Sesame Crusted Rye Shortbread Cookies

Sesame Crusted Rye Shortbread Cookies

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that I had a wonderful cookie from Tandem Bakery in Portland, Maine. This is my recreation of it. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

INGREDIENTS:

2 cups of dark rye flour (9 oz)

½ cups sugar (3 ½ oz)

¼ tsp fine sea salt

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature (8 oz)

1 tsp grated orange zest

TOPPING:

3 TBS sparkling sugar

¼ tsp fine sea salt

2 TBS black sesame seeds

 

METHOD:

Whisk the flour and salt and set aside.

Beat the butter, sugar and orange zest together until combined.

Add the flour and salt, slowly.

Mix until dough comes together.

 

Divide the dough into 2 parts. Roll each half into a log about 1 ½ inches wide.

Wrap each log and chill until firm.

 

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the sparkling sugar, sea salt and sesame seeds.

When dough is firm, slice about 1/3 inch thick.2A08C585-69CC-4753-934A-4BCDCA4A0111

Place on parchment lined baking sheets about 1 inch apart.

Bake 16-20 minutes until the cookies are set and firm to the touch. Rotate the pans halfway through baking.

9E764ADE-8115-42D8-AB2A-E0443E685BB4

Yield about 4 dozen.

Late Winter Citrus Salad

It’s that time of year when you need a little spark to lighten up your dinner. One of my favorite salads is this Sicilian Citrus Salad utilizing what’s fresh in the market now. It’s based on recipes that have appeared in the New York Times over the years, but truth be told it is something that my Sicilian grandmother would have made.

And there’s another thing. Having grown up with my Italian and French grandparents, we always had our salad after our entree. A proper salad acts as a digestif. The world has changed with regards to this, but my old habits die hard and I truly relish a refreshing salad after my entree. Give it a try and see if you don’t agree.

Late Winter Citrus Salad

Ingredients:

2 handfuls of baby arugula

1 cup radicchio, shredded

1 large Cara Cara orange, peeled, sliced lengthwise and then across, white pith removed

1 blood orange, peeled and sliced crosswise

1 rib of celery, sliced

¼ cup brined cured black olives, pits removed

2 TBS extra virgin olive oil

1 TBS red or white wine vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Place the arugula and radicchio on a platter

Top with the citrus segments, celery and olives.

Whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper.

Drizzle over the composed salad.

Serves 2IMG_4067

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

Black Sesame and Banana Tea Bread

A Classic with a Twist

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about my great experiences at bakeries in Portland, Maine.

Two things that I sampled at Tandem Bakery Company have lingered in my brain and palate. So, I tried my hand at recreating them and I’m happy to report that they were successful attempts.

The first one that I’ll share with you is a black sesame and banana tea bread. Black sesame seeds are rich in vital nutrients- iron, calcium, magnesium and zinc. They impart a nice nuttiness and a crunch to the banana bread. If you’re game to try something new- give this a whirl! I think you’ll be pleased.

BLACK SESAME AND BANANA TEA BREAD

Heat oven to 350 degrees; Lightly spray loaf pan (8 ½  x 4 ½ )

DRY INGREDIENTS:

1 cup all purpose flour (5 oz)

½ cup whole wheat flour (2 ¾ oz)

¾ cup sugar (5 ¾ oz)

¼ tsp salt

1 ½ tsp baking soda

½ cup black sesame seeds (2 ¾ oz), lightly toasted

WET INGREDIENTS:

2 large or 3 medium VERY ripe bananas, mashed

1 large egg

½ cup (4 fluid oz) canola oil

3 TBS buttermilk

1 tsp grated lemon zest

METHOD:

In a large bowl, whisk dry ingredients together.

img_4052

In a medium bowl, whisk wet ingredients.

Lightly fold wet ingredients into dry

Pour into prepared pan – only 2/3 full.

img_4054

Bake 55 – 70 minutes until a tester comes clean. The time is a function of how much banana you use.

If browning too much, lightly cover with tin foil.

Cool on a rack for 15 minutes, unmold the bread and cool completely before slicing.

fullsizerender-11

And, enjoy!!