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Chocolate Chip-Apricot Bars

3 Apr

Jam and Chocolate Spread

Bar cookies are my favorite type of cookie. More substantial than your standard round cookie, with increased fillings and topping possibilities. This Apricot Jam bar from The Spice and Spirit was therefore an easy pick for me to try.

Ingredients: margarine, sugar, egg yolks, flour, vanilla, apricot jam, chocolate chips, egg whites, salt, walnuts

Substitutions: I use Earth Balance instead of margarine

The Process: 

Raw Cookie Base

First I preheated the oven to 350 and used that Earth Balance wrapper to grease the pan. I used my hand mixer to cream the butter, sugar and egg yolks. The flour and vanilla were added in and kneaded by hand as per the instructions. This was helpful as I then had no trouble using my hands to pat the dough into the bottom of a baking pan. Then I slid it into the oven for 15 minutes until slightly browned.

When removed from the oven I spread the jam on top followed by the chocolate chips. I beat the egg whites into a white stiff foam that I used to call “snow” when I used to bake with my mother as a kid. Then I folded in some sugar that had been set aside and the nuts. This was spread over the chips and everything was slid back into the oven for 25 minutes.

Raw “Snow” on Apricot Bars

The Results:

The bars were slightly unmanageable when trying to cut them into neat squares (probably would have been easier if they were frozen). I also did not necessarily enjoy the combination of chocolate and apricot. However others did. So I’d rate this cookie as a partial success.

Chocolate Chip Apricot Bar

 

Egg-Free Sprinkle Cookie

8 Mar

While eggs are not an allergen we worry about in my house I was still excited to try this Egg-Free Sprinkle Cookie recipe from Kids Cooking Made Easy. I run out of eggs all the time and this seemed like a quick and easy recipe I could make with my kids. It also looked quick which is exactly what I need for shabbat prep in the winter!

Ingredients:

butter or margarine (I use Earth Balance), sugar, confectioners sugar, vanilla extract, flour, rainbow sprinkles

The Process:

First you preheat the oven and line baking sheets. The recipe calls for parchment paper but I always use silicone baking mats as they never smoke (parchment paper tends to set off my smoke alarm) and cookies bake more evenly with the mats without sticking. I then creamed the margarine and sugar adding in the vanilla and flour until it formed a nice ball of dough. The kids felt it “looked like play dough”.

We then rolled the balls into circles, dipped them into rainbow sprinkles while flattening them a little bit. Then they were placed on the pre-lined baking sheet and bake.

The Results:

The recipe was easy to follow and the instructions were correct. The cookies did not spread further than the recipe said they would. However I would say the baking time of 15 minutes is more of a max time. If you have an oven that runs hot you will want to them out a bit earlier to keep a moist soft cookie. They disappeared pretty quickly from the kitchen and my company even asked to take some home!

          Egg Free Sprinkle Cookie

White Chocolate Chip and Macadamia Nut Cookies

25 Mar
Bais Yaakov Cookbook

White Chocolate macadamia nut cookie

From the moment I opened the Bais Yaakov Cookbook I was itching to make these cookies. The photo jumped off the page and made my mouth water. I also love white chocolate chips way more than standard run of the mill chips. I was simply waiting for the ideal moment.

The ideal moment never came. Working long nights and waking up extremely early doesn’t leave much time for anything else. What time I do have gets spent with family or studying. So instead of the perfect time, I stayed up late one night to bake. I decided to stop studying, give up a little sleep and make cookies so that hte next day, while running around the emergency department seeing consultant patients, I would at least have snacks. In a hospital with limited Kosher food, that made all the difference. The residents didn’t mind the extra snacks either.

Ingredients: 

margarine, sugar, brown sugar, eggs, vanilla, all purpose flour, baking soda, salt, old fashioned oats, white chocolate chips, chocolate bar, macadamia nuts, dried cranberries (optional)

substitutions: Earth Balance baking stick instead of margarine

The Process:

This is a one bowl cookie recipe. I threw everything but the delicate ingredients into a large bowl and mixed. I used my hand mixer because the recipe calls for “creaming” the sugar and margarine, but honestly you could probably get away without it. Then I folded in the chips, nuts and cranberries. I dropped spoonfuls onto my silicone mat lined cookie sheets and popped them into the preheated oven for 10 minutes.

The Results:

The cookies looked like the ones in the cookbook photo, except more rounded. If you like a flat cookie I suggest pressing down on the dough ball to flatten it as the dough seems to retain its shape when baking. The photo shows a crunchy cookie, and they were. If you are like me and prefer a chewier cookie then shave off some time from the baking time.

While the recipe says the cranberries are optional, I feel they are not. They added a lot to the taste of the cookie. Instead, the macadamia nut should be optional. I personally did not enjoy the flavor and crunch they added. Plus they meant the cookies were off limits to all people with nut allergies. It’s a great cookie without the (overpriced) nuts! white choc macadamia cookie 2