Monday, February 06, 2006

Half-Hearted Valentine Cookies

I have a recipe for Valentine cookies that I have used for years. It's just a sugar cookie recipe that I tint pink, cut out with a heart-shaped cookies cutter and dip in a chocolate glaze. But I'm always on the lookout for new recipes and this one seemed an interesting variation. I was a bit leery of the peppermint extract and the plain color didn't appear terribly appetizing. I forged ahead anyways.

The cookie part of the recipe went fine other than the strong smell of peppermint. I ran into trouble with the glaze. The glaze I normally make is chocolate chips and shortening. This one is chocolate chips and butter. Richer (which is good!) but also thicker, which as it turns out, was not good. I broke a few cookies trying to scrape off the excess off of the back of them. I also ran out of glaze before I was halfway through because it was so thick. The thinner glaze that I normally use goes much further. I made another batch of glaze and soldiered on.

These cookies have to be refrigerated for the chocolate to set correctly. To accomplish this feat you need three to four cookie sheets covered with waxed paper and a nearly empty refrigerator. I'm fortunate. I live alone so my refrigerator is pretty empty most of the time. I can't imagine how a normal family with a full refrigerator could possibly fit that many cookie sheets in without emptying it out.

In the end, I felt it wasn't worth the effort. I just didn't care for peppermint cookies although the glaze was pretty good. I was rushing to finish these because I wanted to bring them to a meeting. I forgot to take pictures before I left. No matter, I could take pictures there. But I forgot my camera. No problem, I could take pictures of the leftovers when I got home. But there were no leftovers. Some of the attendees liked the cookies so much, they eagerly took home all of the leftovers. One woman even requested the recipe! I found the picture below on the Lane O Lakes website. I also noticed that they have changed the recipe for the glaze from butter to shortening.

Verdict: I didn't care for them, but other people loved them.

Half-Hearted Valentine Cookies
(Source: Favorite Brand Name Cookie Collection)

Cookies

3/4 cup sugar

1 cup Land O Lakes butter, softened

1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1 egg

1 teaspoon peppermint extract

3 cups all-purpose flour

Glaze

1 cup semi-sweet real chocolate chips

1/4 cup Land O Lakes butter

For Cookies, in large mixer bowl, combine sugar, butter, cream cheese, egg and peppermint extract. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until light and fluffy. Add flour; beat until mixed. Divide dough into halves. Wrap in waxed paper. Refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 375F. Roll out dough on lightly floured surface to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out with floured heart-shaped cutters. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 7 to 10 minutes, or until edges are very lightly browned. Remove immediately; cool completely on wire racks.

For Glaze, in small saucepan, melt chocolate and butter, stirring occasionally, over low heat until melted, 4 to 6 minutes. Dip half of each heart into chocolate. Refrigerate on waxed paper-lined cookie sheet until chocolate is firm. Store, covered, in refrigerator.

Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies

Recycle: peppermint extract bottle

Compost: eggshell

1 comment:

Susan said...

Maybe if I had tasted one, I'd try the recipe, but peppermint doesn't sound good for Valentine's Day. Thanks for the review and saving me a wasted effort. But now I wonder what your regular Valentine cookie recipe is! Maybe you'll post it, too?