snickerdoodle-off: classic vs. cardamom

When presented with a cookie variety plate (which, to my great chagrin, does not happen daily), I’ve been pretty predictable. CCCs please. The more mix-ins – oatmeal, walnuts, cherries, what have you – the better.

Recently, however, I’ve rediscovered the simple. Case in point: snickerdoodles. Their pure texture allows a satisfyingly chewy experience – but the satisfying cinnamon-sugar coating prevents plainness or one-dimensionality. OG cookie realness. I made the Smitten Kitchen recipe for classic snickerdoodles and found myself itching to eating every other cookie that emerged from the oven.

Though I did, indeed, love these snickerdoodles, I later came across a version that seemed a potential, impossible improvement on the original. That’z right… cardamom! Dorie Greenspan and Joe Yonan had thrown the magical spice into the mix. After immediately fixing up a batch, I had to (very impatiently) wait for the batter to meld in the refrigerator or whatever it is that cookies do when they rest. Once I pulled the finished products out of the oven, however, it was clear they were worth the wait. Jay, my sweets-averse gold standard of taste-testing, absolutely devoured these fragrant snickerdoodles.

Two baking authorities – two recipes – two incredible hits. What happens at the end of it all? I’m torn. I can’t decide. Jay would probably have me make the cardamom version all year long, but those classic snickerdoodles have a firm grip on me. The only thing to do, it seems, is to continue making both, forever and ever.

Classic snickerdoodles

Recipe at Smitten Kitchen

Cardamom snickerdoodles

Recipe by Joe Yonan, courtesy of Dorie Greenspan

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