Sugar icing cookies for Halloween

>> Thursday, October 29, 2009





This afternoon before my youngest came through the door, he was beaming with excitement over the assignment he volunteer for in his class.

His teacher asked who is willing to bake some cookies for Halloween party and he quickly raised his hand.
The teacher was so happy to hear that she just asked him that I'll write the ingredients and gave him a cookie cuter - pumpkin shaped.

Here is our creation for the classes Halloween party



Sugar Cookies - Martha Stewart

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons brandy, or milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Whisk together flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar; add dry ingredients, and mix until incorporated.
With mixer running, add egg, brandy (or milk), and vanilla; mix until incorporated.

Transfer dough to a work surface.
Shape into 2 discs, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats or parchment paper; set aside.


On a lightly floured work surface, roll out dough to 1/8-inch thickness.
Cut into desired shapes, and transfer to prepared baking sheets, leaving an inch in between. Leftover dough can be rolled and cut once more.
Bake until lightly golden, about 10 minutes; do not allow to brown. Transfer to wire racks to cool.


Sugar Icing
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 teaspoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • assorted food coloring
Directions
  1. In a small bowl, stir together confectioners' sugar and milk until smooth.
  2. Beat in corn syrup and almond extract until icing is smooth and glossy. If icing is too thick, add more corn syrup.
  3. Divide into separate bowls, and add food colorings to each to desired intensity. Dip cookies, or paint them with a brush.


Happy Halloween.....

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Macarons

>> Monday, October 26, 2009



This month the Daring Bakers challenge was to make the French pastry macarons.
This challenge has truly pushed my cooking ability to the limit.
My first two attempts were a learning experience to say the least. But my determination kept me from giving up.

Fortunately the third time my macarons finally turned out great.
Although there were early difficulties, I'm very glad I participated in this challenge and learn to make this wonderful macarons.



The 2009 October Daring Bakers’ challenge was brought to us by Ami S.
She chose macarons from Claudia Fleming’s The Last Course: The Desserts of Gramercy Tavern as the challenge recipe.


Ingredients

2 ¼ cups confectioners’ sugar (225 g, 8 oz.)

2 cups hazel nuts flour (190 g, 6.7 oz.)
2 Tablespoonsg sugar (25 g , .88 oz.)
5 Egg whites 5 (Have at room temperature)

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 200°F (93°C).
Combine the confectioners’ sugar and almond flour in a medium bowl.
If grinding your own nuts, combine nuts and a cup of confectioners’ sugar in the bowl of a food
processor and grind until nuts are very fine and powdery.


2. Beat the egg whites in the clean dry bowl of a stand mixer until they hold soft peaks.
Slowly add the granulated sugar and beat until the mixture holds stiff peaks.


3. Sift a third of the almond flour mixture into the meringue and fold gently to combine.
If you are planning on adding zest or other flavorings to the batter, now is the time.
Sift in the remaining almond flour in two batches. Be gentle!
Don’t overfold, but fully incorporate your ingredients.


4. Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a plain half-inch tip (Ateco #806).
You can also use a Ziploc bag with a corner cut off. It’s easiest to fill your bag if you stand it up
in a tall glass and fold the top down before spooning in the batter.


5. Pipe one-inch-sized (2.5 cm) mounds of batter onto baking sheets lined with nonstick liners
(or parchment paper).


6. Bake the macaroon for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and raise the temperature
to 375°F (190°C). Once the oven is up to temperature, put the pans back in the oven and bake
for an additional 7 to 8 minutes, or lightly colored.


7. Cool on a rack before filling.

Ganage filling
100 gr. white chocolate
1/4 cup heavy cream

In a small pan over medium heat mix the chocolate with the heavy cream until completely melted, cool for 1 hour.
place a small amount on top of one macarons and close with another one.

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Pie Pecan Cookies

>> Friday, October 23, 2009





There is nothing better in the autumn season then a pie pecan cookies.
They are so easy to make and the smell that filled the entire house can only be describe as heavenly.


Pecan Pie Cookies
Adapted from Land O' Lakes

For the cookies:
1 cup packed soft brown sugar
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder

Pecan Filling:
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup soft brown sugar
1/4 cup double cream (heavy whipping)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Heat the oven to 350°F.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the brown sugar, butter, egg and vanilla extract together until creamy (I used a hand held electric mixer).

Beat in the flour and baking powder until well mixed.

Shape the dough into 1 1/4-inch balls. Place 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.
Make an indentation in each cookie with your thumb; rotate thumb to hollow out slightly.

Combine all the filling ingredients in small bowl; fill each cookie with 1 rounded teaspoon of filling.

Bake for 8 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned.
Cool for 1 minute before removing from cookie sheets.


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Lemon Cream Cookies

>> Monday, October 19, 2009





One of my favorite flavors in the kitchen is Lemon.
Every single time I see a recipe that include lemon I rejoice and prepare it without a second thought.
When I found this Lemon Cream cookies recipes at Cannelle et Vanille blog, I didn't hesitate to make it.

Such a good cookies that I deeply recommended, I only change the cream filling and ever since I'm baking this cookies every week and it's become our house favorite.


Lemon Spritz Cookies

110 grams butter, room temperature
90 grams sugar
3 egg yolks
1/4 tsp lemon oil
Zest of 1 lemon
180 grams flour
2 grams salt


Cream the butter, sugar, lemon zest and lemon oil together until well combined. Add the yolks and mix until combined. Add the flour and salt and mix.

Place the soft dough into a pastry bag fitted with a star tip. Pipe rosettes onto a sheetpan lined with parchment paper.

Bake at 350F for about 12 minutes or until lightly golden.

Let them cool completely and fill with the lemon buttercream.

Filling
2 tablespoons plus 1 - 1/2 teaspoons butter, cubed
1-1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 to 3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
1/2 teaspon grated lemon peel

heat butter in a saucepan over medium heat until golden brown, Remover from the heat, add confectioner's sugar, vanilla and enough cream to achieve spreading consistency. add the lemon zets
Spread on the bottom of half of the cookies top with remaining cookies.


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