLE undone. Let them finish baking as they cool on the sheet. I then pop them in the freezer to speed the cooling process!
What can I say, I’m an impatient college student…. And once the cookies are cooled it’s time for my favorite part…THE ICING. For these cookies I invisioned a cookie with white icing and a red IU sign.
In a perfect world I would make my favorite homemade icing but with the limited ingredients and baking essentials I had to be creative!…and go against some of my baking expectations. This would involve a semi-homemade icing. A store-bought white icing mixed with a teaspoon of vanilla flavoring. I know, I know, nothing can beat the delicious homemade icing, but I didn’t have time to buy the confectioner’s sugar! But the end result was still great! And the sugar cookies were SUPER soft. I also had to by store-bought red icing (in a can with a tip already on it to make writing the letters SUPER easy)
For a baker who is pressed for time. Icings doctored with flavorings can disguise any store-bought flavor.
Biting into one of these cookies was a soft and sweet moment that made it hard to stop after one. And I think the family members at my graduation party all agreed.