Thursday, May 2, 2013

Oh Bodey, You're So Fine

Bodey Looking Fine

 Dear Lola,
 I am so happy for you, my beautiful sister.
 You are a star and I am a clown.
So proud and congrats!

We were so happy to hear from Bodey, we decided to bake some cookies.   You see our good friend Dara sent us her favorite cookie cookbook.  And then she sent us organic farro flour which this recipe calls for.  We just couldn't find any around here.  Dara lives in NYC and they have everything in NYC.   Just so you know, we previously made these cookies substituting spelt flour for farro flour.  You should be able to find spelt flour.

Anyway, the recipe we love is for Date and Walnut Cookies.  They are super simple and our new favorite cookie.   After you bake the cookies, let them rest for a day like the Italians do.  They are better the 2nd day.  Elegant and delicious!

Date and Walnut Cookies

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup farro flour ( you may substitute spelt flour)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
2/3 cup dates, finely chopped
2/3 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped and lightly toasted
36 walnut halves
confectioners' sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degees
Combine the flours, cinnamon and salt in a small mixing bowl
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg and continue to mix until the egg is just incorporated.  Add the dry ingredients and then gently mix in the dates and walnuts until evenly distributed.
Use a tablespoon to drop small mounds of dough on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.  Place 1 walnut half in the center of each cookie, pressing down ever so slightly.

Bake for 13 minutes.  While the cookies are warm from the oven, dust with confectioners' sugar.

Now let them rest for a day.  You can do it.  

A little about the cookbook Dara sent us.  It is fantastic!

When Alice Waters appears in your kitchen, you cross your fingers you're having one of those good cookie baking sort of days. No such luck at the American Academy in Rome, where Waters deemed the campus gorgeous but the food more than a bit stale after a 2006 visit.

So she sent over Mona Talbott, one of her former Chez Panisse pastry chefs, to whip that kitchen into shape (something few others that Waters could likely do -- insult an Italian chef and yet still get an enthusiastic "yes" on that invitation to collaborate).

Biscotti: Recipes from the Kitchen of The American Academy in Rome is the first cookbook to come out of the updated Italian-American kitchen. And it's a pretty fantastic cookie-biscotti hybrid, we should add. Glove-box sized and affordable, too, should you be needing a cookie book to take on any holiday travels this year for those last minute biscotti al datteri e noci (date and walnut cookies) and lingue di gatto (cat's tongue) recipes.