Sugar: A Rondo in Cookies

rondo - 3I regularly read seven different cooking blogs.  And while many of them have recipes I save, it is only rarely that I read a post and then immediately set out to make that recipe the very same day.  But a little while ago Smitten Kitchen posted a confetti sprinkles sugar cookie recipe that completely captured my imagination.  I don’t have a particular affection for sprinkles, but something about the birthday cake vibe of the cookies drew me in.

I made a batch and they were excellent.  Soft and moist, just the perfect texture.  I started thinking about how to modify the recipe for my annual winter holiday cookies, rolling in green and red sprinkles, etc. and then I started thinking of other things I could roll the cookies in…

So that’s where I ended up yesterday.  This was an experiment in creative cookie toppings, based on the same foundation recipe.

The lineup was confetti, snickerdoodle, cherry blossom, sesame seed, and green tea.  Each was taste tested with expert care and precision by myself and my kitchen lieutenant, Mr. R.  Scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being vile, 5 being an ok average cookie, and 10 being the most amazing cookie ever.

The Classic:  Snickerdoodlessnickerdoodle

Small amount of cinnamon folded into dough, then rolled in a mix of cinnamon, sugar, and nutmeg. 

  • The verdict:  Cinnamon and sugar is a reliable combo and consistently tasty.
  • Miss J:  7
  • Mr. R:  8 (he’s a snickerdoodle fan)

The Seasonal: Cherry Blossom
sakura sugar cookie

Dried Japanese cherry blossoms mixed into finished dough.  One drop of red food coloring used for a pale pink color.

  • The verdict:  Cherry blossom flavor nearly lost in the flavor of the dough itself.  Not bad, but basically just a sugar cookie.  Needs more blossoms.
  • Miss J:  5
  • Mr. R:  5

The Chic: Sesame Seed
sesame sugar cookie

Dough rolled in a mixture of white and black sesame seeds.

  • The verdict:  I was most skeptical of this idea, but it was great.  Nutty, almost like a peanut butter cookie.  A real surprise.
  • Miss J:  8
  • Mr. R:  6

The Camo: Green Tea
matcha sugar cookie

Dough rolled in matcha powder.

  • The verdict:  Slightly bitter from the tea at first taste, then becomes more the cookie.  Not bad, but would probably be better if tea was mixed into the dough.
  • Miss J:  5
  • Mr. R:  5

The Original: Confetti
confetti sugar cookie

Dough rolled in colorful sprinkles.

  • The verdict:  Why do sprinkles make any taste difference?  Except they do.  And I love these cookies.  It’s like little discs of birthday cake.
  • Miss J:  9
  • Mr. R:  9

Overall verdict:  Flavor experiments on cookies are always an awesome idea.

If you want to check out the original recipe you can either look on the King Arthur Flour website or the slightly modified version on Smitten Kitchen.  I recommend Smitten Kitchen because she has a variation that can be made in a food processor and that means zero wait time for butter to soften!  These cookies are dead easy and delicious with a variety of toppings.  I can’t wait to hear what other variations there are out there!

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