Black and White Cookies

When I was in NYC, there were numerous (if not all) delicatessens that carried monster cookies in their coolers. Black and whites were no exception. These are a famous cookie, normally a buttermilk-based cookie, they smell (to me) almost like pancakes when baking in the oven with a hint of lemon. Not too shabby. I never got to sample one while I was there, since when I saw them I heard “CALORIES ON YOUR BUTTTTTTTT” in my brain.

Then I had a few bites of cheesecake from the Roxy in Times Square.

I’m all about being hypocritical.

My good friend’s 18th birthday was a few days ago, and she loves the ones I have made before, and so I told her that I would make her some for her special day, the day AFTER the ACTUAL day, then giving them to her TODAY instead of two days before YESTERDAY. I just accomplished something awesome in one sentence.

Sorry for not posting yesterday, May came in with a bang to my health and I was down and out on the couch for my Saturday. This wasn’t a bad deal, nothing makes a sore throat and faucet nose feel better than Froyo. Mmmm, froyo.

First off, let’s start off with making the buttermilk, since I don’t have any. Fill your glass with milk then stir in some lemon juice. So, here, I have 1 1/2 cups of milk, and for every cup of milk, we want 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. So that means to add in 1 1/2 T. lemon juice! Stir them together, and allow to sit on the counter for 10 minutes. When the mixture is a bit curdled-looking, you’re good in the hood! Start working on your batter. Its a simple cake batter, really, if not a bit thicker. Its good to get out all of your ingredients before hand. Like your butter, flour, sugar…

Eg-OH GOOD LORD. Psh, toss the broken egg and wash off EVERY ONE OF YOUR EGG WHITE-SOAKED EGGS WHILE GRUMBLING. Dry. Continue. Bake the cookies, they will be thin, don’t worry.

I’m sorry, Alex, I ate one. I hope you don’t mind. I didn’t get a lot of pictures of the process on account that I was rushing, because I made them all BEFORE church. Why i did this, I dunno, but I did. I’m cute like that.

Don’t you just want to pinch my cheeks?

No?

Well this is awkward…

These are so fun to do, and really very easy. Recipe is listed at the bottom of the post.

It’s Bob’s birthday tomorrow too! He likes funfetti and the color purple. So I made him cupcakes. Let’s explain the panels.

1. He’s turning 19, that one’s obvious, of course. Old man.
2. He likes Lady Gaga, so I made him a Gaga bolt. My artistry was not a factor here. Its beautiful, I know.
3. Make it work? Ever seen Project Runway? You know where its filmed? Parsons New School for Design? Hello, Bob, Parsons Class of ’14 student. Make it work, good fellow.
4. In homage to Gaga, Bob is a little monster.

The right shade of purple 🙂 But I’m not done.

I’m Clara, and birthday gifts from Clara need sparkle. Your welcome.

Black and White Cookies
Ingredients
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups milk (I subbed buttermilk)
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
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/3 to 1/2 cup water
3 ounces very bitter or unsweetened chocolate
1 teaspoon light corn syrup.
1 to 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa (optional)

Method
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray 2 baking sheets with nonstick spray, or line with parchment paper.

2. In large mixing bowl, combine sugar and butter. Mix by machine or hand until fluffy. Add eggs, milk and vanilla and lemon extracts, and mix until smooth.

3. In medium bowl, combine cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt. Stir until mixed. Add dry mixture to the wet in batches, stirring well after each addition. Using a soup spoon, place heaping spoonfuls of the dough 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. Bake until edges begin to brown, 18 to 20 minutes. Cool completely.

4. Boil a cup or so of water in a small pot. Place confectioners’ sugar in large, heat-safe mixing bowl. Gradually stir in enough boiling water to the sugar to make a thick, spreadable mixture. Err on the side of caution because a too-thin frosting is hard to undo. Leave remaing boiling water on the stove.

5. Spread frosting on half of the flat side of each cookie. Once all cookie halves have been frosted, place the bowl of the remaining frosting over the hot water and bring it back to a simmer (creating a double-boiler). Stir in the bitter or unsweetened chocolate until melted, as well as the light corn syrup. At this point, depending on the chocolate you used and your preferences, you might find the chocolate color to be a little lighter than the “black” of a black-and-white cookie. If so, I find that a tablespoon or so of cocoa mixed in darkens the color nicely.

6. Ice the remaining half of the cookies with the chocolate frosting. I find that the chocolate–especially with cocoa in it–is especially prone to getting too dry, so don’t worry about whisking in an extra teaspoon of that hot water from time to smooth it back into a shiny frosting.

7. Let the frosting set. Store in an airtight container. These cookies keep for a few days, but I think they’re best on the first or second. Because of the cake nature of the bases, they can get stale quickly. However, this is really a non-issue as I have yet to make a batch that didn’t get polished off in no time

Happy Baking!
Clara

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