Cookies recipe

Best Fortune Cookie Recipe – How To Make DIY Fortune Cookies

PHOTO: LUCY SCHAEFFER PHOTOGRAPHY; CULINARY STYLING: VICTORIA GRANOF

The fortune cookie is complex, both in its process and in its pedigree. A similar, predecessor, if you will, cookie was served in temples in ancient Japan before Japanese immigrants brought the modern version of the cookie to the United States in the 19th century. Magoto Hagiwara is credited with being the first person to serve these cookies to Americans at the Golden Gate Japanese Tea Garden in San Francisco. Then, in the wake of the Pearl Harbor bombings, when Japanese immigrants were forced into internment camps, many of those companies that brought this beloved cookie to the United States began to close. Soon after, Chinese-American restaurateurs adopted the cookie, making it forever synonymous with Chinese-American cuisine.

With such a complex history, it’s no surprise that the recipe for this cookie is also very complex. It may not require any special ingredients, but it does require careful planning, speed of execution, and a bit of trial and error. Below are some key tips to keep in mind when tackling this recipe:

  1. Stop mixing the dough once the flour is incorporated. Over-mixing will form gluten in the batter, which will prevent it from being crispy. If you make too much of the mixture (it will be hard to spread on the silpat), just add a little water – 1 tbsp at a time – until it reaches a paste-like consistency crepe.
  2. Silpat is the most reliable way to make perfectly crispy, golden fortune cookies. Some recipes suggest using high-quality parchment instead of your everyday stuff, but these are about the same price as silpat. So it’s better to buy something reusable rather than expensive parchment that you’ll end up throwing away.
  3. Bake only 2 cookies at a time and watch them like a hawk while they bake. The cookies are ready once they are golden brown halfway around the edges. They will continue to cook once out of the oven thanks to the baking workout, so be careful not to let them brown too much.
  4. Once out of the kiln, the malleability period is very short, so you will have to work quickly. Wear gloves if necessary!
  5. Embrace trial and error! Making fortune cookies is a bit of a science experiment. You will probably fail several times (or for two hours, like me), before succeeding.

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Yields:

15 – 18

Preparation time:

0

hours

ten

minutes

Total time:

2

hours

ten

minutes

2


egg whites, room temperature

1/2 tsp.

(100 g.) granulated sugar

2 tbsp.

unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1/2 tsp.

vanilla or almond extract

1/2 tsp.

(60 g.) all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp.

ground cardamom (optional)

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  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Line a small baking sheet with silpat or high quality heavy parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites until just frothy. Whisk together granulated sugar, butter and vanilla. Whisk flour, cornstarch, and cardamom, if using, until flour is dissolved and batter is smooth, about 30 seconds. (Do not over-whip or the batter will start to develop gluten, which will prevent a crispy texture.) Let stand 20 minutes at room temperature.
  3. Meanwhile, write or print the fortune messages you want to place inside each cookie.
  4. Whisk 2 tablespoons of water into the batter and check the consistency. It should be loose and spreadable like pancake batter. If it’s sticky and difficult to spread, add 1-2 tablespoons of water.
  5. Drop 1 tablespoon of batter onto half of a baking sheet. Using the back of a spoon, spread the dough evenly to create a thin 4-inch circle. Repeat on the other side (bake only 2 cookies at a time as you will want to assemble and shape quickly while they are hot). Tap sheet firmly against a counter or table a few times to make sure the batter is evenly distributed.
  6. Bake cookies until golden around edges, 10 to 13 minutes. Keep an eye on them, as they can easily overcook.
  7. Working quickly, using an angled spatula or butter knife, gently loosen the edges of a cookie and place a fortune in the middle. Fold in half to form a half-moon shape, then gently press down the edges with the tip of the offset spatula. Fold the cookie over the edge of a cup, edge up, to create a fortune cookie shape. Place in a muffin tin and let cool. Repeat with the rest of the dough.

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fortune cookies

PHOTO: LUCY SCHAEFFER PHOTOGRAPHY; CULINARY STYLING: VICTORIA GRANOF

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