This week, I baked for the first time in my new kitchen! Spoiler alert: it was awesome. Plenty of counter space. Pretty new toys to play with (read: stainless steel mixing bowls). And a whole new group of people to eat the end product! Plus, central air conditioning, which means turning on the oven was not the horrific experience it could have been in this insanely hot summer we’ve been having.
The new apartment is mostly coming together, and its been wonderful to be able to unpack leisurely with no pressing requirements on my time. And living in the city proper seems like it will be a lot of fun. I can walk places, the T is convenient rather than a hassle, and the North End is so close that cannolis will become a staple of my diet. All in all, I’m excited for this post-bar exam chapter of my life.
And to kick it off, I made a recipe that was sure to be a crowd pleaser as well as a Dad pleaser. Last night, my dad and I went to our annual country concert, seeing Keith Urban, who puts on an incredible show. My dad’s favorite cake is Icebox Cake and he is a big whoopie pie fan. In that same vein, I found a recipe for homemade Oreos, which are really more of a smushed whoopie pie with a crispier rather than cakey cookie. He loved them – not that I had any doubts. Definitely a big step up from last week’s disaster.
First, make the cookies. Whisk together the flour, 1/2 cup cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Set aside. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on low speed. Add the sugar and increase speed to medium, beating until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Beat in the egg to incorporate. Add the dry ingredients and beat until just combined. Roll dough into walnut-sized balls and place about two inches apart on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Press down on the top of each with your hand to flatten slightly. Then, place the remaining cocoa powder in a shallow dish. Dip the bottom of a drinking glass into the cocoa powder and press down each ball until it is 1/8 inch thick. Bake at 350°F for about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool one minute on the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Next, make the cream filling. Beat the butter and shortening on medium speed until creamed. Add the sugar and beat on medium speed until desired consistency. Add in the vanilla extract and beat to incorporate. Spread the flat side of a cookie with cream and top with another cookie to make sandwiches. Allow to sit for 15 minutes or so before transferring to an airtight container for storage.
- 1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) flour
- 1/2 cup (2 ounces) cocoa powder, plus 1/4 cup (1 ounce)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 4 cups (14 ounces) confectioners sugar
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, 1/2 cup cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on low speed. Add the sugar and increase speed to medium for about 4 minutes, until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the egg to incorporate.
- With the mixer running on low speed, add the dry ingredients and beat until just combined.
- Roll dough into walnut-sized balls and place on baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray about 2 inches apart. Use your palm to flatten each into a hockey puck shape.
- Put the remaining 1/4 cup of cocoa powder in a shallow dish. Dip the bottom of a pint glass into the cocoa powder and flatten each ball until it is 1/8-inch thick.
- Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes, until dry on top. Remove from oven and allow to cool one minute on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and shortening on medium speed.
- Add confectioners sugar and beat on medium speed until light and creamy.
- Beat in vanilla extract.
- Spread filling on flat side of a cookie and top with a second cookie to make sandwiches.