Diane, 11:30 am, February twenty-fourth. Entering town of Twin Peaks. Five miles south of the Canadian border, twelve miles west of the state line. Never seen so many trees in my life.
Happy Twin Peaks Day!
One of my goals for 2019 was to make something other than (Christmas tree) spritz with my cookie press. So here it is: one batch with three different Twin Peaks-themed cookies: a Douglas Fir tree, a doughnut, and an owl. This recipe is easy to make from my spritz recipe (which I’ve include below so you don’t have to click back and forth). You make a batch (without dyeing it all green), then divide it into three bowls and dye the doughs accordingly. Fire up the oven, get your cookie press out of storage, turn on the atmospheric whooshing or Julee Cruise, and make sure there’s not a fish in your percolator before you put the coffee on.
Adapted from Wilton’s “Almond Spritz” and “The Secrets to Perfect Spritz Cookies” by J. Kenji López-Alt on Serious Eats
Yields: ~100 cookies
Time: Total: ~2 hours
Making the dough: 20 minutes
Prep work (pressing cookies and decorating): 35 minutes
Cooking: 50-60 minutes (for 5 cookie sheets)
- 1.5 cups (345 g / 3 sticks / 12 oz ) butter, at room temperature (should be soft but not melted)
- 1 cup (200 g / 7 oz) granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3.5 cups (440 g / 15.5 oz) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 2 TBSP (30 mL) milk
- Green (or yellow and blue) and pink (or red) food coloring – you can use liquid or gel
- For the “doughnuts”: rainbow nonpareils
- For the owls: black confetti sprinkles (I took some black ones from a Halloween mix)
- Cookie press with the tree, the heart (shaped like a Y), and the wreath/ring disks (I use the Wilton Cookie Max)
- Stand mixer (recommended) or hand mixer
- 3-4 aluminum cookie sheets (not non-stick)
- 4 medium bowls (for mixing and dyeing the dough)
- 1 large bowl, if using a hand mixer
- Silicon spatula
- 2-3 cookie racks
- Optional: tweezers (for the owl eyes–I used my hands, but if you want to be very precise)
- Place cookie sheets in the refrigerator to cool.
- Preheat oven to 350ºF/175ºC.
- In bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- In the stand-mixer bowl (or a large bowl if using a hand mixer), cream butter and sugar together on medium for 7 minutes until light and fluffy.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a silicon spatula. Add the egg, vanilla and almond extracts, then beat on medium for 5-7 minutes.
- Remove bowl from stand mixer (or set aside the hand mixer) and mix in the milk and flour gradually with a spoon so as not to overdevelop the gluten. When the dough is just combined and no dry flour remains, divide the dough into three bowls. For the owl shapes: set one aside (no food coloring); for the trees: dye green; for the doughnuts, dye pink. Mix just enough to incorporate the dye.
- Fill the cookie press canister with the plain dough for the owl (I use a spoon for this), and attach the heart/Y disk. On an ungreased cookie sheet (no non-stick sprays, no parchment paper!), press out the cookies, about 1-inch apart. One click of the plunger is enough, but it sometimes takes a couple tries to get the first one out after filling the canister. Before baking, decorate with black confetti “eyes” on the raised Y section (see photo).
- For the trees: use the tree disk with the green dough to press the cookies and decorate with green sugar sprinkles.
- For the doughnuts: use the wreath/circle disk with the pink dough and decorate with rainbow sprinkles.
- Bake 10-12 minutes or just till the edges start to turn light golden brown. Cool for 2 minutes by setting the cookie sheet on a cooling rack. Gently remove from sheet; cool completely. When the sheet is cool enough, clean it and return it to the fridge before pressing more cookies on it.
- Store cookies in an air-tight container (good for about 10 days). Serve with coffee and bisexual angst.