Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Cocktail Cookies

Sorry for having waited so long between the Oreo post and the Cherry Soup Post. I have a reason though! I was in Vegas! My brother had his bachelor party and his fiancée had her bachelorette party, then the next night the guys and girls got together. Everyone had a blast! What did we do, you ask? Sorry, but “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.” That is, unless you are Miss Spears and you elope. That has a tendency of following you home. Thankfully, no one eloped this go-round!

Anyway, I wanted to bring some goodies to the girls so that if we came back hungry after a night of fun, we’d have something to nibble on. But what to make for a bachelorette party snack? Cocktail cookies of course! After seeing smitten kitchen’s post on her margarita cookies I decided to make a batch of them and then alter the recipe and make strawberry daiquiri cookies. Great idea, right? Sadly, my execution was off. I became one of those people who completely changes a recipe and yet expects it to come out just as good. While they were still edible and the daiquiri cookies were even pretty darn good, I’d say that my changes royally buggered this recipe.

I think the only way in which I can explain why this recipe may be good but my changes not will be to give you smitten kitchen’s recipe along with my changes in brackets. Pink brackets for strawberry, green for margarita.

Tips and notes: Tip #1: follow directions! While they both were edible, neither was great and only the daiquiri was good. #2: do not use coarse salt as it isolates the salt in a few areas and either you get no salt or you get too much. #3: these get better with time. The day I baked them I tried one and was really disgusted, the next day it was edible and by the time I brought them to work 3 days later they were kind of good. I won’t be trying these again, but if anyone wants to, feel free, just for goodness sake, follow the directions!
Margarita Cookies and Strawberry Daiquiri Cookies

2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature [for both I used margarine]
2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 large egg yolks, at room temperature
Pinch of salt
2 teaspoons tequila [ended up using a little more since I couldn’t taste it at first] [used a little under a tablespoon of rum and a tablespoon of strawberry daiquiri syrup]
Grated zest of 2 limes [omitted]
Grate zest of half an orange [omitted]
2 cups all-purpose flour

Approximately 1/2 cup clear sanding or other coarse sugar [used regular sugar]
2 teaspoons flaky Maldon sea salt* [used ¾ teaspoon of coarse sea salt, then realized it would have a lot of salt on just a few cookies, so I tried to crush it into smaller pieces] [omitted]

1. Put the butter in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat at medium speed until it is smooth. Add the sifted confectioners’ sugar and beat again until the mixture is smooth and silky. Beat in 1 of the egg yolks, followed by the salt, tequila [/rum and daiquiri mix], grated lime and orange zest. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour, beating just until it disappears. It is better to underbeat than overbeat at this point; if the flour isn’t fully incorporated, that’s OK—just blend in whatever remaining flour needs blending with a rubber spatula. Turn the dough out onto a counter, gather it into a ball, and divide it in half. Wrap each piece of dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 30 minutes [I’d say mine were in anywhere from 15-45 min each].

2. Working on a smooth surface, form each piece of dough into a log that is about 1 to 1 1/4 inches thick. (Get the thickness right, and the length you end up with will be fine.) Wrap the logs in plastic and chill for 2 hours [mine were in anywhere from 20min-1hour. Ya, I wanted to go to bed at that point]. (The dough can be wrapped airtight and kept refrigerated for up to 3 days or stored in the freezer for up to 1 month.)

3. Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

4. While the oven is preheating, work on the sugar coating: Whisk the remaining egg yolk in a small bowl until it is smooth and liquid enough to use as a glaze. Mix the coarse sugar and flaky salt well and spread the mixture out on a piece of wax paper. Remove the logs of dough from the refrigerator, unwrap them, and brush them lightly with a little egg yolk. Roll the logs in the sugar, pressing the sugar/salt mixture gently to get it to stick if necessary, then, using a sharp slender knife, slice each log into cookies about 1/4 inch thick. Place the cookies on the lined baking sheets, leaving about 1/2 inch space between them.

5. Bake the cookies for 12 to 14 minutes, or until they are set but not browned. (It’s fine if the yolk-brushed edges brown a smidgen.) Transfer the cookies to cooling racks to cool to room temperature.
Keeping: Packed airtight, the cookies will keep for about 5 days at room temperature. Because the sugar coating will melt, these cookies are not suitable for freezing.

* If you should choose to use regular table salt and not Maldon, use less! Much less. Probably half or less. Because Maldon has such volume, the equivalent amount of a finer salt would be much more pungent.

1 comment:

Jess said...

I think I may have nibbled one of these in your apartment. They were interesting. I was definitely trying to figure out what the pink ones were haha.

Re: ballet class. There's a place in downtown Silver Spring. Right across from Macaroni Grill.