World Peace Cookies

Absolutely delicious Dorie Greenspan recipe which started life as a Pierre Herme recipe.  Best if made with Dutch Cocoa!  I left the salt out of these by mistake, and I have to say I’m not missing it at all!  They’re studded with broken up Belgian dark chocolate sticks (the ones made for pain du chocolat, so they don’t melt in the oven quite as much).

Recipe is here…World Peace Cookies.  Dorie has provided metric measurements here.

Jean-Francois’ gooey cake

This dead easy recipe from Trish Deseine’s wonderful book Chocolate is a household staple.  This is my version, sized down to fit my 26cm (10″)  flan dish (and comfortably serving 4 – 5).

  • 150g (5.5 oz)  good dark chocolate (I use Callebaut)
  • 150g (5.5 oz) unsalted butter
  • 4 large eggs
  • 150g (5.5 oz) sugar

Preheat oven to 180C (350F).

Melt butter and chocolate in microwave in short bursts on high (or melt together in double boiler on the stove).  Allow to cool slightly (so as not to scramble the eggs in the next step).

Beat egg yolks and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until the mixture is pale.  Combine the two mixtures together.

Whisk egg whites to stiff peaks.  Stir a small amount of the stiff egg whites into the chocolate mixture to lighten it, then gently fold the remaining eggwhites into the mix.

Pour into 26cm (10″) flan tin and bake for 25 minutes, or until cake is well risen and just past the really wibbly stage.  Cake will collapse as it cools, leaving a slightly raised crust around the edges.  We served it with homemade icecream.

Just out of the oven….

Prawn Crackers for Chinese New Year

I tried making my own Malaysian style prawn crackers this year.  They’re made from Australian Crystal Bay Prawns (banana prawns) and tapioca flour.  I’ve realised there are two separate skill components here – the making is a long, laborious process, but the deepfrying is equally as tricky, and contributes just as much to the final success of the cracker.  The nice thing about making my own is that I know what went into it (no MSG), how they were processed, and what oil they were fried in (Grapeseed).  Next time they could use a smidgen more salt, but all in all, a pretty successful first attempt.  The original recipe, with wonderful step by step photos, is here.

Small girl across the road loved these..  🙂

New Cookies

Yesterday I tried two new cookie recipes, both of which were made in the food processor. (I’m lazy – if I have to wash the food processor, I might as well make good use of it while it’s out).  The first is a chocolate oatmeal cookie from the Jacques Pepin Celebrates cookbook.  It’s particularly interesting in that the recipe has no egg in it, and only 1/4  cup sugar.  It’s a shortbready treat, studded with currents and lacquered with dark chocolate.

The second is a French cookie (over here we’d probably call it a biscuit), the recipe for which I found in Dorie Greenspan’s archives (I’m currently working my way through her blog).  It’s called a “Punition”, although I really don’t know why, unless you’re going to be punished with an enlarged rump for eating too many of them, as they’re pretty addictive.  In this recipe, the quality of the butter is very significant, as the flavour dominates the finished cookie.  I thought this was a great opportunity to use a batch of Pete’s homemade butter, which he made just last week.  It was made with heavy cream (10.5% fat and pure, no thickeners added) which we allowed to sour a week or so past its expiry date, and had just the tiniest bit of crushed Maldon salt added to it.  The recipe made a huge batch of crisp, delicious butter cookies which I’m shovelling into my mouth as I type.  🙂