Pareve Dessert

Honey Nut Balls

Honey+Balls.jpg

Makes about 6 dozen cookies. 

Easy to make, nutritious and not too sweet, these treats keep well refrigerated or frozen for a long time. 

I store them in a tight-fitting container with wax paper in between the layers.

INGREDIENTS:

  • ½ pound almonds, about 2 cups

  • ½ pound walnuts, about 2½ cups

  • Grated rind of 1 lemon

  • Grated rind of 1 orange

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon orange juice

  • ½ cup honey

  • 3 large egg whites, at room temperature, whisked

  • ¾-1 cup flour

  • Confectioner’s sugar for dusting the cookies

PREPARATION:

  1. Line 2 large cookie sheets with parchment paper. 

  2. Preheat the oven to 350F. 

  3. Roast almonds and walnuts in a single layer for about 10 minutes.  

  4. Reduce the oven to 250F. 

  5. Chop the nuts coarsely, SEPERATELY IN BATCHES, in a food processor fitted with the steel blade.

  6. Transfer to a bowl with the rinds, juices, honey and egg whites. Mix well.

  7. Add flour gradually, mixing with a wooden spoon to form a thick, but not stiff mixture.  

  8. Roll generous teaspoonfuls of mixture into balls between damp (not wet) palms. You will have to rinse your hands from time to time. Place on the cookie sheets and bake for 20 minutes, until the tops feel firm to the touch. 

  9. Cool on a wire rack and dust with confectioner’s sugar.

 
 

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.

 
 

Olive Oil Cake

Olive Oil Cake.jpg

Makes 12 servings.

Light, spongy, and delicious, this cake keeps well refrigerated or frozen. I serve it plain or with berries or sorbet.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 5 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ cup extra dry light sherry
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus ¾ tablespoon for greasing the pan
  • Grated lemon zest from 1 lemon
  • 1 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour, plus 2 tablespoons for dusting the pan.
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2-3 tablespoons confectioners sugar for dusting the cake.

PREPARATION:

  1. Brush well with oil a 12 cup Bundt pan. Dust with flour, invert and tap to remove excess flour.
  2. Preheat the oven to 325 F.
  3. Beat the egg yolks in the bowl of an electric stand mixer using a balloon whisk attachment, at medium speed, adding sugar gradually, until pale and bubbly, about 4 minutes.
  4. Whisk in gradually the sherry and oil. With a large rubber spatula add the lemon zest and gradually the flour, combining well. 
  5. Beat egg whites, at high speed. When foamy add the salt and beat until stiff.
  6. With a rubber spatula fold half of the whites into the batter. Then the rest of the whites. Gradually fold the batters together making a motion like a figure 8 until all the whites have disappeared.
  7. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 50 minutes, or until the cake is golden and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
  8. Cool on a wire rack. It will fall a bit.
  9. Release the edges and transfer to a serving plate. Dust with confectioners sugar.
 
 

Almond Tea Loaf

Almond Tea Loaf.jpg

Makes 12-14 servings.

The glaze on this gluten free and light loaf keeps the cake moist, and it freezes very well. Even though I am featuring the recipe with butter, I have made it with margarine with the exact same proportions and the same baking time. Maybe you try both and see which you prefer.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature plus
  • ½ tablespoon for greasing the pan, or same amount of margarine, cut into small pieces
  • ¾ cup scant measure sugar
  • 4 whole large eggs, at room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • Zest from 1 orange
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 3 cups unblanched almond flour (See Note)
  • ¼ cup blanched sliced almonds

GLAZE:

  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon confectioners sugar

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Butter a 9 by 5 inch loaf pan. Line with parchment paper, extending the shorter ends to make it easier to lift the cake after baking. 
  3. Place the butter in a bowl of an electric stand mixer. Using a balloon whisk attachment, beat the butter/margarine at medium speed, adding sugar gradually, until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes.
  4. Add one egg at a time, and beat at low speed until very well combined, add the baking   powder. With a rubber spatula fold in both zests, then the almond flour.
  5. There should be no traces of flour visible.
  6. Spoon the batter into the pan, smooth the top and sprinkle the almonds evenly. Bake for 50 minutes.
  7. The cake should be lightly golden and springy to the touch.
  8. Mix well the glaze ingredients.
  9. Remove the cake from the oven, place on a wire rack, poke the top with a pointed knife. Spoon over the glaze. Leave to cool.
  10. When cool, lift the loaf holding onto the paper and then transfer to a platter.

NOTE:

I use Bob’s Red Mill ground unblanched almond flour. It is readily available in health food stores and many supermarkets.