Monday, December 26, 2011

Coconut Jam Thumbprints

I make these every year and every year my friends ask for the recipe. They are easy to make and quite addicting. I got this recipe from the Barefoot Contessa Family cookbook. She is one of my favorite tv cooks. I have several of her books and am rarely disappointed with a recipe I've used. Try these delish cookies and let me know what you think. They would be a great hostest gift for New Years eve or day party. 

Ingredients

Directions

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until they are just combined and then add the vanilla. Separately, sift together the flour and salt. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture to the creamed butter and sugar. Mix until the dough starts to come together. Dump on a floured board and roll together into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes.
Roll the dough into 1 1/4-inch balls. (If you have a scale they should each weigh 1 ounce.) Dip each ball into the egg wash and then roll it in coconut. Place the balls on an ungreased cookie sheet and press a light indentation into the top of each with your finger. Drop 1/4 teaspoon of jam into each indentation. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the coconut is a golden brown. Cool and serve.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Sugar Cookies

Since I was a kid me and my sisters have been making these sugar cookies. I am happy to say I now make them with my own kids. I don't know where the recipe orginated, I just know that we got it from my grandmother. I don't like cutout sugar cookies that are hard to bite through. That is why I love this recipe. The cookies are crisp on the outside but soft in the middle.

Ingredients

2 1/2 c. flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar
1 1/2 c sifted Confectioner sugar
1 c. Butter
1 egg
1 tsp Vanilla
1 tsp Almond

Recipe

Combine flour, soda and cream of tartar and set aside. Cream sugar and butter. Add egg and flavoring and then add dry ingredients. Chill for two hours. Pre heat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out dough and cut into shapes. Bake for 7-8 minutes

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Granola


I love granola but find that most of the stuff you buy in the store is too dry and bland. A friend of mine made granola when Brody was at her house. Brody didn't really like it but I ate the entire bag before we got home. She gave me the recipe that she got from the New York Times. I added the nuts and berries I like and changed the quantities slightly. It is very easy to make and once you taste it, you wont want to buy granola in the store any more. One of the shocking ingredients is olive oil. I thought it would add a weird after taste but it doesn't at all. Try it and let me know if you think it is delish.

Ingredients

3 c old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 c. roughly chopped pecans
1 c. shredded coconut
1/2 c. sliced almonds
1/2 c. maple syrup
1/2 c light brown sugar
1/2 c. olive oil
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c. dried cranberries

Directions

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a large bowl add oats, nuts, coconut, syrup, olive oil, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Mix it all together and then spread it on to a cookies sheet in an even layer. Bake for 40 minutes. Every ten minutes go in and stir it to keep the browning evenly. Once it is well toasted remove from oven. Add cranberries and toss one more time and let cool.

These make great holiday gifts to give a hostess or a teacher.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Peanut Butter Blossoms

I have had this recipe for the longest time that I don't even remember where it originated from. I have been making these cookies since I was a kid. To me it is the best peanut butter cookie and oh boy have I tried many. I think what I like about this cookie is that it reminds me of the peanut butter in the middle of a Reese's cup. I make them every Christmas because to me they are THE holiday cookie. I hope you try them and think they are just as delish as I do. If you have a better recipe please share.

Ingredients

1 1/4  c. flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c. shortening
1/2 c. Creamy Peanut butter
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 egg
11 ounce bag of Hershey kisses

Recipe

In a medium bowl mix together four, baking soda, salt and set aside. With a mixer cream together shortening and peanut butter until well blended. Then add both sugars. Add egg and mix until combined. Slowly add dry ingredients until all incorporated. Chill in refrigerator for 1 hour.

Roll into small 1 inch balls and then coat with sugar. Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes.  Immediately after you remove from the oven place a Hershey kiss on each cookie and then let cool.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Cornflake Marshmallow Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cornflake Marshmallow Chocolate chip Cookie
I was watching Martha Stewart and saw these cookies that I just had to make. Anything with chocolate and marshmallows is a must try. However, Christina Tosi called them Cornflake marshmallow chocolate chip cookies and the cornflake part kind of turned me off. I kept watching and saw the cookie at the very end and when she described it as crunchy on the outside crispy on the inside. I knew then that I was going to make them as soon as I went out and bought some cornflakes. During the show Martha says the dough is delicious and so I tried it and let me tell you I could have eaten the entire bowl raw. The combination of flakes and marshmallows creates a carmel in these cookies that is to die for. Here is the recipe off of Martha's website. Christina wrote a created a great book called "Momofuku Milk Bar."   If I didn't put myself on a no more cookbook rule because I live in a tiny little apartment, I would run out and get it now. If you don't want to make these cookies but are dying to eat them you can also order them on her website Momofuku. If you live here in NYC you can go to one of her shops and eat one of these cookies or try another. They take a bit more time then the average chocolate chip cookie but well worth the work. Ours were gone before the day was over. If you make them please let me know what you think.

Cornflake Chocolate Chip Marshmallow Cookies
Makes fifteen to twenty
Ingredients
16 tbsp. (2 sticks) room-temperature butter
1¼ c. granulated sugar
2/3 c. light brown sugar, tightly packed
1 egg
½ tsp. vanilla extract
1½ c. flour
½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
1½ tsp. kosher salt
3 c. Cornflake Crunch
2/3 c. mini chocolate chips
1¼ c. mini marshmallows


1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter and sugars; cream together on medium-high 2-3 minutes. With a spatula, scrape down sides of bowl, then add egg and vanilla and beat 7-8 minutes.
2. Reduce speed to low; add flour, baking powder and soda, and salt. Mix just until dough comes together, no longer than 1 minute. (Do not walk away from the machine during this step or risk overmixing.) Scrape down sides of bowl.
3. Still on low speed, paddle in cornflakes and chips until just incorporated, about 30-45 seconds. Paddle in marshmallows.
4. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Using a 2-oz. ice cream scoop, portion 1/3 c. dough at a time onto pan. Pat tops of dough domes flat. Wrap pan tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 1 week. (Do not bake room-temperature disks — they will not hold their shape.)
5. Heat oven to 375°. On a parchment- or Silpat-lined sheet pan, arrange chilled disks a minimum of 4 inches apart. Bake 18 minutes, until cookies are browned on edges and just beginning to brown toward the center. Cookies will puff, crackle, and spread. Leave them in oven for another minute or so if they still seem pale and doughy on the surface.
6. Cool cookies completely on pan before moving them to a plate or an airtight container for storage. At room temperature, cookies will keep fresh for 5 days; in the freezer, they will keep for 1 month.
Good luck keeping a stash around.









Thursday, December 8, 2011

Potato Romanoff

This recipe came from Jerry's mother Lucy. She was one of the best cooks I've ever known. There wasn't a single thing she made that I didn't think was delish. Luckily she taught me a thing or two and passed on some of her recipes to me. I changed one small thing on this recipe and she is no longer with us so I can't ask her why she had the mixture sit in the fridge over night. I found it made them come out to dry so I now make them the day of. I made these for Thanksgiving and thought they turned out and tasted just the way Lucy's did. I hope you make them and like them also.

Ingredients
6 medium potatoes
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup sour cream
1/3 cup scallions (green onions)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp white pepper

Directions

In a large pot boil potatoes in skins for about 30 minutes. Let potatoes cool and then peel. You can even cook these the night before and peel them when you are ready to assemble. Shred potatoes into a large bowl. Mix in 1 1/2 c. sharp cheddar cheese, sour cream, scallions, and salt and pepper. Mix it all together and pour into lightly buttered 9x13 in pan. spread evenly and top with remaining cheddar cheese. Bake for 45 min at 350 degrees.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Dark chocolate turtles

My husband surprised me with some of my favorite chocolates from someone I believe is the best chocolatier ever. Check out her website and if you are here in NYC you must experience her chocolates once. Kee's  One of my favorites is her dark chocolate turtles. So I was inspired to try and make it myself. It was slightly harder than I thought but they turned out to be quite delish. I think next time I will use mini muffin tins to help keep all the carmel from spreading all over the place. If you let the carmel sit too long it starts to get grainy and then you have to heat it all over again. The mini muffin tins would make this easier. Other than that these were not as hard as you would think and the result was worth it.

Ingredients
1/2 C heavy cream
1 stick unsalted butter
1 1/2 c. light brown sugar
1 tbs water
3/4 C. bittersweet chocolate chips (I used Ghiradelli)
Must have a candy thermometer
1 C. (5 ounces) pecans

Directions
Line a baking sheet with silpat or if you are going to use muffin tin spray with non stick cooking spray. Put whole pecans or coarsely chopped pecans in a small circle on the pan or tin.

In a 3 quart heavy bottom saucepan combine the cream, butter, sugar, and water. Stir over medium heat until it comes to a boil and is smooth. Stop stirring and let boil until candy thermometer reaches 240 degrees or soft ball stage. Usually takes between 5-7 minutes. Let the mixture cook for at least 30 seconds but about 1-2 minutes to get a little thicker if you are doing this on a cooking sheet. Using a metal spoon drizzle carmel over nuts in a circle. Allow carmel to sit for 1 hour before adding melted chocolate

Put chocolate chips in a heat proof glass bowl and set over pan with barely simmering water. Stir occasionally until chocolate has melted and smooth. Spoon the chocolate over the top of the carmel leaving a little of the carmel and nuts to show through. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Let them sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Apple pie tart

I love making apple pie but I have the hardest time rolling out dough. I follow exactly what Martha Stewart does on her show but every time my dough rolls out more like a snow flake than a circle. Hers is a perfect without any cracks and mine looks like a kid had a go at it. Now I don't have marble counters. I have those cheap laminate counter tops that I can't upgrade because this place is a rental. This apartment is like the inside of furnace year round so my counters are too warm and the dough sticks to it. I tried the rolling it between 2 sheets of plastic wrap but that really only works on tv. I was flipping through one of my food magazines and found this recipe and thought it was brilliant. I changed it slightly and I have to tell you it is the best combination of an apple pie and tart. They called it apple pie cake but I thought it was more like a tart than a cake. The crust is flaky on the bottom and the crumb on top is buttery and crunchy. If you too like apple pie but hate rolling the dough then this is what you've been looking for. Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Ingredients

2 c. Flour
1 c. light brown sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon (divided)
2 sticks of cold butter cut into small pieces
6-8 granny smith apples
2 tbs sugar

Recipe

In a food processor combine flour, brown sugar, 1tsp cinnamon and butter. Pulse until mixtures forms pea size pieces. You can also use pastry cutter if you want to do it by hand. Press 2/3 of the mixture into a spring form pan and about up 1/2 inch up the sides. Put it in the refrigerator while you prepare apples.





Pre heat oven to 350 degrees. Peel, core and cut apples into thin slices. I use a tool that does all of this at one time. It is great because it is super fast if you have kids they will love to do it with you. Check out the video of my son helping at the bottom. Toss the apples in a large bowl with remaining tsp of cinnamon and sugar. Put them in the prepared pan.


sprinkle the rest of the crumbled mixture over the top of the apples. place on top of a cookie sheet and bake for 1 hr. or until golden Brown. Let cool completely and then release pan.