The Fabulous Baker Girl

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Busy Baking Weekend April 20, 2009

Filed under: biscotti,cookies,Screen Doors and Sweet Tea — amynb2008 @ 5:35 pm

This weekend I was quite busy in the kitchen and I have to say that I loved it!  I had a Private Quarters party on

Blue Cheese Pecan Bread

Blue Cheese Pecan Bread


Saturday and made some really yummy things for my friends who came.  



One thing I made was Blue-Cheese Pecan Bread.  This recipe is from the cookbook Screen Doors and Sweet Tea by Martha Hall Foose.  I actually met Martha at Zingerman’s last year.  They had a special dinner consisting of dishes entirely from this book.  She was there as well.  The whole evening was so much fun and the food was amazing.  That’s where I first got a taste of this bread.  I’ve made it a few times and it’s always a hit.

I also made biscotti from a recipe I got in baking class.  I have to say, everyone loved them!  They were  very popular, both with and without coffee or tea.  I think everyone was impressed with the biscotti because they think it’s hard to make.  In reality, it isn’t — but let’s just keep that little secret to ourselves.

Biscotti and Chocolate Chip Cookies

Biscotti and Chocolate Chip Cookies



Another recipe I made was for nut cookies.  This recipe came from my baking text book.  I made them in class a couple of weeks ago and wanted to make them again.  These are basically Russian tea cakes or Mexican wedding cakes.  I used ground hazelnuts and that just took ’em up a notch.  So good!

Lastly, I tried a new recipe for chocolate chip cookies.  This recipe is out of the new Cooks’ Illustrated magazine.  It’s an interesting recipe that calls using melted butter rather than softened.  I have to confess that I did not follow the exact recipe.  For some reason, I read it wrong so I’m not sure they came out the way they should have.  They turned out really well regardless.  They had a different texture than the usually

Hazelnut Cookies

Hazelnut Cookies

 chocolate chip cookies I make and the butter and dark brown sugar really make a flavorful cookie.

Spring Biscotti

1/4 cup butter

3/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon orange zest

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2 eggs

1 egg white

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 ounces white chocolate

1 1/4 cups pistachio nuts

In a large bowl, cream together butter, sugar, orange zest, and vanilla until light and fluffy.  Mix in eggs and egg whites, one at a time beating well after each addition.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.  Gradually blend into the butter mixture using a wooden spoon.  Stir in remaining ingredients.  Cover and chill for about a half an hour or until dough is not sticky.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface.  Divide in half.  Form each half into a semi-flat log about 12 inches by 3 inches.  Put on making sheet about 3 inches apart.  

Bake for 30 minutes or until lightly browned.  Allow logs to cool on baking sheet until they are cool enough to handle.  On a cutting board, carefully cut each log with a serrated knife into 1-inch thick slices (I actually made mine a bit thinner).  Arrange back on the baking sheet.

Bake for another 15-20 minutes or until golden.  Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.  Store in an airtight container at room temperature.  Enjoy!