There are people out there who think a snickerdoodle is the best cookie ever. I confess that I am not one of those people because a doodle sports not a speck of chocolate. A remarkably simple cookie, the best part about a snickerdoodle is that it makes the kitchen smell like a holiday with all that cinnamon sugar on top.
It’s fun to follow the evolution of cookies in Lynn Oliver’s Food Timeline and the snickerdoodle is no exception. In those early recipes it contained currants or raisins and was a bar cookie. Eventually it became a recipe memorialized by both Betty Crocker and Good Housekeeping in the late 1950′s early 1960′s and turned into the snickerdoodle we know today.
Since it has so few ingredients, it is important to use the best cinnamon you can find. Something that knocks your socks off when you open the jar will do. What? You think cinnamon comes in one flavor only? Not even. There is Ceylon, Vietnamese, Chinese and more. Each one is slightly different from the other. I love them all. Here’s the scoop. If you have a chance, order a few small samples and decide which are your favorites.
Snickerdoodles are usually made with butter and some people make them extra dressy by using brown butter. That probably ups the flavor but then again, some of us love the butter but the butter does not love us back. So these are dairy-free which means you really need to make sure to use some very fine vanilla and extra fine cinnamon. Otherwise, snooze.
I tried adding citrus lemon flavoring and that was over-the-top wrong. Then I added more cream of tartar and baking soda and that was so very-very wrong. Ick. Then I imagined that it needed salt. Wrong wrong and ewww. I finally found a nice balance with a slightly different combination of cream of tartar and baking soda, along with a small splash of almond flavoring (pure almond extract).
Though the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl once mixed, it will still be slightly sticky. Don’t be tempted to add more flour or it will be über dry. Be sure to flatten the dough slightly before baking so it has a chance to spread out and dome a little bit (they fall once they’re cool). Chilling the dough balls helps with the sticky messy flattening part, but it isn’t necessary. There’s still plenty of dough left on the pan to bake into a genuine big fat cookies. And yes – they are supposed to be a little beige – on purpose. The cinnamon sugar is about the only color in the cookie. That and the very outer edge which will get slightly golden.
Though it still contains not a bit of chocolate, at the end of baking several batches it might be said that I learned to enjoy this big fat cookie.
Snickerdoodle – because we can.
|Big Fat Classic Snickerdoodles||
- 192 grams Spectrum Organic Shortening (1 cup)
- 250 grams granulated sugar (1 ¼ cups)
- ¼ teaspoon pure almond extract
- 2 extra large eggs
- 325 grams Canteen flour blend (2 ½ cups) (see notes)
- 1 ½ teaspoons cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 50 grams granulated sugar (1/4 cup)
- 2-3 teaspoons good quality cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line three baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl using a wooden spoon, beat together shortening with 250 grams (1¼ cups) sugar, and almond flavoring until fully combined and somewhat fluffy. Beat in eggs until fully incorporated. Add flour, cream of tartar and baking soda and mix in until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl.
- Mix remaining sugar and cinnamon in a small shallow bowl. Using a generous 2-tablespoon scoop place dough balls in the sugar/cinnamon mixture and then on the baking sheet (about 6-7 on one sheet). Flatten cookies once on the baking sheet so they are about 2.5-inches in diameter. Sprinkle with additional sugar/cinnamon. Bake one sheet at a time in the center of the oven for 9-10 minutes. They will not brown except on the very outer edge. Don’t over bake unless you like them crispy. Remove and let them cool for five minutes in the pan. Transfer cookies to a rack to cool completely.
- Baking them for 9 minutes will yield a softer cookie while baking for 10-12 minutes will yield a crispy cookie. Makes about 20 four-inch cookies.