Italian Sandwich Cookies

Italian Sandwich Cookies

Chocolate and orange is one of the best combinations in a dessert: the bright citrus mixing with the creamy chocolate; it’s a match made in heaven. The chocolate cookies have orange in them and taste great with the fluffy, orange frosting. This recipe, which comes from one of my favorite Italian chefs, Giada De Laurentiis, will not disappoint at any event.

Italian Sandwich Cookies

To make the cookie dough, I creamed my sugar and butter until pale and fluffy. Then, in another bowl, I combined the dry ingredients including orange zest. This recipe also called for cornmeal as well as flour which added a nice crunch to the cookie. Afterwards, I added the dry to the butter mixture and stirred with a wooden spoon until combined. As it turns out, using a wooden spoon decreases the amount of air that goes into the dough which in turn makes for a better cookie.

Italian Sandwich Cookies

I let the dough cool in the fridge for about an hour and then began rolling it out. I cut out round cookies and placed them on a lined cookie sheet. I used a spatula to transfer the cookies from my work surface to the cookie sheet which made it a lot easier and left the round shape intact. While the cookies baked, I combined orange zest, butter, powdered sugar, and a hint of orange juice to make the frosting.

Italian Sandwich Cookies

When the cookies had cooled and the orange frosting was fluffy, I began the process of making cookie sandwiches. I spooned a dollop of  frosting onto a cookie and topped with a second. When I pressed them together, I made sure that the frosting was evenly spread between the cookies. When I tried one, there was just enough of a crunch from the cookie to contrast the creamy frosting and the chocolate and orange flavors both shown. Next time, I might make my cookies a little thinner but otherwise, these cookies were delicious. Give it a try, if you have any comments on the recipe, leave them below. Bon Appetit!  Continue reading

Chocolate Soufflé

Chocolate Soufflé

Chocolate Soufflé is one of those desserts you see at fancy restaurants and never even consider the possibility that you could make it on your own. As you dig in, steam escapes and with it wonderful, chocolaty smells. As it turns out, if you have a knowledge of melting chocolate and folding ingredients in, you are on your way to making a delicious soufflé.

Chocolate Soufflé

I started by melting the chocolate. I went with a bittersweet chocolate but semi-sweet works just as well. I placed the chopped chocolate into a glass bowl and put it over a pot of almost boiling water. You don’t want to burn your chocolate but you want all of the chocolate melted. Once it was smooth, I set it aside and got to work on the egg yolks.

Chocolate Soufflé

I first combined egg yolks and cream. Then I slowly added the chocolate to the egg mixture. You want to be careful so as not to scramble your eggs while doing this. When they were combined, I added cinnamon and flour. As it turned out, the cinnamon gave the soufflés a nice hint of spice to contrast the sweet chocolate.

Chocolate Soufflé

Beating the egg whites and sugar was easy and I was left with peaks not unlike snowy mountains. When the whites were beaten, I added half of the mixture to the chocolate and folded it in until combined. Then I added that back to the original bowl of egg whites and folded until I was left with a perfect chocolate soufflé batter. It took a little longer than I thought it would and I worried I had lost some of the air that I had incorporated in earlier but everything went fine.

Chocolate Soufflé

I poured the batter three-fourths of the way up and was surprised the recipe only made four instead of the six I thought it would. They baked for a while and came out puffed and once I had decorated with confectioners’ sugar, they were complete. They tasted dense and chocolaty just as you would expect from Chocolate Soufflé. Next time, I will be quicker with my chocolate because I waited a tad too long before adding it to my eggs which made it difficult to incorporate the other ingredients into. Otherwise, I think this recipe will be a new favorite for any upcoming events. Give it a try, if you have any comments on the recipe, leave them below. Bon Appetit!  Continue reading