June 22, 2000: Cookie making class
Today, we will have a cookie making class in our Group of Friends house Oita Branch. The course includes "sponge cake", "fried dough soybean cookies", and "sesame cookie,"

From early in the morning, many people are already working hard in the house. Ms. Shiotsuki (right) and Ms. Hirano (center) will teach us how to make the cookies. Ms. Ishibashi (left) supports the class in the back. Another teacher, Ms. Ono, was too busy to join the snap shot here.
The class started. Ms. Hirano first demonstrates "sponge cake making." Many students watch her hands carefully. Ms. Ono stands by at the kitchen door.
The key point of sponge cake making is egg white beating. Very neat and careful foaming is required like this.
The beaten egg white is mixed with egg yolk that was well stirred in advance. The egg white is added and mixed with the yolk by three times. The teacher shows us the status of the mixture in the bowl.
Well-sieved flour containing enough amount of air will be added to the mixture in the bowl by three times. The dough is then poured into molds.

The oven must be kept 170 C for the first 10 minutes, then down to 160 C for another 25 minutes.
During the baking, Ms. Ono explains how to make "fried dough soybean cookies." It is very tasty cookie containing abundant soybeans.
Oil and black sugar to be used for the final coating to the cookie must be prepared prior to kneading the dough.
The bean is soaked well in advance in the water and then chopped after drain off. A proper amount of baking powder is mixed with sieved flour together with milk, salad oil, and sugar. The dough should be like a little bit harder than earlobe.
The dough is then rolled out five millimeter in the thickness and sliced into pieces of five-centimeter length and five to seven-millimeter in width. The oil is already heated to about 160 C.
The pieces of the dough are put into the oil for deep browning. The required time was much longer than I had anticipated. All the dough pieces are browned like this.
During frying, Ms. Shiotsuki demonstrates the "sesame cracker."

Butter must be softened in the ambient temperature, not to be melted. Then small amount of sugar is added to the softened butter and kneaded well.
Egg and flour are "cut-in" to the mixture. The dough is put into polyethylene bags and cooled in the refrigerator for one hour. After the cooling, the dough is cut into pieces of five to six- centimeter lengths and baked in the oven for 15-20 minutes at 180 C.
This is the sponge cake product with very beautiful brown color.

The cake is carefully taken out from the mold and lay on the net. The rough heat is removed with a dry kitchen towel cover.
In the end of the class, we learned how to coat the fried soybean cookies with sugar syrup. Water is added first to the black sugar in the pod and heated with occasional stirring. After small bubbles start to rise, the raw soybean cookies are put into the pod for coating. The pod is carefully shaken. The translucent sugar syrup suddenly changes its color into white at a specific temperature. This is the end point. All of the students were admired in a voice.
The lecture was over. All the participants set up the table for a sampling party. Smooth and dampish sponge cake, crispy sesame cookie, and crisp bite of fried soybean cookies were very tasty and made us very happy.
I will try to prepare them like this way, hoping my products will be sold out in the bazaar coming soon.

Mie Home Oita Group of Friends