Monday, May 9, 2011

Homemade Oreos

Dear Kate,

You seemed a little put out that I would post a recipe for fajitas, which you have no interest in ever eating.  The whole vegetarian thing.  But you could make the fajitas without the meat and it would still be very good.

To make up for it, today is homemade oreos.  They don't quite taste the same as an oreo, but they are so yummy and much better than Poor-eos (your dad's name for the generic brand imitation oreos). Other than the obvious reason for liking these, namely that they taste pretty darn close to an oreo, there are few reasons why I think these are great to make, but you have your own reasons for liking them. 

My reasons:

1.  No eggs required.  Perfect when I want to make something sweet, but I'm out of eggs.
2.  You don't have to soften the butter.  Perfect for when I forget to set the butter out at room temperature.
3.  You mix the whole thing in the food processor.  No sifting flour, no mix liquids in one bowl and dry ingredients in another.  Dump it all together and let the food processor do the work.
4.  You can make the dough the night before, refrigerate, then cook and assemble the next day.  Spreads out the labor.  (It can be a little labor intensive to do all in one day.)
5.  Chocolate yummy goodness.

Your reasons:
 1.  No eggs required.  You can eat the dough raw.
2.  The recipe says you have to roll the dough into a log.  That makes you snicker, especially when you look at the chocolate log.  Really?  Does the bathroom humor never get old?

Homemade Oreos
(Adapted from a couple of different recipes on

 1 1/2 Cups all-purpose flour
3/4 Cup dutch cocoa powder (hard to find in the grocery store, but Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa works fine).
1 Cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar
1/4 Teaspoon salt
1/4 Teaspoon baking soda
14 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons
3 Tablespoons milk
1 Teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine the flour, cocoa, sugar and salt in food processor and pulse a few times to combine.    Add cut butter and pulse several times.  Mix the milk and vanilla together, then add gradually while the food processor is running until combined.

Dump the dough onto the counter or a large cutting board.  You may need to knead it a little to mix it evenly.  Form the dough in a log (snicker) about 1" in diameter.  Wrap the log (snuck) in wax paper or foil and refrigerate for at least one hour.

The oven racks should be positioned with the upper rack in the upper third of the oven and the lower rack in the lower third of the oven.  For me, the means the upper rack in the second highest position and the lower rack in the second lowest position.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.  Remove the log (hee hee) from the refrigerator, unwrap, and cut into thin slices (about 1/8 to 1/4-inch thick) and place about an inch apart on the baking sheets.

Place one baking sheet on the upper rack and one on the lower rack, bake for 5 minutes, then rotate the sheets back to front and upper to lower.

Cool on the baking sheet 5 minutes, then cool on a rack.


1/2 Cup (one stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 Cup vegetable shortening
4 Cups powdered sugar
4 Teaspoons vanilla

Cream the butter and shortening in a stand-mixer on medium-low for 1 minute.  Scrape down sides of bowl.  Add powdered sugar and vanilla, mix on low until mostly combine, then increase speed to medium-high and beat 2-3 minutes until fluffy.

Assembling the cookies:

Assembling is easy, but it looks best if you use a pastry bag for the filling.  You can use a knife, but it won't look as good.  With a pastry bag with a large plain tip, pipe a layer of filling, leaving a small border at the edge of the cookie.  I have this silly frosting contraption I got from Pampered Chef, a hard plastic thing you fill with frosting, with these large tips.  (You can see it in the last picture.) It isn't very good for frosting cakes, but it is perfect for this.  The assembly is the tedious part, but the finished product is worth the effort.  

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