28 November 2010

On the first day of baking . . .

. . . my true love baked for meeeee: absolutely nothing.

Taking matters into my own hands, I proceeded to make a relatively new favorite, the frosted cardamom cookie. I was surprised to find myself out of cardamom, but neighbors B & L accidentally bought four quarts of it recently, so stealing a couple tablespoons from them was no big deal. Incidentally, do you ever read the comments section on epicurious.com? So ridiculous: "The recipe called for two lamb shanks but I hate lamb so used broccoli instead. Delicious." (I embellish, slightly.) I'm sure one of those commenters, faced with a similar catastrophic lack of cardamom, would simply substitute cherry pie filling. But I digress (which, let's face it, should be the title of this blog). Also, if you're going to have a drink while you bake, and there's nothing wrong with such a time-honored tradition, make sure it isn't the Washington Chardonnay that almost ruined Thanksgiving and that I'm polishing off now. Hiddy.

For those of you who hang on my every word and action and are even now beginning to bake these at home, a couple notes:

First, most recipes by sentient beings include salt. Those that don't had better have a really good reason (a recipe for cinnamon toast, for instance, may omit the salt). This recipe does not qualify to go saltless, so either use salted butter or throw in a dash of salt with the dry ingredients. Umami.

Second, the yield is given as two dozen. Ridiculous. We're fat enough, America. If you roll them in chestnut-size balls, you'll yield more than four dozen, they'll look prettier on the buffet, and you can give more away. The only time we need to be eating giant cookies is when we're a) writing maudlin angst-filled poetry at an independently-owned, patchouli-scented coffee shop, or b) stuffing an entire package of Kowalski's iced ginger cookies down our gullet as a substitute for dinner on our way to a rehearsal. Or so I'm led to believe. If you do make these cookies smaller, reduce the baking time to 11:11, my all-time favorite oven timer setting. I usually resist putting that in writing.

Third, the frosting directions are a little weird. There is no reason not to proceed my a more standard way, alternately mixing the powdered sugar and milk in batches to the creamed butter. You'll end up with a more pleasing, even texture.

With that, and even as is, this is a great cookie. Several neighbors will be demanding theirs soon, so it's time to shut off all the lights and pretend I'm at the country house.


  1. My parents asked me to have But I Digress translated into Latin, and then painted over the back door, as it is our family motto.
    Those cookies look delicious.

  2. Do you find this recipe makes way too much icing? I halve the amounts and still have left over icing. I can find other uses for it but it confounds me how you'd use that much on a batch of two dozen cookies.

  3. Yes, Rootbeerlady, you are forced to eat spoonfuls of it directly out of the frig for days afterwards.

  4. I think it would be good on cinnamon rolls but somehow the rolls don't get made before the icing is gone.


As always, civility reigns, but cleverness trumps.

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