Meanwhile, with the temperature today already over 30 degrees, I’m heating my apartment (and cooling my mood) still further, by baking cookies for Thursday evening's launch at Readings. Crazy, I know, but fun too. I'm making Steven Amsterdam's Cinnamon Launch Cookies. I figure if they were good enough for the launch of Things We Didn’t See Coming, which was the winner of this year's Age Book of the Year, then they're good enough for Alzheimer's: a Love Story.
I didn't make it to Steven's launch because I was in Tasmania, though I heard it was terrific, and he can't be at mine, unfortunately, but his cookies will certainly be there.
I preheated my oven to 150 C. and lined cookie sheets with paper. Then I ground 120 grams of lightly toasted pecan nuts with 60 grams of caster sugar in my trusty food processor and set this aside.
Next, I creamed 450 grams of room temperature unsalted butter with 120 grams of sugar and a teaspoon of vanilla extract and then mixed in 500 grams plain flour, a teaspoon of salt and one tablespoon of cinnamon. Last, I added the ground nuts.
This batter doesn’t spread much, so while I listened to music from the Newport Folk Festival, I rolled teaspoonfuls into the size of large cherry tomatoes and put them reasonably close to each other on the baking tray.
In my oven these took between 15 and 20 minutes to bake until they were beginning to brown around the edges. Actually, that's what you should do; I left mine in a bit long.
I lifted them off the baking tray and onto a wire rack with an egg lift and left them for five minutes. Then, while they were still warm, I gently rolled them in icing sugar and put them on another piece of baking paper and sifted more icing sugar on top.
This recipe makes about 80 small cookies. The dough freezes well, so you could bake half a batch and save the rest for another time if you wanted. I'm expecting around 100 people at my launch so I baked the whole quantity.
If you're in Melbourne at 6.30 on Thursday, drop into Readings to say hi and taste a cookie.