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Posts Tagged ‘Walnuts’

A few weeks ago I was flipping through Anna Thomas’ Love Soup to find some soup recipes for the winter months.  Near the back of the book I saw an entry for Parmesan and fennel biscotti.  I was intrigued.  The recipe looked delicious but I wondered if I could substitute the fennel for something else.  In the fall I had made a trio of savoury muffins and I thought about pairing parmesan and garlic instead.  Or if I was really ambitious I could make biscotti in each flavour like the muffins!  I started make my plan but with everything I was buying for holiday baking I decided just one flavour combination would be enough:  walnut and rosemary.  These biscotti were delicious – great with a sharp cheddar cheese and a nice glass of red wine.  We actually ended up eating most of these with soup or as an appetizer.  Not exactly a cookie but nice to have around the house to snack on.

Walnut-Rosemary Biscotti

(Inspired by Anna Thomas’ Parmesan and Fennel Biscotti in Love Soup)

  • 2 c unbleached all-purpose flour, sifted (plus some for the kneading surface for example a cutting board)
  • 1/3 c masa harina
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3 to 4 tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, removed from stem (or more to taste)
  • 1/2 c chopped walnuts
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 c buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Line your baking sheet with parchment paper.  Prepare your kneading surface by lightly flouring it.

In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients:  flour, masa harina, salt, pepper, baking powder and baking soda.  Whisk these together.  Using a fork stir in the rosemary and walnuts.

In a small bowl use the same fork to beat together the eggs and the buttermilk.

Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir together with your fork until a crumbly dough forms.  You may need to use your hands to get it to stick together.  Now transfer the dough to your floured surface and knead it into a smooth ball.  Wrap in plastic wrap and let it rest for 15 minutes.

Remove 1/3 of the dough and leave the remaining dough wrapped in plastic.  Roll the dough into a log about and inch wide and place on your baking sheet.  Flatten the top using your fingers.

Don't worry if they are not even -- you'll be slicing them into smaller pieces for the second baking stage.

Repeat with another third of the dough and leave about two inches between the logs.  Repeat with the last 1/3 of the dough.  Bake for 20 minutes.  They will have a nice golden brown hue.

The golden brown hue you will see after the first baking.

Let cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool.  They must cool for at least 30 minutes.  Don’t rush this step!  In the meantime, lower the oven temperature to 225 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with fresh parchment paper.

Using a bread knife, slice the baked logs about a 1/4 inch thick.  Place the slices on the baking sheets and bake for 35 minutes.  You don’t really need to leave any room since the biscotti will not be expanding anymore.  After the 35 minutes is up flip the slices and then bake another 35 minutes.  The biscotti will be crisp and dry.

This is the biscotti before their second baking. After the second baking the cookies will be more brown and the edges will be crisp.

Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.  Biscotti will keep for a couple of weeks in an air-tight container.

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Cookie exchange recipes

Over 600 bloggers participated in this cookie exchange this year – which means over 22, 000 cookies were sent around the world — how amazing is that?   Even more amazing – all the cookie recipes have been shared online!  There are more cookies here than I could cook in two years!  So, are you looking for last-minute ideas for your cookie tray this holiday?  I am certain you can find some ideas here:

Cookie recipes Part 1

Cookie recipes Part 2

As for me, I plan to take a break from eating cookies — I feel I am made of cookie dough.

 

 

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I have been baking up a storm for the holidays:  these cookies for the exchange, trial cookies that didn’t work out so well, 7 dozen cookies from a class at Urban Element, fruitcakes and I’ll be baking more soon (recipes to follow) for another cookie exchange!  To top all of that off – I’ve been eating tonnes of great baked goods!  I received cookies from Eri @ It all tastes Greek to me and Heather @ New House, New Home, New Life (my 3rd set of cookies arrived today).  There is a new bakery open in my nieghbourhood with amazing gingerbread cookies and so many of my friends and family have given me baked goods.  I feel super lucky.

To begin my recipe you need to set the mood with the right holiday music:

Phil Spector Christmas

After you have the right music, holiday baking is a snap!

Oatmeal-Chocolate-Currant Cookies

(Adapted from a Moosewood cookie recipe)

  • 1 c unbleached all purpose flour
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 c sugar
  • ½ c butter
  • 3 tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 tbs walnut oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ c rolled oats
  • ½ of this type of chocolate bar (but I have made these cookies with a number of different types of bars; this one wasn’t my favourite)
  • ½ c chopped walnuts
  • ½ c currants

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

In a large bowl sift together the dry ingredients:  flour, salt, and baking soda.  In another large bowl, beat together sugar, butter and oils until light and creamy.  Beat in eggs and vanilla.  Sift in the dry ingredients and mix until smooth.  Stir in the oats, chocolate, walnuts and currants.  Your batter will be really thick at this point.

Drop batter onto baking sheet.  Leave about 2 inches in-between.  Bake for 10-12 minutes (check at the 8 minute mark).  You want your cookies to crisp and golden on the edges.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

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