Saturday, December 20, 2008

Lenox Almond Biscotti

adapted from Baking From my Home to Yours
by Dorie Greenspan

1 1/2 cups of flour
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/2 cup of yellow cornmeal
8 tablespoons of unsalted butter, softened
1 cup of sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons of pure almond extract
3/4 cup of sliced almonds, blanched or unblanched

1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and cornmeal together. (If you are adding ground spices, add them to this mixture before combining.)

3. Beat the butter and sugar together at medium speed for 3 minutes, until very smooth. Add the eggs and continue to beat, scraping down the bowl as needed, for another 2 minutes, or until the mixture is light, smooth and creamy. Beat in the almond extract. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients, mixing only until they are incorporated. You'll have a soft, stick-to-your-fingers dough that will ball up around the paddle or beaters. Scrape down the paddle and bowl, toss in the almonds and mix just to blend.

4. Scrape half the dough onto one side of the baking sheet. Using your fingers and a rubber spatula or scraper, work the dough into a log about 12 inches long and 1 1/2 inches wide. The log will be more rectangular than domed, and bumpy, rough and uneven. Form a second log with the remaining dough on the other side of the baking sheet.

5. Bake for 25 minutes, or until the logs are lightly golden but still soft and springy to the touch. Transfer the baking sheet to a rack and cool the logs on the baking sheet for 30 minutes.

6. Using a wide metal spatula, transfer the logs to a cutting board and, with a long serrated knife, trim the ends and cut the logs into 3/4-inch-thick slices. Return the slices to the baking sheet, setting them again on the same sides as before and slide the sheet back into the oven.

7. Bake the biscotti at 350F for another 25 minutes, or until they are golden and firm. Transfer them to racks and cool to room temperature.

These biscotti are perfect- I have been so busy baking sweet treats that I really needed something not so sweet that would go just right with a cup of espresso...and this cookie really
is the perfect choice.

Double Chocolate Cookies

1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. cooking oil
2 c. Bisquick
2 (4 1/2 oz.) pkg. instant chocolate
6 oz. chocolate chips

Mix together. Drop spoonfuls on cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes.

These cookies came really good- They are very moist .
Perfect with a tall glass of ice cold milk or a cup of coffee!

I am also entering this cookie in the Christmas Cookie Event.
Check out all the wonderful cookies...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Baccala’ with Potatoes and Tomatoes

Cut your cleaned and soaked Baccala’(dried salted Cod) in small pieces.

Boil several cubed potatoes.

Some diced tomatoes with sauce.




Green Pepper


Salt and Black Pepper to taste

Sauté thinly sliced onions, scallions and sliced green pepper.

Once they are tender add your diced boiled potatoes,

diced tomatoes, sauce, parsley and capers.

Once it is nicely combined add your cubed Baccala’.

Salt and Pepper to taste and

Slide the pan into the oven and

bake at 350* until your fish is tender (about 45 minutes).

I serve this with thick crusty Italian Bread to dip in the juices .

This is my entry for the Seven Fishes Feast hosted by

Joe of Italyville and Maryann of Finding La Dolce Vita.

I have also entered this recipe in the Potato Ho Down
which is being hosted this month by Christie from The Fig and Cherry.
If you would like to take part in the festivities please rush right
over to her site and read how to enter and start cooking.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Grandmas All-Occasion Sugar Cookies- Dorie Greenspan

I have wanted to try these cookies for a long time. I have never been good at sugar cookies- they just never came out right -no matter how many time I tried. They were too fat or too thin- they would burn- they would taste like they had too much flour in them...something was always wrong. Well let me tell you - these cookies mixed up like a breeze. I was having some oven troubles so I decided to make a roll and slice them instead of rolling them out and using cookie cutters.
These cookies came so yummy! Just golden on the bottom...tender...and so tasty!
I will be making more of these this week and I may even try to use some of my many cookie cutters.

Excerpted from Baking: From My House to Yours by Dorie Greenspan (Houghton Mifflin, 2006). Copyright 2006 by Dorie Greenspan.

Makes about 50 2-inch cookies

These are my rendition of my grandmother's sugar cookies, the ones she used to make for us every week, sprinkling the tops of the cookies earmarked for my brother and me with cinnamon sugar and the tops of those meant for our parents with poppy seeds. Actually this recipe is a composite of grandmother recipes, from mine and my husband's (with an Aunt Bertha recipe tossed in for good measure), all of which were written on small recipe cards and fingerprint-stained long before they came to me.

The cookies are crisp, buttery (but not soft buttery, like their cousins in the shortbread family) and basic — literally, meaning they can be the base for several variations. You can stir zest into the dough or add chopped nuts, shredded coconut or grated chocolate. You can roll out the dough and cut it with cutters plain or fancy, or you can even turn it into the world's easiest cookie, the slice-and-bake. And the cookies take nicely to frosting, icing or glazing.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 stick plus 2 tablespoons (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Sugar or cinnamon sugar, for dusting (optional)

Whisk the flour, salt and baking powder together.

1. Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter at medium speed for a minute or so, until smooth. Beat in the sugar and continue to beat for about 2 minutes, until the mixture is light and pale. Add the egg and yolk and beat for another minute or two; beat in the vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low and steadily add the flour mixture, mixing only until it has been incorporated — because this dough is best when worked least, you might want to stop the mixer before all the flour is thoroughly blended into the dough and finish the job with a rubber spatula. When mixed, the dough will be soft, creamy and malleable.

2. Turn the dough out onto a counter and divide it in half. If you want to make roll-out cookies, shape each half into a disk and wrap in plastic. If you want to make slice-and-bake cookies, shape each half into a chubby sausage (the diameter is up to you — I usually like cookies that are about 2 inches in diameter) and wrap in plastic. Whether you're going to roll or slice the dough, it must be chilled for at least 2 hours. (Well wrapped, the dough can be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.)

3. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.

4. If you are making roll-out cookies, working with one packet of dough at a time, roll out the dough between sheets of plastic wrap or wax paper to a thickness of 1/4 inch, lifting the plastic or paper and turning the dough over often so that it rolls evenly. Lift off the top sheet of plastic or paper and cut out the cookies — I like a 2-inch round cookie cutter for these. Pull away the excess dough, saving the scraps for rerolling, and carefully lift the rounds onto the baking sheets with a spatula, leaving about 1 1/2 inches between the cookies. (This is a soft dough and you might have trouble peeling away the excess or lifting the cutouts; if so, cover the dough, chill it for about 15 minutes and try again.) After you've rolled and cut the second packet of dough, you can form the scraps into a disk, then chill, roll, cut and bake.

5. If you are making slice-and-bake cookies, use a sharp thin knife to slice the dough into 1/4-inch-thick rounds, and place the rounds on the baking sheets, leaving about 1 1/2 inches of space between the cookies.

6. Bake the cookies one sheet at a time for 9 to 11 minutes, rotating the sheet at the midpoint. The cookies should feel firm, but they should not color much, if at all. Remove the pan from the oven and dust the cookies with sugar or cinnamon sugar, if you'd like. Let them rest for 1 minute before carefully lifting them onto a rack to cool to room temperature.

7. Repeat with the remaining dough, cooling the baking sheets between batches.

Storing: The cookies will keep at room temperature in a tin for up to 1 week. Wrapped well, they can be frozen for up to 2 months.

I'm submitting this to Food Bloggas Eat Christmas Cookies blogging event. Check this link to participate in the event. Or check here to see the roundup (gets updated as entries come in).

**I baked another batch and made some cut outs...
these cookies are delicious!

Bake Along 1-Chocolate Crackles

I was so excited to join Nichi, Judy ,Natalie and Megan on this fun bake along. The cookie from Martha Stewart sounded like something my family will really enjoy. Megan was kind enough to send me the recipe and I thought it would be perfect....of course until it actually came time to bake the cookies.

My oven was acting up on Saturday and my husband tried to fix it on Sunday- I cooked dinner on Sunday night so I thought I was good to go. WRONG! I set it to preheat and went about my business of rolling my cookies and getting them on the cookie tray- when I went to put them in the oven...IT WAS COLD! Sooooooo I have taken a few pictures of where I am and I will post the final cookie once my resident oven repair man gets home from work and fixes my oven!

I was so excited to see Niche and Megan's completed cookies- they look so yummy!

I'll get there girls -just not as quickly as I had


Chocolate Crackles -

Martha Stewart

8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

1 ¼ c. all purpose flour
½ c. unsweetened cocoa powder

2 tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

½ c. butter, room temperature
1 ½ c. packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

1/3 c. whole milk

1 c. granulated sugar
1 c. confectioners sugar

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Melt bittersweet chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over the top of a pan of simmering water. Set aside to cool. Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt.

In the bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer fitted with the paddle att

achment, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, and beat until well combined. Add melted chocolate. With mixer on low speed, alternate adding dry ingredients and m

ilk until just combined. Divide the dough into quarters, wrap with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator until firm, about 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Divide each piece into sixteen 1” balls. Roll in granulated sugar to coat, then in confectioners sugar to coat. Space 2” apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper.

Bake until surfaces crack, about 14 minutes rotating sheets halfway through. Let cookies cool on sheets on wire racks. Cookies can be stored between layers of parchment in airtight containers at

room temperature up to 3 days.


My husband came home from work and fixed my stove (temporary of course-I need a new part! ) I got busy and in no time my Chocolate Crackles were done.

Of course the peanut gallery had to get their sticky fingers into them but the votes all around were positive . My son actually asked if I could make these cookies all the time ! Aside from my stove dilema these cookies were easy and taste really good!

Great choice girls! Thanks...

I'm submitting this to Food Bloggas Eat Christmas Cookies blogging event. Check this link to participate in the event. Or check here to see the roundup (gets updated as entries come in).