I have a confession: I’m in love. With my mixer. Of course, it doesn’t do the dishes or mow the lawn, so I have to explore my polyandry options.
I know, I know. Man-woman-mixer relationships are ruining the foundation of our society. I just can’t help myself. I have never been so happy that I was unable to repair something as I was when I couldn’t get my old mixer apart to clean out the Election Cake batter, and was forced to buy an upgrade.
When it came home from the store with us, I started looking around for something to make. At RecipeCurio.com, I found Beatrice Cooke’s Gebackenes. Sugar cookies that had to be rolled and cut out (thus entertaining Daughter), with a strange and ridiculous name… win-win!
I thought Gebackenes would be some traditional German-ish cookie. However, a Google search for “gebackenes” turns up this recipe, and lots of recipes for Gebackenes Euter — Fried Cow’s Udder… rather disturbing, although Euter was clearly the Udder part of the name and so Gebackenes must mean something like fried. Or fried cow.
According to my good friend from Berlin, Gebäck means pastry, and Gebäckenes is nothing. At best, the name of Beatrice Cooke’s recipe is “Bakes”, or not actually a German word but from a different language. Considering Beatrice is as fictional a home economist as Betty Crocker, it’s not surprising she was rather bad at naming things.
1 cup Meadow Gold Butter
1-3/4 cups sugar
2 Meadow Gold Eggs, beaten
1/2 cup Meadow Gold Whipping Cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
2 Meadow Gold Egg Yolks, beaten
Colored sugar or chopped nuts
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in eggs, cream and vanilla. Add sifted dry ingredients gradually, mixing well after each addition. Chill dough for several hours. Roll out on lightly floured surface to 1/8 inch thickness. Cut with various shaped cooky cutters. Place on ungreased cooky sheet; brush with egg yolks; sprinkle with colored sugar or chopped nuts. Bake at 400° or 8-10 minutes. Makes 12 dozen cookies.
My beloved new mixer made quick work of the dough. Mmmm, sticky!
They aren’t kidding about needing to “chill dough for several hours”. At room temperature, it simply sticks to the rolling pin and everything else in sight. When rolled to an eighth of an inch, it creates flimsy little shapes that will fall apart unless they’ve been on a heavily floured surface.
Daughter got to use her miniature rolling pin for the first time, then she got to pick which cookie cutters we used. (These were both also purchased from Linens ‘n’ Things closing sale. I am apparently a sucker for stupid little baking gadgets if they are 30% off.)
After a yolk wash and a sugar sprinkling, they baked. And, being incredibly thin, they got a little burned in places, but that’s to be expected.
As strangely-named holiday cookies go, Gebäckenes aren’t half bad. But I really prefer cookies that you can simply drop onto a sheet and bake. The chilling, rolling, cutting out, and decorating is loads of fun for kids, and can have pretty results. But flavorwise, they’re never terribly exciting. The flour/sugar/butter ratio needed to get a good rolling dough detracts from the taste. It’s not even much fun eating the leftover scraps afterwards.