Sunday, September 26, 2010

September Cookies

I am mildly sad that I decided to make these using a box mix as a base, and not to measure any of my own contributions, because that certainly makes it harder to share them with you. They are lovely. The best I can do is tell you to take a classic chocolate chip cookie recipe, add about 1/4 cup of oat bran flour, 1/3 cup of pumpkin puree, 3 tablespoons of molasses, and a lot of cinnamon. Or, alternately, do all of the above to a Betty Crocker gluten free chocolate chip cookie mix. Because really people, we're all busy and sometimes measuring out millet flour and coconut flour and almond flour and xantham gum and guar gum and oh don't forget the potato starch--it's a damn drag.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bittersweet Orange Macaroons

Perfect fancy party fare, this macaroon recipe from Bon Apetit defies all laws of good baking and uses the oh-so-dreadful sweetened coconut stuff. Shockingly, these still have a very sophisticated taste (thanks to the bittersweet chocolate and addition of orange peel to the batter). It also produces lots and lots and lots o'macaroons, for a very low cost.

I didn't make any changes, so you can find the recipe here.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Blackberry Cream Frosting

I wish this post could be titled Blackberry Buttercream Frosting. Sadly, while I intended on making a buttercream, I didn't feel like walking from the kitchen to the computer to look at the recipe. Yes, I am that lazy. So instead we have a cream cheese/buttercream hybrid frosting. But really, what's wrong with that?

1/3 block low-fat cream cheese
The lowfat part is kind of a joke, considering the nutritional stats of frosting.

1/2 stick butter, just above room temperature

2/3 bag of powdered sugar
The normal sized bag. If you don't know which one is normal, buy bigger and just add powdered sugar until you get to the right consistency.

1 pint fresh blackberries, washed and dried

1 tsp. vanilla

Using an electric mixer or a lot of arm strength, beat together the butter and blackberries. Add powdered sugar until frosting starts to stiffen, then add cream cheese and whip until just so. If you don't have a pastry bag and tip, like me, just cut the corner off of a ziplock bag, scoop in frosting, seal tightly, and pipe through there.

You could easily eliminate the cream cheese and add more butter, but I like the tang it provides as background for all.that.sugar.

This was delicious on 15 vanilla cupcakes, and I had plenty left over to freeze for the days when blackberries aren't abundant.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Food from Morocco

Fancy, traditional Moroccan courtyard restaurant in Marrakesh

Food stalls in the Djemaa al-Fna in Marrakesh

Food stall feast

Sorbet at an ice cream shoppe in the ritzy Ville Nouvelle

Rooftop cafe snack in Essaouira

Cozy French cafe lunch in Essaouira

Shopping for mint at the Essaouira spice market at the end of Ramadan

Cat with olives.