One in five kids are facing hunger. As someone who’s been lucky enough never to face that in her life, the number is staggering. What have any of us done lately to help end childhood hunger? If you live in the New York City area (or one of the many other areas hosting bake sales this year), you may have visited the Great American Bake Sale held at the Fort Greene Brooklyn Flea on April 28.
While I unfortunately wasn’t able to attend this year’s NYC Bake Sale, I knew that contributing was a must. All of the proceeds from the sale went to benefit Share Our Strength, a nonprofit group whose “No Kid Hungry” motto communicates its message to end childhood hunger by 2015. Sweets for a good cause?? Say no more.
This year’s NYC sale was organized by the fabulous Lillian and Ken. Their enthusiasm and effort never failed to amaze me–I was so grateful to be able to take part even if I couldn’t be there selling my cookies in person. After hawking my Double Chocolate Chip Cookies at last year’s sale, I knew it was the eye-catching treats that made passersby stop and stare. So this year, I decided to play to the kiddies–and put CANDY in my cookies! Who can say no to a giant, soft sugar cookie that’s studded with brightly colored M&Ms? Nobody!
- 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg + 1 large egg yolk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups + 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cinammon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup M&Ms (or as many as your candy-loving heart desires)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. (I finally conquered my fear of “medium” on my KitchenAid mixer–I know now how glorious “creamed” butter and sugar is!! Don’t hesitate to use the higher speeds, friends.)
3. Add the egg and egg yolk, then the vanilla, and continue to mix until incorporated.
4. In a separate bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together.
5. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet until just incorporated.
6. Drop dough by heaping spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet–mine were probably about two to two and a half tablespoons. (Also of note: I got better results when I did not use a Silpat).
7. Bake cookies for about 7 1/2 minutes, or until edges are just beginning to brown. Immediately upon removing cookies from the oven, press six M&Ms into the top of each cookie.*
8. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
Makes 18-20 cookies.
*I tried both pressing the M&Ms into the cookies before baking and immediately on removal from the oven. The M&Ms pressed in before baking cracked and lost a little bit of their color in the oven, so I preferred to stick them into the just-baked cookies–they stayed more vibrant.
Thanks to the efforts of countless bakers, bloggers, and foodies around NYC, the sale raised $3,400, surpassing the $2,000 goal! For a full list of contributors and donors, check out the NYC Bake Sale’s Tumblr. If you missed the sale this year, you can still take the pledge or donate to end childhood hunger–and you can come to next year’s sale and buy a cookie from me in person.