Sunday, July 3, 2011

Black and White cookies

Hey everyone, welcome to my food blog!  

So, I graduated from Oberlin College on May's such a strange feeling to be done with college!  But even more than that, it's pretty strange not having a fully working ankle.  Four days before I graduated, I sprained my ankle very badly at the Senior Supper during Commencement.  After going to two emergency rooms and two orthopedic surgeons, I have a sprained ankle with one or two torn ligaments.  Aka, FML.  I've been doing everything to try and get my ankle to heal: ice, advil, and basically staying in one place.  If you know me well, staying in one place is a rare occasion.  After a month of this ice/advil business, I was able to walk a couple of days ago!  With my aircast, but still---it's a huge step (no pun intended, hah)!  

I'm still planning on moving to Champaign-Urbana to start my job as a violin teacher, and play with The Prairie Dogs, Don't Ask (klezmer band), and other musical outfits....but I'm just waiting to see how my ankle heals to know when I'll be living there full-time.  In the meantime, I'm watching a ton of movies, catching up on Grey's Anatomy, and baking/cooking occasionally.

Today I embarked on my first baking adventure as a semi-crippled person---the Black and White cookie.  These are absolutely delicious, and I have eaten them in many a deli shop and bakery throughout my life.  However, anytime I think about these cookies, I think about that episode of Seinfeld, circling around the Black and White cookie, using it as a metaphor for the whole episode (Dinner Party).  As Jerry Seinfeld says in that episode: "The thing about eating the Black and White cookie, Elaine, is you want to get some black and some white in each bite.  Nothing mixes better than vanilla and chocolate.  And yet somehow racial harmony eludes us.  If people would only look to the cookie all of our problems would be solved."  Obviously the most epic of all cookies.

So, here goes the can find the original recipe from The Simple Spatula here.

Black and White Cookies

1-3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
4 large eggs
1-1/2 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
2-1/2 cups cake flour
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/2 to 2/3 cup water
3 ounces very bitter or unsweetened chocolate
1 teaspoon honey
1 to 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa (to help achieve that dark black color)

Preheat oven to 375º F.  Cream butter and sugar, and add eggs one at a time, milk, and vanilla and lemon extracts.  (It looks really chunky, but when you add the dry ingredients, it looks more legit)
In a medium bowl, combine cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt.  Gradually add dry ingredients to wet, stirring well after each addition.  Spoon batter on the baking sheets, and bake until edges begin to brown, 18 to 20 minutes; rotate cookie sheets so each sheet of cookies are evenly baked.
Boil water, and gradually pour over confectioners’ sugar in a large, heat-safe mixing bowl.  Mix until frosting forms, and quickly spread frosting on half of each cookie.  The frosting hardens REALLY quickly, so make sure to be efficient in your frosting!  If the frosting is too hard, double boil frosting and mix vigorously until consistency is reached.
Double boil remaining frosting, and stir in unsweetened chocolate and honey.  Mix in cocoa, and stir until consistency is reached.  Quickly frost the remaining halves of each cookie.  I ended up using most of my white frosting, so I just eyeballed a fresh batch of chocolate frosting.
Let cookies sit, so the frosting reaches the correct consistency.  These cookies are VERY rich, but boy are they yummy---especially with a cold glass of milk :)  ...and some advil and ice, in my case.
Hope y'all enjoy!

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