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Wednesday, January 25, 2012


I love good baklava! It is not as hard as it looks, but it is not inexpensive!  I make mine with 4 different nuts and an amazing amount of butter. It is soooo good!


1 pound frozen fillo (phylo) dough, thawed
1 cup walnuts, rough chopped
1 cup slivered almonds, chopped
1cup pecans, chopped
1 1/2 cups pistachios, chopped
1 cup butter, melted (more may be needed)
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

Lemon Honey Syrup
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 lemon, sliced seeds removed
4 tablespoons honey

Thaw dough at room temperature for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 350
Place chopped nuts, sugar and spices in a food processor and pulse  four or five times till they are all mixed and chopped a little finer. 
Brush melted butter on the bottom of a 15x10x2 inch pan (jelly roll). Gently lay one layer of fillo dough onto the prepared pan. Butter the dough. Add another single layer of dough, brush with butter. Keep doing this till you get 10 layers of dough.
Put about 2/3 of the nut mixture on the top of the 10 layers.  Drizzle with butter.

Put a single layer of fillo dough on top of nuts. Brush the dough with butter. Add single layers of dough brushed with butter till you get about 5 more layers. Add the rest of the nuts, drizzle with more butter.  Add the rest of the fillo dough in single layers, each brushed with butter till you have used the entire package.

Bake for 50 to 55 minutes. Finish cutting the diamonds. Cool completely.
Pour the warm honey syrup over the top. It will all soak in. Might not look like it, but it till


In a saucepan, combine sugar, water and lemon slices. Boil gently for 15 minutes. Remove lemon slices. Add honey. Stir till combined. Pour gently over baklava.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Italian Snowballs

Today was a snow day, again. It is wonderful to have snow.  I wanted a cookie that was not too sweet, still good and sort of snowball shaped. I adapted this recipe from 100 Best Cookies 2004.

Italian Snowballs!

3 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond  (I used a full teaspoon of princess flavor. That is available at King Arthur Flour)

1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
2 tablespoons milk

Preheat oven to 350
Line baking sheets with parchment
In a medium size bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt.
In the bowl of the mixer, combine eggs, sugar, oil and extracts. Beat till well combined. Add flour mixture. The dough will be stiff!
Use the small scoop and drop the them onto the prepared baking sheet

Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned on the bottom.
Cool completely then glaze.
Mix the almond extract with the milk, add to the powdered sugar until the glaze is fairly thin. Dip the tops of the cookies in the glaze.  Then add sprinkles before the glaze dries!

My helper liked the red sprinkles.
Makes 4 1/2 dozen.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Luscious Lemon Drops

Luscious Lemon Drops
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup butter
2 large eggs
zest of one lemon
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
10 ounces white chocolate chips (1 bag)
1 1/2 cups coconut

Preheat oven to 375.

Cream butter and sugar in the mixer till creamy. Add eggs one at a time till well blended  Add lemon zest and lemon juice.  In a small bowl, mix flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt.  Add to butter mixture, mix till just blended.  Add white chocolate chips and coconut.
Using a medium scoop, drop onto parchment lined baking sheets. You don't have to use parchment for this, but it makes clean up easier.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. Let cool for 2 minutes on the pan, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Tropical Escapes

The weather is lousy this first week of January. I would love to go somewhere warm! This is about as close as I can get.

Tropical Escapes
1/3 cup butter
1 cup vegetable shortening
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons  vanilla
1 teaspoon pineapple flavoring
1 teaspoon almond extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
9 ounces ginger vanilla macadamia nuts (I got these as a Christmas gift and they were so GOOD! but regular nuts will also work, just add 1/2 teaspoon of ginger to the dry ingredients)
6 ounces of dried pineapple, chopped up to about the size of raisins (one package)
10 ounces of white chocolate chips (one package)
2 cups of coconut (about half a blue bag)

Preheat oven to 375
Line two baking sheets with parchment. You don't have to with this recipe, they don't stick, but it makes clean-up easier

Mix shortening and butter in the bowl of a mixer. Add sugars, eggs and flavorings. mix well. In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking soda and salt (and ginger).  Blend into butter mixture. Mix well.
Add the nuts, chips, pineapple and coconut.
Drop by medium cookie scoop onto prepared pans
My goofy helper!

Place the cookies about 2 inches apart
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.
Cool for a minute or two on the pan, then remove to cool completely on a wire rack.
Makes 5 dozen.