You know how you can go several years without ever hearing about or encountering something (or someone) that you know and then all of a sudden it (or they) come up in conversation several times over the course of a few days? That's what happened with Snickerdoodles. I know what they are, but hadn't given them much consideration until recently when I'd heard a lot of talk about them from several random sources. My sister's declaration of her love for them was the final straw. Hence, today's baking adventure: Snickerdoodles!
Once I decided to try them, the next question was what recipe to use. There are hundreds. I searched the internet and noticed that almost all of them were baked at 400 degrees and most of them were made with a combination of butter and shortening. No thanks. I kept looking. I could have used my Martha Stewart Cookie Book, but I've been hearing a lot of negative things about her recipes since I started reading food blogs. Even though I've had great luck with her 'baking recipes', not so much with her 'cooking recipes', my opinion of her has been slightly tainted. Clearly I am easily influenced.
I found this recipe on the Brown Eyed Baker blog, it uses all butter, but it bakes them at 350 degrees, not 400 degrees like most of the recipes I found. I got 3 cookie trays out of it, allowing me to play around to find the optimal method.
Tray 1: I followed recipe to a T, except I found the 10 minutes was not enough and I baked them for 12. I found them too soft for my taste. Perhaps they were slightly underdone.
Tray 2: I flattened them slightly before putting in the oven and baked them for 13 minutes. Surprisingly, they were still too soft for me. (The pic below is the dough before baking, flattened slightly).
Tray 3: I cranked the heat to 400 degrees and baked them for 13 minutes without flattening them. Perfection!
I love a cookie with a soft, chewy centre and crispy edges. Small confession: I misread the recipe and only added 1 teaspoon of cinnamon to my sugar for rolling (asks for 1 Tablespoon), which is why you might think these look a little pale compared to others. I'm actually quite happy with the results nonetheless and would consider making that change in the recipe for future use. Enjoy!
Recipe for Snickerdoodles
(Source: Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker Blog)
2 3/4 c. flour
2 t. cream of tartar
1 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1 c. butter
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 t. vanilla
3 T. sugar
1 T. cinnamon (I used a teaspoon)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. (I think 400 is better).
Line baking sheet with parchment and chill in the fridge. (I skipped this step for my batch that went in at 400 degrees and found it unnecessary.)
Whisk together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt in small bowl and set aside.
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla.
Slowly add the dry ingredients, mixing only until fully incorporated. Chill dough for 30 minutes.
Combine your sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside.
Once dough is chilled, roll into 1 inch balls and then roll each ball in sugar and cinnamon. Place on cookie sheets 2 inches apart as they spread significantly.
Bake for 10 minutes. (I baked for 13 minutes.) Allow to cool for a couple minutes then transfer to cooling rack.