Sunday, February 28, 2010


Who doesn't love a warm snickerdoodle?! YUM!

I have found the best way to eat a snickerdoodle is with a big glass of chocolate milk!

Makes three dozen 3 to 4-inch cookies. Your mileage will vary by the size scoop you use.
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
16 tablespoons (2 stick or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 3/4 cups sugar, plus more if needed
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, plus more if needed
2 large eggs
Preheat the oven to 400°, with one rack in top third and one rack in bottom third of oven. Line baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper; set aside.
Sift together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine butter and 1 1/2 cups sugar. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs, and beat to combine. Add dry ingredients, and beat to combine. At this point, I chilled the dough for an hour (or you can overnight) before scooping it, because I otherwise found it too difficult to scoop into balls and roll but the original recipe doesn’t find this step neccessary.
Once dough has chilled, in a small bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the ground cinnamon. Use a small ice-cream scoop* to form balls of the dough, and roll in cinnamon sugar. Place about two inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until the cookies are set in center and begin to crack (they will not brown), about 10 minutes, rotating the baking sheets after five minutes. Transfer the sheets to a wire rack to cool about five minutes before transferring the cookies to the rack. In theory, they can be stored in an airtight container up to one week, but I say good luck wtih that.
* Martha recommends a size 30 (1 1/4 ounce) ice cream scoop but I used a size 40 (3/4 ounce) and they came out 3 to 4 inches across, or plenty huge.

Food this Week

This is one of my favorite soup recipes. Its so versatile. You can add chicken or not. You can add onions or leeks or this or that and a rattle-dat-dat. 
The traditional way of doing it is placing a big yummy buiscut right on top (or puff pastry buiscuts), but I was more in the mood for rustic rolls. 

So for the recipe:

1 sheet puff pastry (9in squares), thawed but cold
1 egg, beaten with a little water
2tsp of poppy seeds
2 baking potatoes-pealed and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 c frozen peas, thawed
3 tbs of extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 lb chicken breasts (optional)
2 leeks-thinly sliced (or onions)
1 carrot, peeled and shredded (or chopped)
2 tbs of chopped thyme
2 tbs butter
2 tbs of flour
1/2 white wine
1 cup chicken broth (or veg. broth)
1/2 cup heavy cream
Grated peel and juice of 1 lemon

1. Preheat oven to 425. Roll our the puff pastry into a 12-in square. Set aside four 2 cup bowls; invert 1 bowl onto the pastry and cut out 4 rounds. place on a parchment-paper lined baking heet and brush with the egg. Sprinkle with the poppy seeds and bake until golden, 12 min. Let cool

2. Into a large saucepan, add the potatoes and enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, salt the water and cook until tender, 7 min. Add the peas and cook for 1 min; Drain. 

3. In a skillet, heat 2tbs EVOO over medium heat. ADd the chicken, season with salt and pepper and cook for 7 min. Transfer to a plate. Add the remaining 1 tbs of EVOO to the skillet. Add the leeks and carrot; season with salt, pepper and the thyme. Cook for 3 min. 

4. Scoot the leeks to the side and add the butter. Whisk in the flour then the wine and chicken broth. Stir in the chicken and cream and heat through. Stir in the lemon peel, lemon juice, potatoes and peas. Fill the bowls with the chicken mixture and top with the crust. 

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Chocolate Armagnac Cake

O my heavens. 

Recipe to come the mean time, dream of this....
Bittersweet Chocolate
Juicy cherries
and Brandy. 

(not my picture, we just ate it to fast!)


(From a clip out of a magazine)

2 large eggs
2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
3/4 lb spaghetti
1 bunch of asparagus 
(halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into 2 inch pieces)
2 TBS of extra virgin olive oil
5 slices of bacon (coarsely chopped)
3 cloves of fresh garlic, finely chipped
1/4 c dry white wine
salt and pepper to taste

1) Beat eggs and cheese together in a bowl. Bring pot of salted water to boil, add noodles, cook until al dente, adding the asparagus during the last minute of cooking. Drain, reserving 1/2 c of the cooking water. Add hot pasta to the egg and cheese mixture. Toss.
2) In a large skillet, heat olive oil, add bacon and cook until crisp; stir in garlic. Add wine and cook until slightly reduced (aprox 1 min). Stir bacon mixture into pasta, adding enough of the reserved pasta water to moisten; season with salt and pepper.