TWD DC Rewind: Cocoa-Almond Uglies

December 31, 2019 at 3:21 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 1 Comment
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cocoa-almond uglies

Cocoa-Almond Uglies– such an unfortunate name for something so tasty! I’d say don’t judge a book by it’s cover but I really don’t think these chocolate-almond meringue blobs are that bad looking. Knobbly with chopped nuts and chocolate, they do kind of do what they want to in the oven. But they’re unique, not ugly, and they’re very, very good. They also happen to be gluten- and dairy-free. The cookies stay chewy inside but have a crispy crust and they have great chocolate flavor. They’re like the cookie version of a Ferrero Rocher. Need I say more? I’ll have one with a glass of bubbles tonight. Happy New Year!!

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

Tuesdays with Dorie BCM: Honey-Nut Nougat

December 24, 2019 at 8:42 am | Posted in BCM, candy, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 8 Comments
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honey-nut nougat

Happy holidays! Is Christmas Eve too late to show you a fabulous edible, homemade gift idea? I admit that I am one of those last minute types, but I really think it isn’t too late, as this Honey-Nut Nougat can be ready to cut up in a just couple of hours (provided you have a candy thermometer and an abundance of nuts in your pantry). And anyway, we still have plenty of party-time ahead of us. This isn’t difficult to make, but the instructions are lengthy, and since you’ll be dealing with a hot sugar syrup, it’s advisable to read them all the way first. Trust me, I would almost never say that, as I would almost never do that, but here it’s important, because timing is everything in candy-making.

You can find nougat in every Italian deli/specialty shop year-round, but the nice thing about making it yourself, aside from the freshness and the fun, is getting to choose exactly what goes into it. Dorie’s recipe uses heaps of roasted nuts, so I went for a combo of hazelnuts, almonds and pistachios, along with tart dried cherries. Nougat is traditionally formed between sheets of edible rice/wafer paper to help with the stickiness, but you can use cornstarch and powdered sugar instead. I actually had the rice paper, which I bought the last time I was in Australia (now that I write that down, it seems like a weird souvenier)…you can also get it online and in decorating supply stores.

This is delicious–chewy and full of nuts and honey flavor–and it lasts for a few weeks, so if you don’t take it to a holiday party, you can just cut off little hunks as you want them. Which will probably be often.

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

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Snowy-Topped Brownie Drops

December 17, 2019 at 12:01 am | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 4 Comments
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snowy-topped brownie drops

What happens when you take brownie batter and treat it like a crinkle cookie? You get Snowy-Topped Brownie Drops! So cute! So tasty! OMG!

Just like making brownies, this is a hand-mixed dough, so it’s easy to put together. I flavored mine with a bit of mint extract instead of vanilla, because ’tis the season for peppermint treats. The dough does need some time in the fridge to firm up before scooping, since it really more of a loose batter when just made. After you scoop and roll the dough into cookie balls, dredge it in a ton of powdered sugar. And I mean coat them well, or else the sugar will sort of absorb into the dough as the cookies bake and it won’t look like a snowy day on Mount Brownie. I baked mine for exactly the time stated in the recipe and they came out fudgy and chewy and with enough powdered sugar still clinging to the crackles to make me cough just a little. Perfect.

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 BCM: Touch-of-Crunch Chocolate Cake

December 10, 2019 at 12:01 am | Posted in BCM, cakes & tortes, groups, simple cakes, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 5 Comments
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touch-of-crunch chocolate cake

I totally didn’t realized what this Touch-of-Crunch Chocolate Cake was all about until I actually went to make it. I just thought, “gonna make a chocolate cake today,” and assumed it would be like most others. Then I had to switch out my cake pan for a pie plate, get a double boiler going and locate some black sesame seeds in the freezer (they’re the hidden crunch in the batter). But what a nice surprise this turned out to be. It baked up with a pretty, crackly, brownie-like crust and a rich mousse-like middle. Super chocolatey, there’s not much in the way of dry ingredient binder here…just a spoonful of flour or cornstarch. I used cornstarch to keep it GF. Dorie says that this cake shines straight from the fridge, and it does, but I actually preferred it at room temperature, when it’s smooth like a truffle, except for that touch-of-crunch from the surprise sesame seeds of course!

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

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Double-Ginger Molasses Cookies

December 3, 2019 at 12:01 am | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 6 Comments
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double-ginger molasses cookies

I love these Double-Ginger Molasses Cookies. I love them so much. Not only do these molasses-spice cookies have double ginger (ground and crystalized), they also have double chocolate (cocoa and bits)! I want to share them with everyone I know, but I also want to eat them all myself. That, my friends, is the sign of a fabulous cookie.

Once you have your dough mixed and portioned into balls, you can bake the cookies free-form, but I went with Dorie’s muffin tin option, which keeps them chubby and chewy and perfectly shaped (especially if you weigh each dough ball…I used 26-28 grams per). The dough is rolled in sugar before baking…I do suggest flattening the balls into pucks before dredging them in sugar, instead of after. You can flatten them gently in your hand and then toss them in the sugar before laying them into the muffin tin. If the sugar gets pressed all the way into the dough, you might lose the sparkly, crunchy effect.

These are definitely worthy of your cookie box, your cookie swap or your secret hidden alone-time cookie tin (I know you have one!). 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 BCM: Caramelized-Coffee Bean Pots de Crème

November 26, 2019 at 12:01 am | Posted in BCM, groups, puddings, custards, mousses, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 7 Comments
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caramelized-coffee bean pots de crème

Pots de crème are luxurious baked custards (pots of cream! and egg yolks!), and these Caramelized-Coffee Bean Pots de Crème are flavored with cracked coffee beans further roasted and toasted in caramelized sugar. Pots de crème are rich, and a small-ish serving will do. I baked these babies off in some cute little French yogurt pots that I had to go all the way to Europe to collect! Turns out it was worthwhile trip. I served my cream pots with a little whipped cream and some chocolate covered espresso beans.

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

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Smoky, Cheesy Cookies

November 19, 2019 at 8:50 pm | Posted in DC, groups, savory things, snacks, tuesdays with dorie | 2 Comments
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smoky, cheesy cookies

I’m really enjoying the “cocktail cookies” section of Dorie’s Cookies. Not that I could ever OD on sweets or anything, but it’s also nice to have a salty snack to go with a glass of wine or a green salad. These Smoky, Cheesy Cookies are like cheese and crackers in one. They have sharp cheddar and smoked gouda (or smoked mozzarella, in my case) and some cayenne pepper to give them a little zip. Similar to the Parmesan Galettes we made last month, this dough is made in the food processor. These are roll-out cookies rather than slice-and-bake, though, and they seem a bit sturdier…more crispy and flaky than delicate and sandy.

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 BCM: Croquets

November 12, 2019 at 12:01 am | Posted in BCM, cookies & bars, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 8 Comments
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croquets

If you are like me and need a little treat to go with your coffee, then you’ll appreciate what these Croquets have to offer. Crisp and sugary, with lotsa nuts (I used macadamias, and also a pinch of cinnamon), they are a perfect saucer sidekick.

They are not flourless, but the base of the dough is a meringue. Therefore, the dough is sticky but it bakes up sweet and with a crackly crust. The dough is formed into logs, which are cut after baking, biscotti-style. The croquets don’t need a second bake, though– they are very crunchy. In fact I think croquet must be a play on the word croquant, which means “crunchy” in French (unless it has to do with the lawn game, in which case I’m baffled!). This crunchiness makes them excellent coffee dunkers, but they’re also good smashed up a bit and sprinkled on an ice cream sundae.

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

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Chocolate-Pecan Pie Cookie Bars

November 5, 2019 at 8:36 am | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, pies & tarts, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 4 Comments
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chocolate-pecan pie cookie bars

Dare I say that I like these Chocolate-Pecan Pie Cookie Bars even more than I like pecan pie? These have heaps of pecan and chocolate pieces, with just enough goo to hold them together. And the base is Dorie’s Sweet Tart Dough, which is so easy to work with. I didn’t even need to roll it out or to chill it before baking it here…I whizzed the dough up in the food processor, pressed it into the pan, weighed it down and it was ready to blind bake right away. The cookie bars are easier and faster to make than pie, and they cool faster, too. (That means you can be eating them faster!)

I made a half recipe in a loaf pan, but if you have a big crowd to serve, go for the full 9-inch square because they’ll be gone fast. If you need to make them in advance, they seem to keep just fine for a few days in the fridge.

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 if you haven’t already.

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: White Chocolate and Poppy Seed Cookies

October 15, 2019 at 8:04 am | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 3 Comments
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white chocolate and poppy seed cookies

White Chocolate and Poppy Seed Cookies are another riff on Dorie’s Do-Almost-Anything Vanilla Cookie Dough. This time the tasty sugar cookie dough contains, you guessed it, chopped white chocolate and poppy seeds. These bake up nice and crisp and the little bits of white chocolate in the dough kind of caramelize with the heat of the baking sheet. Do watch them in the oven at the end though…the edges can go from blonde to brown quite quickly. After the cookies have cooled, you can ice them with a bit more melted white chocolate, or just leave them be if you want something a tad less sweet.

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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