Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Joyful Almond, Coconut and Milk Chocolate Cookies

Today was just one of those days where I needed a homemade cookie. The flavors in this cookie are based on a popular candy bar containing many of the same ingredients. These little babies are packed full of sliced almonds, coconut flakes, and milk chocolate chips. The almond extract in the dough really adds to the flavor so I don't recommend substituting vanilla.
From Hannah's Kitchen

1 cup shortening
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups milk chocolate chips
2/3 cup sweetened flaked coconut
2/3 cup sliced almonds

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a small bowl combine the flour, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.

3. In the large bowl of a stand mixer beat shortening and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs and extract and beat until well mixed. Slowly add the flour and mix until just combined.

4. Stir in the chocolate chips, coconut, and almonds.

5. Use a tablespoon-size cookie scoop to drop the dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until edges are just starting to turn light brown. Cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

This post is linked to Sweets for a Saturday.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Miniature Apple Pies

This is a classic American dessert downsized. I had seen pictures of miniature apple pies circulating on the internet and they looked too cute to resist. I used Pillsbury refrigerated pie crusts to speed the process, but you could definitely roll out a homemade crust as well.  I like my apple pie to be fairly tart, so you may have to add or adjust the amount of sugar used depending on your preferences and the tartness of your apples.  You may also want to experiment using different types of apples.  These pies would be awesome served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top!
Roll out the dough and cut it into 4 1/2 inch circles.
Press the dough into the muffin cups.
Peel, core, and chop the apples.
Cook the apples and the sugar, flour, and cinnamon until the apples are slightly softened and liquid is produced.
Fill the prepared crusts.
Bake and devour!
From Hannah's Kitchen

YIELD - 10 miniature pies

1 package (2 rolls) Pillsbury refrigerated pie crust
4 large Granny Smith apples
7 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 tablespoons flour

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out pie dough just slightly to make it a bit thinner. Use a 4 1/2 inch round cookie or biscuit cutter to cut circles from the dough (I used a small pyrex dish as shown above). Gather scraps and re-roll dough until you have cut enough dough circles.

2. Press the dough evenly into the cavities of a regular size 12-cup muffin pan. Cut away any excess dough and shape the top of the crust as desired (I just used a pinching technique). Set prepared pan aside.

3. Peel, core, and chop the apples in to pieces no bigger than 1/2 an inch. In a 2-quart pot mix the apples, sugar, cinnamon, and flour and cook over medium heat until apples begin to soften and produce juice.

4. Fill the prepared mini pie crusts with the apple mixture. Top with decorative pieces of extra dough if desired.

5. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until crust is light golden brown. Cool at least 10 minutes before removing pies from the pan.

This post is linked to Sweets for a Saturday.