Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Caramel-Sugar Pufflets

July 20, 2021 at 10:27 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 6 Comments
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caramel-sugar pufflets

I am almost too sugared out with my summer recipe testing job to handle these Caramel-Sugar Pufflets this week. If I hadn’t already had a packet of the base dough in the freezer from the Sour Cream Everything Seed Knots, I may have just quietly skipped them. As with the knots, the dough for these pufflets goes through a series of folds and turns to create flaky layers, but instead of salty, seedy sprinkles between each layer, these get hefty sprinklings of sugar that caramelize in the oven. I really gave these the “French bake,” so the are super crisp and have little lacy caramel bits on the edges. My tastes are trending toward the savory right now, as I’m making and tasting three or four sweet recipes a day, but I can appreciate a small nibble with a cup of coffee.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll and please join us anytime!

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Sour Cream Everything Seed Knots

July 6, 2021 at 4:40 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, savory things, snacks, tuesdays with dorie | 5 Comments
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sour cream everything seed knots

As soon as I heard the news that today would be 93° with a heat index of 100, I decided it would perfect weather to make a rough-puff- style dough to bake off these Sour Cream Everything Seed Knots. I plan so well. As it turns out, even without A/C, I didn’t have any issues making the yeasted sour cream dough in the food processor, or completing the set of folds and turns that created the flaky layers and worked in the everything seed blend I stirred together. I think it helped that I made a super small batch, and each step took me only about twenty seconds, so my dough didn’t have the chance to warm up too much. The trickiest part came with forming these knots. I think I did ok, but I don’t have much decorative bread or dough forming experience, so I had to read the instructions like fifty times. Anyway, I had one of these knots along with my lunch salad, and it was a delicious, salty, seedy, garlicky treat. Kind of like a flaky breadstick, I also think they’ll go well with a glass of wine and a piece of cheese for sundown snacks.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll and please join us anytime!

TWD DC Rewind: Natasha’s Mum’s Fruit and Walnut Bread Bars

June 29, 2021 at 12:01 am | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 3 Comments
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natasha's mum's fruit and walnut bread bars

Natasha’s Mum’s Fruit and Walnut Bread Bars wins the award for cutest recipe title. A family recipe given to Dorie by an Aussie friend, these are full of walnuts and dried fruit and definitely have an old-fashioned feel to them. They’re baked off in a loaf pan and cut into slices, and you might at first glance think they are dense fruit and nut bread. But then you bite one, and they are definitely a sweet treat. All the ingredients are bound together by a meringue, and the cookies have a nougat-like chew to them. As for the dried fruit, you can add what you like and what you have on hand. Of course I used walnuts (honestly, pecans or almonds would be great, too, but then you need to change the title), and also dried blueberries and candied ginger. These slice beautifully and are perfect keepers for the cookie tin.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. It’s also here. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Coconut Patties

June 1, 2021 at 8:25 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 4 Comments
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coconut patties

Boy, when TWD Tuesday is the first day of the month, you can really be caught off guard. I would have shown up empty-handed to today’s cookie party had I not actually made these Coconut Patties for a “before times” gym get-together a couple of years ago.  Also, this picture is an embarrassment…I think my photos have improved slightly. These patties are a twice-cooked coconut macaroon flavored with lime. The first cooking step takes place on the stovetop, as the sugar-egg white-coconut mixture is heated in a pot. Then after a nice four-hour chill, the pattie rounds are formed and baked. The fact that the mixture is precooked and baked cold, keeps the patties chewy inside…the baking really just dries the outside to make a nice crust.

I remember getting several compliments on these. They’re gluten-free, so they’re a good treat to bring somewhere if you don’t know the whole crowd. Dorie gives a rose-flavored variation of these as well, and I’m sure it’s not too hard to come up with some others, too (something Almond Joy-esq would be tops on my list).

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Pecan-Brown Sugar Crack-Ups

May 18, 2021 at 7:22 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 5 Comments
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pecan-brown sugar crack-ups

Pecan-Brown Sugar Crack-Ups are an interactive treat…a cookie baked as a slab that you (or you plus buddies) “crack up” into shards and bits. The dough for these comes together with just a few whizzes of the food processor. What you get are streusel-like crumbs that you press into a sheet tray to bake as one mass. The pecans are completely ground down in processing the dough, but the cookies certainly do have a toasty nuttiness, a delicate texture and a nice brown color. I made just one-third of the recipe, but still formed the dough into the same sized (quarter-sheet) tray used for a full batch. My baked cookie sheet was nice and slim, but not so thin that it crumbled apart, and I was able to break it into some good-sized chunks. We’ve been enjoying bits and pieces of this both at night with a little ice cream and in the morning with a little coffee.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Chocolate Chip Not-Quite Mandelbrot

May 4, 2021 at 7:42 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 5 Comments
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chocolate chip not-quite mandelbrot

Mandelbrot are Ashkenazi Jewish almond cookies that share a similar shaping and baking method to Italian biscotti. Dorie leaves the nuts out of her Chocolate Chip Not-Quite Mandelbrot and swaps in the mini chips. I didn’t want to buy a bag of mini chips, so I left them out and swapped in a handful of cacao nibs instead (I didn’t measure them). I guess mine are not-quite chocolate chip not quite mandelbrot, but I say it worked nicely.

The dough is baked first as a cinnamon sugar-sprinkled (yum!) log, then sliced, sprinkled with more cinnamon sugar (more yum!) and baked again. The baking method is just like biscotti, but Dorie describes these mandelbrot as cakey, not dry and hard. Hmmm…”cakey” makes me think she means them to be soft, but mine were definitely dry and crisp after the second bake. They were not hard, though, and they were much easier and more pleasant to eat than some biscotti, which you almost have to dunk in coffee in order to not scrape up the roof of your mouth. Also, they sliced like a dream– with no cursing! I liked these very much, and even though I didn’t get quite as many as I should have from the stated yield, with just a third of the recipe, I was set for the week with coffee treats.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. It’s also here. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Matcha-White Chocolate Mini Mads

April 20, 2021 at 8:05 pm | Posted in cakes & tortes, cookies & bars, DC, groups, simple cakes, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 7 Comments
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matcha-white chocolate mini mads

Madeleines…are you cookies, or are you little cakes disguised as seashells? Personally, I say little cakes, and these Matcha-White Chocolate Mini Mads are really little cakes, since they were baked in a mini madeleine tin. A regular-sized tin will work just fine also…whichever you use, just be sure to grease and flour it well, even if it’s nonstick. These are flavored with, you guessed it, matcha and melted white chocolate, and there’s a bit of lime zest in there, too.

Madeleines are easy to make by hand, but you do need to allow time to chill the batter before baking. I got a pretty good bump on the backsides of these babies. In the past, that has not always happened with Dorie’s madeleines, so I was quite pleased. I liked the flavor of these, and their cool Frankensteinian color, courtesy of the green tea powder. They stayed nice and soft even the day after I baked them (I did check them early in the oven to make sure I took them out when they were just done…over-baking tiny things makes me nervous!). I piped a white chocolate drizzle on some of my mini mads, but that wasn’t as cute as I’d hoped, so those didn’t make the photoshoot– haha.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Fennel-Orange Shortbread Wedges

April 6, 2021 at 1:43 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, savory things, snacks, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 6 Comments
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fennel-orange shortbread wedges

These Fennel-Orange Shortbread Wedges are an apéro hour delight. Just a little sweet with a salty zip, they are finely flavored and fragranced with orange zest and cracked fennel seeds. They have that crisp yet tender texture that earns the name “shortbread.” These are really good with olives and a piece of cheese. And a glass of wine…don’t forget that. I made half of the recipe and patted the dough out into a six-inch cake pan for baking.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll and please join us anytime!

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Peanut Brownie Sablés

March 16, 2021 at 2:11 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 2 Comments
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peanut brownie sablés

Peanut Brownie Sablés…when two become one. You do actually need to make two different doughs to make this recipe, something that initially sounded very annoying to my lazy self but is actually no biggie. First mix up a peanut butter sablé dough then get cracking on a brownie batter. The brownie just uses cocoa, so there’s no messing with a water bath (also, I followed Mardi’s lead and used room temp butter for that batter). The two separate mixes get paddled together to become the final hybrid dough.

This cookie mash-up was a hit for me. Chocolate and PB is a most winning combo, and these cookies are nice and soft in the middle. I have some more dough in the freezer that I’ll bake off this weekend.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll.

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Ms. Corbitt’s Pecan Cake Fingers

March 2, 2021 at 3:35 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 5 Comments
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mc. corbitt's pecan cake fingers

Ms. Corbitt’s Pecan Cake Fingers has a name that makes me giggle and is a vintage recipe straight out of the late 50s. A pecan-loaded brown sugar meringue bakes up into something that I guess could be called cake-like, although still recognizable to me as a chewy meringue, and is topped with a thick brown sugar and vanilla-speckled icing.

When I took my baked meringue out of the oven, it had formed a shell that was a bit souffléd with a hollow gap above the rest of the base. This maybe…probably…had to with my mixing, but I knew that wouldn’t cut or ice easily. I decided to dampen the raised shell slightly, press it down onto the rest of the base and pop it back into the low oven for ten minutes to dry and fuse. Success! It seemed fine.

Dorie and Ms. Corbitt make a stiff, moldable icing that is hand-formed onto the tops of the individually sliced cookies. Boy, that sounds time-consuming, even for the 1/3 sized batch I made. I also didn’t want to handle my cookies quite so much (after I’d already had to squash them into submission once), so I altered the icing a bit to be a spreadable frosting that I could more gently apply to the whole slab before cutting. I let my browned butter set to a soft room temp before stirring in the powdered sugar and vanilla. Then I added just a few drops of milk to get it moving. I frosted the slab, let it set up in the fridge for a few and it was good to slice.

These are sweet, for sure, and it’s no wonder our friend Ms. Corbitt cuts them into slim “fingers,” but they are excellent with a cup of strong coffee. The browned butter icing, whichever way you choose to get it on top, is not to be skipped.

For the recipe, see Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan (it’s also here). Don’t forget to check out the rest of the TWD Blogroll!

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