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Shelby

Your Daily Sweets: What Are You Making and Baking? (2015 – 2016)

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A bit of holiday baking:  pumpkin bread and a riff on Linzer Torte in bar form. The latter ended up with too much jam so they are more of a cookie/candy hybrid. Phyllo dough defrosting so baklava later today.

photo (81).JPG

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Hopefully it is OK to post without an awesome picture of the results, but yesterday I made this:  http://flourandfancy.com/2015/09/04/chocolate-cake-for-leeda/   It was easy, good, and interesting.  Much lighter and not as spicy as I expected.  It wasn't overly sweet either, but I did make it with both the dark cocoa and dark chocolate for the frosting.  That might have been a little too much so I think next time I'll probably use semi-sweet for the glaze.  Alternatively, I would be tempted to try a layer of apricot or orange preserves in it  - like a lighter version of a sachertorte.

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These are the Andes Mint Chip cookies whose recipe I took issue with in When Recipes Attack. The baking instructions were annoying (1oz dough balls when nothing else is given by weight... Who portions cookies by weight at home?!?!) and the cooking time was about two minutes short, but despite all that they wound up pretty decent.

 

image.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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As I posted about in RecipeGullet, I also made Oatmeal/Cranberry/White Chocolate cookies. They had some spreading issues, but I got enough salvageable cookies from the mess to at least include a few of them in each gift box.

 

DSC_1870.jpg.14c439706722298f9f497dd3810

 

I think I'm going to call it a night, and do the two batches of chocolate chip I had planned later this week.

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Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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5 hours ago, Chris Hennes said:

These are the Andes Mint Chip cookies whose recipe I took issue with in When Recipes Attack. The baking instructions were annoying (1oz dough balls when nothing else is given by weight... Who portions cookies by weight at home?!?!) and the cooking time was about two minutes short, but despite all that they wound up pretty decent.

 

image.jpg

 

I have never seen crème de menthe baking chips else I am sure my pantry would be well-stocked with them.   I love chocolate and mint and your cookies look marvelous.   Did you bake them on the silpat?  I ask because I still haven't used my silpats though I've had them for some time. 


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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4 hours ago, Anna N said:

 

I have never seen crème de menthe baking chips else I am sure my pantry would be well-stocked with them.   I love chocolate and mint and your cookies look marvelous.   Did you bake them on the silpat?  I ask because I still haven't used my silpats though I've had them for some time. 

Yes, I love the Silpats (and their generic equivalents). They make cleanup a breeze, and as far as I can tell nothing sticks to them once the baking is done. I use them pretty much anywhere you'd use parchment (except cake pans, of course).


Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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10 hours ago, Chris Hennes said:

These are the Andes Mint Chip cookies whose recipe I took issue with in When Recipes Attack. The baking instructions were annoying (1oz dough balls when nothing else is given by weight... Who portions cookies by weight at home?!?!) and the cooking time was about two minutes short, but despite all that they wound up pretty decent.

 

 

Answer:  I do.


Darienne

learn, learn, learn...

Cheers & Chocolates

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4 minutes ago, Darienne said:

Answer:  I do.

You are a better person than me! I have two different sized scoops: every cookie I make is one size or the other :) .

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Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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Not better...just more OCD I suspect.  Plus, as mentioned a number of times before, I am a dreadful cookie maker.  Still I do have a new-to-me stove with an oven which keeps the proper temperature and it is time to make my friend's late Mother's incredible Shortbread recipe...which my friend has turned over to me and refuses to make anymore.  -_-


Darienne

learn, learn, learn...

Cheers & Chocolates

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I also weigh, and I prefer grams. (More precise.) But I also find weighing to be easier and faster. I guess everyone works out his own method.

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1 minute ago, cakewalk said:

But I also find weighing to be easier and faster.

OK, I've got to hear more about this! How is weighing the portion faster than scooping it out with a scoop?


Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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I bake, therefore I'm a bit on the OCD side of things. I find scoops too messy. Batter sticks to the scoop, which annoys me. The cookies are often visibly different in size, which REALLY annoys me! (Although yours are very uniform, and very impressive.) It's all about creating your method.

 

When I weigh, I put a piece of wax paper on the scale. Let's say each cookie should be 30 grams. I pick up some dough, plunk it on the wax paper. After you do this for a while, your eye knows what 30 grams looks like and your fingers know what 30 grams feels like. I put as many 30-gram blobs of cookie dough on the wax paper as will fit. I watch the weight indicator: 30 gr, then another blob and it's 60 gr, another blob and it's 90 gr, etc. (Or you could hit tare in between, but I usually don't.) If a blob is a bit over or under, I take off or add some dough to it. Then they're transferred to the baking sheet, and you continue weighing out the rest. Then you methodically go to stage two - roll the blobs into balls, or flatten with a glass, or whatever. I know it seems like more steps (it is more steps), but I have always found it to go much more quickly than using a scoop. (Maybe I'm just scoop challenged.) 

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31 minutes ago, cakewalk said:

I have always found it to go much more quickly than using a scoop. (Maybe I'm just scoop challenged.) 

I believe you: those damned chocolate peanut-butter chips with their "rounded teaspoon" size were a huge pain in the butt to scoop, the dough did not want to come out of the scoop. The Andes ones, on the other hand, were very easy. The dough was cold and not sticky, so they popped right out of the scoop.


Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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Lovely pictures all! I have moved from Hanukkah to Christmas all in the same weekend! These are ginger cookies dipped in white chocolate and my poor attempt at holly and berries... Thanks for looking!

Ruth

gingersnaps.jpg

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10 hours ago, Chris Hennes said:

You are a better person than me! I have two different sized scoops: every cookie I make is one size or the other :) .


Same for me, except I have 3 sizes because on rare occasions I want to make really big cookies. I'm pretty OCD about my baking (and cooking) but I can scoop dough and get cookies all the same size just as accurately as I can weigh it and get all the same size... and the scooping goes much faster.


It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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Three words for you: Bacon. Fat. Gingersnaps.

 

I ran across this recipe in the New York Times' cooking section, and stared at it, off and on, for two days before I decided to go ahead and give it a whirl. Now, as I am a proper Southerner, I always, ALWAYS have a crock of bacon grease at the ready (can't cook without it). So I microwaved that to liquefy it, and strained out 3/4 of a cup, which I promptly refrigerated. That, in turn, went into the food processor with sugar, flour, an egg, baking powder, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. I went exactly (as best I recall) by the recipe; next time, I might sub 1/4 cup butter for part of the bacon fat (I use Wright's bacon almost exclusively, and it's very salty and very smoky), and I might up the spices just a bit, and I'd certainly reduce the salt.

 

But these babies are GOOD. I rolled the dough into about one-inch balls, which in turn baked up into about vanilla-wafer sized cookies, and about two of those will do you with a good cup of coffee. The recipe will make between 4 dozen and 5 dozen of this size cookie. When they cool, they're quite crisp, though mine never flattened out as much as the ones in the NYT pic.

 

Definitely a keeper, and a most intriguing addition to the Christmas gift baskets!

 

5670f07648caf_bacongingersnap.JPG.7d6ab1

 

5670f09685115_bacongsnaps.thumb.JPG.4771


Edited by kayb (log)
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Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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8 hours ago, Chris Hennes said:

Last but not least, plain chocolate chip cookies using Ghiradelli semisweet chips and the back-of-bag recipe:

 

image.jpg

 

Chis,

 It only just occurred to me, although you had said it many times, how brilliant it is to use the recipe on the back of the package.  No fussing around looking for recipes and no time wasted trying to decide which recipe to use this time.  For the most part I am betting the recipes are trustworthy and certainly familiar to most people.  

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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16 hours ago, kayb said:

Three words for you: Bacon. Fat. Gingersnaps.

 

I ran across this recipe in the New York Times' cooking section, and stared at it, off and on, for two days before I decided to go ahead and give it a whirl. Now, as I am a proper Southerner, I always, ALWAYS have a crock of bacon grease at the ready (can't cook without it). So I microwaved that to liquefy it, and strained out 3/4 of a cup, which I promptly refrigerated. That, in turn, went into the food processor with sugar, flour, an egg, baking powder, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. I went exactly (as best I recall) by the recipe; next time, I might sub 1/4 cup butter for part of the bacon fat (I use Wright's bacon almost exclusively, and it's very salty and very smoky), and I might up the spices just a bit, and I'd certainly reduce the salt.

 

But these babies are GOOD. I rolled the dough into about one-inch balls, which in turn baked up into about vanilla-wafer sized cookies, and about two of those will do you with a good cup of coffee. The recipe will make between 4 dozen and 5 dozen of this size cookie. When they cool, they're quite crisp, though mine never flattened out as much as the ones in the NYT pic.

 

Definitely a keeper, and a most intriguing addition to the Christmas gift baskets!

 

5670f07648caf_bacongingersnap.JPG.7d6ab1

 

5670f09685115_bacongsnaps.thumb.JPG.4771


Nice! They are tasty. I'm not sure if it's the same recipe I used, I'd have to dig for it to be sure, but they were good. Everybody that received them as part of their Christmas cookie tin liked them.


It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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On 12/15/2015 at 11:36 AM, cakewalk said:

...Batter sticks to the scoop, which annoys me.

 

On 12/15/2015 at 0:09 PM, Chris Hennes said:

I believe you: those damned chocolate peanut-butter chips with their "rounded teaspoon" size were a huge pain in the butt to scoop, the dough did not want to come out of the scoop. The Andes ones, on the other hand, were very easy. The dough was cold and not sticky, so they popped right out of the scoop.

Has anyone tried spraying their scoops with PAM or the non-stick cooking spray of their choice? I imagine you could spray it, wipe out any excess and then scoop away. If it gets sticky again, repeat the spraying/wiping process.


 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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13 hours ago, Toliver said:

 

Has anyone tried spraying their scoops with PAM or the non-stick cooking spray of their choice? I imagine you could spray it, wipe out any excess and then scoop away. If it gets sticky again, repeat the spraying/wiping process.

 

I oil my scoops for cookie-making when it's the kind of batter that will be really heinous to try and dig out (I'm looking at you, chocobolitas!).  However, what I've found is that an old-fashioned ice-cream scoop with the thumb-release mechanism on it works better than any of those things.  Happily, a company here has those in sizes ranging from melon ball to mega gigantic….


Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.

My eG Food Blog (2011)My eG Foodblog (2012)

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42 minutes ago, Panaderia Canadiense said:

 

I oil my scoops for cookie-making when it's the kind of batter that will be really heinous to try and dig out (I'm looking at you, chocobolitas!).  However, what I've found is that an old-fashioned ice-cream scoop with the thumb-release mechanism on it works better than any of those things.  Happily, a company here has those in sizes ranging from melon ball to mega gigantic….

I have that type and there are doughs that defeat even them!


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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