A dreary Sunday afternoon is a perfect time for me to begin thinking about the work week. So, after checking on the dwindling supply of cookie dough that’s always in my freezer, I decided to get a jump on my projects by preparing a few batches of dough. And, in order to make room for the fresh sheets of dough that I like to work with, I removed the pieces of parchment that sandwiched the already twice rolled dough that was ready for retirement.
Ordinarily, I bake these scraps off until they’re just a couple of shades of dark brown away from burned. My nose tells me exactly when that is, because the nutty aroma of browned butter reminds me to take these scraps out of the oven. The scraps get broken up and are stored in the freezer as a bakers’ treat.
But, since I’m trying to be more conscious about what I snack on now, I’m not doing that for a while. And you don’t have to, either.
Breathe some new life into that over-rolled, tired dough by working it into your fresh batch of dough. Through some sort of scientific magic, new dough obliterates whatever gluten has been built up in the re-rolled dough, thereby softening the dough and increasing the new batch’s yield of tender cookies. Be careful not to overload your new dough with too much old dough, or you’ll defeat the whole purpose of this trick. The old dough shouldn’t be more than about 1/4th of the weight of the new dough. You don’t have to be too exact…I just try to eyeball it. Add the old (defrosted) dough to the new dough that’s almost completely mixed and give it a few spins around in the mixer so the two generations become one. Then it’s roll, freeze, cut and bake.
And if cookies are your bread n’ butter like they’re mine, your waistline will be doubly grateful that you’re not eating into the profits.