Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Cookie Nutrition 411

Week 2 cookies are in the books (get it?) - couldn't resist - see the photo :) - and actually, they aren't in there but they have been delivered. Overall, it went a bit smoother than last weeks late night bake off... thank goodness. How do you like the photo of my White Chocolate Cashew Coffee Biscotti - I think it's better than the one shown with the recipe! Of course the backdrop of my kitchen and decor doesn't hurt. And you can plan on seeing the rest of my cookie jar collection throughout the course of the year. They've been ignored and empty for way to long! The one pictured here "Cookies for Empty Tummies" was the first of the bunch (thanks to Ann for getting me started) and I think I have a total of about 20 and have long run out room to properly display them.

Back to the matter at hand, along with the biscotti I made the 'Ultimate Maple Snickerdoodle' and to anyone who's eaten these and may be reading this, well you'll know why I omitted the word Ultimate from the description. I'll admit the flavor was good (yes, quality control tasting is a VITAL piece of the success of this project! :) but I couldn't get the right texture. I think making this cookie a little larger and baking them on Silpat (which is GREAT for even, non-stick cooking, but is slow to 'brown' the cookies) both contributed to a flatter, crunchier cookie than intended - but I'll admit that the caramel-maple flavored cookie was still pretty tasty. But there's no pictures - and with good reason, they looked far less than perfect - my apologies to those on the receiving end - still worth making but I'll use different pans and adjust the size and baking time next time.

So this week they went to both Gilda's Club and the Ronald McDonald House in Buffalo. After I dropped them off, I realized I forgot to include a copy of the recipes. As time permits, and if I have them available, I'd prefer to provide recipes so that if anyone would like to see the exact ingredients they can. I've also made a fair attempt at providing the nutritional information on the cookies as they were made. Meaning a recipe may state that it makes 36 cookies and while I typically make a fairly small cookie (because I'll often 'gift' several kinds of cookies, so for sampling, small is better) but for these cookies I'm typically making the drop cookies about 1/3 larger to provide a nice serving in a single cookie. Being the reformed accountant that I am, I calculate the nutritional information for the entire batch and then divide the total by the actual number of cookies. For example, if I only got 26 instead of 36 cookies, they'd be a little higher in calories per cookie. So what I provide on the cookie packaging is fairly close to actual - the only thing I haven't accounted for is the variance in size - which I try to limit by using a standard size scoop. I also need make a disclaimer on the biscotti, as the size of those can vary quite a bit depending on what part of the 'loaf' it was cut from, so there - consider it a ball park per average cookie.

Ok, the boring 'housekeeping' tasks are done and before I get to thinking about next weeks cookie selection I may take a minute to write about this 'red letter' week in Hoffman cancer history ... but for the moment, I'll leave it for another day ...

1 comment:

  1. Mary Lou,
    Great pictures of your kitchen so far. Cookie jar looks like a magazine shot. On the biscotti issue, I think I have mastered it and it comes with a convection oven. Since I got my new oven with the convection option I have been able to get the biscotti crisp without burning them.