Tag: cookies

Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

You know you are doing good with your exercise regime, when instead of avoiding to wash your jeans (since they get tight after a wash and you lose the “loose” fit), you actually prefer washing them so that they fit you better.

And that’s what I had been doing and felt good about my weight loss (of course there is a long way to go, but the jeans are getting looser, so I was happy).

But all this happy feeling went down the drain this past weekend.

All because of these damn browned butter chocolate chip cookies.

(I know I shouldn’t swear, but these damn cookies, they are just so good that they are no good!)

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Recipe Swap: Triple M Sandwich Cookies- Molasses, Masala & Marshmallows

About two weeks back I stumbled upon Christianna’s site, and not only did I find a great blog, I also found out about this thing that she has going on, called the Recipe Swap.

The idea for the Recipe Swap was born out of a Vintage cookbook find by Christianna. Christianna decided to make her own recipes inspired by those in the cookbook. She also got a bunch of talented bloggers in on the idea and now, the recipe swap has been on for eight months, each month the bloggers dishing out absolute delights that showcase their creativity.

I am thankful to Christianna to let me be a part of this really talented group and to push me into being a little more creative every month!

Do visit the other Recipe Swappers: Dennis, Toni, Christianna, Alex, Lora, Lindsay, Mari, Crissy and Lauren, Pola, Jamie, Claire, Shari, Joy, Monique, Linda, Priya, Rachel, Alli, Katy, Emily, Krissy and Jaclyn. In case you want to know a little more about everyone and the Swap do visit the swap page.


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MINI CHOCOLATE BURGERS

It was a dreadful car ride. I had that feeling- the kind where you know there is doom at the end of the journey. But it had to be done. If not now, it would be too late.

So there I was standing outside the place. I stepped inside- my feet almost ready to run away. But, like I said, it had to be done. So I was there, waiting…waiting with knots in my stomach.

He called me in. He was dressed in white like an angel- but I knew he had the tools of the devil hidden away. He made me lie down. Asked me my name. Did a litle small talk – yeah! like that would ease my nerves!

Then it started. That blinding, in-your-face light. That dreadful noise- the noise that send shivers down your spine. Oh! how I hate that drill and oh! how I hate these dentist visits!

***Update***
Voting at Kitchen Corners is now open! Please go vote for these if you like the recipe!

Well I have not blogged for a while. It’s not that I haven’t been cooking. On the contrary, I have been cooking a lot. But, because of the much hated dentist visits (the very long sittings there and the trauma that goes with them), and cooking for the party my parents had at their house, I have been too busy to blog.

Now, for the above mentioned party I had made “chocolate fondant cake”. It was a disaster. It was nothing like what Raymond Blanc described them to be- and I ended up with mini chocolate cakelets, which I paired with a chocolate sauce and a scoop of ice cream topped with nuts- and thankfully everybody loved it- phew! Saved!

I had some chocolate sauce left from the “chocolate fondant” episode. I was going through my daily serving of tastespotting and saw a burger and the idea of chocolate burger came in my mind. (This is inspite of my dentist repeatedly telling me to stay away from chocolate- I can’t help it, dear dentist, I try but chocolate and I share a bond that just can’t end like that).

I thought for a while and thought cookie would be a perfect idea to sandwich a chocolate ganache to look like a burger.

I thought of entering this for KC April Cook off- the theme – crazy chocolate creations. To make the cookie “bun” completely chocolatey, I used white chocolate- not as chips or chunks but completely melted in the cookie dough batter. So, for the “bun”, I decided to use wheat flour and replaced the oil, milk and sugar (that generally goes in a cookie dough batter) with white chocolate- well isn’t that what white chocolate is made of ! (White chocolate is primarily cocoa butter, sugar, milk and vanilla) Of course I was a little worried about the ratio of the three ingredients in the chocolate compared to what  generally comprises a cookie dough batter and it might change the result of the desired cookie. But they turned out great. I used cinnamon but feel fennel seeds powder or cardamom powder would go better with the white chocolate.

For the “burger” I used the chocolate sauce, that had been kept in the fridge (it solidified a bit in the fridge and was more like a refrigerated ganache). And on top, to replicate sesame seeds, I used some finely chopped cashew.

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Bailey’s & Dulce de leche Mocha Cookie & Cream Ice Cream

If you are like me, then the mention of cookies, alcohol, and ice cream in the same breath would make your eyes brighten up and your mouth drool! That is if the long name doesn’t scare you away!

The idea behind this crazy sounding name came the other day while I was thinking of  how to incorporate the cookies left from the time I made the Mocha Chocolate chip cookies.

Now, during the visit to my grandparents’ place, somebody had invited us for dinner and I had the most amazingly creamy strawberry ice cream- which was homemade and completely eggless. The aunty told it was a fairly simple eggless recipe with equal proportions of milk, cream and milk powder and she adds strawberry crusher which lends the sweetness and flavour to the ice cream. But, I wanted to add the cookies, so I thought I would replace the strawberry crusher with crumbled cookies.

The Bailey’s was something I remember from one of David Lebovitz “no ice cream machine” ice cream. Just before leaving US for my India vacation I got my copy of Room for Dessert and I remember seeing David’s chocolate and banana ice cream that requires no ice cream maker.

Now the thing is I think I am allergic to banana. I think  so because everytime I eat a banana I get this horrible-horrible pain in my stomach. This allergy was never there before. I experienced it for the first time when I was at some one’s place and had taken my banana bread for them. I ate it at night. The next day I had severe pain. Since we had eaten out I thought it was a result of that. But it remained for quite a few days, because I was still eating bananas. Anyway, our home stock of bananas finished and so did the pain. Still it did not strike me. After few days again the same thing and the same happened when my in-laws were there. The only food that was common all these times was banana. So well, I guess I am allergic to it, which kind of sucks because I love banana bread!

So with these two recipes and a little help to get it all together from  here I set out to make my jacked up mocha cookies, dulce de leche ice cream!

Dulce de leche (pronounced DOOL-say day LAY-chay) is Spanish for “milk candy”. It tastes quite like caramel but with the additional taste of cooked milk. (Technically, dulce de leche is a type of caramel.) It’s often used in liquid form as a sauce for ice cream, cakes, cookies, just about anything that needs a sweet topping. In solid form, it is most often eaten as a tasty candy.

The ice cream turned out more like mocha cake batter ice cream.-probably because of the soggy cookies that I had used. Anyway, that wasn’t a problem. Only problem that I had was that it was melting too soon. Homemade ice creams are generally more soft than store bought- they have the soft serve consistency. But this one was melting way too fast. It is really hot here but still not so much that a ice cream can’t behave itself for a few minutes. I guess it could be the alcohol level that did not allow the ice cream to freeze too much. The person, whose original recipe I used, does not add alcohol and has a very creamy ice cream thanks to the milk powder in the recipe. And since I added alcohol, as well as the milk powder, it might have changed the science behind freezing the ice cream. I, actually like my ice cream melted. So I wasn’t complaining, but my mom likes her ice cream “ice cream consistency” (which she couldn’t get because the tub had been out for quite a while as I was busy clicking some photographs). She loved the taste though.

The melted ice cream did make a darn good adult cookie and cream shake! But next time I would skip the cognac and see how that works.

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WHOLE WHEAT NANKHATAI

Yesterday, I met my B-school gang, most of whom, I was seeing after almost two years, but somehow it just did not feel that long a time. I have been in touch with most of them- on and off, and even though a lot were missing from our circle of friends, it was still like old times. One of my friends just recently got married and he had brought his wife along. The others who had attended his wedding were excitedly narrating the food tales they had at his wedding. Now he is a Jain and in Jain weddings- food is the prime attraction (food heaven it is!). Jaini weddings our known for the rich food served and Jains are known for their hospitality. The food though is completely vegetarian (much to the misfortune of one of my friends who is a chickenaholic!), but nonetheless, the food is delicious.

It was fun catching up on what everyone has been up to. I had a great time- lot of leg pulling, college gossip, laughter, food from the dhaba outside our college- brought back a lot of good memories. 🙂

I know I haven’t been quite regular with blogging- posting after a gap of almost two weeks, is it? Well, I have been travelling. And, to be honest, I haven’t been cooking too much either. There’s the maid here who cooks the food and I am enjoying the break from cooking while it lasts. But, I miss baking. I miss my oven- I really do!

For a while I was thinking of something to make for my in-laws. They are not big fans of baked goods, though they don’t mind the occasional baked treat. Last week I had gone to Dehradun/Haridwar where V’s aunt stays. The last time I was in Haridwar, on a trip with my B-school friends, we went to Rishikesh and I remember having these freshly made Nankhatai (an eggless, delicate and crumbly biscuit, quite popular in India), that a roadside vendor was selling. Strange, I don’t remember an oven there, but I am pretty sure they were freshly made.

Anyways, when I went to Dehradun, I realised Nankhatai would be a perfect thing to make that my in-laws would actually enjoy eating. It was a perfect day to bake something too. Its been raining since morning and it’s the kind of weather where you want to be in a blanket, all cuddled up, sipping hot tea and having warm cookies!

I found a recipe here.

Now, my mom-in-law doesn’t do too much baking, even though she is an excellent cook. Her biryanis are awesome! But she doesn’t bake- so they don’t have an oven in the house. But, their microwave has the option of convection. I haven’t baked anything in a microwave. So was hesitant at first- but thought of giving it a try. The first batch came out too flat and though I did nothing different for the second batch (it was the same dough but since I could only put one dish at a time in the microwave I had to bake in two lots), they still resembled the traditional nankhatai a little, though not as perfectly shaped as the ones you get in shops. Well, that just means more trials in the kitchen.

I served the nankhatai to my in-laws and they loved them. The best part – they are whole wheat! Yes, there is ghee, but well you can’t have it your way all the time, can you? Half of them have already vanished between the two of them! (I am on a strict “I have to lose weight” diet – so these things are not coming near me!). Perfect to have with a cup of hot tea and the rainy day just adds to the charm. 🙂

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RUGELACH

‘Tis the season to be jolly!La la la la, la la la la! Today was a fun day. I always have a great time with my coffee group friends. Though generally we meet on Friday for coffee, this time we met on a Thursday for our Coffee group Christmas party!

There was food- lots of it! It was a potluck- so everyone got a dish. The menu was exhaustive. I read out the potluck sign-up list to V last night and even though we had just eaten dinner both of us were salivating! There was Kung Pao chicken, shrimp fried rice, Mac and cheese, Mexican Lasagna (which was awesome!), fried chicken, bean salad, deviled eggs (I got the recipe and will definitely try it out!), Caprese salad (yum!), pumpkin pie (which I couldn’t try because I was stuffed with all the other food- can you believe that- me not tasting dessert?? I thought the day would never come!!!) and Mimosas (now that’s what I call a party)!

Besides all the food, we had the cookie and gift exchange. For the gift exchange we played White Elephant Gift Exchange. Everyone bought a gift under the budget of a pre-agreed amount. Once all the gifts were under the tree, and the food in our stomachs, we each got a number. I was 8 in queue. Now the idea behind White elephant is that each person, as per the order of the number she has, gets to pick up a gift. So the person who has 1, goes first, picks a gift, opens it up and shows it to all. Now the person who goes second has the opportunity to either steal the first person’s gift or pick a new gift from under the tree. If she does steal the first person’s gift, then the first person has to pick another gift. And this goes on. Now a gift stolen can only pass three hands. If it gets stolen the third time, the last person keeps it and no one else can snatch it away from her. That’s how I got my Christmas gift. It got stolen three times and I was the third person to steel it, so no one else could steal mine! I really wanted a new wallet, so was very happy with it. Someone got the magic edge brownie pan. That was the last person, so no one could steal it from her- and it went to the right person- a baker. I would have liked that too but I was very happy with my gift!

For the cookie exchange, all of us were supposed to get a batch of 24 cookies- store bought or home-made and an empty plate. Everyone that ways got two cookies of each kind to take home! There were home-made marshmallows, Mickey mouse shaped cookies, pumpkin cookies, and so many others (I haven’t tried any yet- I’m still full with all the food).

For the cookie exchange, I took rolled fruit cookies, or as the Jews call it Rugelach. The recipe is from Rose Bakery’s cook book. Rose Bakery is an Anglo-French Bakery and restaurant in Paris. Her book includes recipes for over 100 of Rose Bakery’s most popular dishes. Rose Carrarini, the owner of Rose Bakery, holds a passionate philosophy that,

Life is improved by great food and great food can be achieved by everyone.

Now the first part I agree hands down but the second part I feel is incomplete and should go on to add “eventually”.  Eventually great food can be achieved by everyone, case in example- the cookies.

My first attempt at the rolled fruit cookies has been a semi-flop. Semi- flop because, even though they tasted good- the presentation wasn’t that great. I had problems rolling the dough. I don’t know why- I did leave the dough for more than 2 hours (overnight, to be precise), but I doubt that’s the reason. I think I added too much flour. I found the dough too sticky and ended adding more flour, but I think if I had left in the fridge, the stickiness would have been taken care of without any additional flour and would have thus been easier to roll out. Next time I’ll try that and I would suggest even if you feel the dough is sticky, refrigerate it like that and then when rolling add additional flour accordingly.

Rose likes these cookies because the pastry is made with cream cheese and very little sugar, so even though the filling is quite sweet, the cookie is not. I found that to be true!

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