December 9, 2009Mid-Century Menu – Tomato Soup Cookies and Jim Dandies
Well, it is snowing like crazy right now, but I must say we are doing better than most here in Michigan. At least there isn’t a blizzard beating a path to our door like my poor parents in Wisconsin! In any case, it is a good day to stay in and bake cookies, or eat them if you are like me and have a whole kitchen full of cookies!
This week for the menu I chose two cookies to test out for my upcoming Christmas cookie boxes, one that I knew probably wouldn’t make the list, and one I really hoped would!
The first is a cookie from the Campbell Cookbook Cooking With Soup, which doesn’t have a publishing date on it, but from the illustrations looks to be from the 1960’s. Cookies? From Campbell’s? Oh yes. Someone over at the test kitchen got a little TOO creative, and they actually have a dessert section in this book, including a layer cake, all made with tomato soup. The cookies in this section are called Rosy Rocks, and I really don’t know why. I never thought “rock” was a good name for a cookie. It makes you think you are going to break your teeth on them.
Ok, deep breath. It just looks like an oatmeal cookie with…tomato soup in it. Can’t be that bad, right? Oh god.
Everything fine here. Is that a can of tomato soup? Just ignore it. Everything is fine.
The dry ingredients, getting ready to get sifted together. There were A LOT of spices in this one, most likely to cover up the taste of the tomato soup.
I skipped over creaming the butter and sugar and adding the eggs so I could get to this picture. You have all seen creaming before, but have you ever seen someone pouring soup into a cookie? I hadn’t. I am fascinated with this shot.
Look. It’s soup! In sugar! Ah!
Adding the dry ingredients to the soup and sugar…soup.
Just look at this!!!! Ah!!!!
Not only did it look like puke, but it just smelled awful. It reeked like tomato soup and cinnamon, which is NOT a good combo. Ewww.
Here they are, on the sheet and ready for the oven. And let me tell you something, they did not smell better when they were getting baked. Whew. The whole house stank of tomato soup.
Here are the finished cookies in a happy little pile. What’s that? Did I try one? Ohhhhhh no. I waited for Tom to come home then I made him try one. Those pictures are coming up.
The cookie I chose came from this book, Best Loved Foods of Christmas, which is a best of book of all the Pillsbury Bake-Off books. I love those books, so I was super excited to find this book hiding in our recent library book sale. This is another book that doesn’t have a publishing date on it (what is with that?) but I am guessing this comes from the late 60’s, mostly because of the price of the book.
Anyway, there are LOADS of great cookies in this book, and I am going to make a bunch of them for my Christmas boxes, but I was especially excited about the Jim Dandies, because I have been looking for a good frosted chocolate cookie to round out my plates.
Looks pretty good, huh? The only thing is that I didn’t have enough walnuts to put on the tops since I used up a bunch in the Rosy Rocks. Good job me. So I decided to sub a half a cherry for the top.
Ah, nice normal cookie ingredients. I like it.
The dough after beating the eggs into the creamed butter and brown sugar.
Putting in the cherry juice and milk.
It turned the dough a pretty shade of pink! I tried to capture it here, but I think a need a better camera.
Adding the chocolate. Yum!!
All ready for scooping! It smelled so good, way better than the other cookies.
Here they are, all scooped and ready for the oven.
While the cookies were baking, I got started on the chocolate icing. Although, when I make these again, I am going to make the icing first so it has time to cool while I make the cookies. I don’t think it was cool enough when I started using it the first time.
Adding the powdered sugar to the chocolate mixture.
Ta-da! Chocolate icing completed!
Meanwhile, I was pulling the cookies out of the oven and putting the marshmellows on the hot cookies. The cookies turned out soft and puffy, which was what I was looking for.
Here they are, all cooled with the first one decorated. I just spooned some icing over the top and plopped on a cherry. Very cute!!!
Here they are, set and finished! I love the way they looked!
While I was finishing up the Jim Dandies, Tom came home in the mood to try cookies.
First the Jim Dandies.
“Are they good?”
“These are great! But you could probably leave the marshmellow off. It seems a little unnecessary.”
Then…the Rosy Rocks. He sniffed them first. “These smell a little funky.”
“Yeah,” I nodded, “Their smell isn’t the greatest.”
“So, what do you think?”
“What’s in these?”
“Ah. I knew there was a…unique flavor I couldn’t put my finger on. Wow.”
I had a bite. Not too bad. They didn’t really taste like tomato soup, the spices had finally covered that up. They weren’t hard either, but puffy and very soft. The texture was nice, but the whole soup thing still kind of freaked me out. And the cookies ended up more orange than rosy, and pretty ugly.
Rosy Rocks – These will NOT be on the cookie plate this year. Even though they ended up tasting pretty good, they are still too ugly to be given away. The tomato soup flavor goes away after they cool, and they just end up tasting like a spice cookie. DO NOT EAT THEM WARM. I had a warm one after my cool one and it was awful. Wait for them to cool. I am not sure what the benefit is of adding soup to the cookie, other than just making you buy a can of soup.
Jim Dandies – Really good! These are going to be on the cookie plate this year, but I may leave off the marshmellow. Not too chocolatey, nice cherry flavor and really yummy.
If you have time, please email me your classic Christmas cookie recipes!!! I am putting together a post of everyone’s best cookie recipe, and I would love to have your recipe be a part of it! Email it to me at nopatternrequired at hotmail.com!!