Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Cooky Book: Brown Sugar Drops

The Recipe: Brown Sugar Drops from Betty Crocker's The Cooky Book

The substitutions: Butter in place of shortening and I also added one cup of coconut and one cup of chocolate chips.

The Verdict: After receiving some complaints that my Cooky Book cookies were getting boring (I'm still in the intro to drop cookies section, so this is a legitimate complaint), I knew that if I made the basic brown sugar drop cookie recipe my long-suffering family would not be pleased. But with a few extras (as suggested by the book), these very basic cookies are actually pretty great. With the chips these are just pretty standard chocolate chip cookies, but much fluffier than a lot of the varieties you see out there. Not quite cakey, just fluffy. The coconut is a nice addition too -- I might always put coconut in my choc chip cookies now. These would be boring as dirt without the goodies, but as is they make for a pretty tasty lunchbox cookie.

Rhubarb Loaf

The Recipe: Rhubarb Loaf. I used a recipe from Canadian Living

The Substitutions: Not a one.

The Verdict: Fab. I was going to use a recipe that my aunt donated when I put together the family cookbook for my sister-in-law, but it was for a cake pan, not a loaf, and I was really hankering some loaf (that way you can pretend it's bread and eat it for breakfast). And I do love me any kind of cake that is best eaten with coffee. This Canadian Living recipe is almost identical, except that it calls for veg. oil instead of margarine, which was great, since I didn't have the patience to watch butter soften (and I avoid margarine at all costs). It makes two loaves, which is handy because one can go straight in the freezer. The loaf itself is perfect -- not too mushy when you get the rhubarb, but moist and delicious with the perfect amount of tang.

Monday, August 2, 2010

The Cooky Book: Chocolate Drop Cookies

The Recipe: Chocolate Drop Cookies from Betty Crocker's The Cooky Book

The Substitutions: Didn't frost them. Used butter instead of shortening. Added chocolate chips (as per one of the alternate variations).

The Verdict: Not bad. At first I thought these ones were a huge failure because I had a heck of a time getting the baking time correct. The butter I used may have been a bit too soft because these suckers spread like crazy and were not cooked in the middle even when I used the max. suggested cooking time. The second batch, I overcooked (of course), but they weren't bad if you like your cookies crunchy.

My long-suffering family appreciated the fact that they're chocolate in flavour and didn't care about the degree of under or over cookedness. I will say this: modern recipes are a lot more generous when it comes to chocolatey goodness. If this were a Martha Stewart recipe, there would have been at least twice as much chocolate added in. As it stands, the chocolate taste is barely detectable in this recipe, which is why adding chocolate chips was a wise move. And my cookie jar is almost already empty, so I'm chalking this one up as a success.