More cake-like than crispy or chewy, I was hooked on black and white cookies after my first nibble through the two-tone frosted shell. I tried them for the first time back in college when I temporarily left my Midwestern roots to move to New York City for an internship. That semester was full of adventures, exploring different neighborhoods by subway and on foot and indulging in all the culinary gems the city had to offer.
Whenever I reminisce about my time in NYC, I get inspired to bake black and white cookies. It’s a two-step process, baking the cookies, flipping them over and frosting the flat sides. I put a couple drops of lemon extract into the batter to offset the intense sweetness of the icing. I used a small spatula to spread on the chocolate and vanilla, but I am never too fussed about flawless frosting when I make them at home.
Black and White Cookies
Adapted from Butter Sugar Flour Eggs by Gale Gand
Makes 12-14 cookies
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup whole or 2% milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon lemon extract
1-1/4 cups cake flour
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
7 tablespoons whole or 2% milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or using a hand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is smooth and pale. Add the eggs, milk, vanilla extract and lemon extract and mix until fully incorporated.
Sift together the cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined. With an ice-cream scoop, place portions of dough on a parchment-lined sheet pan about 3 inches apart. Using a spatula spread the dough into 3-1/2-inch diameter circles about 3/8-inch thick. Bake for 20 minutes until the edges are light golden brown. Cool completely on a wire rack.
For the icing, mix the confectioners’ sugar, 6 tablespoons milk and vanilla extract in a medium bowl until smooth. Turn the cookies, so the flat sides are facing up. Spread the vanilla icing on one half of all the cookies. Add the cocoa powder and milk to the remaining icing. Spread the chocolate icing on the other halves of the cookies. Allow them to set for 30 minutes at room temperature until the icing has hardened.
Store in an airtight container.