Lindsay Landis is either my new BFF or my worst enemy. Seriously. Her new cookbook is a cookie dough lover’s dream. My three-year-old son, of course, wanted us to make every recipe “right now!” when we flipped through the pages, and it was tempting.
Here is one recipe that we are definitely going to try for the summer. Let me know if you try them too! (And stay tuned below for a cookie-dough-filled Q&A with the author.)
Funny thing about these popsicles: there’s not actually any cookie dough in them. Yet each lick, each bite, has just enough brown sugar and vanilla to make you think that you’re eating cookie dough, or at least its essence. Is invisible cookie dough better than the real thing? I’ll let you be the judge.
Makes: 4 pops
Active time: 5 minutes
Total time: 3 hours
1 1/4 cups milk (skim, 2 percent, or whole, your choice)
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons mini semisweet chocolate chips
In a microwave-safe container or glass measuring cup, microwave milk 30 seconds or until warm to the touch. Add brown sugar and salt and stir until dissolved. Add vanilla.
Place 1/2 tablespoon chocolate chips in the bottom of each of four 1/3–cup ice–pop molds or small paper cups. Top each with milk mixture. Insert sticks and place molds in freezer. Freeze until solid, at least 3 hours.
To release pops, run molds under warm water 20 to 30 seconds; they should slide right out. (If using paper cups, simply peel cups away and discard.)
If your ice–pop mold does not include built–in sticks or a lid to hold them in place, you may find yourself with sticks pointing every which way but up. To prevent this, simply stretch a layer of plastic wrap over the top of the mold and secure it with a rubber band. Cut a small slit in the plastic, centered over each pop, and insert a stick through each opening. Alternatively, you can adjust sticks as necessary after about 45 minutes of freezing, when the pops aren’t yet frozen solid.
In Conversation with this Cookie Dough Genius
You dedicated this book to “anyone who’s ever been caught with a finger in the mixing bowl.” When did you become a cookie dough lover?
I grew up baking chocolate chip cookies with my mom, and licking the beaters was always the best part. There’s no denying that my mom’s chocolate chip cookies were the greatest in the land, but I have to say I always preferred the cookie dough to the final product.
What is it about cookie dough that makes it better than the cookies themselves?
It’s a combination of things: the flavor, the texture (you can still feel the grit of the brown sugar before they’re baked), the nostalgia. There’s also the fact that it was—until now, of course! —forbidden; there was always that little bit of risk and adventure in eating it that made you want it even more.
How did you develop your eggless cookie dough?
Actually, the recipe is not much different than my mom’s famous chocolate chip cookie recipe. To keep the dough doughy, I replaced the eggs with milk, which gives the dough a similar texture and richness without the risk of food-borne illness.
What inspired you to create a book based on your love of cookie dough?
It started with one recipe on the blog, the Cookie Dough Truffles, which are basically balls of eggless cookie dough dipped in chocolate. Two and a half years later, it’s still my most popular post. I took that as a hint that I wasn’t the only one hooked on the stuff, so I created a few more recipes using cookie dough, such as cupcakes, ice cream, and the Cookie Dough Cream Pie. One day, as I was pondering my next cookie dough creation, I thought, “Someone should really write a cookbook about nothing but cookie dough.” And so I did.
The book offers lots of tips on how to turn your cookie dough creations into edible gifts. What makes cookie dough such a great treat to share with others?
It’s something that is equally loved by all. I also have to admit that I’ve eaten more than my fair share of cookie dough treats; so if you don’t share them with others, you may just find yourself sitting in front of an empty plate.
What was the testing process like for the recipes? Did you encounter any surprises along the way?
Because this was my first cookbook, I really didn’t know what to expect. Some recipes were harder than others: the Cookie Dough Fudge, for example, took me five or six tries to finally get it right. I gave away a lot of failures, which were still delicious in their own right, just not quite perfect. Luckily, my neighbors were always more than happy to take them off my hands.
Which is your favorite recipe in the book?
I was just talking with my husband about this the other day, and it’s like choosing your favorite child (or furry child, in my case). But I’d have to say the recipe shown on the cover—the Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwiches. The cookies themselves are soft and chocolaty with a hint of salt; that combo paired with the cookie dough ice cream gets me every time.
For this project, in addition to the writing and the recipe development, you also did the photography. How important is it to make food look as delicious as it tastes?
Very. I’m a very visual person; I may overlook a truly incredible recipe just because it does not have a photo. This is why it was so important to me that each recipe in the book have a photo. Still, I tried to portray every recipe as true to life as possible; there’s no food-styling trickery to be found. In fact, I personally ate nearly every single “hero” that was photographed mere seconds after taking the final shot.
What are you working on now?
Well, I’m excited to say, another cookbook! I’m working on this one together with my husband, and it’s almost a complete 180 from the last.
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