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Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Cookie Carnival: Blueberry Drop Cookies

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After April's busy/crazy schedule it is good get back to something a little more simple, let no less sublime, as cookies. Darling Kate over at The Clean Plate Club is the lovely creator and host of a monthly event called the Cookie Carnival (and check out the seriously cute badge there). Each month Kate comes up with a delicious cookie recipe that she has been wanting to try and emails it to the group and we all make the recipe. The idea is to all make the recipe as is, but if tweaking is needed or done, that is ok too. Which is a very good thing for me this month, because what started out fairly innocently with the change I was going to make to the recipe, turned into several changes in ingredient and a little in the method as well.

So, that is why you see below two versions of the recipe. It isn't that I had any kind of issue with the first recipe, so much as I just had a few other things on hand that I wanted to try. So, while the original uses almond extract, lemon and no butter (just shortening), as well as regular sugar, that isn't what you see here.

Yeah, as I warned Kate, I am a "fiddler" (as evidenced by the new header on the blog... again). Sometimes, even when a recipe looks absolutely great to me as is, something just seems to come over me and I just can't stop myself from tweaking. As in this case. It started out innocently enough, then it just snowballed.

In the beginning I was just going to substitute half the shortening with some butter, just for flavor, just because. Then, I got thinking about how much I love orange with blueberry, so I switched out the lemon. Well... then I kept reading and realized I was out of almond extract and, since I couldn't go to the store at the time, I decided to add in vanilla instead... umm... vanilla bean extract that is, since I had it and all.

Oh, I'm not done yet. Sometimes the fiddling that takes place is a sickness! Told you it snowballed! So... I kept reading the list and got to the sugar and really wanted to switch out part of the sugar for brown sugar because, well, I seriously love brown sugar and would probably add it to absolutely everything if I could. I didn't want to switch out all the sugar though, because I really wanted to rub the orange zest into the white sugar like in Dorie's Perfect Party Cake I made for the Daring Baker challenge back in March. I would seriously love to wake up every day and do that. It is heavenly and totally therapuetic.

The last change I made to the ingredients was the milk. Yeah, I pretty much didn't leave anything alone here. I switched to buttermilk because I had some that needed to be used and also added a little baking soda just in case I had now completely torpedoed the chemistry here somehow.

The end result of all the crazy, can't-leave-well-enough-alone fiddling that went on here? These cookies were completely awesome! As I mentioned above, I'm sure that the original recipe is fantastic too, and I will probably try it as well, but in the meantime, you get two versions.

Oh, and since we all know I have a penchant for eating cookies for breakfast, since these were so much like the orange blueberry muffins in BFMHTY, I passed these off as 'biscuits' (fair enough right, our friends in other lovely areas of the world call cookies biscuits - right? Right.) and scarfed a few. And, yes, I feel fine about it. You should too!

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BLUEBERRY DROP COOKIES
(Revised Version)

Ingredients:
1/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla bean paste or pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons grated orange zest
2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup blueberries, rinsed and picked over

Instructions:

1. In a small bowl, combine the 2/3 cup sugar with the orange zest and rub together until moist and fragrant. Place sugar and zest mixture in a large mixing bowl with the shortening, butter, and brown sugar. Cream together well. Add the egg and mix well. Add the buttermilk and vanilla paste or extract, and continue to mix well. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Slowly add the flour, baking powder and salt to the butter/sugar mixture and mix until combined. Fold in the blueberries gently and mix until well blended.


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2. Cover and chill for 4 hours. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drop the dough by teaspoonfuls, one and one-half inches apart onto greased cookie sheets. Bake 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes before removing them with a spatula.

Makes about 4 dozen.


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BLUEBERRY DROP COOKIES (The original recipe)
Ingredients:
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup blueberries, rinsed and picked over

Instructions:
1. In a large mixing bowl, cream the shortening, sugar, egg, milk, almond extract and lemon zest, mixing well after the addition of each ingredient. Slowly add the flour, baking powder and salt. Fold in the blueberries and mix until well blended.

2. Cover and chill for 4 hours. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drop the dough by teaspoonfuls, one and one-half inches apart onto greased cookie sheets. Bake 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes before removing them with a spatula.

Makes about 4 dozen.

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16 comments:

Jenny said...

I LOVE baking with blueberries. Your cookies look so cute and delicious! very nice!

kate said...

i love that your a "fiddler!" it makes it more fun to see what you will do with a recipe. i'm so glad you are a carnivaler.

and i love your new header, too!

Gabi said...

Yummy blueberries & what a fun event- I'll have to check it out!
Are you checking out the Live Green Fest too this weekend?

Mike of Mike's Table said...

Fiddle on--the results look delicious!

jd said...

Wow - I bet those cookies were delicious! Your pictures are great, too :)

Antonio Tahhan said...

blueberries are my favorite berries!! I seriously think I've developed an addiction to them and these cookies look like a sweet way for me to get more!
ps. I finally got twitter.

Maggie said...

My son has been wanting "muffin tops" (Darn you Eggo commercials!!) and I've been looking for a thicker blueberry muffin. I'll give these a try!

Kevin said...

I like the though of using blueberries in cookies!

RecipeGirl said...

The new header looks great! My blueberry-loving kiddo would like these very much!

Manggy said...

I love what you've done with the banner! :)

I would love to have some of these cookies, too! :) Unfortunately, frozen blueberries = $9 per pound, and fresh = $4.50 for a scant 200g :( And the canned pie filling is just not any good!

Isabelle said...

Thank's for the recipe!
I've made it yesterday and it's so delicious
http://lesgourmandisesdisa.blogspot.com/2008/05/biscuits-moelleux-aux-bleuets.html

EAT! said...

I love blueberry muffins - now I can make cookies for breakfast!!

Jenny said...

Hmmm. I'm sure you are right, the original recipe is probably good but yours looks so good that I think I'll try it first.

Deborah said...

Your version sounds fantastic. I'm usually too scared to play with a recipe that much, but I should start trying - as long as I can come up with an end result as good as these!!

Mevrouw Cupcake said...

I think that fiddling with recipes is perfectly fine, especially when it turns out deliciously! Your cookies look perfect! Did you use a scoop?

PheMom said...

Hi Mevrouw Cupcake -
Yup! I am a scooper (and I think I rolled them a bit to smooth out the edges as well).

Holly

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