Posts Tagged ‘pecans’

choc full of goodies; health-food cookies

30 May


While on a mission to bake some filling and healthy snacks for my 12 year old son to take to school, I’ve made an awesome discovery.  You see, I got distracted while making these cookies and it wasn’t until they were baked that I realized that I had left out the sugar – with delicious results.  These cookies are so full of everything good, that the omission of sugar turned it into a salty, savory confection instead of a sweet one.  The recipe is from Maida Heatter’s Book of Great Desserts, where she writes that she made these cookies for a health-food store in Miami Beach until the demand become more than she could handle.  I will give you the recipe as it was originally written.


  • 1 cup unsifted all-purpose whole-wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • 7 1/2 ounces (1 1/2 cups) currants or (soft) raisins (I used chocolate chips instead)
  • 4 ounces (1 generous cup) walnuts, coarsely broken or cut
  • 4 ounces (1 generous cup) pecans, coarsely broken or cut
  • 3 ounces (1/2 generous cup) pignolias (pine nuts)
  • 4 ounces (1 cup) peanuts, may be salted or not
  • 2 1/2 ounces (1/2 cup) sunflower seeds
  • 2 1/2 ounces (1/2 cup) sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup wheat germ
  • 1 cup rolled oats or quick-cooking (not instant) oatmeal
  • 1/2 lb (1 cup) butter or margarine
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (or other nut butter)
  • 1 1/4 cups dark brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk


  1. Adjust rack to top position in the oven.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cut aluminum foil to fit cookies sheets.  Do not grease.
  2. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and ginger and use a strainer to strain into a very large bowl.  Add the raisins, and toss till they are coated with flour.  Add the walnuts, pecans, pignolias, peanuts, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, wheat germ and rolled oats or oatmeal.  Mix together and set aside.
  3. In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and peanut butter.  Add the sugar and beat well.  Beat in the eggs and the milk, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula as necessary.
  4. Pour over the flour-nut mixture.  Stir with a heavy wooden spoon or spatula or mix with your hand, until the dry ingredients are completely absorbed.
  5. Make these large.  Place by 1/4 cupfuls 2 1/2- 3 inches apart on the foil.  With the back of a spoon, flatten the cookies to about 3/4 inch thickness.
  6. Bake 18 minutes or until cookies are lightly browned and semi-firm to the touch.  If necessary, reverse position of cookie sheet during baking to insure even browning.
  7. Use a wide metal spatula to transfer cookies to racks to cool.

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    cinnamon sticky buns

    22 Jul

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    Fasting seems to bring out the creative chef in everyone.  All day we think about what it is we are going to eat, and, of course, our dreams far surpass our capacity.  After a fast, my husband and I usually entertain invited and uninvited guests, and last night was no different.  I am usually  in the kitchen the better part of the day preparing for the feast, but since my friend, Sarah Lasry-Leizerowski offered a (humongous) side of herb encrusted salmon and a stupendous quiche (which I am craving right now!), and yet another friend was bringing eggplant parmesan, wraps, sushi, cheese blintzes and mini potato knishes, there wasn’t much for me to do  save for setting the table and making an onion soup.

    But how can I just make almost nothing on a fast day? At 4:00pm, I decided to put up a dough for cinnamon sticky buns which I had made once before for my friend’s sons’ Bar Mitzvah.  The recipe was from the Simply Recipes Website and served warm out of the oven it was outrageous!  I doubled the recipe and timed one to come out of the oven shortly before serving time, and I put the other one (raw) in the freezer for another time.  This recipe is not difficult and worth every moment of effort.  It was the highlight of the meal and Sarah was not joking this morning when she said we were in a food-induced coma from all the yummy food last night!

    Cinnamon Sticky Buns



    • 1/4 cup warm water (105° to 115°)
    • 1 (1/4-ounce) package active dry yeast
    • 1/3 cup sugar
    • 3/4 cup milk
    • 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, plus more for greasing
    • 3 large egg yolks
    • 1 Tbsp. finely grated orange zest
    • 1 1/4 teaspoon. salt
    • 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting


    • 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
    • 1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
    • 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter


    • 3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
    • 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
    • 3 Tbsp. honey
    • 1 Tbsp. light corn syrup
    • 1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) coarsely chopped pecans


    • 3 oz cream cheese (room temperature)
    • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter (softened)
    • 1 1/2 cups confectionary sugar
    1 Make the dough. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine warm water, yeast and 1 tsp. sugar. Stir to dissolve and let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add milk, butter, remaining sugar, egg yolks, orange zest, salt and 3 cups flour. Mix on low speed until blended. Switch to a dough hook and then, again on low speed, slowly incorporate the remaining 1 cup of flour, as needed. Increase speed to medium, kneading dough until smooth and slightly sticky (adding a little more flour if too wet), 3 to 5 minutes. Shape the dough into a ball and place in a large, buttered bowl. Turn dough over in bowl to coat with the butter from the bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour (or 2 hours if not in an entirely warm place). After the dough has risen, punch down. Turn out onto a lightly floured cutting board and let sit 20 minutes.

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    2 Make the filling. Combine brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Melt butter; keep separate.

    3 Roll dough out into a 12″ x 18″ rectangle. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Starting with the long side, roll dough into a cylinder. Place seam side down on a flat surface and cut crosswise into 15 slices.

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    4 Make the topping. In a 1-quart saucepan, combine brown sugar, butter, honey and corn syrup over low heat; stir until sugar and butter are melted. Pour mixture into a greased 9″ x 13″ pan and sprinkle pecans on top.

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    5 Place dough slices, flat side down, on top of prepared topping. Crowd them so they touch. Cover with plastic wrap, leaving room for the buns to rise.  You can rise till double in size or refrigerate overnight if you want to bake them fresh for breakfast.  If you do, remove the rolls from the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature while the oven pre-heats.

    6 Preheat oven to 375°. Bake buns until golden, 30 to 35 minutes. Remove pan from oven and immediately (and carefully as not to spill hot topping on your toes!) invert onto a serving tray or baking dish. Let buns cool slightly and serve warm.

    7.  Mix all glaze ingredients together and drizzle over the warm pastry.  The dough should not be too hot as the glaze will melt.

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