We first developed “Letterpress Cookies” as part of our participation in the 2016 Wisconsin Book Festival (during our Community Research Kitchen residency at The Bubbler), where we printed the entire alphabet and available punctuation. Not surprisingly, our favorite was the ampersand. We bought another set of presses to have a second “&” when we planned “Rage Grief Comfort &” for the Municipal show. Since then we’ve incorporated Ampersand Cookies into a lot of activist-oriented activities and events, giving them away at events like the women’s march and bringing them to talks and functions.
This recipe is different every time we make them. The first base recipe had cream as well as butter, and sometimes we’ve incorporated a bit of “The Bubbler”, as we now call our Foodways sourdough. The cookies come out not too sweet, and we’ve yet to feel we over-did either the anise or the cloves.
Beat: 1# butter and 450gr sugar
Mix and add: 3 eggs (about 150gr), 50gr olive oil, 10gr anise extract
Mix and mix in: 100gr rye flour, 700 gr APF, 20gr sea salt, 5gr baking powder, 5gr ground cloves
Wrap and chill: at least an hour, up to a day
roll out to 1/4″
press ampersands deeply with floured press
cut between the cookies–they usually don’t fuze too much while baking but that depends on how loose the dough is
bake at 400F for 15-20 minutes, depending–it’s usually good to rotate the pans partway through