16 December, 2011

cookies for hitler

and so another yuletide season is upon us and that means only one thing. well, two things. well, okay, a whole bunch of things like sparkly balls in trees (or reasonable plastic facsimiles thereof (the trees, not the balls)), drinking hot spiced alcoholic beverages, getting warm hugs from drunk co-workers ("i love you, man!") and baking cookies! christmas is the only time of the year when i bake cookies but i bake them with a vengeance*.

imagine my disappointment, then, when i gather my ingredients, mix, whip, froth, swish, shake and gently fold things into other things, only to discover that the recipe generates a teeny tiny little cake or a mere half dozen cookies (i'm looking at you, smitten kitchen! i realise you cook your wondrous comestibles in a teeny tiny little new york kitchen, but give me a bloody break! i'm browning multiple cups of butter, vast bubbling vats of golden buttery goodness expecting mounds of cookies. mounds!!! you hear me? and what do i get (time and time again)? six fucking cookies. what am i supposed to do with six cookies? six cookies is an appetizer before one gets into the serious business of eating cookies. six cookies is nothing to a woman like me: NOTHING! mere crumbs in my dentition! a not particularly amusing amuse bouche. especially if they are delicious. and with that amount of brown butter, how can they not be? but you're messing with me, aren't ya? because just last week i made delicious mac'n cheese from one of your 2 recipes, and the other one, the one i didn't use, was for 12 people. really? you feed mac'n cheese to 12 people and then what? you give them six fucking cookies. that just doesn't make any sense.)

and lest all you daily bakers look scornfully down at me and wonder why i cannot tell how many cookies this amount of ingredients will generate, i'll tell you why: because i bake once a year and also, i have no imagination when it comes to measurements. of any kind. if mr. monkey doesn't explain it to me in football fields and tea-cups, then i don't get it. is it a little? is it a lot? i don't fucking know. but i do know that it is pure hitlerian evil to publish recipes for 6 cookies. especially around christmas.

as an aside: salted butter is a motherfucking bitch to brown, don't do it! i used only the tiny amount i needed to make up the difference (i used up all my sweet butter reserves! for 6 goddamn cookies!!!) and it still messed me up. but i set out to brown it and brown it i did. and why the hell is salted butter cheaper than unsalted? same with pistachios. why do i have to pay a dollar extra to have the salt removed? do they hire small expensive children from elite private schools to lick off the salt? these are the things that keep me up at night.

*great tagline for a movie, eh? "vengeance is back in town, and this time, she's packing a silpat®!"


Zhoen said...

Never cook anything if the recipe does not clearly state the yield, and size of servings. Screw 'em.

I always wind up with so much more than I intended. Or I try to half a recipe, and forget to ensmallify everything, and it all comes out weird.

the polish chick said...

agreed, zhoen. thing is, they might very well have put the yield in there but i missed it. who knows. also, ensmallifying ought to be a word right up there with angryfying and enbiggening.

the tiny amount of cookies turned to be delicious, though.

Joan said...

I always thought Martha Stewart was a rich lame-ass with too much free time, but the thing that clinched it for me was when I saw her on TV using really expensive ingredients for a 6 cookie recipe! Also, those poor children with the extremely high blood pressure from all that salt!

the polish chick said...

i know, joan. perhaps this warrants a telethon!

Alison Cross said...

I made a birthday cake for hubby and was supposed to slice it in two to sandwich it together with jam and cream. I ould have been affronted to have served that to him, so I ended up making a second sponge - late at night - using emergency rations.

So never believe the quantities, even if they tell you how many it should make. They tell fibs :-)

Ali x

puncturedbicycle said...

In the US, it's pretty usual to make recipes which yield six dozen cookies or a three-layer cake the size of a watermelon. When I moved here to the UK, the first British cake recipe I made wasn't much bigger than a scone. I was horrified.

I tend not to follow my US recipes anymore because: cups! and levelling them! the time-consuming mess! and converting 'sticks' of butter, etc.

EmmaK said...

You are a brave soul! I use a cookie mix if I do it at all or make shorbread which is a no brainer but has about a trillion calories!!! Merry Christmas baby

the polish chick said...

emmak, welcome, welcome! good to have ya.

i like to cook, because it is an art. i am not a big fan of baking, because it is a science. an exact science, and i was never very good at science, what with all the measuring, mixing, things blowing up and such.

still, there is something quite satisfying about whipping up a batch of (6) cookies!

pb, i use this website for all my butter conversion needs: