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Posts Tagged ‘cookies’

I can’t lie.  I jumped at the chance for a review copy of Milk Bar Life by Christina Tosi.  I thought Momofuku Milk Bar was a fun cookbook, albeit one that I was unlikely to ever bake from.  (Good thing it was a library book.)  Many of the recipes had more steps than I was willing to follow.

 

Milk Bar Life is a very different book, even though it’s still a bit quirky.  Actually, it’s very quirky.  There are many recipes that I’m unlikely to use, not because they are complicated, but because they’re not my thing.  At the same time, there are a handful of recipes that I really want to try out sooner rather than later.

The first section is dedicated to Hand-Me Down recipes.  Overall, they are very doable.  I’m eyeing the oatmeal cookies and the bread recipe.  Many of the recipes are very retro which just doesn’t appeal to me personally.  Examples?  The cocktail meatballs, the seven-layer salad, and the cheesy onions.

Of course, since this is a Christina Tosi cookbook, there is a chapter on cookies.  There are a couple of sugar cookie recipes, banana cookies, molasses-rye cookies… nothing with a long ingredient list like her compost cookie recipe.

The third chapter is supermarket inspirations.  It is, if you will pardon the expression, semi-homemade recipes.  Again, not really my thing.

The fourth chapter is filled with recipes that the Milk Bar staff has eaten during their breaks.  It brings me back to recipes I want to try like the tex-mex curried chili with avocado raita, or the jerk chicken recipe.

The fifth chapter brings us recipes that are quick to prepare but not all that healthy for the most part.  I really have to question the inclusion of tang toast.  It scares me a little?  haha.

The sixth chapter are “weekend recipes.”  They are recipes that take a bit more time and dedication.

The seventh chapter are cookout recipes.  It starts with lemon bars, includes a couple of delicious looking burger recipes, and finishes with a few cocktail recipes.

The eighth chapter is called “craft night/sleepover.”  I guess it’s more snacks and party food.  The jellies and jams sound really interesting to me.  I think blueberry miso jelly might be the first recipe I give a test drive from this book.

The final chapter is called “going out.”  They are recipes adapted from other restaurants.  I don’t think I’ll ever give the mac and cheese pancakes a go, but the arepas de pabellon sound good to me.

I’m hoping to make a couple of recipes in the near future but I should probably learn to stop making cooking/baking announcements.  I never get anything done in the time frame that I think I will.  But, let’s hope that I do.  And when I do, I’ll let you know how it goes.

 

Disclaimer – I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.  I’m not getting paid for this post.

 

Reference Links:

http://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/authors/124929/christina-tosi/

http://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/233918/milk-bar-life-by-christina-tosi-author-of-momofuku-milk-bar/

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This post is dedicated to Martyna of http://wholesomecook.wordpress.com/. The pictures in this post were not taken with my really clunky and heavy digital camera. I recently acquired a Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX9 as a result of some confusion and lots of generosity. From here on out, I have no good excuses for leaving my camera at home when I go to food events like the Harvard SEAS lectures.  My WX9 is a travel-friendly small size.

Next time David Chang is in town, I’ll get you a picture of David Chang. (^_^)b

ANYWAY!

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Honestly, I didn’t eat fabulous things while in Antwerp and in France.  The fanciest meal I had was on my last night there.  I had duck confit, which is one of those dishes that I usually think about ordering but then go order something else.  A couple of the people I was traveling with convinced me to order it (the other choices were salmon and cod).  It was good, and needed the accompanying sauerkraut to help cut the fattiness… but honestly?  Chinese roasted duck, the duck that I grew up with, is much tastier.  The flavor is bolder.  However, the duck confit was wonderfully tender which is something you won’t get with roasted duck.

So, here are my pictures:

Breakfast at Hotel Banks, Antwerp:

(cookie recipe inside this entry)

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What is this? An update? Really?!

Yes, really. 🙂

I will admit though that I’m posting at the request of a friend. haha, I’m so lazy otherwise or something like that.

I’ve been experimenting with earl grey butter cookies. They aren’t perfect. The flavor is very subtle. I haven’t been able to keep these in my house long enough, but it’s been reported to me that the flavor improves after a couple of days. I’m still going to experiment – need to see if I can bump up the earl grey flavor a notch, but dang! they smell amazing when they are baking in the oven.

Makes about 5 dozen? I don’t know. Uh… I must admit that I lost some of the dough to the floor.

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, beaten lightly
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
4-5 bags of early grey tea leaves (open up the bags and crush with mortar/pestle)
3/4 teaspoon coarse salt

Cream the butter and sugar first. Then add the eggs and vanilla, and mix. Finally add the flour, tea leaves, and salt. Mix until well combined.

Now, you can roll these into two logs and freeze them for at least an hour, or you can fill plastic bags and roll out flat before putting into the freezer. The first method gives you traditionally round butter cookies. The second gives you the chance to make very neat squares. I’ve done it both ways.

After freezing, slice up your logs into about 1/4″ rounds. If you used the plastic bags, cut the bags open flat and cut your cookies into neat squares. Either way, your cookies should probably be about 1 1/2″ in size.

Preheat oven to 375. Space cookies 1 inch apart on baking sheets lined with parchment. Bake until edges are golden, 18 to 20 minutes.

(My oven runs hot. I baked at 360 for 16-17 minutes.)

Cookies made for Tammy Raabe Rao; photo taken by Tammy Raabe Rao. ♥

~Mikan

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Sometimes, a person comes across something so intriguing that action must be taken up at once.

I had that moment recently, and it was called Peanut Butter Rosemary White Chocolate Chunks cookies. Peanut butter and rosemary? When a blogger mentions being a trained pastry chef in a meme, you don’t take such odd recipe posts lightly.

Asano-mama didn’t sound very optimistic about this recipe, which only fueled my determination. I set about making these cookies, starting even with the rosemary powder.

I think the rosemary powder is an excellent idea in general. However, I admit that it was my stumbling point. After one whole hour, I only had 3 tsp of rosemary powder. Why? I was using a tea strainer as my “fine mesh” accessory, and this tea strainer had really, really small mesh holes. Plus, the strainer was a little deep for the size of my hands, which just made an arduous task more difficult. o_O

The most evil part of the whole night? Realizing when I went to bed that I had a strainer/skimmer that would have been the perfect size for the task. *facepalm*

Oh well, 3 tsp was pretty close to the original 3 1/2 tsp requested in the recipe. The cookies came out just fine.

So, back to the idea of peanut butter and rosemary – wow, they paired really well! Once I smelled the cookies baking, I knew that there was no question regarding the yumminess factor of these cookies. Straight out of the oven, the peanut butter pretty much was the dominant flavor. If I hadn’t known that rosemary was in my cookie, I might not have noticed it. The rosemary was delightfully subtle. Overnight, the rosemary flavor has gotten stronger, but nothing to worry over. Without question, I’m keeping this cookie recipe in my favorites.

cookie recipe here – http://clumbsycookie.blogspot.com/2009/03/pbrwcc-cookies.html

rosemary powder instructions here – http://clumbsycookie.blogspot.com/2009/03/rosemary-powder.html

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And then this morning, I tried a batch of Trader Joe’s Cranberry and Oatmeal cookies. They’re “break and bake” cookies, except without the breaking part. These cookies are frozen in their individual, pre-measured amounts. And you know what? They’re wonderful. Great for when you need to impress people (or in my case, share with my cello classmates) but with very little effort. Such a stark contrast to my one-hour-making-rosemary-powder! Plus, it’s a nice change from chocolate chip break and bake cookies.

Thumbs up for Trader Joe’s. ^_^

(I admit, there are a number of Trader Joe’s products that I’m in love with. I’m considering posting reviews and pictures of them. I haven’t totally decided yet.)

~Mikan

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I guess, if there is one, the theme of my cooking attempts this week has been “rosemary.”

It started with baking cookies for a friend’s birthday. This friend is most near and dear, and I wanted something that I thought he’d like and something that didn’t require a whole lot of effort. He’s tasted my cooking… oh, only the one time I think (plum pie), and for some reason my head thinks this is an insult to my cooking abilities. Or something like that.

Well, if my weakness is for the color blue, then his is for the taste of rosemary. So, when I came across a recipe for rosemary butter cookies, there was no question in my mind. He was getting rosemary cookies for his birthday.

I made a half batch, just in case this experiment went terribly wrong, and had the household sample it. Plumduff, Asano-mama, and I were strangely addicted. Stealth Eater said they weren’t bad, but the rosemary confused her tastebuds. She kept saying that they were “interesting.” When prompted, she wouldn’t say good-interesting or bad-interesting, just “interesting.”

I was impressed enough, and the birthday boy was given a baggie of little cookies. The result? Well, he asked for the recipe (which I forgot to give to him), so I think that’s good sign.

Another good sign was yesterday at work. I made another half batch since I had too much rosemary still in my fridge, and subjected my co-workers to my baking efforts (last time, it was sesame seed cake which was so “meh” in my opinion that I wanted to redeem myself). They were very, very well received. Wow!

So, now I’m thinking about making another batch of rosemary cookies, just because I can.

Recipe came from here – http://foodloveswriting.com/2008/09/03/rosemary-cookies-from-heaven/

And although there are no pictures of it and I don’t plan on making a more official post on it, I also used the rosemary for some fish tonight. I tried my hand at fish en papillote – I used salmon, salt and pepper, slivers of sweet onion, bits of portobello mushrooms, a large sprig of rosemary, and a tablespoon of rice wine vinegar. I cooked it a little too long, but overall I was pretty happy with the results. Onion and portobello with rosemary was delicious. The salmon didn’t pick up the rosemary as much as I would have liked, but it was still there and yummy. Next time, I should sandwich the rosemary between the salmon and the onion/mushrooms.

But yeah, still good. And I am very full.

~Mikan

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