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9/29/2014

Ooey-Gooey Cinnamon Buns

Nothing beats sticky buns hot out of the oven!

Prep Time: 2 Hours 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Ready In: 3 HoursServings: 15

INGREDIENTS:
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45
  • degrees C)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup chopped pecans, divided
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
DIRECTIONS:


  1. In a small bowl, dissolve 1 teaspoon sugar and yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. Warm the milk in a small saucepan until it bubbles, then remove from heat. Mix in 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup butter and salt; stir until melted. Let cool until lukewarm.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the yeast mixture, milk mixture, eggs and 1 1/2 cup flour; stir well to combine. Stir in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes.
  3. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
  4. While dough is rising, melt 3/4 cup butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in 3/4 cup brown sugar, whisking until smooth. Pour into greased 9x13 inch baking pan. Sprinkle bottom of pan with 1/2 cup pecans; set aside. Melt remaining butter; set aside. Combine remaining 3/4 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup pecans, and cinnamon; set aside.
  5. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, roll into an 18x14 inch rectangle. Brush with 2 tablespoons melted butter, leaving 1/2 inch border uncovered; sprinkle with brown sugar cinnamon mixture. Starting at long side, tightly roll up, pinching seam to seal. Brush with remaining 2 tablespoons butter. With serrated knife, cut into 15 pieces; place cut side down, in prepared pan. Cover and let rise for 1 hour or until doubled in volume. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees
  6. Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool in pan for 3 minutes, then invert onto serving platter. Scrape remaining filling from the pan onto the rolls.



5/08/2014

Pumpkin pie / My twist on the spicy American classic

I've swapped the pumpkin for butternut squash – much easier to get hold of and just as tasty

Serves: 8
Cook time: 40 m

Ingredients
  • 500 g ready-made dessert pastry
  • 1 large butternut squash, quartered and seeds reserved
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 6 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 3 large free-range eggs, beaten
  • 200 ml double cream
Ingredients

Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF/gas 6. Roll the pastry to the thickness of a pound coin. Get a 22cm loose-bottomed tart tin, line with the pastry and bake blind for 20 minutes. Set aside. 

Lay the squash in a baking tray. Sprinkle with the nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon and drizzle with the maple syrup. Cover the tray tightly with a double layer of tinfoil and bake for 45 minutes until soft. Reduce the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4. 


Allow the pieces of squash to cool, then scoop out the flesh. You should have about 600g of cooked squash flesh. Don't forget to scrape out the bits in the tray and the maple syrup. Put in a food processor and whiz until smooth. Transfer to a bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of the sugar and the eggs. Mix well and stir in the cream. 


Fill the cooled tart case with the mix and bake for 45 minutes. Meanwhile, wash the stringy bits of squash off the seeds, dry them and lay them flat on a tray. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar and place in the oven with the pie for the last 10 minutes until crispy. 



Remove the tart from the oven. Sprinkle with the seeds when cool. Serve with cream or ice cream, if you're feeling naughty.

Bloomin' easy vanilla cheesecake / With fruity cherry compote

This is a gorgeous all-American cheesecake, made with stuff you've probably got in the cupboard

Serves: 12
1h 25m (plus cooling time)

Ingredients
For the cheesecake
  • 150 g unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for greasing
  • 250 g digestive biscuits, crushed
  • 115 g caster sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornflour
  • 900 g full-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 large free-range eggs
  • 115 ml double cream
  • 1 vanilla pod, scored lengthways and seeds removed, or ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • zest of 1 orange
For the cherry compote
  • 400 g stoned cherries
  • 3 heaped tablespoons caster sugar
  • 1 swig port or whisky, optional
  • icing sugar, for dusting
Method
This recipe somehow made its way on to the menu in the Fifteen Trattoria (I don't know of many Italian trattorias that have American cheesecake on their menus!) and I'm glad that it did because it's absolutely delicious. As you can see, the ingredients are all pretty everyday things. However, my tip for getting the very best out of this recipe is to make sure that you try and get the best ingredients that you possibly can.

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4, and grease and line the bottom and sides of a 24cm springform cake tin. Mix the biscuits and butter in a bowl, press into the base of the prepared tin and cook for 10 minutes. Then remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Turn the oven up to 200ºC/400ºF/gas 6. Combine the sugar and cornflour in a bowl. Add the cream cheese and beat, ideally with an electric whisk, until creamy. Add the eggs and beat well. Gradually add the cream, beating until smooth, then beat in the vanilla seeds or extract and lemon and orange zest.

Scrape the mixture on to the biscuit base, and gently shake it to level out the surface. Put the cheesecake in the centre of the oven and bake for 40 to 45 minutes until the top is golden brown and the filling has set around the edges. (A piece of foil over the top will stop it browning too much.) Let it cool at room temperature and serve after 2 or 3 hours, or, for a slightly firmer texture, put it in the fridge until it's nice and cold.

Before serving, put the cherries in a pan, sprinkle over the sugar and add a splash of water. Put on a low to medium heat and simmer gently for 10 minutes. If you've got some port or whisky handy, feel free to add some. When the compote has reduced down it may be a little dry, so add a splash of water to loosen it. Remove from the heat and let it cool down, then serve spooned over the cheesecake with a dusting of icing sugar.

5/06/2014

Flourless Lemon Almond Cake Recipe

A gluten-free, light and airy lemon cake make with almond flour, eggs, and sugar.
It helps to separate the eggs first, while they are cold, and then let them sit to come to room temperature as you prep the other ingredients.  Eggs are easier to separate when cold, and they perform better as leavening agents when at room temperature. When whipping egg whites, make sure your equipment is perfectly clean. Any fat (or even bits of egg yolk in the whites) can keep the egg whites from properly whipping up.

Prep time: 20 minutes  Cook time: 40 minutes
Yield: Serves 8.

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 Tbsp lemon zest, packed
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) white sugar, divided 1/4 cup (50 g) and 1/4 cup (50 g)
  • 1 1/2 cup (170 g) finely ground almond flour*
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder (make sure your baking powder is fresh!)
  • 1 teaspoon white or cider vinegar
  • Pinch of salt
  • Powdered sugar for sprinkling

METHOD

1 Preheat the oven to 350°F (175 °C).  Place a round of parchment paper on the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan, and grease it and the sides of the pan with butter or cooking spray.
2 In a large bowl, beat together with a wooden spoon the egg yolks, lemon zest, and 1/4 cup sugar until smooth.
3 In a separate bowl, whisk together the almond flour, ground cardamom, and baking powder.   Add the flour mixture to the egg yolk mixture and beat until smooth.
4 With an electric mixer with a very clean bowl and clean whisk attachment, beat the egg whites, starting on low speed and gradually increasing the speed. When bubbles start to form, add a pinch of salt and the teaspoon of vinegar (both the salt and the vinegar will help the beaten egg whites maintain better structure, as will the sugar in the next step). As the egg whites begin to increase in volume, sprinkle in the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar, a little at a time, as you continue to beat the eggs whites.  Beat until soft peaks form.
5 Fold the beaten egg whites into the almond mixture a large scoopful at a time.  You won't get much lift with the first third of the egg whites, but as you add more, you'll be able to gently fold in the whites in such a way as to create a light batter.
6 Gently scoop the batter into a the prepared springform pan and place in the oven. Bake for 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Run a sharp knife around the edge of the cake helping it to separate from the side of the pan. Release the springform pan sides, and gently move the cake (on parchment) to a cake serving plate. Sprinkle with a little powdered sugar before serving.

5/04/2014

No Bake Chocolate Cheesecake


YIELD: Serves 12
ACTIVE TIME:15 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 4 hours
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT: 8-inch springform pan

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces chocolate cookie wafers (such as Nabisco Famous wafers)
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) plus 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 7 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
  • Cocoa powder for dusting
Procedures
  1. Pulse cookie crumbs and granulated sugar in food processor until fine. Place in a large bowl and toss with melted butter until moistened. Firmly press into the bottom and 1 1/2-inches up sides of an 8-inch springform pan.
  2. Using a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and sugar on medium speed until light and creamy, about 1 minute, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Reduce speed to low and mix in vanilla, sour cream, and melted chocolate until smooth and homogenous.
  3. Spoon mixture into crust and smooth top. Chill until set, about 4 hours. Dust with cocoa powder and let sit for 30 minutes at room temperature before serving.

5/03/2014

SWEETHEART PALMIERS

This crisp and delicate cookie is made with puff pastry dough sprinkled with sugar and rolled into the shape of palm leaves.  Serve them with coffee or tea, or with your favorite dessert sampling.

THAW: 40 minutes  PREP: 15 minutes
BAKE: 15 minutes  CHILL: 30 minutes
COOL: 10 minutes  SERVES: 18

RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • 6 tbsp. red decorating sugar
  • 1 pkg. (17.3 ounces) Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry Sheets, thawed
DIRECTIONS

  1. Beat the egg and water in a small bowl with a fork.
  2. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons sugar on the work surface.  Unfold 1 pastry sheet on the work surface.  Brush the pastry sheet with the egg mixture and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar.  Roll up 2 opposite short sides towards the center, leaving a 1/2-inch space in the center.  Fold the pastry in half, placing one roll on top of the other.  The 2 rolls on one side form the top of the "heart".  Pinch the center along the length of the opposite side to form the point of the "heart".  Wrap the roll in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.  Repeat with the remaining pastry sheet
  3. Heat the oven to 400°F.  Cut each roll into 18 (about 1/2-inch) slices.  Place the pastries, cut-side down, onto 2 baking sheets. 
  4. Bake for 15 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown.  Remove the pastries from the baking sheets and let cool on wire racks for 10 minutes.

5/02/2014

LEMON RASPBERRY TART

A chocolate-coated puff pastry crust is filled with homemade lemon curd and topped with fresh raspberries for a dessert that will make your guests rave!

THAW: 40 minutes  CHILL: 2 hours
PREP: 25 minutes  BAKE: 20 minutes
COOL: 10 minutes
SERVES: 8

RECIPE

INGREDIENTS
  • 10 egg yolks
  • 1/2 of a 17.3-ounce package Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry Sheets (1 sheet), thawed
  • 1 cup lemon juice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp. butter
  • 3 sq (1 ounce each) semi-sweet chocolate, melted
  • 1 pt. fresh raspberry
  • Fresh mint leaves


DIRECTIONS
  1. Heat the oven to 400°F.  Beat the egg yolks in a medium bowl with a fork or whisk.
  2. Unfold the pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface.  Roll the pastry sheet into a 12-inch square.  Cut off the corners to make a circle.  Press the pastry into a 10-inch tart pan with a removable bottom.  Trim the excess pastry.  Prick the pastry thoroughly with a fork.  Place a piece of aluminum foil onto the pastry.  Add dried beans or pie weights
  3. Bake for 20 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.  Remove the foil and beans.  Let the pastry cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
  4. Heat the lemon juice and sugar in a 2-quart saucepan over medium heat to a boil. Remove the saucepan from the heat.  Add the butter and stir until melted.  Gradually stir half the lemon mixture into the egg yolks.  Return the egg mixture to the saucepan.  Cook and stir for 1 minute
  5. Spread the chocolate on the pastry.  Spoon the lemon mixture over the chocolate.  Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or until set.
  6. Arrange the raspberries on the tart.  Garnish with the mint.

4/22/2014

Walnut Snowball Cookies

Festive holiday cookies made from a mixture of finely chopped walnuts, flour and vanilla, rolled into little balls and dusted with powdered sugar.

  • Prep time: 10 minutes  
  • Cook time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: Makes about 20 cookies.

  • INGREDIENTS
    • 1 cup all-purpose or cake flour
    • 1 1/2 cups walnuts, finely chopped
    • 2-3 Tbsp sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/4 pound butter (at room temperature)
    • Pinch of salt
    • Powdered sugar, to coat (about 1 cup)

    METHOD

    1 Preheat the oven to 300°F and prepare a large cookie sheet.
    2 Mix all the dry ingredients (flour, walnuts, salt, sugar) in a large bowl. Add the vanilla extract. Add the butter in little pieces, and combine everything together with your (clean!) hands until the mixture looks like a coarse meal with nut bits in it. Form the dough into small balls no larger than a walnut and place on the cookie sheet, spaced at least an inch apart from each other.
    3 Bake for 35 minutes. When they are still warm, but cool enough to touch, roll the cookies in some powdered sugar. Set aside on a rack to cool completely. When cool, dust again in powdered sugar.

    4/19/2014

    Coconut Macaroons Recipe

    Under no circumstances can you use reduced fat coconut for this recipe. Even subbing a portion of the coconut with the reduced fat kind will result in a dough that doesn't want to hold together or cookies that are too dry to be good.

    Prep time: 10 minutes
    Cook time: 15 minutes
    Yield: Makes 20-24 cookies.

    INGREDIENTS
    • 1/3 cup (60g) of egg whites (from 2 extra large eggs, or a teaspoon and a half less than what you can get from 3 large eggs)
    • 3/4 cup sugar (5 1/2 oz, 150g)
    • 2 to 2 1/4 cups* medium grate unsweetened coconut (5.5 to 6.17 oz, 150-175g)
    • 5 teaspoons smooth, unsweetened applesauce (regular or baby food)
    METHOD

    1 Line a bakingsheet with parchment or Silpat.

    2 Place the unsweetened coconut in a food processor. Pulse for 60 seconds.

    3 Combine the egg whites, sugar, coconut, and applesauce in a medium-sized, thick-bottomed saucepan. Mix well and heat on medium low heat, stirring frequently, until the ingredients are well incorporated, and the mixture forms a smooth paste and is warm to the touch (about 120°F). If the mixture seems too dry or stiff to pipe through a piping bag, add a little more applesauce. If the mixture seems too wet, add a little more coconut.

    4 Place warm mixture into a pastry bag and pipe tall mounds onto a baking sheet, about an inch and a half apart from each other. Or form mounds with a 1 tablespoon sized scoop. Let the formed cookies dry out for a few minutes (15 minutes or so) before baking.

    5 Preheat oven to 425°F. Bake the cookies until they start to get color on the edges where the cookie meets the pan, 5 to 7 minutes. Let cool on the pan for a couple minutes, then carefully lift the pan liner with the cookies off the pan and place on a rack. The cookies will firm up as they cool. Once cool, remove from the pan liner.

    Store in a covered box for up to 5 days at room temperature.

    4/16/2014

    Chocolate Linzer Cookies


    Beautiful sandwich cookies filled with raspberry jam and topped with chocolate

    prep time:1 hr 10 min  total time: 2 hr 10 min
    ingredients: 11  servings: 36


    Ingredients

    • 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 2 eggs
    • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 cup hazelnuts, toasted, skin removed and and ground*
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    • 1/2 ounce semisweet baking chocolate, finely chopped
    • 1/2 cup raspberry jam
    • 1 ounce semisweet baking chocolate, melted
    Steps

    1 Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon. Beat in vanilla and eggs until smooth. Add remaining ingredients except jam and melted chocolate. Beat until well blended. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour (dough will be sticky).
    2 Heat oven to 375°F. Roll 1/4 of dough at a time to 1/8-inch thickness between sheets of waxed paper. (Keep remaining dough refrigerated until ready to roll.) Cut with 2-inch cookie cutter (dip cutter into baking cocoa if desired). Cut small shape from center of some of the cookies if desired. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.
    3 Bake 7 to 9 minutes or until light brown. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely.

    4 Spread about 1/2 teaspoon jam on bottom of whole cookies; top with cutout cookie or another whole cookie. Drizzle with melted chocolate. Let stand until chocolate is firm. 3 dozen sandwich cookies

    4/15/2014

    Chocolate Covered Reese’s Rice Krispie Treats


    The greatest part about these Rice Krispie treats? No oven required! In fact, you don’t even need the stovetop. Everything, including the shiny chocolate glaze, is made in the microwave. If, however, you do not own a microwave or prefer to use the stovetop, we have provided the method below in the recipe Notes section.Yield: 24  Prep time: 10 minutes
    Cook time: 10 minutes  Total time: 20 minutes

    You Will Need
    • 4 tablespoons (57 grams) butter (1/2 stick)
    • 1 10-ounce bag (283 grams) mini marshmallows
    • 6 cups (180 grams) toasted rice cereal (Rice Krispies)
    • 2 cups (60 grams) crispy corn puff cereal (Kix)
    • Six 1.5-ounce packages Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (12 peanut butter cups)
    • One 10 oz bag (283 grams) bittersweet chocolate chips (about 1 1/2 cups)
    • 2 teaspoons honey
    • 8 tablespoons (113 grams) butter (1 stick)
    • 1/2 cup salted peanuts, chopped
    Directions
    1. Generously spray a 13-inch by 9-inch baking dish. (You could also line with parchment paper).
    1. Cut each peanut butter cup into six pieces. In a bowl that is large enough to fit all of the cereal, combine cereals and the chopped peanut butter cups.
    1. Add butter and marshmallows to a large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds. Use a spoon and stir the marshmallows (while they may not look melted, once you stir them they begin to turn molten). If some marshmallows are still solid, place the bowl back into the microwave for 10 seconds. Stir until smooth. (If after 10 seconds they still have not all melted, repeat, in 10 second intervals, until they are – just remember to stir each time).
    1. Pour melted marshmallow over cereal and gently stir until well coated.
    1. Transfer mixture to baking dish and press into one even layer. Cover baking dish with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and let sit, at room temperature for 30 minutes or until cooled and set.
    1. Once set, the chocolate glaze can be added to the top. To make glaze, add chocolate, and the butter to a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds. Use a spoon to stir then microwave for 20 second intervals, stirring after each interval until chocolate, and the butter have melted into a glaze. (In our microwave, this took the initial 30 seconds then four intervals of 20 seconds).
    1. Add honey then vigorously stir the glaze until shiny, and then pour over cooled Rice Krispy treats. Now, use an off-set spatula or knife to spread the glaze into one even layer. Immediately top with chopped peanuts then let sit another 20 to 30 minutes until the glaze has set completely. Cut into 4 rows by 6 rows.


    4/13/2014

    Guinness Chocolate Cake Recipe With Creamy White Frosting

    About half a bottle of beer is added to an already moist and rich
    cake. The cake is deep, dark and chocolately with just a hint of
    stout. [br] [br] Since the cake is quite rich, we love topping with a
    simple no-fuss cream cheese frosting.

    Yield: 8  Prep time: 20 minutes
    Cook time: 40 minutes  Total time: 1 hour

    You Will Need

    For the Cake
    • 3/4 cup (about half of a 11.2 ounce bottle) Guinness Stout beer
    • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter plus more for pans
    • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder plus more for pans
    • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1/2 cup sour cream
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    For the Frosting
    • 8 ounces (1 package) cream cheese, room temperature
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
    • 1/2 cup whipping or heavy cream
    Directions
    Cake
    1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter then dust the bottom and sides of a 9-inch round cake pan.
    2. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat then add beer and warm through. Remove from heat, and then whisk in cocoa powder until completely smooth. Cool 1 minute.
    3. In the meantime, add flour, sugar, baking soda and salt to a large mixing bowl then use a clean whisk to combine. Make sure you whisk for 20 seconds or so, you want to make sure everything is combined. In another small bowl, whisk together the eggs and sour cream until well blended.
    4. Pour cocoa and stout mixture into the dry ingredients then use a spatula or large spoon to gently stir together. You do not need to beat, just stir until incorporated. Now, add the egg and sour cream mixture and continue to stir until incorporated.
    5. Evenly fill prepared cake pan then bake in the oven about 40 minutes until a tooth pick can be inserted and come out clean and when you tap the top of the cake, it bounces back. Transfer cake, in pan, to a cooling rack and cool 10 minutes then turn cake out of the pan onto the rack and cool completely.
    Frosting
    1. Add cream cheese and vanilla extract to a large bowl then use a hand mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add powdered sugar a 1/4 cup at a time, mixing after each addition.
    2. Add cream and beat until frosting is light and creamy. Frost top of cake.

    4/12/2014

    Fried Apples Beer Battered Apple Slices

    Fried apple slices can be served savory with a sprinkle of salt or
    sweet with a dusting of powdered sugar. When you deep fry at
    home, make sure you are actively engaged and use a
    thermometer to regulate the oil temperature.

    Yield: 4  Prep time: 10 minutes
    Cook time: 15 minutes Total time: 25 minutes

    You Will Need

    • 4-5 cups vegetable oil, or other high smoke-point oil such as
    • canola oil or peanut oil
    • 1 egg white
    • 1 cup dark white beer, slightly flat
    • 1 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • 3 Granny Smith or other baking apple, peeled and cored
    • course sea salt or powdered sugar (depending on how you plan to serve the apples, sweet or savory)

    Directions
    Pour oil into a large saucepan (5-6 quart size) to reach a depth of 2-inches. Heat the oil over
    medium heat until it reaches 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
    In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg white until frothy then gently stir in the beer, flour, salt,
    cinnamon and cayenne pepper until smooth.
    Slice the apples into ¼-inch rings then pat dry. Working in batches, add the apple slices into the
    batter, then remove them one by one, allowing any excess batter to drip off and carefully place
    into the oil. Fry for about 1 minute on each side until golden. Remove the fried apples from the
    oil with a slotted spoon and transfer to paper towels. Immediately sprinkle each slice with a
    pinch of course salt or if serving as a dessert, with powdered sugar.


    4/11/2014

    Soft Chocolate Andes Mint Cookies



    Prep time: 20 minutes  Cook time: 10 minutes
    Total time: 30 minutes Yield: 18-20

    These chocolate mint cookies have Andes mints added to the batter as well as a chocolate glaze on top. They are simple to make, but it is important to beat the eggs for at least 15 minutes - this makes sure they become soft and risen when baked.
    Yield: 18-20
    You Will Need
    FOR Brownie Cookies
    • 10 ounces (283 grams) semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
    • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • 2 ounces (57 grams) chopped Andes mints or Andes baking chips (about 1/3 cup)
    • 2 eggs
    • 1/3 cup (67 grams) sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/4 cup (35g) all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
    FOR Mint Chocolate Glaze
    • 2 ounces (28 grams) semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
    • 1 tablespoon butter
    • 1 1/2 ounces (42 grams) chopped Andes mints or of Andes baking chips (about 1/4 cup)
    • Extra chopped Andes mints or of Andes baking chips for topping cookies
    Directions
    1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat.
    1. Combine the 10 ounces of chopped semisweet chocolate and 3 tablespoons of butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 20 seconds, stir then microwave for another 20 seconds. Repeat this process until the chocolate and butter have melted. (This takes 2 to 3 minutes).
    1. Now, stir in the chopped Andes mints (or baking chips). Continue to stir until melted. The heat from the chocolate and butter should be enough to melt the Andes mints, if they do not melt, place back into the microwave for 20 seconds to help melt.Chocolate Cookies Step 1
    1. Combine eggs, sugar and vanilla extract in a stand mixer, fitted with whisk attachment, then beat on medium speed for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, the eggs should have become pale yellow in color, thickened and glossy. At this point, the eggs and sugar will be at the ribbon stage. This means when you pull the beater out of the mixture the mixture will slowly fall back into itself, looking like a ribbon. If the eggs and sugar do not look this way, continue to beat until they do.
    1. Place a sifter over chocolate mixture then add flour and baking powder. Sift over chocolate. Then, gently stir the sifted flour and baking powder into the chocolate. Now, add the whipped egg and sugar and gently fold into the chocolate.Mint Chocolate Cookies Step 2Andes Chocolate Cookies Step 3
    1. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of the cookie batter onto the lined baking sheet, leaving about 2 inches between each cookie. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until the cookies have puffed and cracked on top. Cool completely on baking sheet. As the cookies cool, they will deflate a little.
    1. Once cookies have cooled, make the chocolate glaze. To make glaze, combine chocolate and 1 tablespoon of butter in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 20 seconds, stir then microwave for another 20 seconds. Repeat this process until the chocolate and butter have melted. (This takes about a minute). Stir in the Andes mints then spoon about 1 teaspoon of glaze onto each cookie and spread into a thin layer. Top with extra mints.Chocolate Cookies Step 4

    4/09/2014

    Vanilla Sugar Cookies


    Total Time:25 mins
    Prep Time:15 mins
    Cook Time:10 mins

    Ingredients:

    • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 8 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
    • 2 cups sugar
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla
    Directions:


    1.Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
    2.Beat butter and sugar until fluffy.
    3.Beat in eggs one at a time, scraping down bowl each time, then add vanilla.
    4.Add flour mixture and mix at low speed until dough just comes together.
    5.Knead a couple of times just until smooth, then pat into a flat disk, wrap in plastic and chill until firm enough to roll.
    6.Roll and cut as desired and place on parchment-lined sheets.
    7.Bake at 350° for 8-10 minutes.

    4/08/2014

    Raspberry and Almond Shortbread Thumbprints



    Prep Time: 30 Minutes
    Cook Time: 18 Minutes
    Ready In: 1 Hour 15 Minutes
    Servings: 36

    INGREDIENTS:
    • 1 cup butter, softened
    • 2/3 cup white sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam
    • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
    • 3/4 teaspoon almond extract
    • 1 teaspoon milk
    DIRECTIONS:
    1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
    2.In a medium bowl, cream together butter and white sugar until smooth. Mix in 1/2 teaspoon almond extract. Mix in flour until dough comes together. Roll dough into 1 1/2 inch balls, and place on ungreased cookie sheets. Make a small hole in the center of each ball, using your thumb and finger, and fill the hole with preserves.
    3.Bake for 14 to 18 minutes in preheated oven, or until lightly browned. Let cool 1 minute on the cookie sheet.
    4.In a medium bowl, mix together the confectioners' sugar, 3/4 teaspoon almond extract, and milk until smooth. Drizzle lightly over warm cookies.

    Award Winning Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies


    Prep Time: 15 Minutes
    Cook Time: 12 Minutes
    Ready In: 1 Hour 40 Minutes
    Servings: 72

    INGREDIENTS:
    • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 2 teaspoons baking soda
    • 2 cups butter, softened
    • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
    • 1/2 cup white sugar
    • 2 (3.4 ounce) packages instant vanilla
    • pudding mix
    • 4 eggs
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
    • 2 cups chopped walnuts (optional)
    DIRECTIONS:

    1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Sift together the flour and baking soda, set aside.
    2.In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar. Beat in the instant pudding mix until blended. Stir in the eggs and vanilla. Blend in the flour mixture. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. Drop cookies by rounded spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.
    3.Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in the preheated oven. Edges should be golden brown.

    1/26/2014

    Gluten-Free Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars


    Made with browned butter, these bars taste slightly of caramel. As for the chocolate chips and coconut, they're merely suggestions. Add whatever chocolate, nuts, or dried fruit you enjoy to these bars. The recipe can handle about 3 cups total of "mix-in" ingredients. Or skip the mix-ins altogether—thanks to the browned butter and brown sugar, these bars taste great on their own

    serves Makes 18 bars, active time 30 minutes, total time About 1 hour

    Ingredients

    • 2/3 cup (5 1/4 ounces) unsalted butter
    • Gluten-free cooking spray
    • 1 1/4 (6 ounces) cups gluten-free oat flour
    • 1 cup (4 ounces) white or brown rice flour
    • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) cornstarch
    • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 3/4 cups (12 ounces) packed dark brown sugar
    • 3 large eggs
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 cup (6 ounces) dark chocolate chips
    • 1 cup (4 ounces) sweetened shredded coconut
    Preparation

    1. In small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir frequently. At first, the butter will bubble and foam. Cook until butter solids turn lightly golden brown. Butter will be aromatic, about ten minutes. Pour butter into a small bowl. (this prevents it from overcooking) Allow to cool until it just begins to thicken but doesn’t fully set, about 20 minutes.
    2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 13 by 9-inch pan with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside. In small bowl, whisk together oat flour, rice flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, combine cooled browned butter and dark brown sugar. Cream on medium speed until combined. Add eggs one at a time. Allow eggs to fully incorporate before adding the next egg. After you add the last egg, cream for 30 seconds. Stop mixer. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl. Cream for an additional 30 seconds. Butter-egg mixture will be light.
    3. Stop mixer. Add flour mixture and vanilla. Mix until a stiff dough forms. Stop mixer. Add chocolate chip and coconut. Turn on mixer and blend until ingredients are incorporated. Spread batter into prepared pan. Bake until are set and golden brown, about 35 minutes. Cool in pan and then cut into bars.
    Source: seriouseats

    Caramel-Masala Popcorn and Pistachios from 'Salty Snacks'


    serves serves 6 to 8, active time 20 minutes, total time 1 hour and 20 minutes

    Ingredients

    • 8 cups popped popcorn (about 1/4 cup kernels)
    • 1 cup chopped toasted pistachios
    • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
    • 2 tablespoons garam masala
    • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
    • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 teaspoon fleur de sel, coarse or flaky sea salt, or kosher salt
    Preparation

    1. Preheat the oven to 250°F. Put the popcorn in a large baking dish, roasting pan, or broiler pan and scatter the pistachios over; set aside.
    2. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the garam masala and cook, 
stirring, until quite aromatic, about 1 minute. Add the brown sugar and corn syrup and cook, stirring often, until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture comes just to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, continue cooking for 3 to 
4 minutes, stirring constantly. Take the pan from the heat and stir in the baking soda, which will lighten and expand the mixture. Pour the caramel mixture over the popcorn and pistachios and stir to combine. Sprinkle the salt evenly over the popcorn. (Don’t worry about the caramel not evenly coating the popcorn at this point.)
    3. Bake the popcorn for 1 hour, taking the pan from the oven every 15 minutes to stir the popcorn well and help distribute the caramel evenly. Set the pan aside to cool, stirring occasionally to avoid sticking. When cool, transfer the caramel corn to a serving bowl. If you are not serving the popcorn within a few hours, store it in an airtight container for 
1 to 2 days.
    Source: seriouseats