March is here and I couldn’t be happier. With my wedding anniversary, Saint Patrick’s Day and Easter all falling into this one little month, what else we could we ask for? It’s a month of family celebrations!
And let us not forget that March on Long Island is also full of mischievous weather and subtle hints of spring. As of this morning, it’s blustery cold outside and there’s a light dusting of snow on the ground, but by tomorrow, it could be 68 degrees and sunny. Just like the Leprechauns that are bound to be found in a few weeks, the weather likes playing games with us.
After being bundled up all winter, I don’t really mind the game. I just love waking up each morning wondering what the day will bring. The kids do too. Will they need to wear their winter coats to school? Or can they just wing it with a fleece? Will they need their snow boots again? Or have we moved on to rain boots instead? And most importantly, can they finally play in the backyard again?
In our home, we spend a lot of time outdoors, especially spring through fall. But, since our kids aren’t really winter babies, by the end of the winter, we’re all a bit stir crazy, which is why March is such a blessing. She’s a sign of the good things to come. And as my wee little crocus start popping out of the ground, she’s also a lovely reminder that spring is just around the corner.
To celebrate spring – and Saint Patrick’s Day – and Easter – and our Anniversary – I whipped up these super adorable, cake-style cookies that can be found in any (and every) bakery on Long Island. They may look complicated, but I promise you they’re not – especially if you have the kids help you ice them!
This fantastic Black and White Cookie recipe, which really does taste like the bakery-style cookies that we’re all so fond of, comes from Chef Hayley, a Pastry Cook at a posh hotel in Toronto. Find his recipe on Allrecipes.com.
EASY BLACK AND WHITE COOKIE RECIPE
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
Black & White Icing Ingredients:
- 1 1/2 cups icing sugar or 1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
- 1 tablespoon clear corn syrup
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 tablespoon water (approximately)
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
Step 1: Preheat oven to 350°F.
Step 2: Sift together flour, baking soda and salt in medium bowl.
Step 3: In small bowl or cup, mix together buttermilk and vanilla.
Step 4: Beat butter and white sugar together in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer for about 3 minutes or until it’s evenly distributed.
Step 5: Add egg to butter and sugar mixture, and beat until blended.
Step 6: Gradually beat in flour mixture one cup at a time, and add in buttermilk mixture between each cup of flour, and mix until smooth. It will be necessary to scrape down the sides of the bowl
Step 7: Spoon batter in 1/4 cup size servings onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Step 8: Bake on middle rack for about 15-17 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown and spring back when touched.
Step 9: Place on a cooling rack, and allow to cool completely before icing.
Step 10: Stir together icing sugar, corn syrup, lemon juice, vanilla, and 1/2 Tbsp of water in bowl until smooth.
Step 11: Place half of mixture into separate bowl and add cocoa powder, and remaining water bit by bit until it is the same consistency as the white icing. If the icing is too runny, add more icing sugar until it is smooth and spreadable.
Step 12: Turn cooled cookies flat side up, and spread icing with pastry spatula, or butter knife. White over one-half, chocolate over the other. The icing does not set solid on these cookies, and does not harden, but it dries enough to be wrapped as they are sold in the city. They can be wrapped
individually in cellophane, or sealed in a plastic container.
Happy March everyone,