New York Cookie Swap and Corn Cookies

November went by in a flash as I spent two weeks eating my way through Vietnam; I came back and was thrust into the beginning of the holiday season.  First it was Thanksgiving, and now the Hanukkah/Christmas season is upon us.  Before I left for my trip to Vietnam, the second annual cookie swap tickets went on sale, and I made sure I got a ticket before I left.  I was fortunate to be invited to the first cookie swap, and met so many wonderful bakers and bloggers.  This year's event was hosted by Bloggers Without Borders, Maggie, Gail, Ken and Jackie and took place at Hill Country restaurant in NYC a couple of weeks ago.  The event also raised money to benefit Cookies for Kids Cancer.

Below are samples of the gorgeous and tasty cookies that some of the talented bakers and bloggers brought.
Like many cookie swaps, you bring your batch of cookies and share with everyone.  At the end of the swap, you'd go home with a variety of cookies.  As many of you know I'm a novice baker, and I often make savory dishes on my blog.  Baking is not my thing at all; therefore, to come up with cookies to bring to this swap when there are professional bakers attending was extremely intimidating.  After I came back from Vietnam, other than fighting jet-lag, I pondered on what type of cookies I should make.  Coincidentally, I received my second edition of Lucky Peach Magazine.  Lucky Peach is a quarterly food journal published by McSweeney.  The creators of the magazine are David Chang and Peter Meehan.  As I was thumbing through my new copy of the journal, I came across a corn cookie recipe by Christina Tosi, pastry chef/owner of Momofuku Milk Bar.  I read the recipe and not only did I think I could make this, but I was really intrigued by the concept of this cookie recipe as it suggests that it tastes like eating corn on the cob.  The only ingredient that I had trouble finding was freeze-dried corn.  The recipe asks to use regular freeze-dried corn instead of the organic kind because the flavor is richer.  Other than ordering it online, I was only able to find the organic freeze-dried corn by Just Tomatoes at Whole Foods and Mrs. Green.  At the suggestion of my friend Ken (aka Hungryrabbitnyc), I added more corn powder to increase the intense flavor that the organic freeze-dried corn may lack.  These cookies were really fun to make and they came out pretty good. 
Corn Cookies - yield approximately 18 cookies
8 oz of Pulgra* room temperature butter (2 sticks)
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/3 cup flour
1/4 cup corn flour
**3 oz of freeze dried corn grind to powder (after grinding in a food processor, it yields about 1 1/8 of a cup of corn powder)
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

*Pulgra butter contains a bit more butterfat than regular butter.  If you can't find Pulgra butter, you can use regular butter.
**If you're able to find regular freeze-dried corn then use 2/3 of a cup of corn powder

Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on medium-high speed for 2 to 3 minutes.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Turn the mixer to a lower speed, add the egg then turn it back to medium high and let it mix for 7 to 8 minutes.  Once the creaming processing is done, reduce the mixer speed to low and add all the remaining dry ingredients.  Mix no longer than 1 minute, and the dough is ready to be divided.

Using a 2 3/4 oz ice cream scoop (or a 1/3 cup measure), portion out the dough onto a silpat or parchment-lined sheet pan.  Wrap the sheet pan tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to 1 week.  Do not bake your cookies from room temperature especially when you make a cookie with so much butter; otherwise the butter will melt too quickly.

Heat the oven to 350°F.  Arrange each cookie at least 3 to 4 inches apart on a parchment or silpat-lined sheet pans.  Bake for 16 - 18 minutes depending on the oven.  I usually rotate the sheet pan during the half way point for even baking.  After 16 - 18 minutes, they should be lightly browned on the edges, and yellow in the center.  Let cool then serve or store up to at least five days.

I love that these cookies have this really intense corn and buttery flavor.  It does remind me of eating corn on the cob.  Now I want to get to the Milk Bar and taste their corn cookies,

With my cookies in tow, I went to the swap, and was simply in awe by all the cookies that were made especially the ornament cookie tree by Gail (as seen in the photo above).  The swap was a big success, and many tasty cookies to be had.  Elizabeth Karmel and Hill Country provided an amazing lunch for us which included their briskets, ribs, BBQ chicken, sweet potatoes, corn pudding, mac and cheese and cucumber salad.  It was a delicious feast.  I do; however favor the brisket and the corn pudding.  I was lucky enough to win a gift certificate for lunch during the raffle prize drawing, and I can't wait to go back to Hill Country for more brisket and corn pudding.  It was a fun-filled day of gathering of the food community to see old friends and meet new ones.  It was a wonderful way to begin the holiday season.

2 comments:

  1. So glad you finally post these simple yet incredibly delicious cookies.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Such a nice recap Margaret and yes following you in Vietnam was such a pleasure. Wishing you a wonderful holiday season and the best 2012 has to offer!a

    ReplyDelete

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