Monday, October 15, 2012

one hundred and eleven

Over the weekend my husband and I got some awesome news: soon there will be not one, but two new members of the N family!  Two more mouths to feed, twice the messes to clean up, and twice the fun.  Though we're excited, we are not entirely without concern; how Shrubbery J. Cat will react to them encroaching on his lap space?  Will he get as much attention as he currently does? Is it going to bother him when they decide that his toys are their toys?

Oh, I'm sorry, did you think I was talking about baby people?  Meet Bagel (left) and D'ohnut (right), five month old kittens and soon-to-be adoptive brothers of Shrubbery J. Cat.  We got to hang out with them (and their highly allergic caretaker) last night, and it looks like humans are about to be outnumbered by cats in the N house.  Their caretaker is coming by on Wednesday evening to help them settle into their new home--and to eat dinner, naturally--and then everything will be official.  Woohoo!

Yesterday morning, I knew that I had to find something to say "thank you" to our new friend for taking such good care of Bagel and D'ohnut for us despite her horrible allergies.  Since I'm lazy/a fan of multitasking (and because I'm an OMG-so-busy expectant kitty mommy now!!!!!!!) I figured that I'd use those cookies for a blog post today.  They even have cinnamon and nutmeg in them, so they're seasonally appropriate and everything!  I've said it once and I'll say it again: two birds, one stone.  I wonder if Amazon has a bulk deal on bird killin' stones?  I'm going to need them.


  adapted from The Joy of Cooking

These cookies are what I believe to be the perfect fall treat with a great bonus: I've never met anyone that doesn't like them.  They're slightly spicy, deliciously buttery, and perfectly crunchy--they're great warm or cold, fresh baked or a couple of days old.  You can even freeze the dough once it's been shaped into rounds; once you want to bake them, just place them on your lined sheet pan and follow the regular baking instructions below. 

1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar at a medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Scrape down the sides, then mix in the eggs at a low speed.

Stir in the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

Cover with cling film and refrigerate until the dough is slightly firm, about 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350° and line two large baking sheets with Silpats or parchment.  Meanwhile, in a pie or cake pan, mix an additional 1/2 cup sugar with an additional 2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon (and an additional 1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg, if desired).

Remove the chilled dough from the refrigerator.  Scoop one tablespoon of dough and roll it into a ball between your palms.  Roll the ball in cinnamon sugar, then flatten the ball slightly into a 2 inch round.  Coat the round in more sugar.  Repeat until you have twelve flattened, cinnamon sugar coated rounds. 

Arrange six of the rounds onto each baking sheet, then sprinkle with more cinnamon sugar. 

Bake 15 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through to ensure even browning.  Cool on the pan 3 minutes before removing to a rack to cool. 

Repeat with the remaining dough.

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