Last week I wrote to you about having tea with my Grandma Westra’s neighbor ladies and the renegade car. My favorite childhood cookie was the Windmill, which was made by the local Rippin Good Cookie factory.
Rippin Good Cookies https://www.thenorthwestern.com/story/news/2016/05/25/last-ripon-cookie-plant-close-year/84908674/ closed its doors in 2016, due to consumers demanding a less sugary cookie. Gratefully in 2017, the doors were re-opened https://fox11online.com/news/local/fox-cities/ripon-cookie-plant-re-opening once again.
I remember going with my mother to the Rippin Good Cookie outlet store. It was a short drive (about 35 minutes) to Ripon and I always enjoyed the smell of cookies baking and shopping for cookies; especially Windmill cookies!
Grown up tastes
Just like everything else from childhood, you grow out of some likes and dislikes. I moved on from windmill cookies to like several others. My top favorite processed cookie was the Oreo cookie. I would by a small package from Friesland Foods and then keep them in my locker to snack on throughout the day.
At home, we baked the same type cookie over and over again- chocolate chip. We used the recipe right from the Hershey’s Chocolate Chip bag. As I grew up, moved out on my own, and married, I noticed almost every batch of chocolate chip cookies was not the same. Since I attended the Handle the Heat “Magic of Baking” class, I learned some important tips and tricks for making and baking cookies.
Tessa Arias was the instructor. She is a professionally trained Pastry Chef. She has developed her own company and hundreds of great recipes. I consider her the cookie doctor. She can help you fix your baking problems!
The Magic of Baking
Most cookie making starts with a based cookie recipe, I will enclose Tessa’s cookie base recipe here https://www.handletheheat.com/free-cookie-customization-guide/, you’ll have to sign up with your email but it is well worth it. It comes in the form of a pdf, so print it off as it will come in handy.
Tessa is very precise with her measurements. She uses an electronic scale for measuring out her portions. Tessa insists on using an oven thermometer for the best baking results and that butter should be a cool room temperature 67 degrees F. The butter stick should bend easily without cracking and give slightly when pressing in a finger.
Tessa has some lovely troubleshooting pdf’s which you simply sign up to receive. Some of Tessa’s top cookie customizing suggestions are:
- Chewy cookie- add an egg yolk, use brown sugar
- Soft cookie- add in a teaspoon of cornstarch, use pastry flour
- Thick cookie- chill the balls of dough, add 2 tablespoons flour
- Cakey cookie- add an egg white, use a liquid sweetener
- Thin cookie- use melted butter, use granulated sugar
- Crisp cookie- bake at 375 degrees, use a greased pan
Among other suggestions is her best- MARINATE YOUR COOKIE DOUGH. Yes, you read that right, just like marinating your beef steak, chicken, and pork Tessa says you get the best cookie dough from chilling https://www.handletheheat.com/the-1-reason-why-you-should-chill-your-cookie-dough/ it for 24 hours to a maximum of 72 hours. I have tried this marinating of the cookie dough and it is as she says, “well worth the wait”.
Join Tessa in a cookie challenge
Each month Tessa sends out a baking challenge. This might just be a great way to kill the COVID blues as well as learn something new. Tessa has many great cookie recipes as well as some great cookie recipe books. Her newest cookie book is “The Ultimate Cookie Handbook” and it already sold out with the first printing.
You can pre-order for the next shipment in November 2020 right here https://www.handletheheat.com/cookbook-sales-page/. I am completely confident you will not be disappointed!
Tessa has produced this cookie book on her own. If you have ever delved into the world “writing” you know that publishing your own book is VERY intensive, expensive, and with great risk. You will not find this current book on Amazon. I tip my hat to Tessa, she has done a fantastic job with the photos, fonts, recipes and relating to you to the “science” of cookie making.
Tune in next week when I give you a “plate full” of great cookie recipes that you’ll be sure to try. Until next week my cookie loving friends here is to good food, good friends, and a great and freedom living life!
Michele Bruxvoort is sure to draw you in with her delightful sense of humor and love for living life. She enjoys reading, repurposing, as well as remodeling the family home with her husband. Drawing from her life experience as wife, mom, and follower of Jesus, Michele brings you a very honest and real perspective on life. When you don’t find her writing, you can find her mowing lawns, stocking shelves, taking care of her grandbaby and tackling her latest life adventure.
Wisconsin native and empty-nester, she now makes her home with her husband of 27 years in the South West Prairie plains of Minnesota.