⪧ We left our life in New York City to make a new one in Provence ⪦

October 9, 2008

Hoot Owl Cookies



Fall comes around and all the memories flood in. Pumpkin carving (I am searching for a pumpkin to carve all over Paris...help! anyone who can), leaf raking, Hoot Owl cookie-making. These were an institution at the Johnson house. An annual event. We would all storm the kitchen and 'help' my Mom. We would get so excited about the bags of m&ms floating around - something that never happened to us. And then we would load up in the van (as many of us as my Mom could convince) and go 'phantom-ing.' This means that we would bring plates of cookies to people's doorsteps, ring the doorbell and run.

So, this year, I decided to make Hoot Owl cookies in honor of fall and my Mom.

Of course, I was really pleased that Marguerite got excited about it too. So, we set out and took the recipe and converted all the cups and things to metric (she was really helpful with that, being French and all) and I found the French equivalents of baking soda, but not brown sugar (something else I am looking for in Paris if you can help). I also didn't pay close enough attention to the recipe and neglected to find baking powder (this is evidence of how much I bake). So, classic me - I decided I could just add extra baking soda in place of baking powder. Thus, the cookies taste awful. But they are adorable as always. And Josephine might get phantomed tonight..particularly since they are so tasty.



If you want the recipe, here it is:

Ingredients:

3/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 square (1 ounce) unsweetened chocolate, melted
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Orange and yellow M&M's
Whole cashews

Directions:

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and brown sugar. Beat in egg and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture. Remove two-thirds of the dough; roll into an 8-in. square on plastic wrap and set aside.

Combine melted chocolate and baking soda until thoroughly blended; beat into remaining dough. Shape into an 8-in log. Place chocolate log at one end of the square and roll up; pinch seams together. Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Unwrap dough; cut into 1/4-in. slices. To form owl's face, place two slices side by side on a lightly greased baking sheet. Pinch dough at the top of the circles to form ears. Place M&M's in the center of each circle for eyes. Place a cashew in the center of the face for the beak.

Bake at 350° for 9-11 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to a wire rack. Yield: about 1-1/2 dozen.

4 comments:

Jill said...

I've made these cookies a few times myself in honor of Aunt Rosie and ya'all.

I love how traditions cement themselves in us and we feel compeled to carry them out. Aside from the taste you described, your cookies look great! I'm sure Josephine would love a plate.

Julie said...

John and I made these last year too and shared them with Hein and Stephanie's family down in Bedford. We are definitely making them again and allowing JOyce to eat handfuls of whatever she wants.

Rosie said...

Hoot Owls were given to me by a dear teacher of mine in high school. Her name was Vera Reynold and she was married to a man named Burt! She was 4'11" tall and was a giant in the way she loved her students. We hung out at her house and she taught us how to make pies, cookies, bread and all kinds of wonderful foods. But more importantly she really loved us in a way that made us want to be better people. I make hoot owls to honor Vera. Isn't it great how love gets passed down!

Purchase Viagra said...

Excellent cookies thanks a lot for the recipe, I wonder if my daughter will like this haha thanks

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