This is the first time I've ever made Snickerdoodles. In fact, it is the first time I have ever eaten one. Although I've always thought the name very cute, I really didn't know what they were.
Some years ago, there was a local grocery store which gave out samples of Snickerdoodle coffee. Apparently, it was wildly popular, but it smelled horrible. I always thought, if that's what a Snickerdoodle cookie smells like, I'll pass.
I recently discovered that Snickerdoodles are simply sugar cookies, which have been rolled in cinnamon sugar. I imagined the buttery cookies tasting like cinnamon toast, which I love. One thing that distinguishes them from a regular sugar cookie is that they are leavened (traditionally with cream of tartar), which makes a cookie crisp on the outside and soft and chewy inside.
I saw this recipe in the December 2010 issue of Southern Living. A choice is given for using the bottom of a glass to flatten the dough balls, or to bake without flattening for a "snowball look". I made some of each and Pritchard Parker and I both liked the pillowy look and texture of the unflattened cookies best.
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
3 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. cinnamon
3 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
Preheat over to 375 degrees. Beat butter at medium speed with and electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add 2 cups sugar, beating well. Add eggs, milk, and vanilla, beating well.
Combine flour, baking powder, and 2 tsp. cinnamon; gradually add to butter mixture, beating at low speed just until blended.
Combine 3 Tbsp. sugar and 1 Tbsp. cinnamon in a small bowl. Roll dough into 1 1/4 inch balls, roll in sugar mixture, and place on parchment lined baking sheets. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on baking sheets 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.