As promised, here’s the recap of the first two batches of tasty treats from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar. Why two batches? Because I couldn’t decide on just one!
The guy who sold me the book highly recommended the Mexican Chocolate Snickerdoodles, so I started with those. I don’t even know what a snickerdoodle is (shocker: Wikipedia does), but I know that these were easy and baked up beautifully. I was excited about the chocolate-cinnamon combination, and it didn’t disappoint. One caveat: Next time I make these, I’ll probably only add half the cayenne pepper. I liked it because it meant I had to savor each cookie one bite at a time instead of inhaling three or four, but if you like your cookies with less heat than sweet (painful rhyme, I know), go easy on the cayenne. The weekend I made these, I couldn’t find chocolate extract, so I doubled the vanilla. However, this weekend, the hippie grocery had a single bottle of chocolate extract that had clearly been left for me by the baking fairies! I’m looking forward to seeing how much of a difference it makes.
Pregan, some of my favorite cookies were pignoli cookies from Vaccaro’s. Sweet almond paste and pine nuts? Heaven! As a matter of fact, Red had brought some home for himself the week before I made mine, so I was very curious as to how VCIYCJ’s Pignoli Almond Cookies would compare. They were easy to whip up, and pressing the dough balls into the pine nuts was easier than I’d anticipated. They’re probably the prettiest cookies I’ve ever made! I thought they were delicious, but I was afraid they wouldn’t be a match for Vaccaro’s. “Are they as good?” I asked Red nervously. “No,” he said, chewing thoughtfully. “They’re better.” I did a happy dance around the kitchen as he explained that while Vaccaro’s pignoli cookies are indeed fabulous, they’re too rich and heavy to enjoy more than one. These, on the other hand, were light and flavorful without being overwhelming. Veganism for the win! (However, almond paste and pine nuts aren’t cheap, so these will probably be special-occasion cookies only.)
There was never any question that Red and I would keep all these cookies. We ended up with four dozen, and we certainly didn’t need that many! I had originally planned to send my sister and her boyfriend a cookie care package (she loves pignolis, too), but even after that, we still had more cookies than we could eat. Into leftover Chinese takeout containers they went, and both sets of our parents received special cookie deliveries as well.
Sweet success. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a date with a snickerdoodle.