Friday, March 02, 2007

Dragon Cookies for a New Year

A few years ago, a friend of my mom's mentioned that she used to buy Dragon Cookies around Chinese New Year. She was having trouble finding them in nearby grocery stores, so my mom decided to make her some using a recipe from the Internet. Now, we are not Chinese, and I can't vouch for the accuracy of this recipe re. Chinese tradition or culture, but I do know we were able to find a few variations online, so at least we're not imagining the entire thing. Behold the mighty dragon:

Dragon Cookies are basically a variation of a butter spritz cookie, using tapioca starch and corn flour. I don't much like them; they're a little bland and very, very dry. We always add extra egg and/or milk, and they still end up with a dry, starchy aftertaste. We've made them for several years now (her friend is always very nice and claims to love them, despite their dryness) and we always have the same problems. This year was no different...after baking them off and choking down a few with milk, we had the genius idea of forgetting the original recipe and just piping a regular spritz recipe in dragon shapes. Brilliant! It only took us an hour to think of it! So that's what we did. Using this recipe and a star tip on our cookie press, we created adorable dragons, just in time for Chinese New Year.

First, the stiff dough was piped in a squiggly pattern:

Then they were given red eyes using a toothpick dipped in food coloring:

Ready to be baked! Only 6 minutes, please. No one likes an overcooked dragon.

Let's ring in the new year with a roar!