Friday, April 18, 2014

espresso chip shortbread

need i say much? probably not.
but i've had two glasses of wine, and these are the times the words flow.   you know?

these shortbreads are small and tasty. i prefer shortbread to be cut in neat squares. personal preferences. i also like them in triangles or giant hunks, and circles are cool too.

they're like cute edible buttons with shittons of butter.
the best kind of buttons!

i've been testing a bunch of recipes, for a reason i won't say yet.
it's not a cookbook
.. like how every other blog in the internet universe is being commissioned to write a book. no offense bloogs [good for you, that's exciting, yada], but the book commissioning has gotten ridiculous.

the times i don't know what to say, i usually just revert to rap lyrics..
so. clearly no book commissioning here.

which is fine. i don't need you anyway. keep publishing your books about donuts and pickled carrots.


i was talking about shortbread.

they're nice. they're crisp like a shortbread should be. eat them alongside a cup of coffee because we can't seem to get enough caffeine.

bam. blog post complete.

Espresso Chip Shortbread

1 tbsp instant espresso powder
1 tbsp boiling water
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup confectioners' sugar
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

dissolve the espresso in the boiling water, and set aside to cool to tepid. 
working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter and confectioners' sugar together on medium speed for about 3 minutes, until the mixture is very smooth. beat in the vanilla and espresso, then reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour, mixing only until it disappears into the dough. don't work the dough much once the flour is incorporated. fold in the chopped chocolate with a sturdy rubber spatula. 

using the spatula, transfer the soft, sticky dough to a gallon-size ziplock plastic bag. put the bag on a flat surface, leaving the top open, and roll the dough into a 9x10 inch rectangle that's about 1/4 inch thick. as you roll, turn the bag occasionally and life the plastic from the dough so it doesn't cause creases. when you get the right size and thickness, seal the bag, pressing out as much air as possible, and refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours, or for up to 2 days. 

preheat the oven to 325 degreesF. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats. 
put the plastic bag on a cutting board and slit it open. turn the firm dough out onto the board (throw out the bag) and using a ruler as a guide and a sharp knife, cut the dough into 1 1/2 inch squares. transfer the squares to the baking sheets and carefully prick each one twice with a fork. 
bake for 18-20 minutes, rotating the sheets halfway through. they will be pale and shouldn't take on too much color. 
transfer to wire racks to cool and let them cool completely to room temperature before serving. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

como estas?

maybe i'll talk about shortbread soon.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

one pot farro

listen to: mi negrita - devendr√° banhart | elvis presley's version of blue moon
dance to: beyonce.           duh
walk: to the trees or to the sand

think about: making cashew curry for dinner and mochi butter cake for dessert. 
in reality: make one pan farro for dinner again and eat old cookie dough from a bag in the fridge for dessert. 

it's really good and easy and i'd gladly eat it for dinner 3 nights in a row.


One Pan Farro
from smitten kitchen

*just slightly lightly tweaked, i added golden raisins which i do think brings a 
pleasant pop of sweetness to the savory grains. and i like to stir big handfuls of arugula into it. 

1 cup semi pearled faro
2 cups water
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic
10 oz tomatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
1 1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 cup golden raisins

place water and faro in a medium saucepan to pre-soak. (5-10 minutes is good) in the meantime prep the other ingredients, adding each to the pot as you finish prepping it, cut onion in half again and thinly slice it. thinly slice garlic cloves. halve or quarter tomatoes. add the salt, red pepper flakes and 1 tbsp olive oil to the pan. set a timer for 30 minutes. bring uncovered pan up to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, stirring occasionally. when the timer goes off, the farro should be nicely cooked (tender but with a pleasant chew), and the cooking water should be almost completely absorbed. 
stir in the golden raisins. fold a few big handfuls of arugula through the faro (completely optional) scatter with thin slivers of basil and parmesan. drizzle a bit more olive oil if you wish. 

Monday, March 24, 2014

creatives fail and the really good ones fail often.

.steven kotler.

thank you steven, you've made me feel much better.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

winter shortcake

looky here! it's a winter shortcake.
what constitutes a winter shortcake? there are 3 components. winter fruit, a heartier cozier biscuit, and cream.

these are whole wheat brown butter biscuits.
remember that new flour mill in town, Grist and Toll? i snagged a bag of their 'Sonora' whole grain pastry flour and used it to make these here biscuits.
(so light. so delicate. so nutty.)

they are good all on their own. eat one for breakfast with butter and an espresso. 
then later slice one in half, slice up some fruits, make the damn shortcake, eat the damn shortcake. 

it's pretty much a dessert hamburger that you eat with a fork.

See? Strawberry is not the sole dictator of the shortcake universe. 

Whole Wheat Brown Butter Biscuits
adapted from King Arthur Flour

2 cups whole wheat grain flour or white whole wheat flour
3 tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup (4 oz) chilled brown butter
3/4 cup heavy cream (or buttermilk)
1 egg yolk (save white to brush the tops)
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
(optional: 1/4-1/2 cup dried fruit, candied ginger, etc)
sugar for topping

mix the dry ingredients in a bowl or the bowl of a food processor. cut in the butter with a pastry blender, bench scrapers (my favorite), a few pulses of the food processor, or even a fork. whisk together cream, egg yolk, and vanilla. stir into the dry mixture until a dough forms. transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and knead in the dried fruit if using). 

pat the dough into a disk about 1 1./2 inches thick. stamp out circles with a biscuit cutter, or cut into squares. transfer circles to a parchment lined baking sheet. refrigerate for 15 minutes (or put it in the freezer for 5 minutes). preheat the oven to 375 degreesF. brush the tops with the egg white and sprinkle sugar on the tops. 
bake for about 25 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking. 

Whipped Cream: 1 cup heavy cream + 1/4 cup confectioner's sugar + small splash of vanilla 
beat til soft peaks

blood orange/any citrus segments
kumquat, sliced thinly

To Assemble: slice a biscuit through. place bottom half on plate. top with a few nice dollops of the cream. top that with a mix of your fruits. top it the whole thing with the other half of the biscuit. 

Friday, March 14, 2014


just kidding. it's a lake.

but i still think about them if i'm in a lake.
when i was a child i thought sharks could live in the deep end of pools.

happy friday

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

sundae: buttermilk ice cream. lime curd. toasted almond poppyseed cake

how many times can justin bring sexy back, really?
because he continues to seriously do it right. to the point where it's annoying.
i have a love/hate relationship with the jimmy fallon/justin timberlake bromance.
they know how much the world is ahahaha-obsessed with them together.
they'll do some new video and i'll scoff at the complete not surprise.

and then they'll be good and talented and i'll laugh.
and then i'm galled, because ah! they got me again.

so dammit justin. with your pop songs and your dance moves and your confident swagger and your random roles in respectable films...
8 years later and you really do continue to bring sexy back.

but today, in my book, you are not #1 in sexy bringing.
this sundae is.

not a swanky getaway in a nice hotel kind of sexy.
more like, gourmet camping trip sexy. a nice fire going, stars and shit.
and a sundae in a mug.

the mish mosh: buttermilk ice cream. lime curd. toasted almond poppyseed cake cubes.

Buttermilk Ice Cream

2 cups heavy cream
1 1/4 cup sugar
8 egg yolks
2 cups buttermilk
2 tsp vanilla or 1/2 a vanilla bean, scraped and simmered with cream
pinch of salt

in a large heavy saucepan, combine the cream and 1 cup of sugar and bring to a simmer over medium heat. 
in a large bowl, whisk egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar. 

remove cream mixture from heat and drizzle a small amount into the yolks slowly, whisking constantly to keep eggs from curdling. continue slowly adding more to warm the yolks well, and then pour back into the cream, whisking constantly. 
cook over low heat until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon. pour through a fine mesh strainer, then whisk in the buttermilk, vanilla, and salt. press plastic on the top surface so a skin doesn't form and chill in the refrigerator, and then freeze according to your ice cream maker's directions. 

Lime Curd (recipe here)
Almond Poppyseed Pound Cake (recipe here)

sundae: pile all into a mug and do it right.