Cookies


It’s PotLuck week at ICHH. And since we can choose any chef/cook we want from previous months I went with Bittman again. This time, something simple – COOKIES.

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    1/2 cup peanut oil or vegetable oil, 8 Tbl unsalted butter, softened
    1/2 cup granulated sugar Stevia
    1/2 cup packed brown sugar
    1/4 cup applesauce, or 2 eggs
    1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    2 cups rolled oats (not instant)
    1 cup (about 3 ounces) chopped dried apples, or other fruit
    1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    Pinch salt
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/2 cup almond milk, rice milk, or oat milk, or cow’s milk
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract

Blend butter (or oil) with sugars. Add in the applesauce (or eggs) and mix until well blended.
Mix the dry ingredients. Alternating with the milk add to the sugar/oil/applesauce mix.
Stir in the vanilla.
Drop tablespoon sized mounds of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 375 degrees for 10 – 12 minutes until lightly browned. Cool on a rack. About 40 cookies. {Original Recipe}

These were pretty good. They are not very sweet but the pecans add a nice crunch and the apples add a little sweetness. They would also be good with dried cranberries. I think I would try and add a little PB next time for sweetness and fiber.

{Nutritional info: (each cookie) 106 calories, 7 g fat, Less than 1 g cholesterol, 11 carbs, less than 1 g fiber, 3 g sugar, 1 g protein.}
The recipe is from Bittman’s Food Matters page 290.

Once a month I get to cook/bake with an awesome bunch of bloggers who live all around the world. Each month a theme is announced and then we all get busy and find something that goes with the current theme. Sometimes it is easy – PIE! Sometimes it is hard – literary meal! This month I thought would be difficult but it turned out, once I got my thoughts straight, to be quite simple. Come up with a dish using just 3 ingredients!!!

Now how on earth can you make any…… nevermind. Lots of things are possible

How about MAC AND CHEESE?

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    2 cups elbow macaroni
    1 cup 1/2 and 1/2
    3/4 cup grated cheddar cheese

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Cook elbows in salted water until al dente and drain. Return to saucepan.
Add in 1/2 and 1/2 and grated cheese.
Stir until cheese melts and the mixture is thick and creamy. Add salt and pepper to taste.

OR how about Peanut Butter Cookies?

    1 cup peanut butter (creamy or crunchy)
    1 egg
    1/2 to 1 cup sugar (and you can sub out about 1/2 of that for Splenda if you like.)

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Peheat oven to 325.
Mix the three ingredients together.
Drop by spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Bake 8 – 10 minutes.
EAT!!

Okay I could go on but thought I better quit with two goodies. But that’s not all there is for lunch. Check with the other Let’s Lunchers by visiting Linda over at Free Range Cookies who is hosting our lunch this month.

What is it about the holiday season that practically ‘demands’ cookies be made. Lots of cookies. Lots and lots of cookies. The problem is never knowing what kind to make. And you cannot make just one. You have to make several kinds of cookies. So this week’s IHCC theme, “Fill the Tins”, really fit the bill because cookies were the first treat that came to mind.

And, as usual, there were lots of cookies to choose from I wanted something simple. Something not REAL sweet. These were perfect.

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Almond Crescents

    8 oz unsalted butter, softened
    1/4 cup powdered sugar
    150g blanched almonds, chopped
    2 cups plain flour
    1 tsp vanilla extract
    powered sugar to dust

    Preheat the oven to 350 C, and line two baking trays with parchment paper.

    Using a stand kitchen mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or electric beaters, beat the butter and sugar for about 3-4 minutes, or until really light and fluffy. Add in the chopped almonds and beat thoroughly for another minute or two. Gently fold in the flour, and vanilla until combined and the dough comes together.
    Chill dough for about 5 minutes. {Although I found this made it rather dry}
    Quickly, but gently, roll 1 – 2 tablespoon amounts of the mixture into logs, then gently bend to make a crescent shape, placing onto your prepared trays. Repeat with the remaining dough. Chill the dough if you really like to stop it from melting in your hands as you roll it, but this isn’t particularly necessary.
    Bake shortbreads in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until lightly golden and firm to the touch. Remove from oven and let cool completely before dusting with powdered sugar. {I didn’t dust but rather shook them gently in a large sealed container of sugar. Better coverage.} Biscuits will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

    Simple. Not to sweet. Little bit of crunch. Good cookie. Perfect for sharing in Tins of Cookies. The recipe is in The New Cook on page 164.

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    And there are several more I want to make to include in the tins. But those are for another post!

    Check with the other IHCC members and see what is in their treat tins.

    IHCC

Chocolate Chip Cookies. I am always on a quest to find just the right recipe. And I have tried one or two or three. There was even a cookie with Espresso in it but I didn’t make those. Now that I am So Much More Sophistocated (Yeah, Right!) I have learned to use Espresso and like it. Especially in these!!

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    Mocha Chocolate Chip Cookies

Using Cadbury’s Dark Chocolate and regular Semi-Sweet chips I added just one 1 Tbl to half the recipe and ended up with 3 dozen cookies. I wish I had added just a tad more espresso. The chocolate seemed to drown out the taste and one was left with just a hint of a coffee aftertaste. But for me, that was okay because I really don’t care for coffee much. I made them more for the Hubs. I would make these again, however.

Peggy of Galettistais this week’s host and the recipe will be on her page.

And please visit the other members of Baking with Julia for their cookies. Maybe they will share!

Welcome to…

cookie exchange 2012.

It is a virtual exhcange. All we really exchange are the recipes. But it is fun to see what all the others are making for their Christmas Cookie Trays.

This year I made some of my standbys and added in a couple of new cookies. I am trying very hard NOT to eat all of them. Just a few of each.

There are a couple of cookies I make every year:

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These are the Graham Cracker Pralines which I made for Di’s First Exchange. They became so popular with friends and family I now have to make them every year.

And the Spritz cookies are always fun.

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My new ones this year included…

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Brown Sugar Toffee Rounds

    1/2 cup butter (no substitutes)
    1/2 cup shortening
    1 cup packed brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 egg
    2 tablespoons milk
    1/2 teaspoon almond extract
    3 cups all-purpose flour
    1 7 1/2-ounce package (1% cups) almond toffee pieces

BEAT butter and shortening in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; beat
till combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg, milk, and almond extract till combined. Beat in as much flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in almond toffee pieces and remaining flour with a wooden spoon. SHAPE dough into two l Ovmch-long rolls. Wrap in plastic wrap or waxed paper; chill in refrigerator for 4 to 24 hours or till firm enough to slice. CUT rolls into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Place slices 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a 350 oven about 9 minutes or till edges are firm. Transfer to wire racks and cool. Makes about 36.

We really liked these. The little toffee pieces add a little crunch to the soft, moist cookies. The recipe came from BHG Christmas Cookies (2000).

AND

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Cranberry Cookies

    3/4 cup sugar
    1/2 cup butter
    1 teaspoon coconut flavoring
    3 tablespoons skim milk
    1 1/2 cups sifted flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    3/4 cup coarsely chopped cranberries, drained
    1/2 cup shredded coconut

Cream sugar, butter and coconut flavoring until fluffy. Add milk, mixing well. Sift
together flour, baking powder and salt. Add to sugar mixture. Fold cranberries into batter. Divide dough in half. Roll each half coconut. Chill 8 hours. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice cookie logs thin. Bake on ungreased cookie sheet 12 to 15 minutes.
Makes 4 1/2 dozen.

The sour cranberries worked really well with the sweet cookie. The only problem was that they were difficult to slice. Don’t slice them too thin or they will crumble. (Home Cooking Cookies, Brownies & Bars Fall 2005)

This is really the only time of the year I make cookies. They are entirely too easy to grab and go. Several times!!!

Di will have a round-up of all the cookies on her site – Di’s Kitchen Notebook real soon.

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!!

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