I’m baaaaack! Just in time for the thick of summer when I usually begin winding down due to lazy, hot days. Days when I would much rather open a bottle of rosé and plop an ice cube into the glass while kicking my feet up […]
It’s been a while since I’ve had macarons and I am especially missing the fabulous Pierre Herme kind from this trip. I haven’t found anything remotely close in my part of town so I decided to make my own. At least this way I could […]
It’s that time of year again and I decided to get a jump start on this baking business. I’m going to stop for a quick second and pat myself on the back for being ahead of the game this time instead of feverishly trying to get it together at the very last minute. We shall see if I can keep up the charade.
Just a quick aside, I used to hate biscotti. Thanks to the dry, cardboard tasting, pre-packaged biscotti at the local super I was never a fan. I just didn’t get the appeal. Suffice to say, I was missing out on the good stuff. When I started making it at home, I became hooked. Now, I understand how great a cup of coffee accompanied by a few biscotti could be. I rarely make it, but when I do, it’s a treat. Mid afternoon snack, check. Light breakfast, check. 3:00 pick-me-up on a Wednesday, check.
Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti:
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pistachio extract
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/2 cups raw pistachios
1 cup miniature chocolate chips
2 tablespoons sanding sugar
Preheat the oven to 350°.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the sugar with the butter. Add the eggs, vanilla, and pistachio extracts until combined and smooth.
In a medium sized bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Add to the sugar and egg mixture and beat on low until a crumbly dough forms. Add the chocolate chips and pistachios and beat at low speed just until evenly distributed.
Divide the dough into 4 portions and transfer 2 of the portions to each baking sheet. Form each portion into an 8-inch-long log. Pat the logs until they’re about 2 inches wide and 3/4 inch thick. Sprinkle each log with sanding sugar. Bake for about 22- 25 minutes, until the logs are puffed and springy to the touch; rotate the pans halfway through baking. Carefully transfer the logs to a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 200°.
Using a serrated knife, cut the logs crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices; each log will yield about 20. Return the slices to the baking sheets and bake for about 30 minutes longer, flipping the biscotti once after 15 minutes, until crisp. Transfer to racks to cool.
Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
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There are some desserts discoveries that forever will stay on my top 5 favorites list. One extra special sweet treat is the tiger eye. I can’t get enough of them- they are crowd pleasers and very easy to make. In France, I searched for them to compare the real deal to the ones I make from an American dessert book. I was lucky enough to come across a couple of places, but truth be told, I was completely side tracked by the macarons, galettes, tartes, and dazzling array of chocolates. No matter. I’m happy with this recipe and would be hard pressed to find a better version. Although, it’s really just a basic financier method and I guess there’s always room for improvement. In the meantime, I’ll stick with what works and tastes exceptional.
recipe adapted from Sweet Miniatures by Flo Braker
vegetable spray for greasing the molds
3/4 cup finely ground raw pistachios
2 cups unsifted powdered sugar
1/2 cup + 2T unsifted all-puropse flour
3/4 cup egg whites
7 1/2 oz unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp pistachio extract
1/3 cup finely chopped dark chocolate
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place a rack on the bottom 1/3 of the oven. Lightly spray the molds with vegetable spray, set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the ground pistachios, sugar and flour. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whip attachment, whip the egg whites just until foamy. Add the flour mixture and gently stir until combined. Gradually stir in the melted and cooled butter. Stir in the extracts and chocolate. Let the batter rest for 30 minutes at room temperature until it thickens.
Spoon the batter into a pastry bag fitted with small tip, or a disposable bag with no tip. Pipe the batter into the molds and fill 2/3 full. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until the edges are golden and the cakes spring back when pressed lightly. The surfaces will be dull. Let cool on a wire rack.
2 1/2 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
3T heavy cream
Place the chocolate into a small bowl. heat the cream on the stovetop until just before boiling. Pour over the chocolate and let sit for 30 seconds. Whsck together until the mixture is smooth and shiny.
When the tigres are completely cool, pipe the ganache into the middle indentations. Enjoy immediately. These gems are at their best the day they are made. But, if by some miracle, you have any leftover, they will keep in a single layer in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 days.
Yield: 5 dozen 2″ round tigres
It’s been a while since I baked a batch of cookies and I had a craving for PB and chocolate. Why not roll them together into one tasty cookie? It’s a good thing I had the basic ingredients already on hand. Everything except the all […]