I was making a cookie bouquet with some pretty intricate cookies that i was cutting out by hand using an xacto. I used the NFSC recipe because I really wanted to keep the nooks and crannies, and because I cover them with fondant and wanted to use the same template. Unfortunately, two different batches of NFSC both spread a bit during baking. Not as much as other recipes, but enough that I had a 1/4 inch border around the fondant cut out and I lost some of the detail. Is this the very best recipe for retaining shape? Is there another recipe I can try?
After cutting out the cookie, did you put them into the freezer before baking. I have found that if you bake the cookie from a frozen state, they hold their shape better.
ditto... I notice that when my dough gets warm it will spread in the oven. If I notice it getting warm I too will pop it into the freezer for just a minute or two to get the chill back on it...
Here's the recipe I use which tastes great. Colder the cookies are, the less they will spread.
2 sticks butter
1 c powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp lemon extract (or almond if you prefer)
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 c flour
1 tsp. salt
Cream the butter and sugar together. Add egg and extracts and mix again. Add flour and salt and mix again. Refrig for 1 hour before rolling out or place in freezer if you need to roll it out earlier. Bake at 350 for 13-15 minutes.
thanks for the freezing tip - i will definately try that next time - but does it take longer to bake?
No it doesn't freeze them it only tightens the dough quicker. Bake 13-15 minutes until the edge are just beginning to brown.
I agree. I pop the pan in the freezer for about 10-15 min before I put them into the oven. Also you need a very hot oven. I preheat mine for about 30min to an hour.
Oh, Amy, it sounds like you need a new oven! Most ovens can reach temp in under 15 minutes these days. Once the oven reaches temp, it doesn't matter if it's on for 20 minutes or 60 minutes .... it's still only 350 degrees inside.
I need a new oven too Not only does it take forever to reach the right temp, the cookies toward the back brown faster.
Definitely try freezing them after you cut. I do for at least 20min. If it's a super detailed cookie, I've even added just a touch more flour. Really doesn't make it dry, especially if you are adding RI.
Ok, call me crazy... I can't believe I'm going to tell you this as every one thinks I'm nuts, but...
Take your cookie sheet, and using a little magic make some room in your freezer or fridge, and throw your cookie sheet in for a few minutes until it's nice and cold to the touch.
While one batch is baking, have your waiting cookie sheet cooling, then switch them.
Yup, cookies at least in the fridge...and the cookie sheet should be at LEAST room temp, if not cooler. I think any recipe will spread a little but starting with cooler temps seems to work better.
Debi... I envy you your fast oven. My oven is less than two years old and still takes nearly 30 minutes to heat to temp. I just figure its because it's the cheapo thing our landlord bought. It can't hold a temp either and I have to constantly babysit it.
I use the NFSC recipe, but leave out the leavening completely. Melissa taught me that. I didn't believe it would work, so made them both ways and had a taste test. Nobody preferred one over the other.
I also chill or freeze the cookies before baking them.
i think i have read that over mixing can result in spreading too.
Debi... I envy you your fast oven. My oven is less than two years old and still takes nearly 30 minutes to heat to temp.
Then your landlord bought a used or a really really cheap one.
Most of you won't really remember the energy crisis of the 70's, but that was the starting point for the push in technology to make everything more efficient. When you buy appliances and they have that energy efficientcy rating.....? That stemmed from the 70's. People wanted and needed to know that the appliance they bought was going to save energy and how much it saved.
Stoves in particular were really pushed. I remember people getting together with neighbors ... "I'm putting a roast in the oven tonight ... got anything you need baked?" so they could cook two meals in one oven and save energy. It was really common for ovens to take 30 minutes to preheat. That was bad in the 70's. Energy efficiency was the #1 priority.
History lesson concluded!