Monday, October 20, 2014

#8 ~ Piglets (Cochinitos) ~ Mexico (page 78)

Oink! Oink! The Piglets have finally been baked and they are great! I had expected a spicier cookie based on the photo in the book where the cookies appear to be quite dark but if I'd initally read the recipe more carefully I would have noticed that this is not a spice cookie at all. However, these cookies did not disappoint. 

The first step was to prepare a syrup on the stovetop using brown sugar, orange zest, orange juice and cinnamon sticks. The smell of the syrup was heavenly - fragrant with orange and just a hint of cinnamon.

Next the syrup and some vanilla were beat together with shortening. Finally, a mixture of flour, baking powder and baking soda was gradually added to the mixture to form a dough. After refrigerating for an hour, the dough was rolled and the piglets were cut. When I first looked at this recipe I thought there was no way I'd ever find a pig-shaped cookie cutter and how disappointing would it be to make a cookie called "piglets" that weren't shaped like pigs? Much to my surprise I found one at the first place I looked, my local Bulk Barn store. 

The dough had a rather crumbly texture and was not the easiest to roll out. Several of my pigs ended up looking rather wrinkled! The final step before baking was to sprinkle the cookie shapes with a mixture of sugar and cinnamon to give them "a very realistic dusty appearance". 

Piglets! With a light orange-spice taste and great crunchiness. Who knew a pig could be so tasty?

Next Up: Chocolate Spritz Cookies

Monday, October 6, 2014

#7 ~ Melting Moments ~ Scotland and England (page 92)

After a short hiatus I am back in cookie mode again. I deviated slightly from the cookie which was planned next (Piglets from Mexico) when I realized that I didn't have the required orange juice on hand. No worries, I selected another recipe in its place and started baking.

There was nothing very complicated about making this cookie which is very reminiscent of shortbread. It called for mixing up a simple dough, rolling it into 1-inch balls, coating them in oatmeal (easier said than done because the oatmeal really didn't want to stick to the dough!), flattening with the palm of the hand and baking.

The resulting biscuits are light and crispy with a hint of almond flavour. The recipe book states, "Melting Moments are so named for their delightfully crisp-dry, melt-in-the-mouth texture. Whoever first devised this cookie must have created it specifically to go with tea." I would have to agree - paired with this cinnamon spice tea they were delicious!

Next Up: Piglets