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Homemade Dipped Valentine Fortune Cookies

Studio 5 contributor Sue Neal shares her recipe for beautiful, and delicious cookies with thoughtful love-notes inside!


Forget the plain, dry, crumbly fortune cookies you got with your last Chinese take-out. Follow this recipe and you'll end up with a tasty cookie, creative dipping and customized fortunes for all kinds of gift & party fun.

Combining the ingredients is a simple affair. Cooking them and getting that perfect shaped fortune cookie is a little trickier. Even after reading my tried & true tips, you will still figure out much of how to make these by simply making them yourself.

They don't take long to bake, but because you should only make 3-4 of these at a time, it's a lengthy job. Prepare to do something else in the same room while you're waiting.

RECIPE TO FOLLOW:

Ingredients:


" 2 large egg whites
" 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
" 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
" 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
" 3 teaspoons water
" ½ cup all-purpose flour
" 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
" 1/4 teaspoon salt
" ½ cup granulated sugar
" Optional: food coloring or chocolate
" Pam spray

Preparation:

1. Write fortunes (see below for ideas) on pieces of paper that are 3 1/2 inches long and not more than ½" inch wide. Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray two or three 9-X-13 inch baking sheets.

2. In a mixing bowl, on medium speed beat the egg white, extracts, water and vegetable oil until frothy, but not stiff.

3. Sift the flour, cornstarch, salt and sugar into a separate bowl.

4. Add the flour into the egg white mixture and stir until you have a smooth batter. The batter should be thin enough so that it pours off of a spoon, but not too thick that it won't spread easily with the back of the spoon.

Optional: if you want to color the cookies, add the food coloring at this point, stirring it into the batter. Start with just a little bit, as it doesn't take much to change the color. You can also add a few tsps of melted semi-sweet chocolate at the point. Beat well. You can also divide the batter and try a few different things with it.

5. Place level tablespoons of batter onto the cookie sheet, spacing them at least 3 inches apart. Some recipes call for you to tilt the cookie sheet to spread the batter, but I like to use the back of a round Tablespoon to spread it out a bit.

6. Bake until the outer 1/2-inch of each cookie turns golden brown and they are easy to remove from the baking sheet with a spatula (14 - 15 minutes). If you take them out and they are not coming off easily you can put them back in the oven for a few minutes.

7. Working quickly, remove the cookie with a spatula and flip it over in your hand. Place a fortune in the middle of a cookie. To form the fortune cookie shape, fold the cookie in half, then gently pull the edges downward over the rim of a glass, wooden spoon or the edge of a muffin tin. Place the finished cookie in the cup of a muffin tin so that it keeps its shape. Continue with the rest of the cookies.

To begin with back only one cookie, then move on to 2, 3 and 4. I don't like doing more than 4, as any more and by the time I get to them they have cooled down and will crack with folding.

These cookies will be hot when you take them out and handle them. Clean, white cotton gloves can be used to avoid injury.

A few more tips"

1. Chocolate fortune cookies are good! But they take a little longer to bake. They are a softer cookie, so make sure they are fully set before you fold them.

2. To speed up the whole process, I use 2, 3 and 4 sheets (depending on the size and if you have a second oven) and alternate putting them in. This will save a lot of time, but can get confusing, so set timers and watch carefully.

3. By using several sheets, it also allows the sheets to cool down between cooking. Avoid using a hot sheet to spread your batter.

4. Traditional fortune cookies measure approx. 3" in diameter (before they are folded), but you can experiment and make them as big as you dare. I prefer a 3 ½" size, it's just a little easier to handle. But don't hold a ruler to it, just try out different sizes and you'll see which one you prefer. Generally, a little less than a Tbsp will give you a 3 ½" cookie.

5. Cookies generally take 14 minutes to bake, but start watching closely at 12 minutes. Depending on the thickness of the cookie, it may take a little longer or shorter.


Visit Sue Neal's blog at www.sueneal.blogspot.com

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