Well, it was natural that I would feel an affinity with a recipe called "Essie's Cookies"--after all, Essie sounds like Jessie, and that's me!
But rhyming namesake aside, what do these cookies have to offer for eaters? Well, according to the intro in what you have to know is my favorite cookie cookbook, Betty Crocker's Cooky Book, they are a "crisp, crunchy, good-eating cooky". Quel mysterieuse! Curious, I whipped up a batch.
Turns out, these are an amazingly easy rolled sugar cookie, and true to BC's word, very "good-eating". Visiting parents favored the ones from the back of the pan which were crispy on the edges; Mr. Spy and I ate up the softy ones from the front (because no, I didn't rotate the pan--even though I know you're supposed to. Whatevs).
Oh, and in the spirit of abbreviation (and ingredient availability chez moi) I omitted the split almonds on top. Don't tell Essie, but I think they were fine without.
Here's the recipe:
Makes about 36 cookies
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 3/4 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
Optional: 1 egg white (for an egg wash), 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 cup sugar, and toasted split almonds to top the cookies (I just sprinkled with sugar)
- In a stand mixer, mix butter, 1 cup sugar, egg, and flavoring thoroughly.
- In a separate bowl, stir together flour and baking powder.
- Blend the flour mixture into the wet mixture. Chill dough for at least an hour.
- Heat oven to 375 F. Roll dough 1/16" thick on a lightly floured, cloth covered board. Cut with cookie cutters; place on an ungreased baking sheet.
- If you're doing the egg wash business, beat the egg white with a fork and brush over cookies; sprinkle the cinnamon and sugar on top, and garnish with toasted split almonds. Or, if you're lazy like me, just sprinkle with sugar and pop 'em in the oven.
- Bake 8-10 minutes, or until lightly brown at the edges.