When Tim and I came home from Maine, it was with three or four local publications in tow. Between the food festival, our hotel, and a few Portland kiosks, we’d managed to wind up carting around copies of The Portland Press Herald, Down East Magazine, Green & Healthy Maine, and, amongst some other pamphlets, information packets, and a city map, the source of today’s recipe: Northeast Flavor Magazine. This was partly because people kept giving us the content and partly because I can’t turn a glossy magazine or fresh newspaper down. I’m a sucker for pretty packaging, I’m not ashamed to say it, which is at least part of what’s drawn me so deep into the blogging world, as well as why walking through Anthropologie is my idea of a good time.
So in Northeast Flavor, there was a whole feature section on apple cider molasses that caught my eye, mostly because I’d seen and tried a version of it from Alex and Sonja’s gorgeous post and had some left in the fridge. Have you ever heard of apple cider molasses or made it? The concept goes by a few different names: apple cider reduction, boiled cider, cider syrup. In every case, making it is as simple as it sounds: Boil apple cider until it reduces, then reduces some more, until it’s no longer a beloved fall drink, but now a thick, pourable syrup. It takes time, like most good things do, but if you go into the process expecting to do a little thumb twirling, it’s not so bad. And at the end, you have a syrup perfect for topping ice cream or pancakes, combining with seltzer water for an apple cider soda, swirling with tea, and using anywhere you like for a little autumn sweetness. It may be best suited for baking and cooking, at least according to one adorable Washington Post article that credits a resurgence in cider boiling to a new, younger fan base “eager to restore the food traditions that industrialization had left behind,” which sounds to me a lot like hipster or organic eaters or, well, in this case, me.
So let’s chalk these cookies up as one more point for restoring food traditions—easy to make but comprised of whole, natural ingredients. They include 1/4 cup of apple cider molasses, and their thin and chewy texture is the stuff cookie addictions are made of.