Friday, March 25, 2011

Almond Paste Cookies

These are some very addicting family favorites. Dangerous to have around too often as you can't stop after just one. Thankfully, almond paste is expensive so that alone limits how often I make them.

Almond Paste Cookies
1 cup butter
1 egg
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup sugar
1 cup almond paste
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Cream butter and sugar then add almond paste. Mix well. Add remaining ingredients. Form into small balls and roll in sugar. Place on cookie sheet and bake at 325 until just slightly brown on edges (11 minutes on silpat, 7 minutes on dark cookie sheet.) Let cool on cookie sheet for a few minutes before removing. This dough can be refrigerated and kept for a couple of weeks if covered well. A few can be baked each day or whenever needed.
In an attempt to cut fat, I tried to use a half cup of applesauce to replace 1/2 cup of the butter. That did not work. The cookies were much too soft.
Makes about 40 cookies

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

turkey monte cristos

I'm not sure what magazine I cut this out of or what made me do it at the time but I'm so glad I did! Everyone loves these sandwiches and are happy to hear this as the answer to the question - "what's for dinner?" Think of them as Deluxe Grilled Cheese sandwiches.

turkey monte cristos
8 slices sourdough sandwich bread
8 teaspoons honey Dijon mustard
1/2 pound sliced smoked turkey
1/3 pound sliced Muenster cheese
12 leaves of arugula or basil
3 eggs
1 tablespoons milk
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons butter

Place bread slices on a work surface and spread each with 2 teaspoons of the mustard (I'm more generous with the mustard.) Equally divide the turkey and cheese over each bread slice. I use oven roasted or honey roasted turkey. Other cheese will work as well. I sometimes use Colby-jack cheese. Top each with 3 pieces of arugula and the remaining bread slices. I also use whatever lettuce I have on hand, usually green leaf lettuce.
In a shallow dish, beat eggs, milk, cayenne and nutmeg.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 Tablespoon of butter; when foamy, dip sandwiches in the egg mixture and add to the skillet. Cook for about 3 to 4 minutes per side or until nicely browned.
Remove sandwiches from skillet; keep warm. Reduce heat to medium; repeat with remaining butter and sandwiches.
I have a large griddle and am able to cook them all at once. I don't usually use the butter. I just spray the griddle. YUM!!