I am constantly amazed at how animated and talkative people get when you mention food. The mere aroma of certain foods can evoke memories that transport us back to a special place and time. Food can bridge the gap between all ages, races and ethnicities.
Let's face it, the only thing that should ever come between people is a table and some serving bowls.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Snickering over Snickerdoodles

My Mother was always an excellent cook but she herself will tell you that she was a lousy baker. All her attempts to bake cookies, cakes and such when I was young were never fit for human consumption. Whenever it was my mothers turn to bring bake goods for the PTA meetings and bake sales we always got store bought or if we were lucky my grandmother would bake something for her to bring. My mother and I had this funny little joke between us where I would tell people; “I had to rely on the kindness of strangers or go door to door if I wanted homemade cookies”. My mother and I would always laugh. About ten years ago my mother decided to take a stab at making snickerdoodles. A bunch of the family was going over to her house for dinner and she thought the snickerdoodles would be a nice treat to have with coffee. Well after dinner was over my mother served coffee and placed the cookies on the table. They looked and smelled delicious. My Uncle took one, tried to bite it and it didn’t even crumble, so he decided to dunk it in his coffee to soften it up. He still couldn’t bite it, now all of us are laughing. We started hitting them on the table and these things wouldn't even break. My Uncle says; “Harriet what did you make these with? Plaster of Paris”! We all howled and had ice cream instead. Snickerdoodles put my mother into permanent baking retirement!

Easy to make Snickerdoodles (as long as you are not my Mother)!

1/2 cup shortening

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup plus 4 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 tablespoons of cinnamon
4 tablespoons of sugar

Cream the shortening, sugar and egg with electric mixer until smooth.
Sift flour, onto a wax paper, about 1 1/2 cup.
Measure flour, salt, and baking powder into sifter and sift over a small bowl.
Add the sifted ingredients into the sugar and shortening and egg mixture and mix well with a wooden spoon.
Add vanilla and stir again.
Dough should be soft and easy to handle. Add a little more flour (about a tablespoon or so) if dough sticks to your hands.
Preheat oven to 400F. Set out cookies sheets lined with foil 8 combine sugar and cinnamon into a small bowl and set out side
Roll pieces of dough into the size of a small jawbreaker. Roll the ball into the sugar cinnamon mixture. Place on a foil line cookie sheet, three across and five down. Place the rack in the middle of the oven.
Bake for 8-10 minutes until lightly brown. Cookies will puff up and then will flatten down and have a crispy top.
Let the cookies cool on the rack.


sognatrice said...

Mmmm, I *love* snickerdoodles. The story about your mom is too funny; I suppose we all have our weaknesses ;)

Squishy said...

Can I use butter instead of Shortening? These look great, hanging to try them.

Julie said...

Thanks Sognatrice, it really was funny.

Julie said...

Hi Squishy, Yes you can use butter I think the butter just makes them less soft and more crisp.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Julie, I absolutely love snickerdoodles!
I must admit that I'm a shallow person and baked them for the first time because of the name. ;)

Julie said...

I know Patricia it's really the name that makes them seem so special.In actuality they are really just a sugar cookie with cinnamon which sounds pretty boring.

Julie said...

Patricia It's probably a good thing they have such a catchy name otherwise they would just be called sugar cookies with cinnamon (kind of boring).

Christine said...

I LOVE snickerdoodles and am always looking for a good recipe. The story is hilarious! :)

So Simple said...

Hi Julie
Are these holiday cookies?
Love the story about your Mum.
My first (10 years old) effort at pikelets (a small flapjack eaten with jam and cream)was a disaster.They were like rubber. best used as a frisbee I think...I have improved!!!

Julie said...

So Simple, snickerdoodles are not traditionally considered a holiday cookie. But there are no rules here, if you and your family like them serve them during the holidays.