Friday, October 13, 2006

Russ Parsons' Snickerdoodles

OK, let me get this part out of the way first, then we'll move on to these yummy little Snickerdoodles. I LOVE THIS MAN! I have been a major fan of Russ Parsons for years. His "Lamb and Lentils to Eat With a Spoon" from the Los Angeles Times made me a devotee for life. And his "Chicken For A Crowd" is another killer recipe. I had the pleasure to meet him at a book signing and his recommendation for my practical final earned me a solid "B" in my culinary arts class. Watta guy! I have notebooks filled with yellowing newsprint pages, copies of his recipes from the Food Section. Thank goodness for sheet protectors and scanners.

These Snickerdoodles have a flavor and texture similar to "Bizcochos", Mexican cinnamon cookies. He gives a wide range for baking time in his recipe, a full five minutes to finish. Adjust to the desired crispness you prefer.
Thanks Russ, I love you!

SNICKERDOODLES - adapted from Russ Parsons, Los Angeles Times
makes about 4 dozen cookies

1 cup Crisco shortening
1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 3/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon plain salt

Cinnamon Sugar: mix 1/4 cup granulated sugar plus 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon in a small bowl.

Cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating thoroughly with each addition. On to a sheet of waxed paper sift the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Add to the shortening mixture, beat well. Scrape bowl and gather into a ball, wrapping in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm for one hour. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment. With a small melon baller or an iced teaspoon, scoop out a piece of dough and roll into a ball about the size of a walnut. Roll in cinnamon sugar and place on baking sheet leaving two inches apart. Bake for about 10 to 15 minutes. Cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to cooling rack. Store in an air-tight container.

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