Candy-Cap Mushroom (yes) Cookies

It’s Pride Month and it’s rainy and cool in Seattle, so my power is at its peak.

I had been wondering if I write too much about my partner, because you probably came here for the recipes and rants and not to hear about my schmoopy stories about how much I adore C. Then a couple things happened: I had an abnormal number of cishet folks tone-policing and explaining gender to me while demanding ally cookies in one week. The Pulse shooting happened (donate here), and it hurts, because we’re constantly dealing with constant hate crimes and the social message that being queer ends in tragedy. We have an initiative to repeal rights for trans folks to literally use bathrooms (check out Washington Won’t Discriminate for more info on fighting this petition), transphobes are tricking people into signing it, and violence against trans/gender-noncomforming folks continues, including an attack this week after a Pulse benefit in Cap Hill.

So, you know what? Screw lightening up on the schmoop. We had to fight to be together; we survived abuse from past partners, but even after our ship sailed, our lives still include biphobia, transphobia and erasure from the outside.*

It’s important to me to tell our story. I fell in love, I think, back when we were working on a cooking lesson together in Japan. I’m originally from the Midwest and C is from the California part of the PNW; our regional foods couldn’t be more different. We tried to fill in the gaps in our regional cuisine knowledge and ended up watching ridiculous YouTube videos about lutefisk and grilling pies late into the night.

One of the constants of our relationship has been our mutual love of food and of learning about each other’s food culture, which brings me to today’s recipe. C’s hometown is famous for candy caps, which are dried edible mushrooms that smell and taste sweet. (Which I guess could be a ham-fisted metaphor of sorts: people don’t think those mushrooms are real, and they don’t think we’re real, either. That’s a little queer humor for you all.)

Candy Cap Mushroom Cookies | I'll Make It Myself! 1

There’s something of both of us in this recipe. While I was writing this, I remembered the “pecan sandies” my mom used to buy when I was a kid, and I realized that was just a big pecan sable. The word sablé (サブレー) used to describe this cookie was actually something I encountered for the first time in Japan, where we met.

We choose to be ourselves. We choose each other. We choose to fight for the light in the darkness, for love, and torward an end to oppression.

Happy Pride to you and yours.

All our love, L+C.

Candy Cap Mushroom Cookies | I'll Make It Myself! 2

 

Candy-Cap and Pecan Sable Cookies

Adapted from The Bojon Gourmet and Joy of Baking.

Yield: ~25-30 cookies

Time: ~2.5 hours
Prep: ~15 minutes
Chilling: ~2 hours
Baking: ~15-20 minutes

Ingredients

2 tsp powdered dried candy-cap mushrooms (about 1/4 cup, finely ground in spice grinder or clean coffee grinder)
4 oz (113 g, 1/2 cup, 1 stick) unsalted butter, softened and cooled
1/3 cup (66 g) sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (125 g) all purpose flour
1/3 cup (42 g) toasted pecans, chopped
flaky sea salt, to sprinkle on top of the cookies

Equipment

Spice- or coffee grinder
Stand mixer with paddle attachment
Cookie sheet
Plastic wrap

Procedure

  1. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the candy-cap powder, butter, sugar and salt together until combined and the color lightens slightly, about 2 minutes. The mixture should still be fairly dense, not whipped, so it will be easier to shape into a log.
  2. Add the flour and pecans; mix on low until incorporated.
  3. Roll the dough into a log, about 12 inches long and 1 inch in diameter. Wrap the log in plastic wrap. Chill until firm, for at least 2 hours, up to 48 hours. (Most recipes say 1 hour, but I had better luck with colder dough.) The dough also freezes well and can be thawed in the fridge.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (175ºC).
  5. Unwrap the dough and slice the log into 1/8 ~ 1/4-inch cookies, rotating the dough to avoid flattening the edges. (As you can see, some of mine are a bit flat…).
  6. Grease the cookie sheet; set the cookies 1-2 inches apart. Sprinkle each cookie with a few flakes of sea salt.
  7. Bake the cookies until golden brown, about 15-25 minutes; rotate halfway through.
  8. Store in an airtight container for up to a week or freeze.

Note

*Let me note that we are not safe, but we do benefit from some intersectional privileges, including “passing,” education, and race.

 

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