Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Christmas-Spiced Greek Honey Dainties

December 4, 2018 at 4:23 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 8 Comments
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christmas-spiced greek honey dainties

Greek Honey Dainties are more often known as melomakarona, and I see them all the time in bakeries in NYC. It’s about time I made some of this deliciousness at home. I sadly never seem to get around to making many Christmas cookies, so I took this as an opportunity to get festive and made the Christmas-Spiced Honey Dainties version. The batter is easy to put together and flavored with so many good things, like orange juice and zest and the usual holiday spice suspects. It is a soft dough though, so I chose to refrigerate it for about half an hour before I scooped and shaped the cookies into their traditional ovals.

After baking and cooling, the cookies are drenched a few times over in a honey syrup similar to the one baklava is soaked in and sprinkled with walnuts (which I toasted while the cookies baked). The honey syrup, btw, is amazing! I veered slightly off the recipe, which called for orange peel, cinnamon stick and whole cloves, and used some mulling spice mix that I have in a little tin (it also has allspice berries and star anise pods in it) and finished it off with a splish of Grand Marnier while it cooled. You bet I saved every leftover drop….I think it will be awesome in tea or hot toddys. The cookies, too, are awesome. They must be handled carefully, but they do keep their texture, even with all that syrupy goodness poured over them. So perfect with coffee, and I’ll soon test them with vin santo…if there is probably a Greek sweet wine I should know about pairing with them, please let me know.

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: Sweet Potato Pie Bars

November 20, 2018 at 12:01 am | Posted in cakes & tortes, cookies & bars, DC, groups, pies & tarts, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 5 Comments
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sweet potato pie bars

In my family, you cannot get away without having pumpkin pie on the Thanksgiving dinner table. Specifically Grandma W’s pumpkin pie recipe. But it is not yet Thanksgiving (and in reality I’m not going to my parent’s house this year, and therefore I can do whatever I want without my father losing his sh_t), so I’m going to play around a bit. These Sweet Potato Pie Bars are just a little bit of a deviation from my family’s Thanksgiving norm. They are flavored pretty similarly to pumpkin pie, and I added a pinch of cloves to the recipe’s cinnamon and nutmeg, making them even more alike. I used a whole roasted sweet potato and puréed it (like lovielou did) because I think it’s more tasty than the canned stuff, and it made a nice thick filling because it’s also less watery.

The sweet potato filling gets baked over a base of sweet tart dough. You can serve these as is, or add toasty marshmallows on top. Truth be told, I’ve never been crazy about marshmallows, so I made a mascarpone-whipped cream concoction, spiked with rum because I know my father would approve of that, to swirl on top. I liked these cold from the fridge. Although Dorie says they’re best the day they’re made, I thought they held up really well for the three days it took us to eat them.

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. Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Cranberry Five-Spice Cookies

November 6, 2018 at 12:01 am | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, savory things, snacks, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 7 Comments
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cranberry five-spice cookies

When these Cranberry Five-Spice Cookies were being floated around in the month’s nominations, I didn’t realize that they are in the “cocktail cookies” section of the book. This is the section where the cookies lean more savory than sweet…nibbles to go with a glass of wine or an aperitif.  These ones have the texture of sugar cookies, but they are only very lightly sweetened, and are flavored with tart fresh cranberries, salty peanuts and Chinese five-spice powder, an exotic mixture of ground cloves, cinnamon, fennel seeds, star anise and Szechuan pepper.

A lot of times, I like to cut roll-out cookies like these into squares rather than rounds so I don’t have any waste. I sprinkled these with a little mix of extra sugar, salt and five-spice before baking. Even though they weren’t quite what I had in mind when I cracked open the book to make them, I did like them. I thought a bit of spreadable goat cheese on top went rather nicely.

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

TWD BCM Rewind: Basque Macarons

October 30, 2018 at 12:01 am | Posted in BCM, cookies & bars, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 3 Comments
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basque macarons

Why on Earth did I skip out on Basque Macarons last month? There isn’t anything precious or fiddly about this type of macaron…this is an easy recipe to throw together. At its heart, there are just four ingredients: almond flour, egg whites, sugar and salt. Okay, you have to whisk and fold in some of the egg whites, but I made and baked these at 7:00 in the morning and managed not to screw them up, so I’d call them low stress. I did add in a bit of cinnamon and a dash of almond extract for extra flavor. And I pressed a whole almond into the tops of half of them just ‘cuz. But you don’t have to do any of that if you don’t want to.

These bake up with a sweet, crisp shell and a nice, chewy inside. If feel like I say this with every cookie, but they are so good with coffee! I could even give them to my DF/GF bestie, so they win extra points with me.

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

Tuesdays with Dorie DC: Spiced Pumpkin Jammers

October 16, 2018 at 12:01 am | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 3 Comments
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spiced pumpkin jammers

I’ve made a larger galette version and the classic cookie version of Dorie’s jammers before, and these Spiced Pumpkin Jammers are a take on those. Here, a sweet and sandy spiced sablé base is topped with a pumpkin-cream cheese mix and ringed with sweet pumpkin seed streusel. Don’t expect immediate gratification…this is a recipe for when you have some time to spend and want a project.

These can be formed in either rings or muffin tins to get a crisp, round shape. I went with my muffin pan. Rather than roll, chill and cut the sablé dough to fit the tins, I used a little cookie scoop to portion it out right after I made it, and then just pressed it in. Be sure to grease the cavities of the molds well, as these are delicate. You’ll notice these’s one missing in the picture, and that’s because I destroyed it trying to get it out. I ate it anyway and shared a half dozen of the rest with the trainers at my gym (who all have a secret sweet tooth)…we all gave them glowing reviews! They’re like pumpkin pie bites, and, fyi, a little blob of whipped cream on top certainly doesn’t hurt anything.

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: Maple-Star Anise Cookies, Sandwiched

October 2, 2018 at 12:01 am | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 4 Comments
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maple-star anise cookies, sandwiched

We’re definitely moving into fall here in the US, and our cookie choices this month reflect that. Maple-Star Anise Cookies are flavored with, you guessed it, maple syrup and star anise (a spice I don’t often use, but have at home as part of a mulling spice blend someone gave me), as well as cinnamon, ginger and orange zest. These are soft and spicy cookies, on the cakey side, and while I suppose you could eat them as is, they are a natural match for maple and spice cream cheese frosting. You can schmear just one side with frosting and have them open-faced, or you can schmear and then sandwich them, which is what i did here. They remind me of whoopee pies, but a bit more delicate. The cookies spread a lot in the oven and need plenty of space on the sheet tray…I found that freezing the dough balls for just the amount of time it took to preheat the oven helped control things a bit and keep them round.

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: Devil’s Food Wafflets with Chocolate Sauce

September 18, 2018 at 12:01 am | Posted in breakfast things, cookies & bars, DC, groups, pancakes & waffles, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 3 Comments
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devil's food wafflets with chocolate sauce

I have a big Belgian waffle maker…the kind that does two at a time. It mostly lives in the storage room, but I did drag it out for Devil’s Food Wafflets with Chocolate Sauce. I found that with little bitty wafflets, it can make more like ten at a time, so it didn’t even see daylight for long! These wafflets are made with a devil’s food cake batter and they get crispy/soft in the waffle iron. Dorie has some optional instructions to really dry them out and make them crunchy through and through in a low oven, but I opted to keep them as-is, like toasted cake bites. I liked these best like little ice cream cake bites, with a spoonful each of caramel ice cream and chocolate sauce.

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: Double-Buckwheat Double-Chocolate Cookies

September 4, 2018 at 3:08 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 7 Comments
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double-buckwheat double-chocolate cookies

Buckwheat and dark chocolate is a combination that is oh-so-good. The earthy nuttiness and bittersweetness all just work together. So naturally it follows that Double-Buckwheat Double-Chocolate Cookies should be oh-so-so-good. And I just know that they are, but here’s where I will confess something…I actually made single-buckwheat triple-chocolate cookies. The two types of buckwheat called for in the recipe are flour and kasha. The flour I have already, but the kasha I don’t. Since I’m on a self-imposed lockdown on the purchase of any new flours, grains and condiments (my fridge and cabinets are seriously out of control), I didn’t go out and get any. I did want that crunchy element that the kasha would have added to the cookies, so I reached into my freezer drawer and pulled out my baggie of cocoa nibs and added them to the cocoa powder and chopped chocolate already in the recipe. The dough can be rolled out into a sheet and cut, or rolled into log and sliced. I opted for the slice-and-bake version.

These cookies are great. They’re nice and soft inside (with that bit of crunch!), and a sprinkling of salt and sugar on top gives the flavor a real pop. A Brooklyn bakery called Bien Cuit makes similarly flavored salted chocolate buckwheat cookies, which I buy from time to time and have found to be the perfect nibble with an afternoon coffee. The same is true with these. Small and not too sweet, they are just right.

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: Chocolate-Raspberry Thumbprints

August 21, 2018 at 8:10 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 4 Comments
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chocolate-raspberry thumbprints

Sometimes I’m kind of “eh” on fruit and chocolate combinations, but I’ll admit that these Chocolate-Raspberry Thumbprints are good little cookies. The chocolate dough is Dorie’s “Do-Almost-Anything” dough and rolled into balls, it makes a nice, soft thumbprint cookie. I filled my prints with a not-to-sweet jam from Sqirl that I bought at a local cheese shop. I was pleased not to have any jam overflow and it set up nicely once the cookies were baked and cooked. I gave them the little drizzle of chocolate for some extra pizzaz. I’m pretty sure everyone I’ll give them to will be happy that I shared.

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: Rosemary-Parm Cookies

August 7, 2018 at 12:46 pm | Posted in cookies & bars, DC, groups, savory things, snacks, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 3 Comments
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rosemary-parm cookies

I like baking savory cookies because it gives me an excuse to open a bottle of wine. Hello apéro! A drink, a snack and a podcast make getting the rest of dinner on the table less of a chore. The Rosemary-Parm Cookies are from the “cocktail cookie” section of the book. They are savory shortbread cookies, delicate and crumbly, and flavored with parmesan, pecans and rosemary. I cut mine into (imperfect) squares rather than rounds so I wouldn’t have any waste, and sprinkled them with a bit of extra grated cheese before baking. They’re salty and cheesy, and I can verify that they go quite nicely with white wine!

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

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