Project Name: Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread
Recipe Source Link: http://userealbutter.com/2008/09/25/espresso-chocolate-chip-shortbread-cookies-recipe/
Brief Description: One of my favorite smells is fresh ground and brewed coffee. While I don't like the taste of coffee, I do love the smell of freshly ground beans, which I associate with my husband who grinds them fresh every morning before brewing a cup in his French press. (At the same time, he always makes me a cup of tea too, which is extra endearing.)
Project Picture:Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread
1 tbsp instant espresso or coffee powder/granuels
1 tbsp boiling water
2 sticks unsalted butter or margarine, room temperature
2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup store-bought mini chocolate chips
Dissolve espresso powder in boiling water. Set aside to cool to tepid.
Beat butter and confectioners’ sugar together on medium speed for about 3 minutes, until the mixture is very smooth.
Beat in vanilla and espresso, then reduce mixer speed to low and add 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 or chips with a sturdy rubber spatula. Using the spatula, transfer dough to a gallon-size zip-loc bag. Put bag on a flat surface, leaving the top open, and roll the dough into a 9 x 10 1/2 inch rectangle that’s 1/4 inch thick. As you roll, turn the bag occasionally and lift 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°F. Put the plastic bag on a cutting board and slit it open. Turn the firm dough out onto the board (discard 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, gently pushing the tines through the cookies until they hit the sheet. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point. The shortbreads will be very pale–they shouldn't take on much color.
Transfer the cookies to a rack. If you’d like, dust the cookies with confectioners’ sugar while they are still hot, or drizzle with melted chocolate. Cool the cookies to room temperature before serving. Makes about 3 dozen.Challenge: Bertie Bott's Mini Challenge - Baked Beans
Project Name: Dreamy Veggie Polenta Biscuits
Recipe Source Link: http://www.madejustright.com/recipe/dreamy-polenta-biscuit/
Brief Description: I've spent the last two days trying to use up stuff from around the house before I go grocery store tomorrow. These came up on my Pinterest feed yesterday and sounded delicious, so I had to try them.
Project Picture:Polenta Biscuits
1 cup Flour ( I use a mix of 50/50 w.w. pastry flour and unbleached white)
2 tablespoons Earth Balance Shortening or margarine
1/2 cup Polenta
1 cup whole corn ( canned, fresh or frozen which as been thawed)
1/2 cup finely diced carrots
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup Almond Milk or Soy Milk (unflavored)
1 teaspoon sea salt or to taste
1 tablespoon baking powder
In a bowl blend flour and shortening.
After flour is blended add polenta, carrot, cilantro and sifted baking powder.
In a blender add corn and soymilk, blend for about 30 secs. You want to keep this a bit on the chunky side.
Add salt to the dry ingredients and the blended corn & almond milk.
Gently mix, it should resemble a soft dough. Put in fridge to rest for 10 minutes. This allows the polenta to absorb some moisture.
Give a final mix and loosely spoon into muffin tins.
Put in preheated 375 degree oven for 25 minutes.
Let cool before removing from muffin tin, serve with a side salad or soup or enjoy them on their own with a dab of Earth Balance buttery spread.