Pies are to Thanksgiving as cookies are to the December holidays. So without futher ado, we are officially kicking off the cookie-baking season with this set of recipes from Stacy Adimando, a Trumbull, CT native and author of the recently published and irresistible, The Cookiepedia. From Almond Biscotto to Mint Thins, more than 50 cookie recipes fill her book and Adminando has graciously offered to share a few of her recipes with us as we get ready to break-out those mixers and dust-off those measuring cups.
Poppy Seed Squares
"Some people might think poppy seeds aren’t the sexiest of cookie mix-ins. These crispy, poppy-flecked cookies beg to differ. The little blue-gray beads add both a nutty flavor and a crunchy texture, bringing a savory depth to this shortbread-style dough. Balance it all out with a healthy dunk into sweet melted chocolate."
2 cups all-purpose flour
5 tablespoons rice flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
For dipping: 12 ounces (about 1 bar) chocolate; 1/4 cup unsalted butter
Cornmeal Cookies with Rosemary
"These crumbly, sweet, and savory bites make a beautiful drop-by offering tied with baker's twine and packed into gift boxes or goodie bags. And they’re a treat to bake, because when they’re about halfway done, you’ll smell the pungent rosemary aroma seeping out of your oven."
"I’m not really a lingerer at the table. For a little lady, I take serious bites (and I like second helpings while they’re still warm, please). But at the oven, things are different. This biscotti recipe is for the slow Sunday cook in all of us. The name means “twice baked,” and they are, so there’s no rushing to the finish line.
This recipe can be varied in any number of ways—you can change up the nuts, add dried fruit, replace the almond extract with citrus zest, the list goes on and on. But start with the original first. I swear, you’ll want to make a batch every week."
13/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornmeal
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or almond extract)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 cup almonds, coarsely chopped
[Preheat Oven: 350˚] 1. Beat together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Add the eggs, working them in one at a time until fully incorporated. 2. Add the vanilla and butter, mixing well until the dough begins to form. It will not come together completely. Add the almonds and stir to evenly distribute. 3. Turn out the dough onto a cookie sheet with lightly floured hands. Divide it in half and shape it into two logs, each about 1 1/2 inch thick and 2 inches wide.4. Bake the biscotti for 20 minutes (this is the first of 2 times you’ll be baking them), rotating the sheet halfway through baking. Take it out and let the logs rest on the sheet for 20 minutes. They’ll still be slightly spongy to the touch, kind of like dense bread. Lower the oven temp to 250°F. 5. After 20 minutes, transfer the logs to a cutting board. Cut them into 1/2-inch slices using a serrated knife. Finally, move the slices (cut side up for any ends) back to one sheet and bake for 40 minutes more. The biscotti will still be slightly soft while warm but will harden fully once they’ve cooled.