Sunday, February 28, 2010

In search of the perfect butter cookie... Milan Cookies (NQN)

Back in the days when I used to live in Hong Kong, our local bakery made the best butter cookie. It was very thin and crispy yet crumbly, ooooh so rich and buttery and they just melt in your month. Now that I'm in Brisbane I just can't find any butter cookies nearly as good as that! So I'm on a mission to find the perfect butter cookie from my childhood....

The first recipe I tried was Not Quite Nigella's Milan Cookie.

I reduced the amount of sugar and it was still quite sweet. So here's my slightly tweaked version, from Not Quite Nigella.

Milan Cookies
Makes 3 dozen cookies

Scale of difficulty ★★
Yummy-ness ★★★ 

12 tablespoons (170g/ 6oz) softened unsalted butter
1.5 cup caster sugar
7/8 cup egg whites (about 6-7 eggs, depends on the size)
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon lemon zest
0.5 teaspoon lemon juice

1)  Cream together the sugar and butter until it is light and fluffy
2)  Add egg whites gradually (one at a time) and mix in the vanilla, lemon juice and zest
3)  Add (sieved) flour and mix till completely combined

How the batter should look. Nice and pale :)

4)  Put the batter in a piping bag and use a small (1/4 inch) tip, pipe the batter onto baking paper and make sure there is plenty of space in between, because they will melt into puddles and spread like crazy.
lol please excuse me in my PJs
See??? Batter melted into puddles!!!

5)  Bake in a preheated 160C/ 350 F oven for approximately 10 minutes until the cookies are nice and golden brown around the edges.
6)  Place cookies on cooling rack and enjoy :)

Ta da!! Finished product!!

How did it taste?
These cookies look exactly like my beloved butter cookies from my childhood. However the texture and the taste are completely different. To be honest the cookies are quite nice,they have a nice buttery flavour and the lemon goes great with it, the egg white flavour is quite prominent as well. The texture is crisp but I find it a bit on the crunchy rather than the crumbly side. It was nice, and the guys at work liked it, however it is not what I'm looking for. So I guess the quest continues!

To people who actually read my blog and especially those who took the time to leave a comment, THANK YOU! Do you have a favorite butter cookie recipe that you'd like to share?


faithy, the baker said...

Is there a name for your hong kong butter cookie in chinese? probably have to look for asian cookie recipe though..:) I've seen someone posted thin and wafer like and i wanted to try too..i have to search for it..will let you know when i find it. :)

Hanaâ said...

How nice that you're trying to find a childhood fav! I'm kind of doing the same with a spice cake. The cookie you describe remind me of a butter cookie from my childhood called Kattetong (a cat's tongue, also called La Langue du Chat in French). Don't ask me why it's called that :o) Good luck!

ButterYum said...

Hmmm - maybe you should have chilled your piped cookie dough before you baked it. Also be sure to pipe your dough onto cold cookie sheets.

I hope you finally find that beloved childhood flavor you're looking for!