Bravetart: Homemade Lofthouse-Style Cookies

These have surpassed my famously popular chocolate chip cookies to become my daughter’s favorite cookie. If she’s particularly upset about school, the thought of coming home to one of these cookies freshly baked for her will snap her out of it every time.

The recipe comes from Bravetart’s cookbook, which Food52 Baking Club went through in November last year, but it’s also been published on the Serious Eats website if you don’t have access to the book. They remind me of my childhood and since we can’t get the store bought packaged Lofthouse cookies here, these were a must bake.

I won’t go into the details of the process of making them at all, but I will point out two interesting things that make this cookie recipe different from others. First, it uses egg whites rather than whole eggs – but you don’t have to whip them or anything before incorporating into the dough – instead, you whisk them with some cream and vanilla. That’s the second thing, cream – I’ve used buttermilk in cookie recipes before, but never cream. It only uses 2 Tablespoons which is kind of inconvenient if you don’t normally have cream in your fridge, but it also uses 1/3 cup in the icing so I suppose it isn’t too bad. I try to plan it that I’ll have something in mind to use the remainder so it doesn’t go to waste (the egg yolks can be a problem in that regard too).

I use a cookie scoop to portion them out, they bake perfectly every time and I always use a bit of blue food coloring in the icing because that’s what I used the first time I made them and now that’s what my darling daughter expects! I put whatever sprinkles I have on hand on top of the icing – it’s been a great way to finish off leftovers from various projects but it’s quickly run down my supplies because I make these so often. (I’m trying to make my own sprinkles next week!) These cookies are definitely going to be handed down from generation to generation because they will forever be associated with cheering my girl up on a bad day.

The Food Lab: Eggs Florentine

Today’s Meatless Monday post is from my husband Aaron. Just FYI there will be a lot of Throwback recipes this month as it’s the 1 year anniversary of Food52 Cookbook Club.

There is a confession I need to make – I absolutely LOVE¬†The Food Lab, and everything Kenji does, so I am biased. But I’m biased because his recipes (and ideas behind them) make good sense. There are a bunch of videos of his on YouTube for various things, including one that talks all about eggs. Just ask Jen. After watching said video, I spent the next hour or so telling her all about what Kenji had to say about eggs!

Eggs Florentine is basically a poached egg with cooked spinach instead of ham or smoked salmon on an English muffin covered in Hollandaise sauce. Kenji shows you how to ensure your mayonnaise or Hollandaise sauce doesn’t split. It is probably the easiest Hollandaise I’ve made (and one of, if not THE tastiest). And out of the kindness of his own heart, Kenji gives you two methods to make the sauce – one for if you have an immersion blender, and another for the rest of us with standard blenders/food processors. Basically, you blend egg yolks, lemon juice and hot water, then slowly add melted butter to the blender/food processor to mix all the ingredients, and then season with salt and cayenne (optional). So easy and so nice!¬† The spinach for the Florentine was cooked with garlic and seasoned with salt and pepper – nice and easy, and nice and quick…and again, very tasty.

As an aside, an awesome tip I got from Kenji on poaching eggs is, if you’re having more than a few friends over for brekky, you can poach the eggs the day before (he may have even said up to 5 days before, but I’d check that before trying it!), put them in iced water and keep them in the fridge, then on the following morning, pop them back into the simmering water for about 30 seconds and they will be right to go! Very handy instead of trying to evenly poach a dozen eggs at the same time.

I’d highly recommend The Food Lab’s Eggs Florentine for a very nice brekky, or in our case, for brinner (breakfast for dinner), as it was fairly quick, easy and VERY tasty.

Two Eggs Florentine