Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Ok- so maybe they won't make you smarter, but they are darn tasty. I'm feeling a little stupid lately (Hmm...maybe it's comments like "teaching teenagers would be so much easier than getting a PhD"...umm, ok, whatever you say...). Cooking always makes me more confident. Especially when my culinary experiments come out this good. If you don't care for grapefruit, skip the madelines, because it does shine through. I am in love with its tart, slighly bitter flavor that cuts the sweetness of the cookies.
Ruby Red Current Madelines
1/3 cup red current jelly
1/2 large ruby red grapefruit, segmented
6 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup sugar
zest of 1/2 a ruby red grapefruit (make sure the rind is washed thoroughly)
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
In a small food processor or blender, combine jelly and grapefruit and pulse until combined. Set aside
In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Let cook, swirling occasionally, until it browns slightly. Remove from heat and cool.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, rub together zest and sugar. Add eggs and beat until pale and fluffy. Beat in vanilla. Use a rubber spatula to first fold in dry ingredients, then butter, then jelly mixture.
Chill batter at least 3 hours, or up to 48 hours. Preheat the oven to 350 and chill madeline pans in the freezer. (If they are nonstick - the most you will need to do is maybe a little cooking spray - if not, they need to be fully buttered and floured)
Fill each mold about 3/4 full with batter (don't overfill!). Any pans that will not be going straight into the oven should go back to the fridge. If you are using a dark pan like I do, bake for 8-10 minutes for large madelines.
These are chewy and rich, with white chocolate chips, dried cherry halves, whole toasted almonds and toffee. The combination is divine, like chewy amaretti cookies with bursts of intense flavor. Serve with amaretto on the rocks.
Super Chunk Cherry Almond Cookies
1 stick butter, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup dried unsweetened cherry halves
2/3 cup white chocolate chips
2/3 cup toffee bits
2/3 cup whole almonds, toasted until golden and fragrant
Cream the butter and sugars together until fluffy. Beat in egg, salt and extracts. Add dry ingredients and mix to combine. Stir in cherries, chocolate, toffee and almonds. Chill dough for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375. Line a cookie sheet with a silpat or parchment paper. Spoon dough in 2 Tbsp balls onto cookie sheet, about 3 inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until edges just start to brown. Cool on pan 2 minutes, then use a spatula to transfer to cooling racks. These will keep about a week at room temperature, but I've never known them to last that long!