Monthly Archives: November 2010

Sherried Fruit Cookies

These cookies are a little work, but worth it! They taste like sherried fruit & nut cake in a thin butter cookie. Perfect for Christmas Tea.

Sherried Fruit Cookies
Makes approximately 8 dozen.

Ingredients

½ pound good quality dried figs
¼ pound raisins or currants
2 ounces candied cherries, coarsely chopped
2 ounces dried apricots, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon honey
2-3 tablespoons dry sherry
1 tablespoon lemon juice
6 ounces chopped pecans
Pinch of kosher salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ cup superfine sugar (++see note below about “superfine” sugar)
1/3 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 extra-large egg
2  2/3 cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt

(++you can make “superfine” sugar by processing granulated sugar for 60-90 seconds, measure AFTER)

NOTE: preparation for the fruit in these cookies requires starting a day before you bake. 

Directions:

Snip off the hard stems of the figs with scissors or a small knife and coarsely chop the figs. In a medium bowl, combine the figs, raisins, cherries, apricots, honey, sherry, lemon juice, pecans, and a pinch of kosher salt. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to sit overnight at room temperature.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, cloves, superfine sugar, and brown sugar on medium speed until smooth, about 3 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the egg and mix until incorporated. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt just until combined. Don’t over-mix! Add the fruits and nuts, including any liquid in the bowl. Divide the dough in quarters and place each quarter on the long edge of a 12 by 18-inch piece of parchment or waxed paper. Roll each quarter into a log, 1 ½ inches in diameter, making a 9-inch-long roll. (We then made the rolls triangular just for fun.) Refrigerate the dough for several hours or overnight.  Just before slicing, place each roll in the freezer for 10 minutes (which will enable you to make thinner slices.)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

With your sharpest knife, cut the logs into very THIN slices (1/4 to 1/8-inch). Place the slices 1/2-inch apart on parchment-paper-lined baking sheets and bake for 15-18 minutes, until golden.  Store in air-tight container. Cookies will be crisp at first and soften like butter cookies over the next few days.

 Adapted from Ina Garten’s BACK TO BASICS COOKBOOK.

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Grandma’s Canadian Lemon Bread

Rich & moist with a tart lemony top, this is a versatile, classic quick bread we think you’ll love! Be sure to check out the tips and serving suggestions at the bottom of this recipe.

Grandma’s Canadian Lemon Bread
Makes at least 2 small loaves.

½ cup shortening
1 ¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups flour
½ cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
Grated rind & juice of 1 lemon (3 Tbsps.)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Blend shortening and eggs in a bowl. Reserve ¼ cup sugar, and sift remaining 1 cup of sugar with baking powder, salt and flour. Add to egg mixture along with milk and mix well.

2. Stir in grated lemon peel and fill small loaf pans, greased and floured, about half to two-thirds full. Bake for 45-60 minutes. Bread is done if top springs back when lightly depressed or toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

3. Combine lemon juice with remaining ¼ cup of sugar and mix well. Spoon lemon glaze slowly over hot lemon bread so glaze will soak into cake – this is a clear glaze. Cool completely. Slice thin and serve with butter. Bread may be stored in freezer for several months before use.

(Double wrap in plastic wrap and then foil if storing in freezer.)

Tips and Serving Suggestions:

– Ovens vary in temperature, so be sure to start checking for doneness early. You can always bake longer, but over baked is ruined.

– If you like a really tart lemony flavor, don’t be afraid to double the lemon glaze. This dense bread can handle it!

– A visit to the freezer, double wrapped, makes this bread even moister. This is our favorite trick for moist cakes and breads. When you thaw, keep the loaves tightly wrapped.

– This bread is wonderful on its own served thinly sliced (1/4” slices). However, it is equally yummy thinly sliced and sandwiched with a little softened butter and/or preserves such as raspberry, apricot or a tart fruit curd ie: lemon or lime.

You’re invited to click Teapots ‘n More and browse our newest selection of teapots, tea accessories, teacups, tea miniatures and elegant tea sets.

Christmas Gift Ideas from Teapots ‘n More

Teapots ‘n More Christmas 2010.

Chicken Salad Ribbons

Chicken Salad Ribbon Tea Sandwiches

(makes approximately 36 sandwiches) 

2 large loaves of bakery bread, sliced horizontally (one wheat, one white)
4-5 cups of chicken salad**
2 packages (8 ounce) of cream cheese, softened
1 15 oz. can of crushed pineapple, drained
softened butter or margarine

1. Discard top and bottom slices of loaves. Drain and puree pineapple. Mix together pineapple and cream cheese and set aside, but do not refrigerate.

2. Lightly butter one side of a wheat slice of bread then spread with a layer of chicken salad. Lightly butter one side of a white slice of bread and place on top of chicken salad, buttered side down.

3. Lightly butter other side of white slice then spread with a layer of pineapple/cream cheese mixture. Lightly butter one side of another wheat slice of bread and place butter side down on cream cheese mixture.

4. Cut off crusts on all four sides of sandwich to form a long rectangle. Cut rectangle in half to form 2 squares. Wrap each square snugly in plastic wrap and refrigerate 3-4 hours or overnight.

5. Continue making sandwiches with remainder of bread slices, alternating wheat and white slices. Remove plastic wrap and slice each square into 6-8 sandwiches, approximately 1/2″ thick.

**See following recipes.

NOTE ON THE BREAD: If you can’t get bread sliced horitontally, you can still make these sandwiches with regular bakery sandwich bread sliced vertically.

Party Tip: If you’re fortunate enough to be near a bakery that bakes their own bread and will slice loaves horizontally for you, ask if they will bake you a loaf of white bread tinted with a pastel color such as pink, green, blue or purple. When paired with an egg or wheat bread, this makes for a delightfully festive ribbon sandwich.

Chicken Salad Recipe
(makes 4-5 cups)

3 cans (10 ounce) of chicken, drained
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
Salt and pepper to taste
Mayonaisse
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

1. Drain chicken. Combine with onion, celery & nuts.

2. Add mayonaisse one large tablespoon (about 1/4 cup) at a time until moist and creamy.

3. Adjust flavor with salt and pepper to taste.

4. Refrigerate for an hour then check again. If too dry, add more mayonaisse. 

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