Showing posts with label Maple Leaf Rag. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Maple Leaf Rag. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Maple Leaf Rag Cookies Recipe from Final Sentence



Often when I write, I listen to music. Usually classical or orchestral music is my “muse.” With music, I get a feel for what I’m writing. I feel inner rhythms. My emotions seem easier to access. My mind clears.

When I was writing Final Sentence, Jenna, the protagonist in the book, wanted to listen to a variety of music. I know, weird, but writers (not just me) let our characters have free rein.

In addition to “foodie” themed songs (which Jenna likes to play in the shop) and Judy Garland hits (which were Jenna’s mother’s favorites), Jenna liked to listen to ragtime music. Scott Joplin in particular.

When Maple Leaf Rag was playing, I got the idea for a cookie. Crazy, right? Final Sentence features cookie recipes, from easy—like last Wednesday's post for Mexican Wedding Cookie—to difficult like Gluten-free Orange Biscotti (oh, so delicious).

But back to today’s recipe. I love all things maple – syrup, more syrup, and plenty of syrup. I like maple candy. I like maple-flavored bacon. When I was listening (along with Jenna) to Joplin’s popular song (which is the theme from “The Sting” and was the model for many subsequent ragtime compositions), I decided to create a cookie with a maple syrup icing. This is a chewy cookie. If you don’t like raisins, leave them out, but make sure you use the full amount of chocolate chips, keeping in mind that it’s the icing that makes the cookie special.  In the book, Jenna’s friend Katie, the chef at The Cookbook Nook’s café, creates this cookie:

MAPLE LEAF RAG COOKIES
Ala Katie
(makes 3-4 dozen)
Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 eggs 
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup sour cream 

1/4 cup water
3 cups flour (*if using gluten-free flour, add ½ teaspoon xanthan gum)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chips or raisins (or mixture)
   
For Glaze:

1/2 cup butter
2 cups confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons maple syrup
2 - 4 tablespoons milk (I used 2)

Instructions:

Heat oven to 375 Degrees.

Cream together the butter, sugar, and eggs.

Add in the maple syrup, sour cream, and water, and blend well.

In a separate bowl combine the flour, soda, and salt; then gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring until well combined.

Gently sir in the chocolate chips and/or raisins.

Drop dough by rounded tablespoons onto ungreased cookie sheet, leaving about 2" between cookies. Press with fingers or back of spoon to flatten.  [If you don't flatten them, they won't flatten!!]





Bake 8-10, until light brown.

Remove to a cooling rack (or paper towels) and allow cookies to cool completely.



Meanwhile, make glaze. HEAT the butter until it begins to change color (light caramel); then remove from heat and allow to cool completely.

Using a whisk, stir in confectioners' sugar and maple syrup. Gradually add the milk until the glaze is the desired consistency.

Spread glaze over cooled cookies.

Note: If you want to do something fun and wind up with a delicious toffee candy, make the icing, all by itself. Same ingredients. Cook on medium heat to a full boil. Stir, constantly, for eight to ten minutes. It will bubble and froth. Pour the candy onto a sheet of wax paper (laid on top of a cookie tray). Let stand until completely cool. Break into pieces. 



Trivia for 100The Maple Leaf Rag was composed in 1899. Joplin received a steady—though “unspectacular” according to Wikipedia—income from the piece for the rest of his life. He agreed to 1% royalty on all sales of the music, with a minimum sale of 25 cents per sale.

Trivia for 200: This was one of the main pieces my son wanted to learn on the piano, probably because he heard me playing it way back when. I’m sure he can still play it. I’m a little rusty.


* * * * * * *

The first book in A Cookbook Nook Mystery series is out!!

FINAL SENTENCE
You can order the book HERE.

It's set in the fictional coastal town of Crystal Cove, California and features Jenna Hart, a former advertising exec who returns home to help her aunt open a culinary bookshop and café.

The 4th in A Cheese Shop Mystery series is out, too! 
TO BRIE OR NOT TO BRIE
You can order the book HERE.

Next one up: DAYS OF WINE AND ROQUEFORT. You can order the book HEREuntil I have it up on my website. This is the first I've known about cover art for the book!  :) 


You can learn more about Daryl by clicking this LINK. "Like" my page on Facebook and "follow" me on TwitterAnd if you haven't done so, sign up for the mailing list so you can learn about upcoming events, releases, and contests! You can also follow and "like" Avery Aames the same way:  Facebook and Twitter