Tag Archives: Flour

My Favorite Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie

4 Jun

Christopher and I try to be healthy. We really do. In fact our latest health craze has gotten us into a big intake of fruits and leafy greens. Our own jumping onto a green smoothie revolution wagon– and we’re taking as many people as we can on that journey.

I eat this way, so that I can feel light and energetic and happy. I also eat this way because I want to be able to indulge in new and old favorites without the guilt.

So, the other evening, I revisited a chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe I had spotted several months back on the Apple a Day blog, and I gave the cookie my own little organic, slightly experimental twist.

I try to use as little refined sugar as possible in my desserts, and lately the only sweeteners I have had stashed in my cabinet of baking goods have been maple syrup, raw honey, and organic, raw sugar. The last two especially bring back memories of my childhood with my paternal grandmother– the smells, sounds, and tastes of early mornings and peaceful, star-filled nights at my Nina’s ranch in Baja, California. “Mi Nina” was a beekeeper, one of her many trades, and she readily used honey in the kitchen and to treat scrapes and cuts.

But, every evening, she would sit at her kitchen table, pour herself some coffee, and ask me to pass the sugar. Grainy, brown-ish sugar. When I became an adult, I started seeing the stuff advertised as Turbinado or raw sugar, but I had always thought of it as “Mi Nina’s sugar.” You know, the unrefined Mexican stuff that most of us gringos wouldn’t dare touch with a ten-foot pole.

A few years ago, I started using it as a substitute for white sugar, and for this recipe I’ve used it exclusively– even instead of brown sugar.  The crunch added to this chewy cookie makes me feel so giddy. I hope you enjoy it as much as Atticus, Christopher, and I do.

My Favorite Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

Ingredients: 
3/4 C unsalted organic butter, softened
1 C organic, raw sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 C organic unbleached flour, sifted
1/3 C organic whole wheat pastry flour
1/3 C organic semolina flour
2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 C bittersweet chocolate chips
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy. Sugar crystals will still be visible. Add egg and extracts and blend.
Mix in flours, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Stir in chocolate chips.
With a  tablespoon, drop dough onto a prepared, parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
Bake for 7-8 minutes, until barely golden brown around the edges.  (The tops will not brown, but do NOT bake longer than 9 minutes.)
Allow to cool 15-20 minutes on the baking sheet, then gently transport to cooling racks. Cookies will seem underdone, but they will be just perfect (at least for me) when completely cooled.
I would love to read about your favorite cookie recipes.
As always, happy eating!

Emergency Heart Day Dessert: Buttermilk Pound Cake Muffins

15 Feb

We almost had an emergency on our hands yesterday.

Atticus, Christopher, and I (along with about three-quarters of the population, apparently) have been battling this mystery cold and flu for a few weeks now. Although Atticus and I are still functioning normally, Christopher has had the hardest time. I know that it’s because he does too much for us. He washes dishes, does the laundry, takes the little guy to school, and indulges my every whim. Oh, my. I’m started to feel kind of guilty.

I felt even worse when I received a phone call from Christopher on Valentine’s Day informing me that he was in the emergency room, under doctor’s orders. Without going into too much detail, I am relieved to report that an appendectomy scare turned out to be unfounded.

Basically, my multi-tasking husband has been ordered to rest and recover.

And, so I tried to take care of him the best way I know– I cooked and I baked.

I had had Mixed Bean and Lentil Soup with Roasted Butternut Squash on my mind anyhow, but now I needed  to think of a quick, comforting dessert. Something fool-proof. I remembered the batch of Brown Sugar Hot Fudge that I had prepared earlier with my mother-in-law’s treasured family recipe, so I swung by the market to pick up vanilla ice cream (Haagen-Dazs has a great five-ingredient ice cream, aptly named Five) and organic flour for my favorite pound cake recipe (also courtesy of my mother-in-law).

Brown Sugar Hot Fudge!

Usually, I’ll bake this perfect pound cake in a bundt pan, but that takes nearly one hour, so I decided to try something different to speed up the process– individual Buttermilk Pound Cake muffins! I got the idea when I spotted a box of so-called tulip baking cups in red, pink, and white.

Buttermilk Pound Cake

"Daddy, tell me a story." Atticus is simultaneously enjoying a muffin at the table and a story from Chris.

Ingredients:

2 c sugar ( I use raw unrefined sugar with great results)
1 c butter, room temperature
3 eggs

3 c cake flour, sifted
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda

1 c buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp almond extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Cream sugar, butter and eggs.
Slowly add flour mixture (with salt and soda), alternating with buttermilk about three (3) times, beginning and ending with flour.
Add flavor extracts.
Pour batter into muffin pan lined with tulip baking cups, almost to the top of the tin. The extra length on the baking cups should prevent spillage.
Bake at 350 degrees for 22-25 minutes. Do not allow to brown. Under-baked is best with this recipe!

Pound Cake Muffins in Tulip Cups

If you use the traditional bundt pan for this recipe, be sure to grease or butter the pan liberally, dust with flour, and bake for 45-50 minutes.

Use a flour sifter or sieve to 'dust.'

May your days be filled with friendship, peace, and enough food to keep you going. Happy eating!
~ Isela, Christopher, and Atticus

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