Pareve Cookies

Mandelbrot

Mandelbrot.jpg

Makes about 5 dozen slices. 

Mandelbrot, which means “almond bread” in German, look like biscotti. It is the combination of nuts and long, slow baking that gives these cookies their wonderful crunch. I always have some on hand. This is a revised recipe which first appeared in my cookbook, Helen Nash’s New Kosher Cuisine.

 INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 ounces skin on hazelnuts

  • 8 ounces skin on almonds

  • 8 ounces dark raisins

  • ½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour

  • ½ cup sugar

  • 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon

  • 3 large eggs, whisked well

 PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F. 

  2. Line a 9-x 9 inch square baking pan with parchment paper.  

  3. Chop the hazelnuts coarsely in a food processor fitted with the steel blade and transfer to a large bowl. Chop the almonds and add them to the hazelnuts. Add the raisins, flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Combine well using a wooden spoon.   

  4. Stir in the eggs and combine thoroughly.   

  5. Press the mixture into the pan and flatten the top with your hands until it feels firm. 

  6. Place the pan in the middle rack of the oven and immediately reduce the temperature to 300 F.

  7. Bake for 1 hour. 

  8. Lift the parchment paper and cool the mandelbrot for a minute. Place on a board and cut with a serrated knife into 3 equal parts. Cut each part into ¼ inch slices or thinner.   

  9. Reduce the temperature of the oven to 200 F. 

  10. Arrange the slices on a large cookie sheet and bake for 45 minutes on each side.  The Mandelbrot should be very crisp.   

  11. Cool on a wire rack.

 NOTE:

Mandelbrot keep well in the refrigerator in an airtight container or in a cool place.

 
 

Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti

Chocolate Pistachio Biscotti.jpg

Makes about 2 dozen biscotti. 

The name biscotti means “twice baked,”once in a log form and then sliced and baked again to make them crisp.

These biscotti keep very well stored in a cool place and are delicious dipped into espresso, tea or dessert wine. I always have them on hand.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup unbleached all -purpose flour

  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 1/3 cup sugar

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 large egg plus 1 yolk at room temperature, whisked

  • 5 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 2/3 cup pistachios, toasted or plain (3 ounces)

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. 

  2. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. 

  3. In a food processor fitted with the steel blade pulse flour, cocoa powder, sugar and baking powder until combined. Add the eggs and vegetable oil. Pulse until the dough begins to stick together. Add the pistachios and pulse until just combined. 

  4. Empty the dough onto the cookie sheet and divide it into 2 halves.   Place a piece of plastic wrap on top of each half of dough and press it into a log, about 6 inches long and 1 ½ inches wide. Square the ends.  

  5. Bake the logs for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes.   

  6. Transfer to a cutting board and using a serrated knife cut into ½ inch slices.

  7. Do it gently since the logs tend to crumble.  

  8. Arrange the slices flat on the same cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Turn over and bake for another 10 minutes.  Cool on a wire rack.

 
 

Pine Nut Cookies

Pine Nut Cookies.jpg

Makes about 5 dozen bite size cookies.

These cookies are pareve, gluten free, bite size and ideal on Passover. They keep very well, refrigerated and stored in a tight fitting container with wax paper between the layers. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • ¾ cup pine nuts
  •  1 ¾ finely ground almond flour with skin (See Note)
  •  2/3 cups sugar
  •  1 ½ to 1¾ large egg whites, at room temperature, well whisked

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F.
  2. Line an 18 x13 inches cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Place the pine nuts on a piece of wax paper.
  4. In a medium bowl combine the almond flour with the sugar.   
  5. Add 1 ½ egg white to the almond flour. Combine with a wooden spoon until the mixture becomes a paste (it may take a few minutes. If it is still too dry to roll into a ball add some more egg white).
  6. Roll the dough into cherry size balls. They will expand when baking.
  7. Roll the balls in the pine nuts, pressing gently.   
  8. Place on the parchment paper and bake for 25 minutes. The underside should be lightly golden.
  9. Cool on a wire rack.

NOTE:

I use Bob’s Red Mill ground almonds flour with the skin. Once opened, I freeze it.

If you find it difficult to roll the cookies, do it with wet hands.

 
 

Two Tone Mini Cookies

Makes about 10 dozen, 1 x ½ inch bite size cookies.                                                                 

These small tidbits are a lovely combination of a cookie bottom and a soft chocolaty top. They freeze very well and are convenient for large gatherings.

If you like, it is easy to make them in two stages. You can bake the bottom at any time and finish the top the following day.

The only time consuming part is cutting them. I make mine almost bite size. You can, of course, cut them to any size.   

 I must confess that they are more delicious made with butter.                    

INGREDIENTS:

DOUGH

  • ½ cup blanched almonds
  • 1½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted margarine, at room temperature, cut into small pieces, plus ½ tablespoon for greasing the pan
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

CHOCOLATE TOPPING

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted margarine at room temperature, cut into small pieces
  • 7 ounces imported, high quality semi-sweet chocolate, broken into small pieces
  • ½ generous cup sugar  
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups (7ounces) walnuts, toasted, semi coarsely chopped 

PREPARATION:

TO MAKE THE DOUGH

  1. Grease a 13 X 9 inch baking pan with margarine.
  2. In a food processor fitted with the steel blade, chop the almonds finely. Add the flour and sugar and pulse to combine. Add the margarine, eggs and vanilla extract.
  3. Pulse until dough clings to the blade but before it forms into a ball.
  4. Turn out the dough unto a lightly floured work surface, knead it with your hands and shape into a smooth, flat rectangle.
  5. Roll out the dough between two sheets of wax paper to about 11 x 15 inches. The dough will spread more easily if you occasionally turn it over, lift the top wax paper and flour the dough lightly.
  6. Remove top sheet of wax paper. Roll dough loosely over rolling pin and unfold over the baking pan.
  7. Place the dough in the baking pan and press evenly with your hands to cover the bottom and extending to 1/8 inch of the sides (dough is malleable enough to fix the cracks). Refrigerate for 1 hour or longer.  
  8. Preheat oven to 350F.
  9. Bake the dough in the center oven for about 25 minutes. The edges will be a little golden and pulling away from the sides. Place on a wire rack to cool. This can be done a day ahead.

TO MAKE THE TOPPING

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Melt the margarine, chocolate and sugar in a double boiler until smooth. Remove the top and whisk in one egg at a time, vanilla extract and flour until well combined. With a rubber spatula, fold in the walnuts.
  3. Spread chocolate evenly over cooled cookie crust, not touching the edges and bake, for about 15 minutes, or until top feels slightly set to the touch.  Cool on a wire rack.
  4. To cut the cookies to the size of your choice, flip the rectangle unto a large cookie sheet and than again unto a cutting board. The chocolate will be on top. 

NOTE:

I freeze the cookies in a tight fitting container with wax paper between the layers.