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Archive for the ‘Cookies’ Category

Oatmeal Raisin Dunkers

Hi everyone.

Yes yes! I know I am such a slacker. I haven’t updated my blog for what seems like forever. But here I am again trying to pick up where we left off.

I have been meaning to do a post but sometime now but things got a little crazy for me. (In a good way, that is) I was lucky enough to have my family visit me from Malaysia for the last six weeks. Their visit has kept me very busy and extremely happy. Let’s just say that it was a very memorable holiday that we shared together. I spend every day going out to the city and barely have any time to get things done, let alone attempt to do a blog post.

I am now going through the after effects of their vacation. I miss them so much. I hope that they will be back soon for another visit. But right now, I have a lot of catching up to do. I can’t believe how the weeks and months just flew by, just like that. And then, what do you know, months have passed since my last post. Honestly, this is not what I had planned.

I planned on baking these amazing oatmeal cookies. I plan on eating this every morning for breakfast with my coffee. I also plan on dunking this with a cold glass of skim milk. I imagine they would be irresistible, a little crunchy on the edges and slightly chewy in the middle and loaded with just the right amount of raisins.

These babies are my latest obsession. Inspired by the Trader Joe’s cookie dunkers selection. I can’t seem to keep my hands of these. Instead of using cranberries, I went with the traditional raisin version. It is after all, my all-time favorite. If you like, you can drizzle them with melted white chocolate after they are baked and cooled. It’s delicious either way.

Oatmeal Raisin Dunkers

3/4 cup unsalted butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
2 tbs heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
3 cups rolled oats
1/3 cup toasted wheat germ

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease cookie sheets or use silicon baking sheet.

In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar and white sugar until light and fluffy. Then mix in the egg, heavy cream and vanilla extract. Mix together the dry ingredient in a large bowl. Combine the flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, rolled oats and toasted wheat germ.

Stir that into the creamed mixture. Scoop out a spoonful of mixture and roll it out into small logs and place onto the prepared cookie sheet. Bake them for 10 to 12 minutes in the preheated oven.

Note: If the tops of these cookies look a little under bake do not sweat it will continue to bake on the cookie sheet while cooling.

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Corn Flake Crisps

 

Time is flying by so fast these days and I find myself trying to catch my breath just to catch up on things.I didn’t even realize that it’s been more than two weeks since my last post. I have been keeping myself busy these days planning and stressing over the wedding cake that I will be making this spring. I have less than two months before the wedding and right now it’s all about preparing the decorations and sorting out the check list. I recently had a light bulb moment at 3 am and woke up all giddy with ideas on how my cake would look like. Finally, I now have it figured out after months of searching for inspiration I am happy to report that I finally got it. And with that, I would like to celebrate it with something sweet of course!

As the weather here in the Northeast is slowly but surely finding its way to spring, I am seeing a lot of pretty bright colors everywhere; in dresses, shoes, bags and of course food. My color for today is yellow. And this makes me think of an old time family favorite that my mom and I used to bake. The idea of crushing golden crisp cornflakes with my hands is really fun plus it’s also a great way to release any build up aggression.

These cookies are really yummy. I love the idea of using corn flakes in cookies. It adds a delicious crunch to sink your teeth in and of course, corn flakes appeals to just about anyone.

Corn flake Crisps

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup ground almonds
1 cup self-rising flour
2 cups lightly crushed corn flakes 

In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and creamy. Then add in the egg and vanilla and continue to mix.

Combine the ground almond and self-rising flour; add to the creamed mixture and mix well.

Roll a tablespoon of the mixture into a ball or use a small ice cream scoop and roll in the crushed corn flakes. Place on cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until lightly golden.

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Gingerbread Men

This is a little last minute for me but, I just baked this batch of gingerbread men and I couldn’t wait to share this post with you. To me, these cute little fellas really know how to set the Christmas mood in my kitchen. They leave a lovely earthy scent that beats any scented candles out there. It can be very intoxicating.

Every year I try to dress them up differently to welcome the holidays, sometimes I give them tiny bow ties and sometimes i give them cute little buttons. This year I piped a bright red hearts on to each of them with some royal icing and they turn out looking pretty darn sweet.

I am putting a rush on this post, just so I will make it in time to wish all of you a Merry Christmas!!

I am really excited about Christmas Eve and I just can’t wait to cook my thirteen pound bird. She is a real beauty and I am hoping, delicious too. This year I am going with simplicity. It won’t be anything over the top, just the good old fashion Christmas Eve dinner with lots of egg nog. Then for the next couple of days, we will be having a whole lot of left overs. So, it’s kinda like, Christmas all over again.

 

 

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Happy Thanksgiving

It’s that time of the year again when we are all bound by the beautiful aroma of turkey, pumpkin pie, football the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade and then some. (but not necessarily in that order). Then for some of us, the madness of black Friday.

This year thanksgiving I will be at my cousin’s place. I will be bringing over a pumpkin pie, green bean casserole and this cookie doll house for my cousin’s six year old daughter who is so cute by the way. I was going to get her a toy but then I figured this would be way better. Gingerbread houses are really all the rage during the holidays and I absolutely love it. I wanted to give this a different twist for thanksgiving and thought this rendition would be pretty sweet.

Making this was not complicated at all but it does takes up a fair amount of time. I added some doll house furniture to complete the look. There is a dresser, a china cabinet, grandfather’s clock, a dining table with a whole roasted turkey and some holiday cookies, and of course a little puppy and his dog dish. I used tinted royal icing for hold it all together. All the cookies are hand cut without any molds. Yeah, that was why it took a while.

china cabinet

 

puppy and his dish

 

whole roasted turkey

I gotta say that I had this idea swimming around in my head for a while now and I’m so glad I did it. The end results look just adorable and I can’t wait to bring this over for thanks giving tomorrow. I hope she likes it.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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Coconut Raspberry Shortbread

Today is one of those days when I take a mental trip down memory lane. I blame it on the cold weather, when all I want to do is just curl up on my sofa wrapped myself in a thick blanket and indulge in something sweet with my big pink mug of strong coffee. I start to think about my first baking memory. I think about how simple ingredients can bring so much pleasure, how it can dress up good plain shortbread dough into something sophisticated.  When I was nine, my mother would always bake her famous Christmas pie using shortcrust pastry. There would always be left over pastry dough that she would let me play with. And there would also be enough for her to make these lovely cookies. Ever since then her Christmas pie would not be complete until she bakes up some of these for us.

I tweak the original recipe and came up with a nice crumbly version by using shortbread for the dough instead of using shortcrust pastry. But if you are baking up some pie anytime soon then save the scraps for these.

Coconut Raspberry Shortbread

1 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam
Flake coconut, sweetened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F  

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy then add in the vanilla extract.

Mix in the flour until the dough comes together.  Wrapped dough with a cling wrap and let it rest in the fridge for 20 minutes or until ready to use.

Roll dough on a floured surface and cut it up in to squares or small rectangular cookies. Then brush each cookie with raspberry jam and then sprinkle the coconut on it. Then place it on a cookie sheet and bake it in a preheated oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Let it cool down a minute or so on the cookie sheet.

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Molasses Cookie

Don’t you just love this time of the year?

Where the weather is cool and sunny and the beautiful fall colors just set the scene outside my window. The view is absolutely breathtaking and I just want to soak it all in. I feel like everything seems to be moving so fast lately and sometimes it’s just nice to sit back and appreciate this moment.

So, the best way to do that is to bake up a batch of my favorite molasses cookie. Which in my mind, is the official fall cookie (no disrespect to the other cookies out there) I love the earthy aroma of this cookie and how the smell lingers in your kitchen all day long it just heavenly.

You can make this into bigger cookies if you like; I did mine a little smaller. I used a one teaspoon as a measurement but whatever size you decided it will still be fantastic, it will still have its signature cracked tops glistening with sugar which in my book is what it’s all about.

So bake this today and share it with your friend, your family, your co-worker or even a lover and just enjoy this beautiful fall moment.

Molasses Cookie adapted from Allrecipes

3/4 cup margarine, melted
1 cup white sugar plus extra for rolling on the cookies
1 egg
1/4 cup molasses, light unsulphured
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, mix together the melted margarine, 1 cup sugar, and egg on medium speed until smooth. Then stir in the molasses.

In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and ginger, then add this into the molasses mixture and mix thoroughly.

Roll the dough into small rounds (use the 1 teaspoon as a guide) and roll them in the extra white sugar.

Place cookies 2-3 inches apart onto baking sheets and bake for 12 minutes or until tops are cracked. Remove cookies on a wire rack and let cool completely.

Tips:

Before measuring the molasses, spray the cup with some cooking spray. The molasses will flow out nice and easy.

For a softer and chewier cookie, let the cookie cool on to the baking sheet and not on the wire rack.

VariationSpread the cool cookies with a layer icing glaze.

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Peanut Butter Fudge Macarons

I am pleased to report that my second attempt in making these finicky little beauties went pretty well. It went a lot better than the first time, that’s for sure. However, I still have to work on these a lot more before I can officially filed it under a success story. This time, I managed to get the top of my macaron nice and smooth without any wrinkles and without any of those almond bumps. A good tip is to try to run the almond and powdered sugar mixture a couple of time through a sieve and regrind any that don’t pass through the sieve.

This time, I used Tartelette recipe, which was so much easier to follow. I also tried to alter the baking time to 12 minutes instead of the suggested 15 minutes and lowered the oven temperature just a tad for better visible feet. I think this is all about getting to know your oven and finding out which baking time works best on your oven.

After filling the macarons, I like to leave them refrigerated for about an hour before digging in. You don’t really have to do this, but I personally like how the flavor develops over time.  I used the same peanut butter fudge that I used for when I made the chocolate peanut butter cake and it turned out really yummy.

Well, in the meantime I’m going to do more research on the different types of macaron recipes and find out which one works best for me. Gotta run now, need to stock up on more egg whites. Brb.

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Chocolate Waffle Cookie

How cute are these babies?

These are really fun to make if you have a waffle iron. They are not as light as your conventional waffle, but rather a little bit dense with a touch of crunch. I usually like making this around the holiday time; and these cookies makes really good gifts for friends and family. This is one of my favorite cookie recipe from Martha Stewart. I just love how easy it is to put together.  Instead of using my electric mixer as directed, I simple place all the ingredients in my blender and blitz away. Then let the batter rest for 30minutes in the refrigerator before using.

You can pretty much try this recipe with different variation besides chocolate, I have recently tried one with vanilla and also some cinnamon and nutmeg and I have even tried a pumpkin spice version. It’s all very delicious. Personally, I love this one the best.(big surprise right?) The chocolate makes this somewhat dense. Try using a good quality cocoa that will bring out the flavor of this babies.  Don’t skip chocolate glaze; it’s the best part and really makes a lot of difference in flavor and the appearance of this cookie.

Chocolate Waffle Cookie  adapted from Martha Stewart

3 oz unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
18 tablespoons (2 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder, plus 2 tablespoons for icing
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus more for dusting
1 1/2 tablespoons milk
Vegetable oil cooking spray

1. Melt chocolate with 1 cup butter (2 sticks) in a saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Let cool slightly.
2. Put eggs, vanilla, and granulated sugar in bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed until pale, 4 to 5 minutes. Mix in chocolate mixture, salt, cinnamon, 1/2 cup cocoa powder, and the flour.
3. Heat a waffle iron until hot. Lightly coat grids with cooking spray. Spoon about 1 tablespoon batter onto center of each waffle-iron square to make 1 1/2-inch rounds. Close cover; cook until set, about 1 1/2 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack, bottom sides up. Let cool completely. Repeat with remaining batter, coating grids with cooking spray after each batch.
4 .Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Add confectioners’ sugar and remaining 2 tablespoons cocoa powder; stir until smooth. Stir in milk.
5. Gently dip 1 surface of each cookie in icing so that just the waffle lines (not gaps) are coated. Repeat with remaining cookies and icing. Transfer to wire racks; let stand until set, about 10 minutes. Dust iced surfaces of cookies with confectioner’s sugar. Cookies can be stored in single layers in airtight containers at room temperature up to 2 days.

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Caramel Banana Pinwheels

Growing up in the eighties, pinwheels (sweet or savory) were pretty in back then. Some served at cocktails, at tea time and at my home it was served at birthday parties. This explains why I usually associate these as being very retro. I still remember making these with my mom for the various parties we hosted at home. I was always fascinated at how cute they look. It reminded me of a coil when served on a silver platter.

My job in the kitchen then, was to spread on the filling which my mom would then gently roll it and would later slice it. Given to play such an important part in the making process at 10 years old, I was totally overwhelm and made sure I did my best. Even till this day, every time I see any sort of pinwheel recipes; sweet or savory it will always bring me back to that day.

Today, I had some extra bananas left in my fruit basket and instead making the usual smoothie I decided to turn them into cookies. And seeing how my cookie jar is now empty I thought, why not? This taste just like bite size banana bread only crunchy. You can make them ahead of time and just keep it in the refrigerator or freezer until you’re ready to bake it. Then simply slice it up and pop it in the oven to bake and later serve it over tea or coffee or however you like it.

Caramel Banana Pinwheels

1/3 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup self-raising flour
1 cup ground almond
1/4 cup mashed banana

Caramel

4 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup soft brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Mix together butter, vanilla and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy; add egg, beat until combined.
In a separate bowl, mix together flour, ground almond and salt.  Add the mashed banana to the butter mixture, then mix in the dry ingredients. Mix to a firm dough. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Roll half the dough between sheets of greaseproof paper to 8inch x 12inch rectangle. Spread evenly with half the caramel, roll up firmly from a long side. Repeat with remaining dough and caramel. Wrap rolls in foil, refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Cut rolls into 1/8 inch slices, place about an inch apart onto greased baking sheet.

Bake in preheated oven for about 15minutes or until lightly browned; cool on baking sheet.

Caramel: Beat butter in a small bowl until smooth, then add sugar and cinnamon and beat till combined.

Makes about 80

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Tomato Basil Cracker

These cute little savory darlings make an excellent snack to have on hand to serve it over drinks, over cheese and it goes really well pairing it with you favorite bowl or (if you’re like me), a cup of hot soup. Chances are you probably already have all these ingredients sitting in your pantry. So, whipping these up would be a breeze.

I really love the use of fresh basil in here. It gives out a nice depth of flavor in these crackers and I wouldn’t substitute it for dried basil because that would be crazy. The sprinkle of sea salt on the top just makes the whole flavor pop! I usually make an extra batch and store it in an airtight container or you can also freeze it. You know, just in case.

Tomato Basil Cracker

1  1/4 cup plain flour
1/4 cup butter, cold – cut in small cubes
3 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
3 tablespoon tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablesoons ice cold water, approximately
1 egg white, lightly beaten
2 teaspoon sea salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Sift flour into bowl, rub in cold butter. Stir in chopped basil, tomato paste, salt and pepper. Add enough cold water to the mix to a firm dough. Knead gently on lightly floured surface until smooth.

Cover, refrigerate for 30 minutes. Roll dough fairly thin on lightly floured surface.

Prick all over with fork then cut into 1 inch squares, place about 1/2 inch apart onto greased cookie sheet.

Brush with a little egg white, sprinkle with a little sea salt. Bake for 15 minutes or until lightly browned, cool on cookie sheet.

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