November 26, 2007

Whopper Drops

Chocolate Malted Whopper Drops
from Baking From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan

1 3/4 cups flour
1 cup malted milk powder
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick plus 3 TBSP (11 TBSP total) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup whole milk
2 cups chocolate-covered malted milk drops, coarsely chopped
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Sift together flour, malted milk powder, cocoa, baking powder and salt.

Beat butter and sugar together until very smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add vanilla. Add half the dry ingredients, mixing just until they disappear in the batter. Mix in the milk, then the remaining dry ingredients, mixing only until they are incorporated. The batter will look more like fudge frosting than cookie dough. Mix in the malted milk balls and chopped chocolate.

Drop the dough by rounded tablespoonfuls onto baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches of space between spoonfuls. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back after 6 minutes. When done, the cookies will be puffed and set but slightly soft to the touch. Let the cookies rest for 2 minutes before using a wide spatula to transfer them to racks to cool.

Makes about 30 cookies.

Notes: I'm not sure whether I cooked these sufficiently since the cookbook recipe does not include a temperature for the baking. But they came out chewy and didn't fall apart, so it was probably close enough. These are my dad's favorite candy. And so when I found this recipe I knew I had to make them for him. The cookies are good. However.... they don't have much whopper taste to them and are more like chocolate chocolate-chip cookies. Maybe they need less cocoa and more malted milk powder.

Posted by Jennifer at 8:08 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
November 23, 2007

Butternut Squash Gratin

Butternut Squash Gratin with Goat Cheese and Hazelnuts
Bon Appetit (November 2007)

3 1/2 pounds butternut squash (about 2 medium), peeled, seeded, cut into 3/4- to 1-inch cubes (8 cups)

2 tablespoons olive oil
kosher salt
ground pepper
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, divided
3 cups sliced leeks (white and pale green parts only)
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
1 5.5-ounce log soft fresh goat cheese
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted, husked, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 400 F. Place butternut squash cubes and olive oil in large bowl; sprinkle with coarse kosher salt and ground pepper and toss to coat. Spread out squash cubes on large rimmed baking sheet. Roast until just tender and beginning to brown, stirring occasionally, about 35 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt 3 tablespoons butter in heavy medium skillet over medium-low heat. Add sliced leeks and chopped sage; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Saute until tender but not brown, about 15 minutes. Coat 11x7-inch baking dish with remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Spread half of leek mixture over bottom of prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with half of squash and half of cheese. Repeat layering with leeks, squash, and cheese. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.

Preheat oven to 375 F. Pour cream evenly over gratin. Sprinkle with toasted chopped hazelnuts. Bake uncovered until gratin is heated through and cream is bubbling, about 30 minutes (40 minutes if previously chilled).

TO GO: This gratin is a good choice for transporting because it travels well.

Notes: I am, I must admit, something of a fanatic about goat cheese. I will eat it straight out of the packaging. That was one of the reasons this caught my attention. Also, that it claimed to travel well. Plus, the last two years for Thanksgiving I've made a sweet potato dish and wanted to stray slightly further into the realm of vegetables not generally liked by my family. Well, this one seemed to go over well. I had one sister who commented that she'd prefer it without the hazelnuts, but someone else at the table argued they added interesting texture. So, that's a draw. As for me, I liked the mix of flavors and found it really dressed up the squash. Of course, it had nothing on grandma's stuffing recipe. Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted by Jennifer at 12:38 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
November 9, 2007

Coconut Lemon Tea Cake

Coconut Lemon Tea Cake
from Baking From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan

2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk (stir well before measuring)
1/2 stick (4 TBSP) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
4 large eggs
2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp dark rum
3/4 cup shredded coconut, toasted or not
grated zest of one lemon
juice from 1/2 a lemon

Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9 to 10-inch (or 10 to 12 cup) bundt pan.

Pour the coconut milk in a small saucepan, add the butter and lemon juice. Heat until the milk is hot and the butter melted. Remove from the heat, but keep warm.

Rub the grated zest of lemon into the sugar. With a hand mixer at medium-high beat eggs and sugar together in a large bowl until pale, thick and almost doubled in volume, almost 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and the rum. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients, scraping down the side of the bowl as needed and stopping just when the flour disappears.

Keeping the mixer on low, add the coconut, mixing only until it is blended, then steadily add the hot milk and butter mixture. When it's smooth, stop mixing and give the batter a couple turns with a rubber spatula, just to make certain that any ingredients that may have fallen to the bottom of the bowl are incorporated. Pour the batter into the pan and gie the pan a few back-and-forth shakes to even the batter.

Bake for 60 to 65 minutes or until the cake is a golden brown and a think knife inserted deep into the center comes out clean. Transfer the cake to a rack and cool for 10 minutes before unmolding.

Notes: My BFF made me this cake for my birthday. First one he ever made from scratch. It's amazing. Light with just a touch of lemon and the coconut gives it texture. Perfect. And that's two for two in this cookbook. Definitely a keeper.

Posted by Jennifer at 8:17 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack