When life hands you ________, make _________ cookies.
That's the unofficial theme of my life.
Do you have a type of dessert that you find yourself going back to again and again? Some people are crazy about cakes, and others love making pies. For me, I swear I think in terms of cookies. You give me a dessert, and I wonder how it could be a cookie. (Root beer float cookies, anyone?) You give me some fruit - I put it in a cookie. Candy? Cookie. Nuts? Cookie again. I'd say it was a problem, but I don't see anything wrong with it.
It would follow, then, that when my totally awesome neighbor offers me some rhubarb from her garden, the first thing I do with it is put it in a cookie.
Now, some cookies turn out better than others. The caramel apple cookies weren't actually that good. (The caramel melted and the apples didn't taste remotely fresh. Probably because they were dried.) The chocolate cayenne pepper cookies had too much cayenne and not enough chocolate. (They were tasteless until this heat would hit you in the back of the throat like a mac truck and leave you running for some milk.) Some cookies are works in progress. That's all I will say about those because you will see them when they are perfect. Someday. I promise.
And then some cookies are home runs.
These rhubarb cookies are home runs.
To be fair, I cheated a little. I adapted a cookie recipe that I knew was a winner already, and one that I could easily imagine being equal to the challenge of balancing the tart and juicy rhubarb. It turns out it was more than up to the challenge, and it was a happy moment when I tasted the first cookie. (Not that I hadn't tasted plenty of the dough before the first cookie was done baking.) The cookies were soft and sweet, with tart bits of rhubarb that really stood out, but not in a mouth-puckering way. Just enough so that you enjoy the unique flavor of rhubarb, all wrapped up in a fluffy, soft cookie.
I can't wait to see what life hands to me next.
1 1/2 cups rhubarb, chopped medium
1/2 cup plus 2 T granulated sugar, divided
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon table salt
3 ounces (6 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
3/4 cup plus 2 T heavy cream
Coarse sugar, for sprinkling
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine rhubarb and 3 tablespoons granulated sugar in a small bowl. Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and remaining 7 tablespoons granulated sugar in a large bowl. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter, or rub in with your fingers, until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in cream until dough starts to come together, then stir in rhubarb mixture.
2. Drop 1 1/2 T of dough onto baking sheets, spacing evenly apart. Sprinkle with coarse sugar, and bake until golden brown, 11-12 minutes. Let cool on the cookie sheet five minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies are best served immediately, but can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 day.
Recipe Source: cookie base adapted from www.marthastewart.com