snickerdoodles 2

Source: Smitten Kitchen

Makes about: 20 tiny cookies (1 tsp scoop, using ¼ recipe)
Prep time: 10 minutes
Bake time: 10 minutes/batch

These cookies were crisp on the outside and soft on the inside and not too sweet. I replaced the cream of tartar plus baking soda with baking powder, since the internet told me this was an appropriate substitution. I also made a quarter of the original recipe, since I didn’t want to make a ton of cookies. Both recipes are included below.

Quarter recipe
½ cup + 3 tbsp flour
¾ tsp baking powder
1/16 tsp salt (a dash)
¼ cup (1/2 stick) butter
¼ cup + 2 tbsp sugar (or, 3/8 cup)
1 egg white

1 tbsp sugar
½ tbsp cinnamon

Full recipe
2 ¾ cup flour
2 tsp cream of tartar*
1 tsp baking soda* (can replace the cream of tartar and baking soda with 3 tsp baking powder)
¼ tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 ½ cup sugar
2 large eggs

¼ cup sugar
2 tbsp cinnamon

Special equipment

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Cream together butter and sugar.
3. Add eggs. Mix until combined.
4. Chill dough until firm. (You can omit this step if your dough isn’t too sticky).
5. Form dough into balls.
6. Roll in cinnamon and sugar mix.
7. Bake 8-10 minutes. Enjoy!

snickerdoodles 1

Fresh Ginger Cake

fresh ginger 1

Fresh Ginger Cake
Source: David Leibovitz

This ginger cake is very light, fluffy and moist. I thought it would have too strong of a ginger flavor, but it’s actually not too much at all (that is, unless you dislike ginger). I froze ginger beforehand to make it easier to grate.

Makes about: One 9×13 pan (original recipe suggests a 9.5’’ springform pan)
Prep time: 25 minutes (grating ginger takes a while)
Bake time: 35-40 minutes

4 oz fresh ginger, grated
1 cup molasses (mild is suggested; I used dark)
1 cup sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
2 ½ cups flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp ground black pepper
1 cup hot water
2 tsp baking soda
2 eggs, room temperature

Special equipment
Box grater

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare pan by lining with parchment paper or by buttering it.
2. Grate the ginger (or chop until very fine).
3. Mix together hot water and baking soda.
4. Add in molasses, sugar, and oil.
5. Stir in ginger.
6. Mix in flour, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper.
7. Add eggs. Mix until combined.
8. Pour into prepared pan and bake about 30-40 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool before serving! Bake time will be longer with a greater depth of batter (as with a smaller pan).

fresh ginger 2

Everyday Chocolate Cake

everyday choc cake 1

Everyday Chocolate Cake

Source: Smitten Kitchen

Makes about: 1 loaf
Prep time: 10 minutes
Bake time: 50-60 minutes

This cake is super moist, very chocolately, very delicious, and extremely easy to make.

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup cocoa powder (Dutched preferred; I used natural)
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp baking soda and ½ tsp baking powder (if using Dutch cocoa powder)
½ tsp baking soda (if using natural cocoa powder)

Special equipment

Loaf pan

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare loaf pan by lining it with parchment paper or by buttering it.
2. Cream together butter and sugar. (Alternately, melt the butter and mix with the sugar).
3. Mix in egg, buttermilk, and vanilla.
4. Mix in flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda until just combined. (Add baking powder if needed).
5. Pour into prepared pan.
6. Bake 50-60 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
7. Let cool before slicing.

everyday choc cake 2

Nutmeg Maple Butter Cookies

maple nutmeg 4

Nutmeg Maple Butter Cookies
Source: Smitten Kitchen

Makes about: 34 small cookies, 6 larger
Prep time: 1.5 hours (mostly chilling time)
Bake time: 8-11 minutes/batch

These cookies are very sweet and very buttery with a hint of maple flavor. Mine didn’t have much of maple taste, but maybe it’s because I used grade A instead of grade B maple syrup.


Half recipe
½ cup (1 stick) butter
½ cup sugar
¼ cup maple syrup (orig asks for grade B, used grade A)
½ large egg yolk
1 ½ cup flour
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp salt

Full recipe
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 cup sugar
½ cup maple syrup
1 large egg yolk
3 cup flour
½ tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp salt

Special equipment
Rolling pin, cookie cutters.

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Cream together butter and sugar.
3. Add in yolk and maple syrup.
4. Mix in flour, nutmeg, and salt.
5. Gather the dough into a ball. Chill until firm (about 1 hour in the freezer). It might be easier to roll out the dough, then to chill it.
6. Roll out dough and cut out cookies. If you like, roll cookies in a mixture of sugar and spice (1:2 ratio of spice and sugar).
7. Bake 8-11 minutes, or until cookies very slightly golden brown.

maple nutmeg 1

maple nutmeg 2

maple nutmeg 3

maple nutmeg 5

Austrian Raspberry Shortbread


Austrian Raspberry Shortbread
Source: Smitten Kitchen

Makes about: One 9×13 pan (if you make the full recipe) or one 9×3 loaf pan (if you make the quarter recipe)
Prep time: 2.5 hours (most of which is freezing the dough)
Bake time: 50-60 minutes

These shortbreads where very fluffy and light, just as was promised. They are efinitely one of the more delicious shortbread cookies I’ve made, and worth the extra effort to grate the dough. Make sure the dough is fully frozen before trying to grate (or else it will crumble)

Quarter recipe (9×3 loaf pan)
1 stick butter
1 egg yolk
½ cup sugar
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/16 tsp salt (or, a dash)
¼ tsp vanilla extract or lemon zest (optional)
¼ cup raspberry jam (I used ½ cup; this seems to depend on how much jam you like in your cookies)
Confectioner’s sugar, for dusting

Full recipe (9×13 pan)
4 sticks butter
4 egg yolks
2 cups sugar
4 cups flour
4 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract or lemon zest
1 cup raspberry jam

Special equipment
Freezer, box grater.

1. Cream butter.
2. Add in egg yolk (s).
3. Mix in sugar, flour, baking powder, salt, and vanilla extract or lemon zest.
4. Divide dough into 2 balls. Freeze for at least 2 hours until the dough is hard enough to grate.
5. When you’re ready to grate the dough, preheat oven to 350F.
6. Grate 1 ball of dough over pan the pan. Don’t press the dough threads down.
7. Pipe jam over surface of grated dough. (Put jam in a plastic ziploc bag and cut a hole in the corner to improvise a piping bag).
8. Grate other half of dough over the jam.
9. Bake 50-60 minutes, or until top is golden brown and the dough no longer jiggles.
10. Let cool, dust with confectioner’s sugar
11. Enjoy!



Shaker Lemon Tart

shaker lemon 1

shaker lemon 2

Shaker Lemon Tart
Source: Tartine

Makes about: 1 9’’ tart
Prep time: 3+ hours (although there is a good amount of waiting around)
Bake time: 40 minutes.

The filling for this pie is extraordinarily simple: whole lemons, eggs, and sugar. The entire process is quite time consuming for a pie that’s so simple. The final result is worth it if you love lemons—an intensely rich lemon filling encased by a flaky and very buttery crust.

Crust: Tartine’s Flaky Tart Dough
Note: I used 2/3 of this recipe because my tart pan was shallower. The full recipe is below.
1 tsp salt
2/3 cup very cold water
3 cups + 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 cup + 5 tbsp very cold butter, cut into chunks

2 medium lemons, chilled or frozen (I used Meyer lemons)
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
¼ tsp salt

Egg wash:
1 large egg yolk
1 tbsp heavy cream

Decorating sugar

Special equipment
Tart pan

1. Prepare lemons:

a. Slice lemons paper-thin and discard stem end and seeds.
b. Toss with sugar in a glass or stainless steel bowl.
c. Let sit for 3 hours or overnight. (This step, which tenderizes the skins, can be omitted with Meyer lemons, but I let the lemons macerate anyways). Chilling or freezing the lemons will make it easier to slice them thinly.

2. Prepare crust:

a. Dissolve salt in water.
b. Place the flour in a mixing bowl. Add chunks of butter. Using a 2 knives, cut the butter into the flour until the mixture forms large crumbs. (Alternately, use a food processor to accomplish this).
c. Drizzle in the water until a shaggy mass. Toss dough with a fork if doing by hand, or simply drizzle water into the food processor.
d. Divide dough into 2 equal balls and shape each into a disk 1 inch thick. Wrap in plastic and chill for 2 hours. (I divided the dough into 3 balls and used 2 of them for this tart).

3. Line tart pan and prepare top crust:

a. Place one disk of dough on a floured surface or between 2 sheets of parchment paper.
b. Roll out to 1/8 thick, rolling from the center toward the edge. The final circle of dough should extend about 1 ½ inches beyond the edge of the pan if lining a tart dish. Repeat for the other disk of dough.
c. Carefully transfer 1 piece of dough to the tart dish and press into place. In this case, a 1 inch overhang should remain. Set aside.

4. Make filling

a. Whisk together eggs and salt together.
b. Add eggs to lemon mixture.
c. Pour the mixture into the lined tart pan. Evenly distribute the lemon pieces in the pan.

5. Make egg wash

a. Whisk together the egg yolk and cream. (I omitted the cream since I didn’t have any, and it turned out fine).

6. Assemble pie

a. Brush the rim of the pastry overhang with egg.
b. Lay the second piece of dough over the filling.
c. Trim the overhang for both rounds to ¼ inch. Crimp the edge and make a good seal (a fork is useful for this).
d. Brush the top crust with egg yolk.
e. Sprinkle with sugar.
f. Chill pie for 30 minutes.

7. Bake pie

a. Preheat oven to 350F.
b. Line baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place pie pan on top of this sheet (this will make clean up easier should any filling bubble over).
c. Cut a few slits in the top of the pie for decoration (and for ventilation)
d. Bake about 40 minutes, or until the top crust is a deep golden grown and the filling is bubbling. If the top cooks too quickly, cover with a piece of foil.
e. Let cool before slicing.

shaker lemon 3

shaker lemon 2

Chocolate Friands

friand 1

Chocolate Friands
Source: Tartine

Makes about: 24 mini cakes
Prep time: 10 minutes (batter)+10 minutes (cooling)+10 minutes (dipping)
Bake time: 12-15 minutes

These tiny cakes are topped with a silky ganache—truly a rich mouthful.

6 oz bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup unsalted butter
1 ½ cups + 1 tbsp sugar
¾ cup all-purpose flour
2 tbsp cornstarch
¼ tsp salt
4 large eggs

4 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
2/3 cup heavy cream

Special equipment
Mini muffin pan

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare muffin pan by lining with paper liners, or by using butter.
2. Melt butter. Pour butter over the chocolate. Mix until chocolate is completely melted.
3. In a separate bowl, mix together the sugar, flour, cornstarch, and salt.
4. Add flour mixture to chocolate-butter mixture in batches, whisking well after each addition.
5. Add in 2 eggs, then whisk until combined.
6. Add the remaining 2 eggs, and whisk until just combined.
7. Fill baking cups ¾ full with batter.
8. Bake 12-15 minutes, until the tops just start to crack. Let cakes cool completely.
9. Prepare ganache: bring cream to a boil. Pour cream over chocolate. Mix until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth.
10. Dip the tops of friands in the ganache. Shake gently to let the excess off the sites.
11. Let the ganache set for 1 hour. Enjoy!

friand 2

Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

big fat choco chip 1

Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
Source: Smitten Kitchen

Makes about: 45 cookies (using a tablespoon to scoop)
Prep time: 10 minutes
Bake time: 12-15 minutes/batch

These chocolate chip cookies are thick and chewy. Mine didn’t really spread at all, but it might be that I made smaller cookies. I also froze balls of dough for future use. Also, the bake time seems to depend on how crispy you like your cookies. Baking for 15 minutes yields a crisper and more toasted cookies (the darker ones above), unless 1) you’ve made a gigantic cookie or 2) you are baking frozen cookie dough.

¾ cup melted unsalted butter
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup white sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 cups flour
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Special equipment
Baking pans

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare baking pans by greasing or lining with parchment.
2. Mix together melted butter, vanilla, brown sugar, white sugar, egg and egg yolk.
3. Mix in flour, baking soda, and salt.
4. Stir in chocolate chips.
5. Scoop cookies by tablespoonfuls for more reasonably sized cookies, or ¼ cup scoop, as Smitten Kitchen suggests, to yield cookies that are 4x bigger.
6. Bake 12-15 minutes, or until cookies are barely golden brown
7. You can freeze these and bake them later.


pale ones were frozen, then baked for 15 minutes. darker ones baked for 15 minutes
pale ones were frozen, then baked for 15 minutes. darker ones baked for 15 minutes

French Yogurt Cake

french yog 3

French Yogurt Cake
Source: New York Times

This yogurt cake is moist and a bit dense, with a hint of lemon. It’s a bit like a lighter version of a lemon bar because of the combined flavors of the eggs and lemon. Anyhow, this is really easy to make, and perhaps it’s a little better for you than traditional pound cake 🙂

Makes about: 1 loaf
Prep time: 10 minutes
Bake time: 60-70minutes

½ cup yogurt, plain
3 large eggs
¼ tsp vanilla
½ cup oil
1 cup sugar
zest of 1 lemon (used about 1 tsp)
1 ½ cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt

Special equipment
Loaf pan

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare loaf pan by lining with parchment paper or greasing
2. Mix together yogurt, eggs, vanilla, and oil.
3. Add in sugar and lemon zest.
4. Stir in flour, baking powder, and salt until just combined. (Don’t overmix!)
5. Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 50-70 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
6. Let cool before slicing.

french yog 1

french yog 2