Monday, July 26, 2010

Mexican hot chocolate cookies

the goods:

2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 and 3/4 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon chili powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and 1 and 1/2 cups sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs and beat to combine. With mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture and beat to combine.

In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup sugar, cinnamon, and chili powder. Using heaping tablespoons, form balls of dough and roll in cinnamon-sugar mixture.

Place about 3 inches apart on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until cookies are set in the center and begin to crack, about 10 minutes. Let cookies cool on sheet on wire rack 5 minutes, then transfer cookies to rack to cool completely.

Monday, July 19, 2010

raspberry whoopie pies

the goods:

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons light-brown sugar
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup fresh raspberries (6 ounces)
confectioners' sugar, for serving

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter, 1 cup brown sugar, and lemon zest until light and creamy. Add vanilla and egg and beat to combine, scraping down bowl as needed. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. With mixer on low, beat in flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with milk and ending with flour mixture (scraping down bowl as needed). Beat well to combine.

Drop batter in 2-tablespoon mounds, about 2 inches apart, onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until puffed and pale golden around edges, 17 to 19 minutes. Repeat with fresh parchment. Let cakes cool completely on sheets on wire racks.

In a large bowl, whip cream and 3 tablespoons brown sugar to soft peaks.

In a small bowl mash raspberries with a fork, then fold into whipped cream.

Divide raspberry cream evenly among bottom half of the cakes, then sandwich with remaining cakes.

Using a fine mesh sieve, dust whoopie pies with confectioners' sugar.

Monday, July 12, 2010

caramel apples

the goods:

10 Granny Smith apples
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
chocolate, sprinkles, nuts, mini m&m's, chopped up oreos, or any desired toppings

Rough up apples with a fine grade of sand paper. Wash and insert stick. Place on a cookie sheet.

In a large, heavy pot, combine brown sugar, butter, and corn syrup. After the butter is melted, stir in sweetened condensed milk.

Stirring constantly, cook until caramel reaches soft ball (230 degrees on a candy thermometer). Stir in vanilla. Let caramel sit for 3 to 5 minutes before dipping apples.

Dip apples into caramel. Let set up on cookie sheet.

After completely cooled, drizzle with chocolate and cover with toppings.

Refrigerate if needed.

Monday, July 5, 2010

applesauce cake

the goods:

1/2 cup vegetable oil, plus more for cake pan
3 large apples, peeled, cored, quartered, and cut into chunks
1/2 cup light-0brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
confectioners' sugar, for serving

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil an 8-inch round cake pan. In a medium saucepan, bring apples and 1/4 cup water to a simmer over high. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and cook until apples are very tender, 12 minutes. Mash apples with a whisk, stirring to dry mixture slightly, 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

Whisk brown sugar into apples, then oil. Whisk in eggs, then flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

Transfer batter to prepared pan and bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes.

Let cool in pan on a wire rack 20 minutes. Invert and let cake cool on rack. To serve, dust top with confectioners' sugar.