Friday, 11 October 2013

Maple Black and White Cookies

If I had to choose between a mango fresh from the Caribbean and an authentic dessert from somewhere around the world, I’d have to go with the latter.

If you buy a box of sticky baklava from a bakery in Istanbul, it's going to taste amazing because they've got that craft nailed and heck; it's from Istanbul and not Sainsbury’s.

Cue my attempt at recreating an American Classic on top of my MDF counter kitchen tops.

Black and white cookies are totally a New York thing. I am getting on a plane to New York with my boyfriend nine days before Christmas. This is definitely a thing that is happening in just over two months. To contain my excitement I made a cookie in true Yorkian style, with maple syrup because who doesn’t love maple glaze? Also maple is one of those comforting flavours that tastes even better at this time of the year.

To be honest, I’m not sure why this is called a cookie, its kind of like eating the bottom half of a whoopee pie. Its soft and if you only bite from the center you get the best ratio of lemony sponge, maple and chocolate icing. Once the center has been demolished, I like to sandwich the corners together and shove the whole thing in my mouth. After doing my research (eating six in one day) I can conclude that there really is no other way to eat this.

The thing that keeps this cookie from drying out in the oven is the buttermilk. The ingredients read like a sponge cake recipe, without the buttermilk, I think you could end up with 18 cookies that look & taste like you forgot to add baking soda to them. My local supermarket ran out of buttermilk, so I went homemade for this one, this is something that is dead easy to do and produces the exact same results. All you need to do is add 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice to one cup of milk, let it sit for 5 minutes until it looks like runny cottage cheese and that’s it.

I think my cookies are close to the real deal, but I’ll have to wait until December to find out if this post was a complete waste of time. Have you ever been to the Empire State? If you have, and if you discovered the most epic bakery/café/restaurant/market/pop up/old guy selling cornhusks on 5th avenue pleeeeease let me know!
Maple Black and White Cookies

Adapted from Baked Explorations: Classic American Desserts Reinvented 


For the Cookie:
198g unsalted butter, cool but not cold
1 + 1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 medium egg + 1 egg yolk
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 cups + 2 tbsp plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp lemon zest (optional)

For the Frosting:
3 3/4 cup icing sugar
3 tbso double cream
4-5 tbsp whole milk
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp cocoa powder
4 tbsp maple syrup
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

The Method:

Preheat the oven to 180 C and line to baking sheets with baking parchment.

Add the dry ingredients to a large bowl and ‘plump’ up the mixture with a spoon (alternative to sieving).

Cream butter and sugar for 2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl and add eggs  & yolks one at a time whilst mixing.

Add the buttermilk and flour mixture in thirds, alternating after each and ending with the flour mixture. Scrape down bowl again, add vanilla, maple and lemon rind.

Scoop the cookies onto the baking sheets, 3 inches apart, using an ice cream scoop. If you’re using a regular sized scoop, only fill it half way otherwise you will end up with huge cookies. Bake for 12 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack.

Make the icings. Add the icing sugar, cream and milk to a bowl and whisk until smooth. Add milk by the teaspoon if the icing is too thick. Add half the icing to a separate bowl. Add the cocoa powder to one bowl, and vanilla & maple syrup to the other. If the cocoa icing is thick, add more milk.

Cover the cookies. Set the chocolate icing aside. Take a piping bag fitted with a small round tip and outline the half the circle. Repeat with each cookie. Flood each cookie with icing once the outline has set. Repeat with the cocoa icing. Store in airtight containers, cookies last up to 3 days.
Love Em xx

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