Part XVI: Classic
Everyone’s got their one. Doesn’t matter if you’re on a diet, or you’re counting carbs, or that Oprah dude read a book one time that said you should eat figs and she’ll give you a free car. Everyone’s got the cookie. The one cookie that you lock eyes with when you go in a bakery, or a cafe, and you know no matter what happens, you’re going to eat it. A meteor could crash through the roof, smash your wife’s temple into oblivion, and reinstate the Great Depression, and you’d still waddle over the pile of dead bodies and empty paychecks to get that oatmeal chocolate chip.
For me, the choice is simple: the black and white. It’s cakey, which is important because cake is delicious. It’s got two kinds of frosting, so you won’t get bored halfway through the damn thing (I’m looking at you, sugar cookies). And most importantly, they’re mostly found in delis, which we all know are the greatest establishments on earth. So I’m gonna make Black and White Cookies, you’re gonna eat them, and everyone’s gonna be nice and happy.
Here’s what you need:
-2 cups AP flour
-1 3/4 cups cake flour
-3/4 teaspoon baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (that’s 2 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
-1 1/2 cups sugar
-4 large eggs
-1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
-1 teaspoon lemon zest
-3/4 cup buttermilk
-2 cups confectioners’ sugar
-2-3 tablespoons hot milk, plus more if needed
-1 tablespoon light corn syrup
-1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
-Pinch of salt
-1 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate chips
-1 1/2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
-1 tablespoon unsalted butter
-1 cup confectioners’ sugar
-2 tablespoons boiling water, plus more if needed
-1 tablespoon light corn syrup
-3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Here’s how you do it:
First, heat up your oven to 350.
We’re gonna take a little pause here. Every single cookie recipe, including this one, says the same thing at the beginning: line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Anyone who’s tried to “line” a baking sheet with parchment knows that it doesn’t just lie down like magic. That stuff immediately rolls up the second you look away from it, meaning that you doing that at the beginning means absolutely nothing, and takes up space. So don’t do it. Do it at the end. When you’re actually gonna put the damned cookies on there.
Put all the stuff that looks like cocaine (that’s the flours, baking powder and salt, kids) and whisk em up in a bowl.
Then, cream the butter with a mixer on medium. You want it to look like the picture: a little lighter, and whipped.
Add your sugar and mix it in for 5 minutes, then mix your eggs one at a time, for half a minute apiece.
Follow that by mixing in the lemon zest and vanilla.
Mix in your big bowl o’ crack, and alternate in the buttermilk. Make sure you add the crack first and last.
Put the dough on a couple of baking sheets (that haven’t been waiting around this whole time) with a cookie scoop or an ice cream scoop. Just scoop it with something. Put them in for 20 to 30 minutes, and switch them around halfway through. That means put the top shelf on the bottom, or vice versa, and flip them both around front to back. When they get a little brown on the edges, then you’re good to take them out.
After the oven, let them cool off for 5 minutes, then move them to a wire rack. You want them to be COMPLETELY cool before you frost them, otherwise you’re gonna have a melty, ugly mess. And then you’ll be sad. I’ve heard that’s a bad thing.
Vanilla’s a little easier, so do that one first. All you have to do is put the powdered sugar in a bowl, add the rest of the ingredients, and stir. That’s it. Add more milk if it’s too thick, but other than that, it’s impossible to screw up. It’s also a great glaze for scones and such, if you’re into that kind of thing. It’s ok to admit it. You can hang out with a mug of earl gray and still yell at monster trucks or bait bears or whatever the manly men do these days.
Chocolate’s a bit more involved. Set up a double boiler (for people who think that’s some kind of “moonshinin’ dee-vice”, it’s not. Take a bowl, fill it with water, put a shallow bowl on top. Boil the water. There you go.) and melt the chocolate and butter in it.
When they’re melted and mixed together, take it off the heat and add the water and sugar, alternating. Next, add vanilla extract and corn syrup, and stir until its smooth. Again, add some hot water if it’s thin, but you shouldn’t have to.
All that’s left is frosting the cookies. Or getting your girlfriend to do it because you suck at that kind of thing. I might have done that. Maybe. And make sure you do it half-and-half, don’t be all creative and make swirls or something. Nobody likes the swirl guy. Nobody. I will personally ban you from every deli in the nation if you even think of doing such a thing. Anyways…enjoy your cookie.
And enjoy some beats. Since we started with that whole coke motif, I’m gonna finish this off with Count Bass D’s Drug Abusage: player?sid=49319816&ac=now
Look. Everyone likes to get creative here or there. You throw some star anise into a scone, toss some sea salt on top of caramel like you’re the next mastertopironchef person. But you’re always gonna feel that pull towards something you know and love. Love the black and white. It’ll love you back, in all it’s multiracial frosting-y goodness. See you next time, people.
Thanks to this lovely website for the recipe: http://www.thecandidappetite.com/2012/07/20/new-york-black-and-white-cookies/