Mini Brown Sugar Cookies

As you can tell by my previous post, I’m going through a brown sugar phase. It’s just so darn good. When it bakes, it tastes as though caramel and maple sugar had babies.

 

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Oh…and check out my newest tiny food model. Meet Estée Grace who turned 4 months yesterday.

 

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Makes 30 mini cookies

 

125 g (1/2 cup) butter, room temperature

¾ cup Muscovado sugar (dark brown sugar)

1 egg yolk

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp baking soda

½ tsp baking powder

1 ¼ cup flour

 

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  1. Preheat oven to 350 F or 180 C, and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda and put aside.
  3. In the bowl of your mixer, mix butter with dark brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  4. Add in the egg yolk, beating until just incorporated.
  5. Turn off your mixer and add in the flour mixture, beating until smooth.
  6. Lastly, fold in chocolate chips.
  7. Scoop cookie dough in ¼ inch balls (I used a mini ice cream scooper) and place on parchment paper lined cookie sheet at least 1 inch apart.
  8. Bake 6-7 minutes, or until the edges are just golden.

 

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Gingerbread Mug Houses

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Because you get to eat tons of sweets, from Yule logs to gingerbread men, to Christmas puddings and truffle stocking-stuffers.

Here’s a recipe that I’ve adapted from this little treasure trove of a book called Gingerbread Wonderland by Mima Sinclair. There are tons of stencils to photocopy and cut out to build cookie townhouses, miniature houses, and large homes. (FYI: the book is totally worth buying).

 

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Makes 15 houses

 

Gingerbread dough

200 g butter, room temperature

60 g molasses

60 g honey

150 g packed brown sugar

1 egg

zest of 1 lemon

2 tsp ground ginger

2 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground nutmeg

¼ tsp ground cloves

1 tsp baking soda

500 g flour

½ tsp salt

 

  1. Cream the butter with molasses, honey and brown sugar.
  2. Beat in the egg, lemon zest, spices, baking soda and salt.
  3. Add the flour in increments until dough is homogenous.
  4. Roll it out as a disk between two pieces of plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  5. Preheat the oven to 325 F or 160 C and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  6. Roll out the dough to 5 mm (1/4 inch) thickness and cut into desired shapes (see stencil below). Place in freezer for 5 minutes so that dough retains its shape while baking.
  7. Bake for 5-6 minutes.

gingerbread stencil

 

Royal Icing

500 g icing sugar

2 egg white

lemon juice (1 lemon)

2 tsp water

 

  1. Sift the sugar.
  2. Mix in egg white, lemon juice, and water.
  3. Whisk for 2 minutes on low speed until mixture is smooth.
  4. Use royal icing as glue to hold your gingerbread house together.
  5. Put some in a pastry bag and decorate.
  6. You can thin out the icing with some water. Add a teaspoon at a time.

 

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The Ultimate Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie

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I’m always on the lookout for my next chocolate fix. I mean, always. And chocolate chip cookies are the greatest drug ever invented by human kind. My little sister, Samantha B., found this recipe on The Every Girl blog and raved about it so much I just had to try it. Knowing her, she stuck to the recipe like glue on paper. I didn’t. I’m a tweaker. I can’t help it. It’s stronger than me.

So I can’t tell you how Sam’s cookies turned out, but I can tell you how my version, with ½ cup less sugar, 1 cup less chocolate chips, and no refrigerating time came out. One word: un-freakin-believably-delicious. Yes, that’s one word. 😉

 

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Ingredients

 

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cornstarch
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg + 2 egg yolks at room temperature
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, salt, baking powder and baking soda and put aside.
  3. In the bowl of your mixer, add butter and both sugars and cream together for 2-3 minutes on high until light and fluffy.
  4. Add in egg + egg yolks beating until incorporated. Then beat in the vanilla extract.
  5. Turn off your mixer and add in the flour mixture in three intervals, beating after each addition until smooth.
  6. Lastly, fold in chocolate chips.
  7. Scoop cookie dough in balls and place on parchment paper lined cookie sheet at least 1 1/2 inches apart.
  8. Bake 12-14 minutes for large cookies and 8-10 minutes for smaller ones, or until the edges are just golden.

 

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They were a huge hit with the kiddies too.

Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing

Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing | Sisterbakers.com I’m baaaaaack! It’s been a difficult few months in my private life recently so as you can imagine baking has been the farthest thing from my mind. Halloween was a holiday I just couldn’t pass up baking for. Last night, with a little help from my toddler, and a lot of help from my husband, I made these awesome Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing.

I have to be honest, I’m not the biggest fan of sugar cookies, but they’re super fun to make and decorate and a great activity to involve the kids in! That makes them worth baking all on their own!

Neither recipe is my own so I’ll refer you to the wonderful bloggers whose recipes I used to make these. Enjoy!

Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing | Sisterbakers.com

Soft Cut-Out Sugar Cookies by Sally’s Baking Addiction

TIPS:

  1. I highly recommend making a double batch. The cut-outs take a lot of room and you won’t get very many cookies out of each sheet of dough unless your molds are tiny!
  2. Combine the remaining scraps of dough and roll them back out and refrigerate before cutting more cookies.
  3. Freeze any remaining dough and you’ll have sugar cookies in a snap!
  4. Bake them one sheet at a time and place the unbaked cookies on their sheets in the fridge while you bake and cut. That way they’ll stay nice and cold bake more evenly.

Royal Icing by Sweetopia

TIPS:

  1. Meringue Powder is essential so make sure you have some on hand. I had a lot of trouble finding it in a store (and I’m in NYC!!!), so don’t wait for the day of to buy it. Look around and if you can’t find it, order it online.
  2. Color gels are a must for tinting the Icing without thinning it out. Wilton makes a great set of icing color gels and you can find them on Amazon.

How to decorate with Royal Icing by Annie’s Eats

TIPS:

  1. Make sure your purchase some very small round piping tips to make the border. I bought some Size 3 Round piping tips at Williams-Sonoma.

  Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing | Sisterbakers.com

Brown Sugar Cookies with Chocolate Chips

Brown Sugar Cookies with Chocolate Chips | sisterbakers.com

I hope you all are getting a better introduction to springtime than we are here in NYC. The first week has been cold and now it’s warmed up but pouring rain. Lovely. I don’t know about you guys, but when the weather is this bad, my favorite thing to do is curl up with a good book, a warm beverage and a fresh baked cookie. Luckily for me, I can do just that since I baked an awesome batch of cookies yesterday. These cookies almost taste like shortbread. And they are most definitely best warm or fresh out of the oven. If they were baked the day before (like mine were) pop them back in the oven for a couple minutes to warm them through. Trust me this step is absolutely worth it. I also love this recipe because it’s a roll out cookie so you can have fun with it and cut out whatever shapes you prefer. So feel free to be whimsical with these. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go back to reading and eating my cookies.

Brown Sugar Cookies with Chocolate Chips | sisterbakers.com

Disclaimer : One cookie was harmed during the photo shoot. It has since disappeared and has never been seen again. 

Recipe:

Brown Sugar Cookies with Chocolate Chips:

Makes approx 12 cookies (depending on the size of your cookie cutter)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temp

1/2 cup brown sugar, packed

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup chocolate chips

  1. In the bowl of a stand-mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix the butter and sugar.
  2. Scrape the bottom of the bowl and add the egg and vanilla extract. Mix again.
  3. Add the flour, baking powder and salt. And mix until incorporated.
  4. Empty your mixer bowl onto a cutting board (or other surface you can knead the dough on) and gently knead the dough, slowly incorporating your chocolate chips. Once it looks nice and smooth, form it into a ball and pat it down to form a disc. Wrap it up in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 15-20 minutes.
  5. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat.
  6. Place a sheet of parchment paper down. Place your chilled dough  on it and place a second sheet of parchment paper over the top. Roll the dough out. I let the chocolate chips be my guide for thickness. When you start to feel them on you rolling pin then you know you can’t roll the dough any thinner.
  7. Cut the cookies out using whatever shape cookie cutter you want to use and place them on your prepared baking sheet. You may knead to reform the dough and roll it out several times to cut out all the cookies. Place them in the freezer for 2-4 minutes.
  8. Bake for 7-9 minutes or until they no longer look “wet” and they are lightly golden. Allow to cool a couple of minutes on your baking sheet then transfer them (with the parchment paper) to a cooling rack. Enjoy!

Sesame Nougatine & Chocolate Chip Cookies

A friend of mine lent me a cookbook about cookies and brownies. Just looking at the pictures has made me gain weight. J I wanted to share the sweetness with you before I have to hand the book back over.

I’ve never made nougatine before, even though I’ve always loved eating it. I imagined it was challenging and only chefs that went through culinary school could be talented enough to make this paper-thin, nuts folded into golden caramel delicacy. Well, I was wrong. I think it is probably the easiest thing to make.

 

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I tripled the amount of nougatine and saved some in a jar. It keeps a very long time in most kitchens. In mine, the jar is sitting next to the espresso machine, so by the end of today—considering how much coffee is drunk in my household—it will be all gone.

 

makes 18 cookies

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Sesame Nougatine

60 g (¼ cup) sugar

1 tbsp sesame seeds

1 tbsp slivered almonds

¼ tsp fleur de sel

 

  1. Lay a large piece of parchment paper on your kitchen counter.
  2. Heat the sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat until golden brown. Add the salt, sesame seeds, and the slivered almonds. Stir with a spatula.
  3. Pour onto one side of the parchment paper. Fold the other side over. With a rolling pin, roll the nougatine out until ¼ inch thickness.
  4. You can lift the parchment paper on top but do not touch the nougatine until it’s cooled down (approximately 5 minutes).
  5. Break into small pieces for your cookie batter.

 

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Cookie Dough

150 g butter, room temperature

110 g sugar

1 egg

½ tsp baking powder

¼ tsp fleur de sel

200 g all-purpose flour

100 g chocolate chips

Nougatine in chunks you’ve just made

 

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  1. Preheat oven to 180 C or 350 F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of a standmixer, cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
  3. Add the baking powder, salt, and egg and beat on low speed until well incorporated.
  4. Pour in the flour and whisk until mixture is homogenous.
  5. Fold in the nougatine and the chocolate chips.
  6. Drop heaping tablespoons of batter onto prepared baking sheets.
  7. Bake for 12 minutes or until the sides of the cookies are golden brown.

 

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Snickerdoodles

Snickerdoodles were my favorite cookies growing up. Truly, I was obsessed with them. I find it extraordinarily surprising that I haven’t shared this recipe with you, or my children. Today, was the first time they tried it and considering how many they swapped off the baking tray and the trail of cinnamon crumbs leading straight to their bedrooms, the snickerdoodle will most probably become a weekly kitchen staple.

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The snickerdoodle dough needs to be refrigerated before shaped into little balls that are then rolled into a mixture of cinnamon and sugar, so set aside some extra time to cool down your dough.

 

Inspired from Magnolia Bakery’s Snickerdoodles.

Yields 3 dozen cookies

 

Cookie Dough

2 ½ cup all-purpose flour

2 tsp cream of tartar

1 tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

1 cup of butter, softened

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

2 tbsp of milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

 

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Cinnamon Sugar Coating

¼ cup sugar

2 tsp cinnamon

 

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter with the sugar. Add the eggs and beat until thick and velvety.
  2. Add the cream of tartar, salt, baking soda, and vanilla extract and beat some more.
  3. Pour in the milk and the flour and whisk until fully incorporated. You will have a sticky dough.
  4. Wrap the dough in saran wrap and place in the refrigerator for 2 hours to harden or in the freezer 30 minutes.
  5. Preheat your oven to 350 F or 180 C and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  6. In a little bowl, whisk the cinnamon and sugar together. Set aside.
  7. Scoop out half of the dough (leave the rest to harden while you prepare the first batch of cookies).
  8. Roll 1-inch balls in between your palms then roll around in cinnamon sugar until evenly coated. Space out on baking tray. Repeat. Don’t forget the rest of your dough in the fridge or freezer.
  9. Bake for 12 minutes or until golden and puffed-up.
  10. These cookies will flatten as they cool down and become deliciously crisp. Yum!

 

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Double Chocolate & Coconut Cloud Cookies

Double Chocolate & Coconut Cloud Cookies

 

I’m obsessed with these cookies. Like obsessed-obsessed. I’ve made them so many time I’ve lost count and they come out perfect every time. These cookies are flourless (bonus!). They are chewy and chocolatey and just the perfect bite of chocolate. They’re not unlike a meringue cookie, just less finicky and easier to bake. The original recipe “Chocolate Chip Clouds” is pretty perfect on its own but I think the coconut just adds a perfect extra little chewiness and flavor. Enjoy!

Recipe:

Double Chocolate & Coconut Cloud Cookies (adapted from SkinnyTaste.com “Chocolate Chip Clouds“)

Makes 24-30 cookies

1/2 cup egg whites (about 3 large eggs)

1/8 tsp cream of tartar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut (desiccated coconut)

1 cup mini chocolate chips

  1. Preheat your oven to 300˚F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silpats and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your electric mixer, place you egg whites and cream of tartar. Whisk on medium-high speed until frothy. Slowly add the sugar and turn the speed up to high. Continue whisking until egg whites are white and glossy and hold stiff peaks.
  3. Add the vanilla, cocoa powder and coconut and whisk on low just to combine evenly. Give it a quick whisk on high speed to re-fluff it up if necessary.
  4. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Drop in large tablespoonfuls on your baking sheets. Try to shape them how you want them to look because they’re going to keep the same shape post-baking.
  6. Bake for 34-40 minutes. When the cookies are dry to the touch, they’re done (so keep an eye on them the first time in case they need less than 34 minutes).
  7. Allow to cool slightly and transfer to wire rack. Best enjoyed slightly warm or room temperature.

Honey & Almond Cigars

After years of buying them already made, I attempted to make my very own crispy, honey cigars. To facilitate my endeavor, I bought a fryer. I’ve been deep-frying way too many things since, but I digress. This oriental delicacy takes a long time to make (around 1h30 from start to finish), but it’s worth every single minute.

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I’ve always found oriental desserts a tad bit too sweet, so I lessened the sugar content in the stuffing and made a honey syrup instead of using pure honey. The result is PERFECT!

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Makes 24

For the almond stuffing

250 g almond meal

40 g icing sugar

1 egg white

40 g vegetable oil

water

 

  1. Mix all ingredients except the water.
  2. Gradually add 1tbsp of water at a time so that the mixture forms a dry paste (like play dough). See picture below.

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  1. With clean hands, roll out long ovals and set on a plate.

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For the shell

Phyllo dough (1 pack should be enough to make 24 cigars)

Water

Vegetable oil

 

  1. Place your phyllo dough on a clean surface and divide in 4 if dealing with rounds. Cut into long triangles if dealing with rectangular sheets. Keep the sheets you’re not working with covered underneath a kitchen towel. The thin dough dries out extremely quickly.
  2. Place one of the oval almond mixtures on the large top of the triangles.
  3. Moisten the edges of the dough with water (use a brush if possible so you don’t need to dry your hands after each rolling).
  4. Roll like the pictures below. You begin by folding the larger edges horizontally then rolling it out vertically.

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  1. Place on a plate lined with parchment paper so that it doesn’t stick.
  2. Repeat for all 24.
  3. Line a baking sheet with disposable towel paper.
  4. Heat oil in a fryer or in a large saucepan and fry the cigars (5 at a time is best so that you don’t overcrowd your pan), until golden brown.
  5. Let cool on towel paper so that it absorbs some of the oil.

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For the honey syrup

1 cup liquid honey

½ cup water

2 tbsp orange blossom water (optional)

 

  1. In a saucepan, heat the honey, water and orange blossom water. If you do not use the orange blossom water, add 2 tbsp of normal water.
  2. Simmer for about five minutes.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  4. In batches, carefully drop each fried cigar into the mixture and roll it around until well-covered.
  5. With kitchen tongs, scoop it out and place it on the parchment paper to come to room temperature.

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The BSF Chocolate Chip Cookie (Butterless-Sugarless-Flourless)

The BSF Chocolate Chip Cookie (Butterless-Sugarless-Flourless) | sisterbakers.com

So remember a while back when I made some super healthy chocolate chip cookies using bananas and almond butter & meal? Well, I may have outdone myself and made them even more delicious. I know what you’re thinking: “That’s impossible!” “That’s crazy talk!”. Okay fine, you’re probably not thinking anything at all except about yummy cookies at this point, and frankly I don’t blame you. But I did indeed manage to make those cookies even better with just a little (teeny-tiny I swear) extra-effort! (Psssst… the secret is hazelnut meal and homemade almond butter) So here you go, a newer, better rendition of a healthy chocolate chip cookie! Oh and did I mention these are gluten-free too? You’re welcome.

Recipe:

The BSF Chocolate Chip Cookie (Butterless-Sugarless-Flourless)

Makes 15 cookies

Homemade Almond Butter

1 1/2 cups roasted, unsalted almonds

 

Cookies

1/4 cup overripe banana, mashed (about 1/2 a large banana)

1/4 cup homemade almond butter

1/4 cup honey

1 egg

1 1/2 cups hazelnut meal

1 tbsp flax meal

1/2 tsp baking soda

Pinch of salt

3/4 cup mini-chocolate chips

 

To make the Almond Butter:

  1. Put all the almonds in a food processor.
  2. Process for 10-15 minutes until you have almond butter. You’ll wonder after about 5 minutes how the powder could become nut butter, but good things come to those who wait. Promise!
  3. Once you’re happy with the consistency (thick but spreadable), store the almond butter in a glass jar or container, at room temperature or in the fridge. This makes approximately 1 cup almond butter.

 

To make the Cookies:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the banana, almond butter, honey, and egg. Whisk to combine.
  3. Add the hazelnut meal, flax meal,baking soda, and salt. Whisk until smooth.
  4. Fold in your mini chocolate chips.
  5. Drop the dough in 1 1/2 tablespoonful amounts on your parchment paper (I like using a medium ice-cream scoop), spreading them out so that they don’t touch. With very wet hands or a very wet spatula, lightly press the top of each cookie to flatten it slightly (re-wetting as you go). This just helps them get a nice cookie shape.
  6. Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden.
  7. Allow to fully cool on your baking tray (they’re too fragile to handle when hot).

The BSF Chocolate Chip Cookie (Butterless-Sugarless-Flourless) | sisterbakers.com

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