Ode to New York Part 1 – Black & White Cookies

Born and raised here my entire life, I figured what better way to honor the city I love then baking some of its most iconic desserts, and some newer ones =), but we will get into that later!

One thing I remembered growing up was going to the local bakery called Glendale’s on the Upper East Side, which now is a CVS — oh how things have changed!, with my parents. My dad would get a deli made sandwich with all the fixings, on a hero of course, and I would oogle at all of the freshly baked cookies and cakes in the bakery display case. Pushing my nose up so far to the glass I could taste it!

Aside for getting some pretty epic birthday cakes from here, we would stop in and one of my favorite things to get was a jumbo black and white cookie. I’ve gone back and forth debating on making these on my own. Found a great recipe from the Brown Eyed Baker, to be linked below, and I wanted to finally give it a shot and see how it would taste. Would it truly live up to the iconic New York City bakeries? We are about to find out!

black-and-white-cookie

An adult now, with my husband, we still are residing on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. I couldn’t see myself leaving the neighborhood, I love it too much!

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The NYC side streets!

So I live farther east than where my parents do now, but there are a lot of amazing little restaurants, diners, and more importantly –bakeries! One in particular that I would like to refer to is Glaser’s Bake Shop. We are literally a few blocks from this fantastic bakery that has been an UES staple since 1902! Just imagine how many black and white cookies were made in all those years. If you are ever in New York City, I highly recommend you stop in for a black and white cookie.

bakery-front

Anyway, enough of my history, lets get to the cookie! By the end of this recipe, I wouldn’t say that it was a difficult thing to make, but it does require time and patience. It did take me 2 attempts on the frosting to get this done correctly, so please don’t give up if it doesn’t come out right the first time! Because of my immense frustration in the beginning, I do not have many step-by-step images, but I will do my best to explain.

The recipe does provide an amazing job explaining each step, so long as you follow it you’re golden for success. The recipe says it makes roughly 20-24 cookies, all depending on the size you make them, I got 22 out of it.

What you’re going to do first is mix together all of your dry ingredients in a large bowl which are the following:

  • 4 cups cake flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Mix and then set aside. Next take 1 cup (2 sticks) of unsalted butter at cooled room temperature and mix with a hand or stand mixer on medium speed for about 30 seconds. To me, cool room temperature butter is when it is softened a bit to the touch, but still firm, if that makes sense. You are then going to add the granulated white sugar, 1 ¾ cup, into the butter and increase the speed of the mixer to medium-high for 3 minutes. You want this mixture to have a nice fluffy consistency.

Scrape the sides of your bowl, and on medium speed add the following ingredients until combined (30 seconds)

  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon extract

Scraping your bowl once again, on a low mixer speed, you are going to add your dry ingredients and the milk in an alternating processing starting and ending with your flour mixture. (Flour – Milk – Flour – Milk – Flour – Milk – Flour)

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Gets kinda messy here =)

Next is the fun and messy part. Using a 1/4 cup measuring tool, you are going to dollop the cookie dough on to a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Now, what the recipe says is to use moisten fingers to morph this blop (is that even a word?) of dough into a 2 1/2 inch circle. What I do suggest, since I had no clue what I was doing, is set a cup of water somewhere close to your working space.

I did not realize that the dough was not going to easily come out of the measuring cup, so using my right hand to scoop, I used my left hand to pull the dough out and place it on the cookie sheet. I then took that same right hand, that is still clean because it was the scooper, dip my index, middle and thumb into the cup of water and shape the dough accordingly. It was a very, very, very messy process that I was not expecting, but after like 2 cookies I got the hang of it. You’re going to want to keep these roughly 2 inches apart from each other. I personally baked 6 at a time per cookie sheet.

These cookies are suggested to bake for 20 minutes, or until gold brown. For me, golden brown was at 10 minutes. This was trial an error as my first batch was 15, then 12 until we found the magic number being 10 minutes.

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My shameless Instagram story images

As you can see they bake pretty big, mine definitely not perfect circles, so don’t worry if they don’t come out perfect!

Once they cool the next part, which was a little tricky for me, is icing them with the white and black frosting. This part takes a lot of patience. My suggestion would be to take it one step at a time, and do not rush the process.

Alright! Set up a wire rack with some parchment paper underneath to catch the excess icing, and this will happen, to prepare the cookies for icing. For the icing, you will need the following:

  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
  • ⅓ cup water
  • ¼ cup light corn syrup
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

First you are going to melt the chocolate. This can be done in a microwave at 50% power, or over a stove in a heat safe bowl over simmering water. Once your chocolate is melted, set aside and in a medium saucepan, boil your 1/3 cup of water and 1/4 cup of light corn syrup.

Once it has boiled, you are going to add the 5 cups of powdered sugar. What I suggest is to add small amounts and wisk until completely incorporated. This will take a bit of time, but it makes it much easier in the end. Once that is all mixed, the consistency should be fairly runny, take 3/4 of a cup of the mixture and add it to your melted chocolate. Wisk together until completely incorporated and set aside.

Now you are going to begin icing, starting with the vanilla first, using a small off set spatula, dollop 2 tablespoons of the icing on to half of the cookie and spread it evenly. This can be a messy and slow process, but take your time! Rest the completed vanilla half of the cookies on the cooling rack to allow excess to drip off. Not a bad idea to first remove any excess off the side of your cookie before letting the icing harden. Let sit for about 15 minutes before frosting the chocolate side.

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Looks so good!

What I found helpful, especially with the chocolate icing, is to keep in on a very low simmer and stir every once in a while to make sure the icing doesn’t harden too much. Because this is a tedious process your icing might harden. If the vanilla does, you can add a tsp of warm water at a time to the icing and stir until you get the correct consistency again. If your chocolate icing begins to harden, she suggests to put the bowl over simmering water to re-melt it, if that doesn’t give you the right consistency, then can add a tsp of warm water at a time and stir until you are at the right consistency once again.

Once the icing finally sets, feel free to chow down on these absolutely delicious cookies! This recipe did a fantastic job replicating this cookie and it tasted amazing!

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“Look to the cookie Elaine!” – Jerry Seinfeld

Store in an air tight container. To making stacking them easier, use parchment or wax paper in between each level of cookie so the icing doesn’t stick.

Enjoy!

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @Phreya to see all my baked goods!

Black and White Cookies – The Brown Eyed Baker

Glaser’s Bake Shop

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