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Homemade Chocolate Wafer Cookies
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diy chocolate wafer cookies

Since scratch baking is such an important aspect of what I do in my kitchen, it’s really no surprise that I should find and fall head over heels in love with a homemade chocolate wafer cookie that perfectly mimics the packaged varieties.  You already know my feelings on packaged graham crackers, Wheat Thins, and Oreos to name a few so to that end, these light and crispy cookies don’t need much of an introduction.  They are made with dark unsweetened cocoa that lends to a richly flavored chocolate cookie that is even deeper and darker in color than I expected they could be.  Ground up for a cheesecake’s cookie crust or the base of a peanut butter pie, you won’t be sorry you spent a few extra minutes making these slice and bake chocolate gems.  I’ve made two batches in the past two weeks and foresee a few more happening before Christmas!

diy chocolate wafer cookies

Looking for a fun no-bake dessert to try with these cookies?  Try these peppermint icebox cupcakes.

Homemade Chocolate Wafer Cookies

Prep Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes

Cook Time: 12 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Yield: about 6 dozen 1 ¼-inch (diameter) by 1/8-inch (thickness) cookies

If you plan to use these cookies in place of a certain brand of chocolate wafer cookies for a chocolate cheesecake or pie crust, cut out 1 to 2 tablespoons of the suggested amount of melted butter in the crust recipe; these cookies contain a fair amount of butter and too much added butter to the ground up cookies crumbs will yield an absurdly wet mass of crumbs. Trust me. Nine ounces of these cookies (or about 2/3 of the recipe) will yield as much as the packages of wafer cookies contain.

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups (6.75 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup (2.4 ounces) dark unsweetened cocoa powder (like Hershey’s or King Arthur Flour)
  • 1 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 14 tbsp (1 ¾ sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • 3 tbsp whole milk
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, add the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt, and baking soda. Pulse the ingredients a few times to combine thoroughly. Dollop the butter around the dry ingredients and pulse a few more times until the butter starts to incorporate and large chunks begin to form. Mix the milk and vanilla together in a small bowl. With the mixer running, pour the milk mixture into the feeding tube in a slow and even stream until the cookie crumb mixture starts to form together and ball up on the sides of the bowl.
  2. Transfer the cookie dough to a work surface and knead it a couple of times to fully incorporate all of the ingredients. Divide the dough in half and shape each half into a long and narrow log, about 1 ¼ inches to 1 ¾ inches in diameter. Depending on how large you want your wafer cookies to be will determine how thick to form the log. Wrap each log in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to a week.
  3. Position the oven racks to the upper and lower thirds of the oven. Preheat oven to 350° F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  4. Slice the dough logs into approximately 1/8-inch thick slices and lay the dough rounds on the baking sheets about 1 inch apart. I formed my dough into 1 ¼-inch diameter logs and was able to fit 24 cookies on each of my baking sheets.
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes, rotating pans from back to front and top to bottom halfway through the baking time. The cookies will be finished baking about 1 ½ minutes after the puffed-up dough deflates so try to keep an eye on them. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets on wire racks for 5 minutes then transfer the cookies to the racks to cool completely – they will crisp up as they cool. The cookies will keep for up to a week at room temperature if kept in an airtight container. Supposedly the freeze really well too but I haven’t tried it myself.

Source

adapted from Pure Dessert by Alice Medrich via Smitten Kitchen

http://www.smells-like-home.com/2012/12/homemade-chocolate-wafer-cookies/

Giant S’mores Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies
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I swear I wasn’t going to do this.  I wasn’t going to stuff something inside of something else.  It was too trendy.  And then, not trendy at all.  (Neither of which I’m actually about, anyway.)

But I succumbed to the pressure of a college kid who just finished finals.  A college kid who squeaked with excitement when she exhaled the love she had for these s’mores stuffed chocolate chip cookies in a quick and breathless sentence.  I told her that the only conditions I had to making them was that the graham cracker and cookie dough had to be homemade.  And frankly, if we had put a little forethought into this, the marshmallows would have been too.  She had no issues with my conditions.

S’mores stuffed into thick and chewy chocolate chip cookies.  A total diet/healthy lifestyle buster.  But damn, it’s worth it.  I’ve gone on a few times about how magical my favorite cookie dough recipe is and it just stands to reason that I would have chosen it for these giant creations as well.  Yesterday I posted about homemade graham crackers and yup, we used that recipe too.  The deeply flavored brown sugar graham crackers were an outstanding choice to use here and they certainly didn’t get lost amid the gobs of cookie.  Of course, the marshmallows and Hershey’s chocolate bars (is there no better option for s’mores?) melted into everything and admittedly, there were a few nerve wracking minutes of watching the conversion from cookie brick to enormous cookie rounds as all of the components settled into each other in the oven.

But alas, perfection.  Gooey s’mores nestled into my favorite chocolate chip cookie.  At nearly 6 inches a piece, you’ll probably need a friend to help you finish off these monsters (and at least a couple glasses of milk) but since there is so much cookie to go around, sharing shouldn’t be an issue.  Or, I supposed you could just make them smaller for single servings, but where’s the fun in that?

So there.  I went there and now I’m sharing it with you.  It’s a holiday weekend – go celebrate!

Giant S’mores Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: PT20-24M

Total Time: PT40-45M

Yield: 4 gigantic cookies

I made my own graham crackers for these s'mores stuffed cookies, but you can certainly use store-bought crackers if you're pressed for time or you know, not crazy like me. You'll need 4 approximately 1 1/2" by 3" pieces which for store-bought graham crackers means half of a graham square. If you decide to make your own graham crackers (go for it!), cut them to fit. This recipe yields 4 gigantic cookies. Feel free to double the recipe or make smaller cookies by using smaller graham crackers and just half of a marshmallow for each cookie.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups plus 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 12 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled until warm
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • For assembly:
  • 1 cookie dough recipe, at room temperature
  • 8 graham cracker squares, broken into halves (see header note above)
  • 4 marshmallows, snipped in half lengthwise
  • 1 full-size Hershey's bar, divided between each of the prospective cookies

Instructions

  1. To make the cookie dough: Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl; set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or by hand, mix butter and sugars until thoroughly combined. Beat in the egg, yolk, and vanilla until combined. Add dry ingredients and beat at low-speed just until combined - the batter should look a little lumpy. Stir in chocolate chips.
  2. Preheat oven to 325° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  3. To assemble and bake: Lay half of the graham crackers out on the baking sheets - two crackers per sheet. Top each cracker with 3-4 pieces of chocolate then top the chocolate with two marshmallow halves, laying them side-by-side. Lay the remaining graham crackers on top of the assemble s'mores. Sandwich the s'mores between two large spoonfuls of cookie dough and using the remaining dough to wrap around each of the s'mores; the result should resemble a small cookie brick.
  4. Space the cookies at least 4 inches apart on the two baking sheets. Bake for 20-24 minutes or until the tops and edges are lightly browned and the edges just lift off the pan with a spatula. (While baking, the s'mores will press down under the weight of the cookie dough and will sink further while cooling. Don't worry if the cookies don't end up completely covering the s'mores - it only adds to the charm here.) Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and cool the cookies on the sheets for at least 5 minutes. Transfer the cookies to the wire racks and cool for another 5-10 minutes before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Source

source: idea and method inspired by Picky Palate

http://www.smells-like-home.com/2012/05/giant-smores-stuffed-chocolate-chip-cookies/

DIY: Cinnamon Graham Crackers
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DIY cinnamon graham crackers

Oh those horrible teenage years with a mouth full of braces.  Eating Oreos was devastatingly embarrassing.  The time I got hit in the mouth with a softball trying to tag out a stealing runner at 3rd base was a pretty horrific event.  And for me, it always seemed like the two days following the orthodontic visits where my braces were tightened were worse than dealing with teenage-PMS.  Imagine when they occurred together?!

DIY cinnamon graham crackers

Yet, I had a solace aside from the inordinate amount of Advil I consumed during those years: mush.  Broken up graham crackers soaked in a bowl of ice cold milk.  To the unfamiliar “palate” it probably sounds horrible.  But when your mouth hurts so much to even close your jaw, you’ll try almost anything.  I hated Carnation.  Smoothies were almost unheard of in my neck of the woods (bagel- and egg sandwich-centric Long Island) and yogurt wasn’t considered a full breakfast for an active teenager in my house.  This mush is actually what my mom ate when she had braces and I fell in love with it.

DIY cinnamon graham crackers

But I won’t go on and on about the mush.  It’s my general love for graham crackers that made me want to try a homemade version for so long.  I don’t typically buy them any more unless I need to make a crust for a cheesecake so it’s been a true delight having a stack of fresh graham crackers at home…and that include a list of ingredients that I can pronounce.  This version uses all dark brown sugar (that’s why they are so dark in the photos – I didn’t burn them) which really helps to develop a deep caramel-ish flavor in the grahams.  After cooling, they crisp up perfectly and can be eaten as they are (I love a schmear of peanut butter on them), ground down into crumbs for crusts, broken up to mix into strawberry cheesecake ice cream, or used for homemade s’mores (more on that soon).  I haven’t tried them soaked in milk yet, but maybe that’s in my future this weekend…you know, for old time’s sake.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Ice Cream
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Some things in life are worth waiting for.  Warm towels from the dryer on a cold winter morning.  Baseball season after 5 long months of off-season blues.  Hydrangea bushes with bright blue blooms in late June.   Oatmeal raisin cookie ice cream.  Oh my goodness, where has this ice cream been all my life?  Actually, I’ve known about it for quite some time and Josie has been talking about it as one of her favorite homemade flavors for ages, but taking a few extra minutes to make it seemed to be just so elusive to me.  And boy was the wait worth it.  Well worth it.

Clusters of caramel-y oatmeal praline and loads of boozy raisins are scattered throughout creamy vanilla-cinnamon ice cream and even though there aren’t any actual cookies in the ice cream, all of the separate parts come together to taste just like an oatmeal raisin cookie.  The praline remains a little crunchy even though you’d think it would soften after a couple of days in the ice cream and it was those addictive little crunchies that I found myself digging around for in the bowl.  I drizzled this oatmeal raisin ice cream with a little salted caramel sauce and I seriously couldn’t have been happier with a couple little scoops of this very indulgent dessert.  Oh yes, oatmeal raisin cookie ice cream with salted caramel sauce?  Definitely worth the wait.

Lofthouse Style Soft Frosted Sugar Cookies
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I realize that Shanon said last week that she was the last blogger to post these cookies, but actually I’m right there with you, Shanon!  While it seems that they have been all over my friends’ blogs, I couldn’t help but get in on the action as well.  My cousin and I made a batch of these a few weeks ago (as making cookies seems to be our usual activity when she visits) and with this recipe on my radar for what seems like forever, we made it a point to pump these babies out.  And needless to say, I promptly sent her back to Johnson & Wales with over half of them because having them in the house is dangerous.  Seriously dangerous.  Let the college kids and their ridiculous under-30 metabolisms deal with the calories.

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Anyway, we all flipped out over these cookies.  Mariah and I lamented earlier in the afternoon about neither of us being able to pass up the Lofthouse cookies in the grocery store bakery but this homemade version blows the store-bought version out of the water.  There’s no comparison in texture and flavor and there’s no going back to the store-bought version now.  The recipe only yields around two dozen (we got 27) but they are definitely substantial cookies so while I wanted to put away (in my stomach, that is) a couple extra, one cookie was definitely enough to satisfy me…for one sitting anyway.  ;) I imagine that freezing some of the dough would work great and I definitely plan to do so the next time we’re craving these bad boys.  And now that I’ve found my measuring cups and set the stand mixer up, it’s entirely possible that they’ll show up in the new kitchen sometime this week.  Yay for having reasons to celebrate with cookies!

Chocolate Chip Toffee Bars
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Anyone will tell you that the process of creating your own baking recipes is a difficult one.  There’s this “science” to baking that we bakers know about and live by…how just the right amount of yeast, baking powder, or egg whites will make sandwich bread, fluffy biscuits, or a soufflé rise perfectly…how flour packed into the measuring cup is actually a different amount than flour fluffed into the cup…even how soft the butter is affects how the water and fat molecules in butter react in a recipe.  The science of baking is often the reason so many of us home bakers leave the recipe creation and testing up to the pros – let them figure out the nuances and tell us how to overcome them.  I’m totally fine with that!

So when I came across the idea for these chocolate chip toffee bars, a) I knew I would need extra time at the gym this week, and b) I knew the America’s Test Kitchen/Cook’s Illustrated Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe was the only recipe that I would want for these bars.  It is by far my go-t0, most beloved chocolate chip cookie recipe and if I were to combine toffee (uh yes please!) with any chocolate chip recipe, there was no question which one it would be.  And when I tell you that the toffee bits melt into the cookie dough and that the two blend into a rich caramel-milk chocolate cookie bar, I’m not lying.  I swear, this cookie bar was heaven.  Soft centers with a little crunch on top and the occasional nibble of a toffee bit that survived the oven temperature.  Seriously, go make these now and don’t let anyone fool you into thinking that the ATK/CI recipe is anything but perfection (both for cookies and bars like this one).  And, I can’t stress this enough – when you’re looking for a fabulous recipe, be sure you know who really created it – it makes all the difference in the world to have a truly credible recipe to work with.

Giant Double Chocolate Cookies
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Giant Double Chocolate Cookies

When I set out to make a new cookie, it’s never an easy task.  SO many recipes touted as “the best”, so little time.  And so few calories to sacrifice.  But I’ve had my eye on these giant double chocolate cookies for almost exactly a year now and I finally gave in.  It was time to tackle a giant cookie and I was ready for it.

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The long-awaited verdict?  An extra 1/2 hour on the treadmill was well worth the work for these cookies.  Dense, chocolatey, and gigantic, these cookies are best served slightly warm to take advantage of the gooey chocolate chips.  I feel like they could have been just slightly sweeter since the dark cocoa powder (I used Hershey’s Dark) really takes center stage and is altogether unsweetened to begin with; I’ve adjusted the recipe below to reflect this.  Whether you weigh the dough into 4oz portions (this will yield 11 cookies) or divide the dough manually into 12 cookies, be prepared for a decadent bakery-sized cookie.  I’ve never had cookies from Levain Bakery in NYC but if this cookie is any indication of what they are like, other copycat recipes that are floating around the web may just be in my future as well.

Butter Cookie Sandwiches with Dulce de Leche Cream Filling
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When I set out to make my list of goodies to make this Christmas season, I vowed to not make a ton of cookies.  I had planned early on to put together treat packages for everyone this year and I wanted to focus my attention on getting them squared away early so that I could actually relax on Christmas Eve day, something I never seem to be able to do.  But then my cousin and I came across this recipe for butter cookie sandwiches.  And goodness knows, I’m a sucker for butter cookies!  The original recipe called for the filling to include chestnut cream (crème de marron) but because of Kyle’s allergies, that wouldn’t work so I swapped dulce de leche in place of the original ingredient.  And umm…genius?  Rich butter cookies sandwiched with dulce de leche cream filling might just be one of the better ideas I’ve had lately.  I did feel like the chocolate slightly overpowered the flavor of the dulce de leche so I think next time I’ll skip the chocolate (the horror!) because the filling needs to shine through.  But overall, adding these cookies to you cookie platter will not disappoint anyone and you’ve still got plenty of time to work them into your schedule!

Chewy Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies
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Chewy Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies

For two years, every time I pull out this cookbook, these drool-worthy cookies have been staring me down, begging me to make them.  And when I finally figured out they were these chewy chocolate gingerbread cookies, I immediately classified them as Christmas-only cookies.  (Seriously, who makes gingerbread at any other time of the year?) The first Christmas with this book in my possession, I had no clue which recipe it was.  Last Christmas, I had them on “the list” but they never got made and I vowed to make them this year.  And goodness gracious am I happy I made them a priority this year.  By far, these are some of my favorite cookies to date, and hands-down they are in the top 5 best Christmas cookies I’ve ever made.  Loaded with warm spices, dark brown sugar, molasses, and candied ginger, they smell amazing while baking and will rock your Elf on the Shelf, Muppet Family Christmas, or It’s a Wonderful Life world (depending on which generation you are a product of) once you bite into them.  The chocolate chunks and cocoa powder lend an extra level of greatness to these soft and chewy gingerbread cookies and I dare you not to go back for seconds.

Don’t forget!  The giveaway for the very cookbook these cookies come from ends tomorrow night at 11:59pm ET.  Three winners will be chosen!

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Giveaway: Martha Stewart Cookies [CLOSED]
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[THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED]

Whaaat?  Two giveaways in one week??  Heck yes!!  (P.S. – Don’t forget about the Lodge Cast Iron Skillet giveaway that ends tonight at 11:59pm!!)  I had been contemplating doing this giveaway closer to Christmas but I feel really strongly about your needing this book for your holiday baking.  To put it simply, I ADORE Martha Stewart Cookies.  This book is truly one of my favorites in the kitchen and for the past two Christmas seasons, it has been the primary source that I’ve used for new cookie recipes.

Here are a few things I’ve made and loved from this book:

[THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED]

So in honor of Round 4 of “My Favorite Things Holiday Giveaway” series, I’m giving away one book to THREE lucky winners!  Good luck!!

To enter this giveaway here are The Rules:

  1. Answer this question in the comment section of this post (and only this post):  What is one item from your holiday wish list this year?
  2. Only one entry per person will be accepted and you MUST include a valid email address with your comment.
  3. If you don’t see your comment post right away, please don’t post another comment.  The delay happens because I moderate all comments.
  4. You have until Tuesday December 13, 2011 at 11:59pm Eastern to enter this giveaway…and you can potentially have this book in your hot little hands by Friday 12/16!
  5. Three winners will be chosen by that handy-dandy random number generator we’re all familiar with.
  6. The winners will notified on Wednesday December 14, 2011.  If you do not respond to my email within 48 hours, another winner will be chosen (also at random).
  7. Giveaway is open to entries with U.S. addresses only.

[THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED]

—–

Disclosure:  This giveaway is sponsored by yours truly.

Pecan Linzer Cookies with Raspberry Filling
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Pecan Linzer Cookies with Raspberry Filling

These sweet little cookies may just have made me the most proud I’ve been in the kitchen in some time now.  When I say that I’ve been wanting to make linzer cookies for the past 7 Christmas seasons, I’m not kidding you.  And with all that waiting came a lot of anticipation and high expectations for what these cookies should be.  But they turned out just perfectly and met every one of those expectations.

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While they look delicate and difficult, they are actually quite easy to put together, though involving a few steps that require some patience, as my cousin and I learned this past weekend while making them.  You’ll make the dough and chill it for a few hours.  Then roll, cut, bake, and cool completely.  In the meantime, you’ll reduce some jam; I used seedless raspberry but any kind will work.  While the jam is cooling, you’ll dust the cut-out cookies (we made hearts) with powdered sugar.  When the jam has cooled, you’ll spread it on to the full cookies (the ones without the powdered sugar) and sandwich it with the sugared halves…and you’ve got these picture-perfect Christmas cookies!  Like I said, they do require a few steps but they would be the perfect weekend baking project for a few friends or even for your kids or grandkids to help you with.

Pecan Linzer Cookies with Raspberry Filling

Oh, you want to know about how they taste?  Well, think of the best light shortbread you’ve ever eaten, combine it with a tiny dollop of a reduced jam that is almost savory in comparison to the sugared linzer cookie, and you’ve got quite possibly the best Christmas cookie I’ve ever made..the cookie that all Christmas cookies will be judged against this year and maybe for years to come.  That’s quite a cookie!

Pecan Linzer Cookies with Raspberry Filling

Homemade Halloween Oreo Cookies
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I really don’t think I’m unlike many food bloggers.  I make my way through the grocery store on the outer edges, starting with produce and ending with dairy with only a few random dips into the center aisles for things like dried pasta, canned tomatoes, sugar, and flour.  We’re increasingly using less and less bottled items since I’ve found it so easy to make my own dressings and bbq sauce (ketchup is next on my list).  But for some reason, when I don’t feel like making cookies, I can’t pass up Oreos.  It’s so rare that I buy them, though, that this usually only happens when the fun holiday colors show up or my hankering for a Double Stuf completely consumes me.  That said, I decided it was time to make my own and being that the Halloween Oreos have been taunting me for weeks, my timing was right.

Homemade Halloween Oreo Cookies

These Oreos may have been some of the easiest cookies I’ve ever made.  In a stand mixer or food processor in an unorthodox cookie-making manner, you’ll add the dry ingredients first (including the sugar), then beat in the butter and then the egg.  It’s almost like making a pastry dough but you’ll end up with a firm dough that will be scooped into 1/2-inch balls, lightly flattened, and baked.  And inside of about 17.5 minutes (give or take) you will have homemade Oreo cookies!  The recipe states that you can vary the amount of sugar but for these cookies, I feel like less is more where next time I’ll use closer to 1 cup of sugar rather than 1 1/4 cups since I feel like they were just a tad too sweet – if you think about it, those chocolate wafers on their own aren’t all that sweet.  Regarding the colored cream filling, I split the white filling into three bowls and added enough color gel to achieve my desired colors then piped them on the cookie halves.  Really easy and such a cute effect for any of those upcoming Halloween parties or potlucks – you’ll definitely turn some heads if you show up with these Halloween Oreos!

Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese Shortbread Cookies
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Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese Shortbread Cookies

When I found the dreamed-up recipe for Dorie’s CookieBar Jammers a few weeks ago, I immediately started imagining different “fillings” of my own for them and if you remember, the blueberry and peach vanilla bean jam version that I made was a lovely late-summer treat. These monstrous pumpkin spice cream cheese shortbread cookies, on the other hand, are more like a trifecta of individual shortbread tarts, pumpkin cream cheese muffins, and pumpkin pie.  And they usher in Fall like no other recipe I’ve ever made.  They use the same sablé cookie base (which is like the French cousin of the shortbread cookie) but add a swirl of spiced pumpkin and silky cream cheese sandwiched between the cookie and streusel topping.  It’s kind of a genius combination and they may just transport you to a chilly walk through crunchy leaves, even if you’re still suffering through 80+ degree heat.   Of the two versions I made, these were by far the favored ones for both of us and in fact, there may have been a little arguing about who the last cookie “belonged” to.  Thankfully, they are huge enough to split in half to share and sharing one with a scoop of cinnamon vanilla bean ice cream makes for a wonderful evening treat.

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Dorie’s Blueberry and Peach Vanilla Bean Jammers
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Dorie's Blueberry and Peach Vanilla Bean Jammers

I seem to be a sucker for any recipe made with jam recently.  Maybe it’s because this is my way of hanging on to the freshness of the summer’s fruits for a little while longer.  Or maybe it’s because I could eat this jam by the spoonful.  Either way, when I came across this recipe recently, the urge to make it was unstoppable.

Dorie's Blueberry and Peach Vanilla Bean Jammers

From just the somewhat silly name, you might not be able to guess that these Jammers have the potential to be one of the best desserts you ever make.  But they are.  And they kind of came out of nowhere…or at least from somewhere in the depths of a deep sleep.  A creation of Dorie Greenspan for her pop-up CookieBar in NYC, Jammers are a middle-of-the-night brainstorm of Dorie’s which combines her Sablé [shortbread-like] cookie recipe with a high-quality jam and a streusel topping; all fairly innocuous-sounding on their own but a truly outstanding combination when pieced together.  I liken them to an underground movement: they are catching like wildfire but the creator (leader) hasn’t quite stepped out of the shadows yet.  And what I mean by that is that Dorie hasn’t published a recipe for these Jammers yet; this particular recipe (aside from the Sablés) is the brilliant Lottie + Doof version.

Dorie's Blueberry and Peach Vanilla Bean Jammers

If you’ve noticed, I haven’t really called these Jammers anything yet.  I’m not quite sure if they could be a cookie because quite frankly, they are monstrous, and a la Seinfeld, I ate them with a fork.  And because of the jam and streusel topping, they take on an almost crumble-type resemblance.  Put together, these Jammers are one hell of a dessert and would be perfect to serve to kids at a birthday party, adults at a dinner party, or at any kind of event you need to travel to since they are completely portable and will keep at room temperature for a few days.

Dorie's Blueberry and Peach Vanilla Bean Jammers

The recipe below may seem a little daunting simply because of the length but the recipe couldn’t be easier to put together but the one thing you’ll want to make sure you have on hand before you start the recipe is either a whoopie pie pan or a set of ring molds (I used my English muffin rings but various-sized round cookie cutters will work also – just be sure you adjust the baking time for different-sized molds).  If you don’t have any of those tools, use mini tart pans (removable bottoms would work best) or even a muffin pan.  While the original Jammers at Dorie’s CookieBar include a lemony pear-pineapple preserve, I added some cinnamon to the Sablé batter and topped them with a mixture of homemade blueberry jam (a delightful gift from a friend) and my peach vanilla bean jam.  These Jammers are helping to hold on to summer for a little while longer but with the cooler weather in the early mornings now upon us, I can almost feel fall knocking on the door – not that I’m complaining.  Maybe it wants one of these Jammers.

Dorie’s Blueberry and Peach Vanilla Bean Jammers

Yield: 10-12 very large cookies

Ingredients

    For the sablé dough (barely adapted from Dorie Greenspan's Baking: From My Home to Yours)
  • 2 sticks (8 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt, preferably fine sea salt
  • 2 large egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • For the brown sugar streusel topping
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup lightly packed brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt or Kosher salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • For assembly:
  • 1 recipe sablé dough
  • 1 recipe streusel topping
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup of your favorite jam - I mixed together equal parts blueberry jam and peach vanilla bean jam

Instructions

  1. *To make the sablé dough:*Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter at medium speed until smooth and very creamy. Add the sugars, cinnamon, and salt and beat until well blended, about 1 minute. The mixture should be smooth and velvety, not fluffy and airy. Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in 2 of the egg yolks and vanilla, again beating until the mixture is homogeneous.
  2. Turn off the mixer. Pour in the flour, drape a kitchen towel over the stand mixer to protect yourself and the counter from flying flour and pulse the mixer at low speed about 5 times, a second or two each time. Take a peek - if there is still a lot of flour on the surface of the dough, pulse a couple more times; if not, remove the towel. Continuing at low speed, mix for about 30 seconds more, just until the flour disappears into the dough and the dough looks uniformly moist. (If most of the flour is incorporated but you’ve still got some in the bottom of the bowl, use a rubber spatula to work the rest of the flour into the dough.) The dough will not clean the sides of the bowl, nor will it come together in a ball - and it shouldn’t. You want to work the dough as little as possible. What you’re aiming for is a soft, moist, clumpy (rather than smooth) dough. Pinch it, and it will feel a little like Play-Doh.
  3. To make the streusel topping: Melt butter in a small saucepan on stove or in microwave. Add the rest of the ingredients all at once and stir with a fork to form crumbs. You should have a kind of wet sand texture with pea-sized crumbs throughout the mixture. Cover and set aside until ready to use. The crumbs will harden a little as the cool but that's fine.
  4. To assemble and bake: Preheat the oven to 350° F.
  5. Ring Mold Method: Line a half sheet pan with parchment paper. Roll dough to just shy of 1/2-inch thick. Use 3-inch round rings to stamp out cookies (I ended up getting 9 cookies using this method. You could take the scraps and press them into extra molds). Transfer the dough and rings to prepared baking sheet. Chill in the fridge or freezer for 10-15 minutes until the dough firms up a bit (while the dough chills, you can make the streusel). Top the chilled dough with a couple of teaspoons of jam and a sprinkling of the streusel.
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for 18-22 minutes (my large molds took about 25 minutes), or until golden and delicious looking. Remove from oven and let cool 15 minutes before removing the rings. Allow to cool completely before serving.
  7. Whoopie Pie Pan Method: Fill each cup of the pan with a piece of dough and flatten with your fingers. The dough will be just slightly lower than the top of the pan. Chill in the fridge or freezer for 10-15 minutes until the dough firms up a bit (while the dough chills, you can make the streusel). Top the chilled dough with a couple of teaspoons of jam and a sprinkling of the streusel.
  8. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until golden and delicious looking. Allow cookies to cool for 15-20 minutes in pan before using a small offset spatula to carefully ease them out of the pan and onto a cooling rack. If you can hold on to them, they will keep well for 2-3 days.

Source

source: adapted from Lottie + Doof's version from Dorie Greenspan

http://www.smells-like-home.com/2011/09/dories-blueberry-and-peach-vanilla-bean-jammers/

Kitchen Sink Cookies
17

Kitchen Sink Cookies

After having made a huge batch of these cookies a few weeks ago, I’m SO glad I froze the majority of the dough in a ready-to-bake form.  Not only were these cookies one of the more outstanding cookies I’ve made in quite a while, but they came in extra handy this past week and weekend during Hurricane Irene and the time following sans electricity.  Packed with protein from a good deal of creamy peanut butter and whole grains from the oats, these kitchen sink cookies make a great snack or dessert that obviously don’t need to be refrigerated.

Kitchen Sink Cookies

If you’re wondering about the name, the explanation is pretty simple: you can basically throw everything but the kitchen sink into them.  In addition to the original ingredients, in this version I also added chocolate chunks in place of the recommended chips, Reese’s Pieces since you can never have too much peanut butter in a cookie, and toasted coconut (my version is below).  Toasted coconut adds this amazing depth of flavor to baked goods and since I needed some for the granola I also made recently, I decided to use some of in these cookies as well.  (Look at me patting myself on the back right now. :)

Kitchen Sink Cookies

The cookies themselves are nothing short of magnificent.  They are mostly chewy but have nice crispy edges and because there is NO flour in them, the peanut butter really shines through as a main ingredient.  And the best part?  In every single cookie, you’ve got different pops of added-in flavor so no one cookie is alike!  I’m thankful to have baked up a bunch of these before we lost electricity because they really are quite comforting during this mess of a week we’re having here.