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French Fridays with Dorie: Salted Butter Break-Ups

I’m back to French Fridays this week with a cookie. It is, in Dorie’s words, “essentially a large, buttery, flaky, salty-sweet rectangular cookie.” Sel gris or French grey sea salt is what you use for the cookie’s saltiness but I didn’t have any and used kosher salt instead. I pulsed the flour, sugar, salt and butter in the food processor and added 4 tablespoons of cold water to make it combine. I refrigerated the dough for just an hour and baked it for 35 mins.

Although this recipe is in the Dessert section of Around My French Table I didn’t serve it as a dessert. I had put it in the oven before our friends arrived for dinner and it was ready just before we were to sit. It was smelling so buttery and good that I brought it to the table and intentionally left it in one piece, as how it is meant to be served, so we could have fun breaking it up. The cookie drew comments like “Mmm..,” “Buttery..” and “Rich…” I found it like a sweet, buttery shortbread cookie. It was unanimous that it was not something to eat before the meal! I left it at the table though and we munched on it after we finished eating.

Breaking cookie at the table:

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19 Comments

Posted by on March 18, 2011 in Baking, Food, French Fridays with Dorie

 

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Peanut (Butter) Cookies

Every year during Chinese New Year (CNY) I’ll make peanut cookies. They are somewhat a traditional CNY cookie in Malaysia. Peanut cookies require roasted peanuts to be grind till fine before being mixed with the rest of the ingredients. I find that a lot of work and  maybe not as yummy as my mum’s short-cut version which uses peanut butter instead! It may sound sacrilegious to the traditional peanut cookie bakers out there who would painstakingly roast and pound (okay, maybe just whiz in a food processor) tons of peanuts for the cookies but this is really a time-saver. Granted the texture of the cookie would not be the same but it’ll still be a hit with all peanut and peanut butter lovers.

I’ve not met anyone who likes peanut/peanut butter who doesn’t like this cookie. This year I brought some over to my neighbours, Andrew and Cherie, along with ang pow (red packets) for their daughters. I had just gotten back into the house when the phone rang. It was Andrew and Cherie on speaker-phone telling me how much they love it and asking me if I would teach Cherie how to make it! I taught Cherie how to make it on Tuesday and she and her 4-year-old had fun rolling and baking the cookies.

Give this recipe a try. The full recipe makes about 300 cookies depending on big or small you roll them but they’ll go fast! They break in your mouth with the slightest pressure and melt into peanut butter goodness. They’re pretty addictive that way and you won’t be able to stop yourself from taking one after another!

Peanut Cookies

340g creamy peanut butter (I prefer Skippy’s)
600g all-purpose flour
200g confectioners’ sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
240ml vegetable oil
1 egg yolk

1. Mix all ingredients together, except the egg, in a stand mixer with a paddle attachment until the mixture comes together. The dough will be smooth and soft.
2. Pinch some dough and roll in between the palms of your hands to form a round ball. Place it on a parchment paper-lined baking tray. Alternatively, you can take some dough and roll it to form a thin, long log. Pinch dough off the end of the log to roll into balls. Repeat till dough is used up. (Leftover dough can be frozen.)
3. Using the end of a drinking straw or a pen cap (I used a Crayola marker cap) press down lightly on each ball to make a dent.
4. Beat the egg yolk lightly with a tablespoon of water to make an egg wash. Brush the egg wash over each cookie.
5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake each tray in the centre of the oven for 15-16 minutes until the cookie is done and turns brown on top. The cracked top is characteristic of this cookie.
6. Place the tray on a cooling rack and allow the cookies to cool down and firm up before removing.

 
8 Comments

Posted by on February 9, 2011 in Baking, Food

 

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Cookies and Hot Chocolate

 

I went over to Sandy’s house today to bake Christmas cookies together. She made Mint Chocolate Truffle Cookies while I made Christmas Cherries. The cookie doughs were made earlier so we just had to roll them out to bake.

The truffle cookies were fun and easy to make: make dough, smash candy, roll dough into balls, bake, make a dent, sprinkle! They were fudgy and chocolately. It’s very important not to overbake them. If you don’t like mint or candy cane in your cookies, omit the candy and eat them plain or with some melted chocolate drizzled over.

 

The Christmas Cherries were citrus-flavoured soft cookies. I didn’t roll them as small as Pioneer Woman did but I got more than 50 cookies from one recipe. If you’re using unsalted butter, add in a pinch of salt.

 

While the moms are baking cookies, the kids went sledding. We dropped by to watch them after finishing the last tray. It was so chilly outside that it was a real pleasure to step back into a warm house that smells of freshly-baked cookies!

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Hot chocolate to warm their bodies up!

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Posted by on December 22, 2010 in Baking, Food, Life

 

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Granola Grabbers

It was my turn to bring a snack for the moms’ group meeting on Wednesday. I thought this healthy cookie would be a good choice. This recipe also makes a lot of cookies which is perfect as I was also hosting a meeting in my house that night.  It’s a granola cookie with raisins, almonds, wheat germ and other good stuff that came with the hemp granola I used.  The butter and sugar in the cookie saved the cookie from being dry and bland. The original recipe has peanuts in it but I left it out because of Big Kid but he still didn’t like them even though there are raisins. Little Guy likes them even though he doesn’t like raisins!

Use granola without fruit in this recipe as the fruit in packaged granola cereals is often dry and it won’t soften up in the batter giving you cookies that are hard and dry. Also choose granola that are not overly sweetened or your cookie will taste too sweet. I have also reduced the sweetness in this cookie by using unsweetened coconut and reducing the sugar slightly.

Granola Grabbers
(Adapted from Dorie’s Greenspan’s Baking From My Home To Yours)

3 cups granola without fruit
3/4 cup moist, plump raisins
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/3 cup toasted wheat germ
1 3/4 sticks (200g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
3 tablespoons sugar
1 large egg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and divide the oven into thirds. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Combine the granola, raisins, almonds, coconut and wheat germ in a large bowl and mix together. Break up any clumps with your fingers.

In a stand mixer, beat the butter at medium speed until smooth. Add the sugars and beat until creamy. Add the egg and salt and beat until well blended. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour, mixing only until it is incorporated, then add the granola mix. Stop the mixer when most of the granola mix is blended into the batter and finish the job with a spatula, making sure to get up any bits of dry ingredients left in the bottom of the bowl.

With a cookie scoop, scoop out tablespoons of dough and arrange the mounds on the baking sheets, leaving about 1 1/2 inches between them. Flatten the mounds lightly with your fingertips.

Bake for 11 to 13 minutes , rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point. The cookies should be golden brown but not firm. Allow them to rest on the sheets for 1 to 2 minutes before transferring them to racks to cool.

Repeat for remaining dough, cooling the baking sheets between batches. If there’s only one sheet left to bake, bake in centre of oven for 11 mins.

Makes 44 cookies.

 

 

 
2 Comments

Posted by on October 14, 2010 in Baking, Food

 

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Cornflake Cookies

It’s a blast from the past. I remember these cookies from my school days. They were a favourite during Chinese New Year too. Someone please correct me if I’m wrong but did Kellogg’s Malaysia come up with this cookie? Anyway, Big Kid likes these very much too as he loves raisins. These are fragrant, crunchy butter cookies with sweet bites of raisins. The recipe is also perfect for making together with children.

Cornflake Cookies

  • 125gm unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar (reduce if you like your cookies less sweet)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 1/3 cup sultanas
  • 1 cup self-raising flour (sifted)
  • 3 cups cornflakes
  1. Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.
  2. Put cornflakes into a bag, tie it up and lightly crush cornflakes with a rolling pin. Empty crushed cornflakes into a large bowl.
  3. IMG_2673 (400x600)

  4. Cream butter and sugar in a stand mixer with a paddle attachment till light and fluffy. Add egg and beat for a minute. Reduce mixer to the lowest speed and stir in the flour, raisins and sultanas. Drop batter by the tablespoons into the bowl of crushed cornflakes and toss the batter to coat.
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  6. Scoop up the batter, round the shape if desired, and place them on the cookie sheet an inch apart. Bake for 25 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point. Cool cookies on a rack before storing in an airtight container . (We used to store them in a Tupperware. Smile )

(I forgot to count the cookies in the haste to eat them but I think this recipe makes at least 36 cookies.)

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Posted by on October 6, 2010 in Baking, Food

 

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