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Bringing Home the Bakin'

bake my cake and eat it, too

Monthly Archives: April 2010

I have been babysitting for the same family for almost 6 years… that’s a long time.  And almost every time I have babysat for the family, Allie and I have baked.  However in 6 years, I had yet to bake with (or for) Allie something from scratch.  I decided I needed to change that…So, for Allie’s birthday, I hauled over some cookbooks, and let her choose whatever her heart desired, and I told her I would make it for her.  Luckily, unlike many kids who would have chosen something extremely complex, like a 5-tier cake, Allie chose Elinor Klivans’ “Totally Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies” — they seemed to have been a hit!  They were super easy, and looked delicious.

Totally Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies – Big Fat Cookies, Elinor Klivans

Ingredients:

2 2/3 cups (16 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, slightly softened (for about 30 minutes)
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large cold egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Position a rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 325° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Put 2/3 cup (4 ounces) of the chocolate chips in a heatproof container or the top of a double boiler and place it over, but not touching, a saucepan of barely simmering water (or the bottom of the double boiler). Stir the chocolate chips until melted and smooth. Remove from the water and set aside.

Sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt into a medium bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until smoothly blended, about 1 minute. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl as needed during mixing. On low speed, mix in the melted chocolate chips until blended. Add the egg and vanilla, mixing until blended, about 1 minute. Add the flour mixture, mixing just until it is incorporated. Mix in the remaining 2 cups chocolate chips.

Using an ice cream scoop or measuring cup with a 1/4-cup capacity, scoop mounds of dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies 3 inches apart. Bake the cookies one sheet at a time until they crack slightly on top and a toothpick inserted in the center of a cookie comes out with moist crumbs, not wet batter, about 18 minutes. (If the toothpick penetrates a chocolate chip, test another spot.) Cool the cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then use a wide metal spatula to transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely. The outsides of the cookies will become crisp as the cookies cool.

The cookies can be stored in a tightly covered container at room temperature for up to 4 days.

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Apparently this passover apple kugel was so good that an unnamed taster asked if she had broken passover.  You could eat this as at a brunch, to accompany a meal, or even as dessert — I DEFINITELY recommend it.

Apple Kugel – The World of Jewish Entertaining, Gil Marks

8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup granulated or packed brown sugar (I used brown sugar)
  • 1/2 cup matza cake meal
  • 1/4 cup ground almonds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or melted unsalted margarine (I used vegetable oil)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or grated lemon zest (I used vanilla extract)
  • 6 large (about 2 pounds) tart apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced or diced
  • 1/2 cup raisins, chopped pitted dates, or chopped dried apricots (I used dried apricots)
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped almonds, hazelnuts, pecans, or walnuts (optional — I omitted)

Preparation:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 9-inch-square baking pan.
  2. Combine the sugar, matza cake meal, almonds, cinnamon, and salt.  Beat the egg yolks until thick and creamy.  Blend in the oil and vanilla.  Stir in the sugar mixture.  Add the apples, tossing to coat.  Add the raisins and, if desired, the nuts.
  3. Beat the egg whites on low speed until foamy, about 30 seconds.  Increase the speed to high and beat until stiff but not try, about 5 minutes.  Fold 1/4 of the whites into the apple mixture, then fold in the remaining whites.
  4. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan.  Bake until golden brown, about 45 minutes.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

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