Sweet Stuff

The Dark and Tan Cookie

Sometimes I just have a deep urge to bake cookies. There is something very zen and soothing by making an awesome batch of cookies. While my default for cookies is chocolate chip, I had a bunch of peanut butter and Nutella left over from this, so I thought I would try to use them. Use them I did.

The standard black and white cookie is a New York staple and a fantastic cookie. Rumor has it that bakers used to make them with left over batter and hand them out. I’m not sure that I put much faith in rumors though.

Anyway, let’s make them! You will need:

Cookie: Deconstructed.

Cookie: Deconstructed.


Dark and Tan Cookies

Just a moment please...

Prep Time
Total Time

Light and fluffy cookies iced with chocolate, vanilla, and peanut butter icing.

Ingredients

1 cup butter (unsalted is best, but I actually used salted because it was all I had)
1 3/4 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
4 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Icings

4 cups confectioners sugar
1/3 cup boiling water (might need more. Add it a tablespoon at a time)
2 heaping Tablespoons of peanut butter
2 heaping Tablespoons of Nutella
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Directions

1) Cream together the butter and sugar with a hand mixer or stand mixer with the paddle attachment until the mixture is light and fluffy.

2) Mix in eggs, one at a time, then the milk and extracts.

3) In a separate, much larger bowl, combine your flour, baking powder, and salt. Then slowly mix in your wet batter. You are still going to want a use a mixer at this point unless you are very strong.

4) Portion out cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Shoot for heaping 1/4 cup cookies. You should get six large cookies per baking sheet.

5) Bake these bad boys at 375 degrees F. for about 20 minutes or until they are just starting to turn brown around the edges.

6) Meanwhile, mix your four cups of confectioners sugar in a bowl and slowly add your boiling water. Eventually it will turn into a light icing – very easy to spread. Leave your water boiling for when you add the flavors in a second.

7) Divide icing and flavor with peanut butter and/or nutella if you want. It helps to heat icing over a double boiler while you add peanut butter and nutella so it melts together.

8) Remove cookies and let them cool. Then ice them and let them continue to cool for 30 minutes so the icing hardens.

The first thing you need to do is cream the butter. Creaming is baker-speak for mixing butter and sugar together. The sugar acts as millions of little knifes that cut up the butter and make it light. If you don’t have a stand-up mixer (I don’t), you can use a hand mixer. If you don’t have a hand mixer or a stand-up mixer you could use a fork, but, dude, borrow a hand mixer from someone. NOT worth it.

Hide and seek - for butter.

Hide and seek – for butter.

After 5-6 minutes beating, you will have something that looks roughly like mashed potatoes. That’s good!

Mashed butter.

Mashed butter.

To that you want to mix in the eggs, one at a time, then the milk and extracts. Mix for a few minutes to combine well.

In a separate, much larger bowl, combine your flour, baking powder, and salt. Then slowly mix in your wet batter. You are still going to want a use a mixer at this point unless you are very strong.

Dessert soup.

Dessert soup.

This whole thing of batter, for me, made 18 cookies. Six cookies per baking sheet. Needless to say these are large cookies. Two tips on these:

1) Parchment paper will be worth the $2. It makes removing the cookies very easy. You could also butter the pan though.
2) The batter is pretty thick. It does not flatten out like chocolate chip dough. If you put a blob on the sheet, you will end up with a two inch high cookie. Which is fine if you want that, but I wanted mine a bit thinner so I smoothed the blobs out with a knife.

These are going to be huge.

These are going to be huge.

Then bake these bad boys at 375 for about 20 minutes or until they are just starting to turn brown around the edges.

Basically pieces of cake.

Tiny cakes.

Now for the icing. This is pretty easy stuff. Just put your four cups of confectioners sugar in a bowl and slowly add your boiling water. Eventually it will turn into a light icing – very easy to spread. Leave your water boiling for when you add the flavors in a second.

Icing Icing Baby.

Icing Icing Baby.

Now you can use this as your icing if you want to preserve the “white” part of the white and black cookie. Otherwise, you can add any sort of flavor to it that you want. I wanted to add peanut butter to one half and Nutella to the other. This is how you do it:

Put half of your icing base in a metal bowl and sit it in your pot of boiling water – a simple double boiler. Add your peanut butter or Nutella or chocolate if you want and it should melt together fairly quickly. If it gets too thick add another tablespoon of boiling water. Just remember, it doesn’t take a lot of peanut butter or Nutella to change the flavor of the whole batch.

This is much better than peanut butter.

This is much better than peanut butter.

Now it is as simple as icing your cookies! After you ice them you want to let them sit for at least 30 minutes to make sure the icing hardens. I went ahead and made a few different versions below because I’m cool like that.

Variety is the ice of life.

Variety is the ice of life.

So there ya go! Dark and tan, white and dark, and white and tan cookies.

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2 comments on “The Dark and Tan Cookie

  1. While I’m sure these are ubertasty, let’s work one up made with Magner Cider and Guinness… Now I have a taste for a black and tan!

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