Stamped Chocolate Shortbread
No need to buy cookie stamps...use kitchen tools to create texture!
See my Spicy Stamped Cookie recipe for details on the tools–scroll to bottom for pix. If you don't feel like stamping, skip step 7 in the recipe. These cookies are just as yummy without texture. :-)
Salted S'mores Matzah
It's been exactly one year, to the day, since my last post, and it's been quite a year. The absence was due to my sudden full-time role as caretaker for my mom, who ultimately lost her yearlong struggle with brain cancer.
So, here i am, trying to put the pieces back together during this strangest of quarantine times. And a big part of that effort is getting back to creating and baking.
Which brings me to this recipe—a riff on the classic chocolate toffee matzah seen at many a Passover seder. But you don't need to be Jewish, or have matzah, to enjoy this treat...most any cracker will do...like saltines, stoned wheat, or water crackers.
Any chocolate will work (Milk, Dark, White), but darker chocolate balances nicely with the super sweet toffee.
If you've made some other version of this recipe, most likely it called for half the amount of butter and brown sugar. I upped the quantities because i realized i prefer the toffee to seep under the matzah, coating the bottom as well as the top. That way, when you go to take a bite, toffee is the first thing your tongue hits.
If you want regular chocolate toffee matzah, you can bake for 12-14 minutes in step 5, and skip steps 6 & 7. Lastly, make sure to line the pan as described below, which will ensure easy removal post-bake.
Easter Bunny Linzer Cookies
The Easter linzer bunnies pictured here were made with Rodelle Pure Almond Extract. I've used their almond extract for years and absolutely love it.
To make these delicious treats, i used my Linzer Cookie Recipe.
For a twist on the traditional linzer decor, I topped some of them with a mixture of Rodelle’s Organic Dutch Process Baking Cocoa & Organic Hot Cocoa. I hadn't tried Rodelle's cocoa powders before. So, when they kindly offered to send me some to experiment with, i was super excited since i knew they are among Rodelle's bestsellers. and wow! they are so rich and flavorful!
To make the cocoa topping, mix 2 parts hot cocoa + 1 part baking cocoa, and then follow the powder sugar application instructions in the assembly section.
The cocoa bunnies are filled with melted white chocolate tinted in various shades. To make the filling, simply melt white chocolate chips in a microwave for 20-30 seconds, or until soft enough to mix. add food color a drop at a time till you achieve desired shade.
If you don’t have white chocolate on hand, tinted royal icing in a thicker consistency would do just fine.
Spicy Stamped Cookies
Yield: about 3 dozen 2” sandwich cookies
8 oz. unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. almond extract
3/4 tsp. salt
1 egg, room temperature
1 cup almond meal (I use Trader Joe’s. If you can’t find this in your store, grind roasted almonds in a food processor until finely ground.)
3 cups flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 cup jam, or filling of choice
glazed pumpkin spice cookies
Yield: About 3 dozen 2.5" cookies
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt (vegan: reduce/skip the salt if your butter contains salt)
3 tbsp pumpkin spice mix (recipe below)
1 egg (vegan: 1 flax egg)
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 cups confectioners' sugar
6 tbsp warm water
3/4 tsp pumpkin spice mix (recipe below)
pumpkin spice mix ingredients:
3 tbsp cinnamon
2 tbsp ginger
1 ½ tsp nutmeg
1 ½ tsp cloves
3/4 tsp allspice
3/8 tsp cardamom
Decorated Sugar Cookies
I've partnered with Five Acre Farms to spread the word that June is National Dairy Month! Local dairy farmers across the US are having a super hard time because of the low prices of conventionally-produced dairy products. We can help by buying local dairy products, which are almost always higher quality, transparently-sourced, ethically-produced and better tasting!! I feel so lucky that here in NY we have family-run farms and cooperatives like Five Acre Farms supplying us with awesome local dairy items.
I made these cookie cows with super fresh Five Acre Farms eggs. I just love how the farmer's story is inside each egg carton. The "pasture" is made from chives and lantana from my garden. You can get the cookie & icing recipe below.
My love for buying local food whenever possible started about 20 years ago, back when i was living in San Francisco and frequenting the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market. It soon became my Saturday am ritual. I'd stay for hours, getting to know the farmers, and eventually i started working there. My meals seemed even more delicious with that added dimension of knowing where my food comes from, and that sense of community that forms when you are connected to the source.
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