28 December 2009

A Little Break

Y'all, I'm going to Mexico tomorrow. I'll be back in a week with food stories and lots of photos. Have a happy New Year and don't forget to eat black eyed peas and collards on the first!

Back to Cookies.

I posted this photo earlier but I never gave the recipe for the cookie! And it's really good, so it needs posting.

Chocolate Toffee Cookies
Adapted from Bon Appetit

1 lb dark, semisweet chocolate (chopped)
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 stick butter
1 3/4 cups packed brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
5 1.4 oz chocolate covered toffee bars (I used Heath)
1 cup toasted pecans or walnuts
sea salt for a final sprinkling.

Combine flour, salt and baking powder in a small bowl and set aside. Meanwhile, melt chocolate and butter in a large double boiler. Once melted, remove the bowl from the double boiler and allow to cool down to room temp.
In a standing mixer, beat eggs and brown sugar for 5 minutes, until they are smooth and thick. Slowly add in chocolate and vanilla. Next, sift in flour mixture, chopped toffee and nuts. Chill batter for 45 minutes. It is really thin before chilling, but it firms right up in the fridge.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a pan with parchment paper, and drop spoonfuls of dough 2 inches apart on the pan. Sprinkle with sea salt. Bake for 12 minutes- they are really good underdone. They should have a crackled appearance on top.

26 December 2009

Christmas, Etc.

Yesterday I made an apple custard danish, got a new coon-skin cap, put a bow on Jacky- the usual holiday business. I also got a few extra special gifts, including my dream typewriter. You may remember, I wrote about it in March!!! And now it's mine!!! I'm going to write a cookbook on it, whilst drinking vermouth and eating smoked almonds.
I don't know about anyone else, but I woke up today and ate a huge bowl of oatmeal. Then I immediately started in on my stocking candy. We have finished most of the maple candies and a lot of chocolates, and polished off the cassoulet from last night. It's disgusting. I can't wait to put on a bathing suit in a few days.

24 December 2009

Cookie Party!

Merry christmas, Y'all. My brother is visiting and puking his brains out, so you can tell we are having a good time. Today while he moans and sighs around the house I am going to be roasting lamb bones and making duck confit. Yes, we are having cassoulet! I can't imagine that the smell of baked lamb bones will help his situation, but then, I don't care. It's worth it.
Also on the roster, cookies and danishes! I will be turing dough and taking photos for later when I can be a better blogger.
Enjoy your holiday and bake some cookies.

15 December 2009


I made these earlier this fall and have not stopped thinking about them. They are so simple. Comforting and flakey.

Pecan Ginger Scones
adapted from Molly Wizenberg

2 cups AP flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 stick butter (chilled)
3 Tb sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup cream
1/2 cup pecans
1/4 cup crystalized ginger, diced

In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients together. Dice butter into small cubes, and then add them into the dry bowl. Pinch the butter into the flour until all the large lumps are gone. Add in the ginger and the pecans. I don't actually remember the measurement of pecans I used, but a half cup sounds safe. In a small bowl beat the egg and the milk. Pour this over the dry mix and stir briefly. Dump the dough onto a floured surface and knead with your hands 12 times (Molly says this is the perfect number of kneads, and I listen to her when she gives out numbers). Form the dough into a flat circle and then cut it into 8 wedges. Sprinkle with coarse sugar. Bake them on a baking sheet for 10 minutes or until they look golden and done. I served mine with salt sprinkled butter and marscarpone.

07 December 2009

12 Days of Cookies!!!

via lottie & doof

I want to make them all!!!!! Maybe I will!!!!!!!!!

Also in my future:

Dinner tonight: Roast Chicken. It is SO cold in Portland tonight.

For holiday secret snacking 3 Layer Peppermint Bark

I need to find A replacement for Shane

Maybe I will drink a bowl of Aristocrat Sparkling Punch

And... I want to go to there.

03 December 2009

Thanksgiving Memories

Here you see images of a huge failure (the Italian style squash tart with chocolate, caramel and rum that was featured in Portland Monthly last month- I almost wonder if they ever tried the recipe, it was so bad, no offense Portland Monthly!!), and some beet pickled eggs that are destined to be deviled. Those were tasty, though I found that the pickling made the eggs a little... tough. Next time I will only pickle them for one day rather than three.

School is for Squares (And I'm L7)

Sorry for my crappy posting lately, y'all. It's finals week at school and I'm taking a beating.

Here are some fantasy recipes that I have not made but want to and maybe you should first and then tell me about it or better yet bring me some:

Anzac Cookies from 101 Cookbooks
Fresh Mint Ice Cream from Orangette
No Knead Bread from Smitten Kitchen
Israeli Couscous with Preserved Lemons and Butternut Squash from David Lebovitz
Dr.Pepper Ribs from Homesick Texan
Savory Cabbage Slaw with Applesauce Vinaigrette and Mustard Seeds from The Wednesday Chef
Ugly Fish Soup from The Lobster Squad

And OK... Maple and Homemade Yogurt Panna Cotta from Cannelle et Vanille.

Get to it- I have to go back to class.

30 November 2009

24 November 2009

I'm Not Making Pumpkin Pie.

I am making an Italian roasted pumpkin tart with chocolate and caramel, in case you were wondering. I am also making most of the rural Pennsylvania Thanksgiving recipes from Gourmet's final issue (I can't get over its end, by the way. I am completely depressed about it, as I was just learning how special Gourmet magazine was when it was taken from me). We are spending T-day in my father's newly built barn, so it seems appropriate. There will be fires, music, and an indoor grill. Its going to be a hell of a barn warming.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, and always has been. I plug my ears and hum to forget what we are really "celebrating", and once I do, I focus on what we celebrate today: food. Food is my favorite! Hanging out with friends and family who love to cook and eat together sounds like a perfect day to me. To top it off with Calvados spiked Cider (Thank you Holly, via Carlyle), and who knows- maybe there will be dancing.

Photos, naturally, to follow.

photo via Gourmet.com

20 November 2009


We have been meaning to go into the Carlyle for a long time, and finally this week we did. We tried the tasting menu, a 5 course meal selected by the chef, Jake Martin. His specialty is fish. One of the plates that we had was hake with an uni soup- I do not know how he seared the fish in a way that it seemed to have a crust, while the inside was silky and soft- but it was perfect. Each dish was creative and thoughtful, and included ingredients not found in Portland restaurants very often. You should go there- get dressed up. It's fun.

18 November 2009


Oh did we eat. Do you see those homemade english muffins? They were SO. GOOD. Kevin and I were in charge of Bloody Mary's. We made ours with Aviation gin, a bottle of the new dark Sessions beer, a whole jar of horseradish, black pepper, dried chilies, fresh celery juice, salt and tomato juice. They were really good, and we garnished them with our host Jon's pickled green beans and meyer lemons.
Jon works with me and he has been responsible for some of the best staff meals I have ever had. It was no surprise that the brunch he fed us was perfect. The eggs were slow cooked at a low temperature for 3 hours. This resulted in the creamiest, softest eggs I have ever had.

My friend Nic and I have a goal for each of our 25th birthdays (we are a month apart- I am about to achieve my goal, hopefully). We decided that on our birthdays we would each saber a champagne bottle. This is when you use a knife to chop (shave? flick? It's a little hard to describe...) off the top of the bottle, leaving a clean cut in the glass that you pour out of. You can see a photo of the final result up there, except it didn't work this time and the cork stayed in the bottle, despite the glass being cut off! He did it perfectly on his birthday, but at brunch he somehow messed up twice. Ha! We only got a few tiny cuts in our digestive systems- the wine was still great!