Cookies


So, here I am. The last post for TWD, the first TWD which started in January 2008. It took me a full year to catch up and complete all the recipes I missed. 67 to be exact! And six of them in December. So here we go:

2 December 2008 Hosted by Noskos of Living the Life the bakers made:

    Linzer Sables

I had never made sables before. They are a lovely butter cookie that is filled with a jam or other treat. I used Cherry jam and instead of almonds, walnuts, or hazelnuts, I used pecans. Lots of pecans here in the south. They were perfect with a nice subtle nutty taste. And the cherry jam fit well with the pecans. You can find the recipe on her blog or on page 134 of BFMHTY.


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December is a popular month for cookies. On December 16, 2008 we followed up with


    Buttery Jam Cookies
    .

While the sables had the jam between the cookies these had the jam IN the cookie. And since I had the Cherry jam that is what I used in these tasty, biscuity cookies. There were little chunks of jam all through the cookie giving little surprises with every bite!

Thanks to Heather of Randomosity and the Girl for this sweet little treat. The recipe is on her blog. It’s also on page 80 of Dorie’s book.


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December also brought two tarts into the kitchen. On 6 December 2012 we made a

Honey-Almond Fig Tart It was delicious. A sweet honey-almond custard paired with ripe juicy figs. {From my friend’s tree!} I made the full recipe of custard but only two 6″ tarts. Usually I make less custard but past experience has taught me that more IS better! The tart was hosted by my friend, Kayte of Grandma’s Kitchen Table. The recipe is on her blog, or will be because Kayte is on hiatus right now and her blog is in hibernation. You can find it on page 373 of BFMHTY.


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The other tart (12 December 2011) was the…

    Puffed Double Plum Tart

And please forgive the photography. There was no way this was going to be pretty. {Or at least mine wasn’t!!} I used a regular black plum slice and prunes that had been poached in black tea with cinnamon rather than wine, orange juice, zest and anise. And while not pretty it was definitely yummy! 1/8 of a recipe gave me one small tart just for me. I knew no one else would even touch it! This was chosen by Julie of Someones in the Kitchen (or page 378 of Dorie’s book).

{Hang in there, almost done. I have to do all six today because the next available Tuesday is Christmas!}


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We eat ice cream all year round. Which is a good thing because on December 13, 2011, TWD bakers pulled out their churns and made:

    Unbelievably Good Chocolate Blueberry Ice Cream

I have to admit. I was a little iffy about this one. Chocolate and BLUEBERRIES!! No way that was going to be good. I. Was. Wrong! It was delicious. I know – Trust Dorie, Trust Dorie!! Story is, she didn’t care for the combo either when she was young, but like me, she has since come to her senses!! Yay! Dorie!!

Thanks to Lauri of Slush for hosting this week’s TWD choice.>


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Last (well almost) but not least –

    REAL Butterscotch Pudding

And by real I mean REAL Scotch in the pudding! Really? Yes, Really! Unfortunately, I didn’t have any scotch. Fortunately, my VGF did! A tiny bottle of Chivas Regal in her Hub’s underware drawer (Yes, Really!) which she gifted me {Prolly to her Hub’s chagrin!} and there was just enough to make 6 little pudding treats.

One word – GOOD!! Topped with a little whipped cream infused with just a tad of Scotch! BETTER!! And Donna, of Spatulas, Corkscrews and Suitcases, our host for this week, made her pudding into a PIE! What a GREAT idea! Next time!! Now that I know how easy pudding is to make from scratch. The reicpe is on Donna’s site and on page 386 of BFMHTY!

Okay. That’s it, that’s all… Okay, not quite. I still have one more cake to make. It has been the hardest to find the ingredients for. But I found what I needed and so….. but that’s another post!!

Thanks TWD for a wonderful five years of baking, learning, eating, gifting, and friend gathering. I will never forget anything!!

I needed cookies for a cook-out. What better ones than Malgierie’s Sandwich cookies? Easy to carry. Easy to make. Fun to eat!!

There are four sandwich cookies in Malgieri’s the Modern Baker but I only had time for two of them before the end of the Cookie Phase of The Modern Baker Challenge. And, of course, there were a few setbacks along the way.

These are supposed to be Blackberry Jam Cookies. But either my Jam has not been out in the sun or it isn’t jam! Did you know you cannot thicken SUGAR FREE Jam? Do you want an answer to that? I did not know I had picked up the sugar free (meh!!) until I poured it into the saucepan to thicken. I ended up with Blackberry SOUP!! The only sub I had was some home-made lemon curd I had made with GAARP a few days back. So what we have here is a triple lemon sandwich cookie. Lemony cookie. Lemon Curd. Lemony Drizzle. Good combo.

To go along with those I made the Chocolate Sandwich Cookies

No trouble with the filling here. I ALWAYS have chocolate of some kind in the house!!! But I did use a German Chocolate rather than Milk Chocolate as Nick calls for. Chocolate cookie. Chocolate Filling. Powdered sugar dusting. And, just for good measure, some with added Cocoa dusting!!

Too much? I. Don’t. Think. So!! NEVER too much chocolate!! (Sorry, Kayte!)The only sandwich cookies left were the Raspberry Linzer Disks and the Viennese Punch Cookies. Maybe another day.

I made 1/2 of each recipe which gave me eight sandwiches of each type. The only trouble I had was that the dough was crumbly dry. I had to wait for it to reach room temp before I could really work with it. Gaarp had the same problem, as did others. But they baked up just fine.

The chocolate cookies are on page308 of Nick’s book. The lemon on page 306.

June is right around the corner which means CAKE for the next and last phase of The Modern Baker Challenge. It’s not too late to join in the fun. Visit the website and sign up for a cake. Or TWO!!

Okay. How many of you actually remember that movie?

The old one with Spencer Tracey, Milton Berle, Sid Caesar, Ethel Merman, Jonathan Winters, Mickey Rooney, Buddy Hackett, Phil Silvers, and an additional cast of THOUSANDS!!! Or am I really showing my age here??

The plot of the movie is the pursuit of hidden treasure in the form of $350,000. A lot of money 49 years ago. {It was remade in 2001 under the title “RatRace” with a prize of $2 million and it was not nearly as funny.}

This month I had my own pursuit for hidden treasure. The ability to make a decent MADELEINE. Over the four years of Tuesdays with Dorie the bakers made 4 different types of Mads. I missed out on three of them. And the ones I did make were some really horrible looking Blobs made in a really bad, CHEAP pan!! At that time, Jan 2011, I said I would get a decent pan. I did. And the results are MUCH MUCH MUCH better!!

Not all three are in May, but I decided to do them all together.


May 20, 2008, Traditional Madeleines {on the right} was the choice of Tara of Smells Like Home and she was right, they are very easy to overcook even when you start with a cold pan AND cold batter!!

The traditional mads are a sweet little sponge cake made into a cookie. The pan gives them a lovely scalloped shape that makes them a beautiful cookie to share and show off. I did discover that it is better to UNDER fill the pan rather than simply fill the pan. I like the edges better on the smaller ones.

November 8, 2011 found us baking Mads again. This time Mini-Madeleines {middle ones} chosen by my friend Di of Di’s Kitchen Notebook. Her daughter, Brianna, was intrigued by this cookie because her middle name is Madeline. No, her daughter was NOT named after a cookie but rather after her Italian Grandmother.

You will notice that my Mini’s are not mini but full sized. I only have the one full sized pan {maybe I need to remedy that!}. I baked them for a minute more than the Traditional mads and they came out just a little over done.

Lastly on this MAD-cap baking marathon I made my favorite of the four – Earl Grey Madeleines {left ones} which were chosen for us by Nicole of Bakeologie on December 6, 2011. What a great idea to put tea IN the cookie!! I had some Cream Earl Grey in the cabinet from The Metropolitan Tea Company which has a hint of cream the the additional flowery flavor of cornflowers.

It is one of my favorite teas. I would like to try these with Masala Chai and a Christmas Spiced tea. There are all kinds of flavors you could play with for these madeleines.

So there you have it. Three different Madeleines from Dorie’s Baking From My Home to Yours. The recipes are similar but just different enough to change the flavor. The Mini’s use brown sugar while the others don’t. All three use lemon zest. The Minis and Earl Grey mads use honey. Just different enough!!

The recipes are all posted on each host’s website. Go out, buy a pan, and make these delightful little sponge cookies.

There are only two weeks left for COOKIES in the Modern Baker Challenge. Just two weeks. I want to know where all my Mondays for cookies went. I have at least 4 more I want to make. Guess I better get busy.

This past week I made two cookies – thinking it was the last week of May {I have been a week ahead in dates for the past month…..}

    Pine Nut Macaroons

Pine nuts are not something I usually bake with. They are the edible seeds of some pines and often harvested for food among many Amerindians of the Southwest. They are soft and delicious. It takes a lot of labor to harvest the nuts so they can be pricy. But they were good in this little almond cookie which only called for 4 ounces of the little seeds. I made 1/2 of the recipe which resulted in 16 cookies. They are very easy to make – nuts, almond paste, sugar and eggs are all you need. After only 18 minutes we were munching on this sweet little nugget.

Since I was in cookie mode I also made the Macadamia Shortbreads.

The great thing about shortbreads, at least Malgieri’s, is the fact that you don’t have to do anything except put the dough together (in a food processor), empty the mix into a pan and press down gently. That’s it. No rolling. No shaping. No scraping. I LOVE making his shortbread cookies. Oh, and they taste good, too!!! The cookies come out of the pan a little soft but Nick said to slice them and then let them cool and they would crisp up. And they did. Nice a crispy and buttery and nutty. Oh, Yeah!!

Now that I know I have another week left I can get some more of the cookies done. I tell you, this retirement thing is great – except sometimes you lose count of the days!!!

The Macaroons are on page 302 and the Shortbreads on page 292 of Malgieri’s the Modern Baker. I also found the shortbread recipe HERE!!

One more week of cookies for Modern Baker Challenge then on to CAKES!!! Oh, My! Put the scales AWAY!!!!!

Check out the other cookies at The Modern Baker Challenge.

Tweeles! Yes, Tweeles. Or at least that is the pronunciation of the word. Tuiles are very thin wafer cookies named for and curved like the tuiles, or tiles, that line the rooftops of French country homes, particularly those in Provence. They can be sweet and served with ice cream or any custardy dessert or they can be savory made with cheese. Malgieri’s are sweet and made with almonds and lemon. Or, in my case, orange.

Malgieri calls for lemon zest but I had used my last in the Lemon Loaf. Orange was just fine with the almond. You can drop small teaspoonfuls on parchment or on a greased cookie sheet. There is a BIG difference in how they turn out.

The cookie on the right was on parchment, the left one on a greased sheet. AND the left one had a tad more dough than the right one. The plain cookie sheet gave me a thinner cookie.

If you want them curved you HAVE to place them HOT onto a curved object, such as a rolling pin, {if you want really curvy tuiles use a small round object, or shape them into small bowls for ice cream} or they will not curve without cracking. TRUST ME!! I ended up with lots of flat cookies and broken cookies. But the broken ones didn’t go to waste. On top of Lemon Curd Ice Cream they were just right!!!

The recipe for the TUILES is on page 288 of Nick Malgieri’s the Modern BakerAnd stop by the home of The Modern Baker Challenge for more cookies!

How would you like to live a Fit and Spicy Life? I know I would? And this past week or so I did – virtually – through Mellissa’s foodie blog – A Fit and Spicy Life. Mellissa’s blog was my ‘assignment’ for April’s The Secret Recipe Club. And, as usual, I found a blog full of tasty treats and interesting entrees.

So without further ado, let me introduce you to some of Mellissa’s recipes.


For breakfast one morning we had:

      Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

If you like pumpkin and all the spices that go with them then these muffins are right up your alley. Filled with cinnamon and nutmeg they are sweet and spicy. Especially warm from the oven. 1/2 of the recipe resulted in 12 regular muffins and 10 minis. Perfect!!

    3 cups sugar
    1/2 cup oil
    1/2 cup applesauce
    4 eggs
    2 tsp. vanilla
    3 1/2 cups whole wheat flour {I used half AP flour and half Whole Wheat}
    1 1/2 tsp salt
    1 tsp baking soda
    2 tsp cinnamon
    1 tsp nutmeg
    2/3 cup milk
    1 15oz can of pumpkin
    1 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350.
Spray muffin tins with a bit of non-stick cooking spray.
Beat together the sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla in a mixing bowl until well mixed.
Mix together the flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg in a separate bowl
Mix the milk, pumpkin, and applesauce in another bowl.
Add the flour mixture in 1/3’s to the wet sugar oil, vanilla and egg mix.
Add half the milk and pumpkin and beat until combined. Add the rest of the milk and pumpkin.
Stir in the chocolate chips
Add batter to muffin tins until about 2/3 full
Bake for 20 minutes

Good breakfast.

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Dinner found us eating Risotto and Fish. To be exact we had…..

      Foil Packet Fish with Tomato Corn Relish
    1 teaspoon coriander seeds
    1 cup fresh parsley
    1 cup fresh cilantro
    1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
    2 tbsp vegetable oil
    Salt
    1 can of corn, drained
    1 heirloom tomato, chopped {I used sun dried tomatoes since Tomato season is no where near!}
    Mahi Mahi (or any other white fish) {I used VERY fresh Catfish, it was swimming that morning!}

Preheat a grill to high the oven to 350.
Toast coriander seeds in a dry skillet over medium high heat, tossing, about 3 minutes.
Crush the seeds and add to the food processor with the parsley, cilantro, ginger, vegetable oil, salt and 1 tablespoon of water.
Toss the corn and tomatoes with 3 teaspoons of the herb mixtures in a bowl and season with salt
Tear off foil sheets for each piece of fish. Please fish in center and top with herb mixture while placing tomato and corn relish on the sides of the fish. Fold up foil packets, but leave room for circulation.
Grill Bake the packets, covered, until the fish is cooked through, 10 – 15 minutes. Place a foil pack on each plate and open very carefully!

Talk about easy, and tasty, and quick. And no dishes to clean afterward if you leave the fish in the pouch. I loved the play of the ginger with the sweetness of the corn and the herb mix was just perfect with both the fish and the veggies. When summer comes along and we can actually find DECENT tomatoes I want to try this one again.

Along side the fish we enjoyed…

      Leek Bacon and Pea Asparagus Risotto

    2 leeks (use just lower half)
    12 cups chicken broth vegetable broth
    4 slices bacon
    2 1/2 cups Arborio Rice
    1 cup dry White Wine
    3/4 cup frozen peas chopped asparagus
    1/2 cup of finely grated Parmesan
    1-2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
    Salt and Pepper to Taste

Finely chop leeks and bacon
In a saucepan bring broth to a simmer over medium heat
In a large skillet cook bacon until crispy, add leeks and cook until softened
Add rice and cook about a minute, ensure it is coated
Add wine and stir until evaporated, about 2 minutes.
Add broth in 1/2 cup to 1 cup intervals and stir until absorbed, waiting about 2 minutes between additions for a total of about 30 minutes
Stir in peas asparagus after final addition of broth
Remove skillet from heat and stir in Parmesan, cover and let stand 2 minutes.
Season with lemon juice, salt and pepper
Serve remaining Parmesan on top of the risotto

I really liked the sweet crunch of the asparagus in the risotto. I had only used it because I couldn’t find the peas and I needed to use up the last of the asparagus. It is simply too good to waste. I am glad I couldn’t find the peas!! I have been making more risotto since I found out how easy it can be. It was always a dish that scared me. I mean, really, making risotto at home?? YES!!! And this one was delicious. The vegetable broth added another layer of flavor.

For dessert I made…

      Peanut Butter Surprises

You can find the recipe on Mellissa’s Blog. I’ll let you visit her and find out what the surprise is.

There are lots more recipes I want to try from Mellissa but they will have to wait.

Hop on over to the other SRC members’ blogs and see what fun they had exploring their ‘assigned’ blog. And if you want to join in the fun just visit The Secret Recipe Club. You could have a great time with your ‘assignments’!!



Cookies are easy. Easy to make. Easy to store. Easy to eat (sometimes too easy!). These little cookies are no exception

These little cookies have a slight orange taste, due to the orange extract and orange zest. It is faint but there. I think next time I will add a little orange oil to bring the taste out more.

These are on page 295 of Malgieri’s the Modern Baker

Visit the other Challenge Bakers for their ‘moments’.

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