Friday, July 18, 2008

Spritz Cookies (Page 684)

RECIPE #785

  • Date: Tuesday, July 8, 2008 -- 8pm
  • Location: Somerville, MA
  • Kitchen: Matty's Apartment
  • Dining Companions: Matty, Jenny, John, Mike, Scott, etc...
  • Recipe Rating: B

Veronique recently bought me several items off my Gourmet Project Wishlist (thanks Vero!), and one of them was the cookie press required for this recipe. So I made these cookies to bring to the summer topology seminar last week. These spritz cookies were very typical butter cookies, with a hint of almond extract, pressed into cute shapes and baked until crispy and golden. These are a type of cookie that you would expect to find on any well-stocked tray of Christmas cookies. I had quite a good time making these, trying out my new cookie press! It looks like a big cookie gun -- you load it up with cookie dough and pull the trigger to shoot out cookies. You can change the plate through which the dough is extruded to form all sorts of different shapes. The press that Vero gave me must have at least 20 different plates, and it was great fun (and very humbling) to look at the plate and try to guess what a cookie extruded through it was going to look like. Sounds easy, no? Well I challenge you to come by my place sometime and try it. Very, very, tricky! Anyway, the cookie press produced very industrial looking cookies. In fact, with the look and taste of these cookies they somehow seemed store-bought. They tasted fine -- extremely buttery -- but there was nothing terribly exciting about them. I ate more of these than I will admit, so I won't say they were at all bad, but I probably won't make this particular recipe again.

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Hello from South Carolina! My mother's birthday was this week, so Matty and I drove down from Boston to surprise her. My dad knew we were coming, but he kept the secret, so needless to say she was a little shocked when I rang the doorbell! My parents live part time in Wisconsin and part time in small town South Carolina. I haven't been down to South Carolina in more than two years, so it is not as though I usually just drop in! Matty and I had a fun drive down. In total it is about 15 hours of driving from Boston. We broke it up by stopping in Charlottesville, VA for a night to visit friends who just recently had a baby.

We arrived in Hartsville (where my parents live) on Thursday afternoon. It took about an hour to give Matty a walking tour of the whole "city" (population approximately 8,000). Today we drove the hour and a half into Columbia -- the nearest actual city -- to do some grocery/clothes shopping. The pace of life is slow down here, which makes for a nice break. The heat has been slightly less oppressive than it typically is this time of year (only 96 today rather than 100+). Admittedly, I have mixed feelings about life in Small Town Deep South, USA, but it is nice to be here for a few days. As Matty pointed out to me (because perhaps I had forgotten...) it is quite beautiful down here. And since there is not much to do, it is very relaxing!

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