Thursday, February 17, 2005
Favorite Recipes: Dessert
We probably don't need more reasons to eat dessert, but these are my favorites.


Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

These are the best cookies. I got the recipe from Susan Wise Bauer (I am such a groupie, I tell you). She got it from Cook's Illustrated.

Makes about 18 3-inch cookies

2-1/8 cups (2 cups plus 2 tablespoons) bleached
all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
12 tablespoons (1-1/2 sticks) unsalted butter,
melted and cooled until warm
1 cup light or dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 to 2 cups semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips

1. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Adjust oven racks to upper- and lower-middle positions. Mix flour, salt, and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.

2. Either by hand or with electric mixer, mix butter and sugars until thoroughly blended. Mix in egg, yolk, and vanilla. Add dry ingredients; mix until just combined. Stir in desired amount of chips.

3. Form scant 1/4 cup dough into ball. Holding dough ball using fingertips of both hands, pull into two equal halves. Each half will have a jagged surface where it was ripped from the other; rotate each half up so the jagged surface faced the ceiling and press the halves back into one ball so that the top surface remains jagged. (The nooks and crannies you have created will give the baked cookies an attractive and somewhat rough, uneven appearance.) Place formed dough onto one of two parchment paper-lined cookie sheets (I don't do this, I just place them on the cookie sheet), about 9 balls per sheet.

4. Bake, reversing cookies sheets' positions halfway through baking, until cookies are light golden brown and outer edges start to harden yet centers are still soft and puffy, 15 to 18 minutes (start checking at 13 minutes). Cool cookies on cookie sheets. Serve or store in airtight container.


Strawberry Pie
This is fresh, simple and really delicious.

1 quart strawberries
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 pie crust*
Whipped cream

1. Sprinkle powdered sugar in the bottom of the pie crust.
2. Clean and slice berries in half, place in pie crust.
3. Spread whipped cream over berries.
4. Chill in refrigerator for 3-4 hours.

The powdered sugar mixes with the strawberries' juices and makes a light sauce.

*Pie Crust Recipe
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup oil
2 tablespoons milk, cold

1. Sift flour, sugar and salt into a 9" pie plate.
2. In a 1 cup measuring cup, whisk together oil and milk and pour over the flour mixture.
3. Using a fork, mix until completely dampened.
4. Press the dough evenly over the bottom of the pan, then up the sides and over the rim.

To use as a baked shell, prick the surface of the dough with a fork several times and bake in a preheated 425* oven for 12-15 minutes; cool and fill as desired.

To use as an unbaked shell, just fill with the desired pie filling and bake according to the filling directions.

NOTE: If you want to use the crust for beef pot pies or with any other savory filling, just eliminate the 2 tablespoons sugar.



Peanut Butter Chocolate Cookies
2 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 pkg chocolate Kisses

1. Mix together flour, soda, salt.
2. In a separate bowl, mix together peanut butter, butter, sugars, egg and vanilla. 3. Add flour mix to peanut mix until well combined.
4. Shape in balls and tuck a chocolate kiss inside the ball.
5. Place on ungreased cookie sheet at 375 degrees for 9-10 minutes.

These are also good as a traditional peanut butter cookie, just shape them into a ball and then flatten with a fork.


Cocoa Brownies
I usually make brownies from a mix. One day we were in the mood for brownies and all I had on hand was cocoa. I found this recipe. The brownies are chewy and slightly bittersweet.

10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cold large eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup walnut or pecan pieces (optional)

1. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8" baking pan with parchment paper or foil, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.

2. Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a medium heatproof bowl and set the bowl in a wide skillet of barely simmering water. Stir from time to time until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth and hot enough that you want to remove your finger fairly quickly after dipping it in to test. Remove the bowl from the skillet and set aside briefly until the mixture is only warm, not hot. If you simply melt the butter and stir in the remaining ingredients, the brownies are still excellent, but they have a rougher texture.

3. Stir in the vanilla with a wooden spoon. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each one. When the batter looks thick, shiny, and well blended, add the flour and stir until you cannot see it any longer, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes with the wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Stir in the nuts, if using. Spread evenly in the lined pan.

4. Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool completely on a rack.

5. Lift up the ends of the parchment or foil liner, and transfer the brownies to a cutting board. Cut into 16 or 25 squares.

Makes 16 large or 25 smaller brownies.
posted by lochan | link
2 comments and fresh takes

Name: Laura

I have five kids including triplets. I'm too busy to blog, but I do anyway (uh, sometimes).

Learn more about me



My Antonia
by Willa Cather

June

Sarah's Quilt
by Nancy Turner

May

Maus
by Art Spiegelman


Housekeeping
by Marilynne Robinson

April

These Is My Words
by Nancy Turner


The Myth of You and Me
by Leah Stewart

March

Inconceivable
by Ben Elton


Songbook
by Nick Hornby


Follies
by Ann Beattie


Hungry Planet

February

About a Boy
by Nick Hornby


High Fidelity
by Nick Hornby


Stargirl
by Jerry Spinelli

January

Revolutionary Road
by Richard Yates


Morality for Beautiful Girls
by Alexander McCall Smith


A Long Way Down
by Nick Hornby


How to be Good
by Nick Hornby


Mere Christianity
by C. S. Lewis

December
Click here for a free Book of Mormon
The Book of Mormon

Good Faith
The Know-It-All
by A. J. Jacobs

Good Faith
Endurance
by Alfred Lansing

November
Good Faith
The Secret Life of Bees
by Sue Monk Kidd

September

Kite Runner
by Khaled Hosseini


The Good Earth
by Pearl S. Buck

August

Freedom of Simplicity
by Richard Foster


Pride and Prejudice
by Jane Austen

July

Celebration of Discipline
by Richard J. Foster

Peace Like A River
Peace Like A River
by Leif Enger

Things Fall Apart
Things Fall Apart
by Chinua Achebe

Gap Creek
Gap Creek
by Robert Morgan

June
Life of Pi
Life of Pi
by Yann Martel

My Name is Asher Lev
My Name is Asher Lev
by Chaim Potok

A Prayer for Owen Meany
A Prayer for Owen Meany
by John Irving

All New People
All New People
by Anne Lamott

May
Patrimony
Patrimony: A True Story
by Philip Roth

Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters
Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters
by J. D. Salinger

Good Faith
Good Faith
by Jane Smiley

Cradle and Crucible
Cradle and Crucible History and Faith in the Middle East
by National Geographic Society

April
Saturday
Saturday
by Ian McEwan

Blue Shoe
Blue Shoe
by Anne LaMott

Emma
Emma
by Jane Austen

Operation Shylock
Operation Shylock
by Philip Roth

March
Jane Austen: A Life
Jane Austen: A Life
by Claire Tomalin

To See and See Again
To See and See Again
by Tara Bahrampour

Reading L0l1ta in Tehran
Reading L0l1ta in Tehran
by Azar Nafisi

February
A Thomas Jefferson Education
A Thomas Jefferson Education
by Oliver Van Demille

Still Alive
Still Alive
by Ruth Kluger

The Screwtape Letters
Not The Germans Alone
by Isaac Levendel

Still Alive
World War II: A Photographic History
by David Boyle

The Screwtape Letters
The Screwtape Letters
by C.S. Lewis

Persuasion
Persuasion
by Jane Austen

January
Climbing Parnassus
Climbing Parnassus
by Tracey Lee Simmons

With the Old Breed
With The Old Breed
by E. B. Sledge

All But My Life
All But My Life
by Gerda Weissmann Klein

We Die Alone
We Die Alone
by David Howarth