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Sunday, May 24, 2009

Ginger Lemon Cookies

A delightful, light cookie from Martha Stewart Living. I baked mine for 15 minutes as I like cookies fairly crisp, but less, say 12 minutes should do it for softer cookies. This is an old favorite of mine, so there was no experimental anxiety in the making.

Here's the recipe:
Ginger Lemon Cookies


Makes 3 dozen
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1 large egg
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup crystallized ginger, cut into 1/8-inch dice

1.Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment; set aside. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl twice. Add egg; mix on high speed to combine. Add zest; mix to combine.
2.In a bowl, whisk together flour, ground ginger, baking soda, salt, and crystallized ginger; add to butter mixture. Mix on medium-low speed to combine, about 20 seconds.
3.Using two spoons, drop about 2 teaspoons of batter on baking sheet; repeat, spacing them 2 inches apart. Bake for 12-15 minutes(my timing). Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Waiting for TWD in June

No TWD until June I am afraid - I am terribly busy with a large baking project right now - will post pictures later on. I will do the Mango Cake and the Brownies quite soon, altho' I know it won't be for credit. Cheers for now.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Tartest Lemon Tart - Tuesdays with Dorie

Babette of Babette Feasts has picked The Tartest Lemon Tart for us this week. It's 8:30pm on Tuesdays with Dorie night and my pastry still has to sit in the fridge for an hour before I start baking - cutting it fine!

Actually, I should have got done yesterday but there was a little roadblock, like not reading the recipe properly (say no more, say no more) so this is my second attempt. It's looking rather promising - the lemon filling doesn't seem too tart as I used the method of blanching the peel and scraping off the pith.

Just made the deadline - it's now 11:50pm and my tart has just come out of the oven. No time to take its photo on a cake stand or a pretty plate - the stovetop has to do. The tart is looking quite pretty and has a nice texture to the touch. Here's hoping it will be popular tomorrow.

Thank you Babette - I'm looking forward to a slice.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Apricot Bars

I have found a wealth of bar cookie recipes on Allrecipes - almost every type imaginable. I was desperately googling last night as I was almost done with my BakingGALS package for my soldier in Iraq, except that I was a whole cake box layer short of cookies (the usual Molasses Cookies and Snickerdoodles that I make for the Troops).

Allrecipes to the rescue! - I selected Apricot Bars; they seemed easy and only required one more ingredient purchase, the dried apricots.

Today - they have just come out of the oven now and will fill out my package very nicely; of course, I will have an itsy, teeny taste to see if they taste as good as the recipe says.

Here it is:

8 ounces dried apricots
1/2 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
water to cover 1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).
2. Place apricots, lemon juice, white sugar in a small saucepan. Add enough water to just cover the apricots. Bring to a boil, and cook until fruit is soft. Chop coarsely.
3. Sift flour, oatmeal and brown sugar together. Melt butter or margarine over low heat and stir into flour mixture. Put 2/3 of this mixture into 8 x 8 inch greased pan. Spread apricot mixture over crust. Sprinkle remaining oatmeal mixture over apricots.
4. Bake for about 35 minutes.

Packaging time - I have had the itsy bitsy taste - they are very good; the apricot has a real tangy fruity flavor so that's good for people who don't like things too sweet; my own preference is for a bit sweeter. I hope the guys and gals will enjoy them.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tiramisu Cake - Tuesdays with Dorie

This is a wonderful, delicious cake (with a lousy pic, I am sorry to say). Megan of My Baking Adventures picked this week's cake - thank you, Megan! It is a delightful recipe to add to my "Portfolio."

The Tiramisu is for the gods on Olympus - I am sure they would exchange their nectar and ambrosia for this anyday. The cake itself needs a bit of improvement from me, the baker - I left it in the oven just a teeny bit too long (the sides had pulled away too much) so it came out somewhat dry. Not too much to worry about though as the filling and frosting and syrup dealt with that little problem.

I am making this recipe again soon, and I will add 1-1/2 teasp. of baking powder as I think 2 tsp. led to it not rising very much; also, I will prick small holes in the cake before drizzling the syrup over it so it soaks better. I am also thinking of trying mini-cupcakes filled with tiramisu cream - that would be a treat.

The folks at my Office absolutely loved it. Next week - a very tangy lemon tart to look forward to.

Sunday, May 3, 2009


This is another Sherrytrifle skills builder. I have never made meringue before so I had fun last night whipping up some egg white and confectioners' sugar. I picked a recipe from one of my favorite sites, Allrecipes:

Authentic French Meringues

4 egg whites 2 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F (95 degrees C). Butter and flour a baking sheet.
2. In a glass or metal bowl, whip egg whites until foamy using an electric mixer. Sprinkle in sugar a little at a time, while continuing to whip at medium speed. When the mixture becomes stiff and shiny like satin, stop mixing, and transfer the mixture to a large pastry bag. Pipe the meringue out onto the prepared baking sheet using a large round tip or star tip.
3. Place the meringues in the oven and place a wooden spoon handle in the door to keep it from closing all the way. Bake for 3 hours, or until the meringues are dry, and can easily be removed from the pan. Allow cookies to cool completely before storing in an airtight container at room temperature.

I halved the ingredients and it made 7 nicely rounded meringues. They are quite flat and crisp, maybe they should have more whirl and twirl but that should come with more practice. I'm going to use them to top a cake for my next "Tuesday's with Dorie" entry.

I'm in an austerity phase as I have put on quite a bit of weight so no gobbling my baked goods except for tiny pieces; maybe that is how some bakers stay lean. I just tasted the crumbs of meringue that had strayed onto the tray when I was forming them. Pretty good and nice and crisp.