Friday, May 29, 2020

Glazed Lemon Poppyseed Bars

I think that lemon is a lovely flavor for spring, and I realized it has been a bit since I used it in a recipe. Now, I’ll be honest, I am not sure what season we are in as the weather varies so much. One day it is very rainy, the next day it is sunny. We have had days of pouring rain in the morning only to have sunshine in the afternoon. We have even had a couple of days in the mid-80s, which is too warm for the Seattle area.

This recipe I had to plan ahead before I made it. I sometimes have lemons around, but not this time. You also need to be careful with poppy seeds, as they go rancid really quickly. I didn’t want to check to see if mine were rancid, I simply added them to the grocery order last week. Trust me, you don’t want to taste things that are rancid. I try to buy the smallest container that I can, since I know they don’t last. I suppose I should store them in the refrigerator, but I never remember to do that.

These bars make a small number, but that’s ok. If you were planning on serving this to a larger group of folks, you could double the recipe and bake it in a 9” x 13” pan. The bars are very simple, you don’t quite mix everything together at the same time, but it’s pretty close. You do have to be patient and let the bars cool before adding the glaze, but that’s not too bad. My bars were a little strange, and I wondered if I had added too much butter. It was following the recipe so I’m not sure. Once glazed they looked great and have a wonderful lemon flavor.

Glazed Lemon Poppyseed Bars
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
zest from 1/2 lemon
3/4 cup flour
1/2 tablespoon poppy seeds

1/2 cup powdered sugar
zest from 1/2 lemon
About 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8” square pan with foil and spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large mixer bowl, beat the butter, sugar, eggs, lemon juice, salt, and lemon zest. Beat on medium until smooth. Add the flour and stir on low to combine. Stir in the poppy seeds by hand. Spread the mixture evenly in the prepared pan.

Bake for 18-22 minutes, until set in the middle. Allow to cool on a wire rack.

Once the bars are cool, make the glaze: in a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, lemon zest, and enough lemon juice to make the glaze of a spreading consistency. Smooth the glaze over the bars and allow the glaze to set before cutting into bars.

Recipe from Practically Homemade

Friday, May 22, 2020

Peanut Butter Crispy Cookies

What to bake this week? I mentioned that I had selected a number of recipes that used a small amount of flour, so I have a couple of recipes that are basically ready to go. We do grocery delivery now, so I feel like I have to plan even further ahead. For this week’s order, I bought an ingredient that I plan to use for next week’s recipe. I looked at the recipes that I had the ingredients on hand. That left it to two recipes, and as I didn’t want to fuss with a recipe that might not turn out, I chose these cookies.

I have made many peanut butter cookies. I also have Crispy Rice cereal on hand, and I don’t really like to eat it as cereal. This recipe combines the two items: peanut butter cookies with Crispy Rice cereal mixed in. I looked at the blog recipe I used and then looked at what recipe that blogger used, and the only difference was whether you chill the dough or not. It’s not uncommon to refrigerate peanut butter cookie dough, and it is supposed to make the cookie puffy, so I did refrigerate the dough.

I was short on time and didn’t get these cookies started very early, but they took only a couple of minutes to make the dough, and I eat dinner and did some other tasks while the dough refrigerated. I shaped the cookies and my only question was whether I should flatten the cookies or not. For the first dozen, I flattened half the batch and left the other half as is. When they came out of the oven, the flattened cookies looked better, but once they cooled it didn’t make any difference. These are smooth like a peanut butter cookies, but with an added crunch!

Peanut Butter Crispy Cookies
½ cup butter, room temperature
½ cup sugar
½ cup packed brown sugar
½ cup peanut butter
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1-1/4 cups Crispy Rice cereal

In a large mixer bowl, mix the butter, sugar, and brown sugar on medium until the mixture is smooth. Add the peanut butter, egg, and vanilla and mix again on medium to combine. Stop the mixer; add the flour, baking soda, and salt and mix on low until almost combined. Add the Crispy Rice cereal and stir on low until the dough comes together.

Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with silicone baking mats.

Shape the dough into balls and place on the prepared baking sheets.

Bake the cookies for 9-11 minutes, until slightly browned along the edges. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe from Boys Ahoy

Friday, May 15, 2020

Ginger Slice Traybake

What exactly is a traybake? Many of you may not be familiar with that word, but here in the States it is basically a bar cookie. I often see traybakes in British and Australian publications. The blogger who posted this recipe is originally from Northern Ireland, but now lives in the States. I have cookbooks that have recipes for traybakes, and this recipe also comes from a cookbook that was published overseas.

Another reason I like British recipes is that they tend to make a small batch. If you have visited the UK, homes are smaller, kitchens are smaller, ovens are smaller. When I don’t have anyone to take cookies to, the smaller batch works great. This entire recipe is made in an 8” pan, so it doesn’t make that many cookies.

This recipe is a little different; the bar cookie is relatively traditional, but the topping is not. My dough for the base was a little crumbly, so I added part of an egg yolk and that helped. You make the topping for after the bars come out of the oven, which is so different. The sweet sticky topping is butter, sugar, golden syrup, and ginger. As the filling sets, it depends if you refrigerate the bars or not. Leave them on the counter and the topping is soft, refrigerate it and will be chewy. I opted for chewy. These taste like they are topped with a gingery caramel, and that’s hard to beat!

Ginger Slice Traybake
170 grams butter, room temperature
85 grams sugar
170 grams flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ginger

55 grams butter
¼ cup sugar
1 tablespoon golden syrup
1 teaspoon ginger

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8” square pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large mixer bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light. With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour, baking powder, and ginger. Stir until combined. Carefully spread the mixture into the prepared pan.

Bake for about 25 minutes, until golden around the edges.

About 5 minutes before the bars come out of the oven, prepare the topping. In a small saucepan combine the butter, sugar, golden syrup, and ginger. Heat on medium until the mixture is smooth.

As soon as the bars come out of the oven, spread the topping evenly over the baked bars. Allow the bars to cool, and then refrigerate. Once cool, cut into bars.

Recipe from Ginger Slice Traybake