Sunday, February 21, 2010

Blueberries 'n Cream

Like a bolt of lightening, it struck me. Inspiration! The latest "It" chef of the moment has to be David Chang of the Momofuku restaurant group. Chang has definitely become the hottest commodity in the New York food community, and with the publication of his cookbook - the hottest commodity in the foodie community internationally. He has been making the requisite appearances on mainstream television shows such as No Reservations and the Martha Stewart show, both discussing the evolution and theory behind his cuisine and demonstrating the true complexities of his vision.

Amateur gourmets like myself have been dissecting the Momofuku cookbook and posting their failures and successes online. One particular site is Momofuku for 2, a foodie's adventures of attempting every recipe in the cookbook. It is through reading her progress and others' that you realize the passion for food runs deep - it is the commitment of sourcing obscure ingredients and sitting and watching your egg poach for 10 hours (or something like that, it's a slooooow poached/boiled egg).

Anyway - the recipe was for Blueberries and Cream cookies from the Momofuku Milk Bar, (which can be found on the Martha site) was the subject of a recent post and caught my immediate attention while on the bus ride home. I love the idea of duplicating tastes and to mimic blueberries and cream, in a cookie no less, was for me - enlightening. This recipe was unlike your typical butter-sugar-eggs-flour-mixin combination, well...sort of I guess (all cookies have to contain some permutation of that sequence of ingredients), but it involved a more complicated step of creating a 'milk crumb' to duplicate that milky/creamy taste. Did I mention that the milk crumb also has white chocolate? Hubba hubba!

The results:

(left: Batter up! right: Milk 'n cookie? )

I think this is another case of "it tastes better than it looks!" When I heaved the tray out of the oven, I was less than impressed. "Why, they look like bland little cookies!" I exclaimed. But the outer crunch gives way to a surprisingly rich and dense interior without being too much work for the teeth. The sweetness of the milk crumb comes out well and contrasts well to the sour tang of the fruit. Dried blueberries are expensive, yo! So I bulked up to the 3/4 cup line with dried cherries, which was a nice addition. It added a bit more depth to the cookie as well as a nice residual chewiness. The true test will be tomorrow when the cookies have had a night to sit - are they going to retain that nice crunch or go right to soggy-ville? Or over-crunchy-land?

I will definitely make these cookies again, but with a different twist. I am thinking chocolate and nuts! Dark chocolate and toasted slivered almonds...mmmmm....

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