A couple of weeks ago a co-worker, who knows how much my wife loves to bake, brought a cookbook in to loan me. It's actually a collection of recipes that her Swedish aunt had put together years ago. It consists of dittoed pages (remember the smell of freshly dittoed paper?) and handmade covers held together with those two-pronged brads. I would never trust anyone with such a family heirloom, but I was honored that she would lend it to me. The recipes are old, and a number of them call for hartshorn. This is an old leavening agent used before baking powder was commonly available. Chemically speaking, it's ammonium carbonate, and it supposedly fills your kitchen with the odor of ammonia when you bake with it. Yum. It can only be used with light batters as you don't want any of that lovely ammonia flavor trapped in your finished goods!
This recipe is a quick and easy one from that book. It requires no hartshorn and makes very tasty cookies. They're especially good within a few hours of baking when they'll have a thin, slightly crisp exterior and a soft inside.
Orange Drop Cookies (from Aunt Annie)
4 T. butter
1 C. sugar
2 T grated orange rind
4 T orange juice
2 C sifted flour
4 T baking powder
1/2 t salt
Cream butter and sugar together in mixing bowl. Add eggs one at a time and mix well. Add orange rind and orange juice and mix well. Combine dry ingredients and work them into the butter mixture until combined. drop tablespoon-sized balls of the dough onto a lightly greased cookie sheet (we got great results with a Silpat liner) and bake at 375° for about ten minutes or until the bottoms are lightly browned.
Last edited by Mike Filigenzi
on Thu Apr 27, 2006 1:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"People who love to eat are always the best people"
- Julia Child