Sunday, January 15, 2012

Proscuitto, Fig and Goat Cheese Crostini

I love appetizers and this is one that is not only simple to make but quite delicious. The inspiration was the wonderful proscuitto in the frig and my homemade fig preserves. Give it a try, I promise you won't be disappointed!
Proscuitto, Fig and Goat Cheese Crostini
1 baguette
Goat cheese, softened
Fig preserves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Slice the baguette into 1/2 inch slices.  Place on a cookie sheet and drizzle with olive oil.  Bake until lightly toasted, 10 to 15 minutes.  Spread slices with goat cheese.  Top with fig preserves and proscuitto. 

Chocolate Biscotti Cookies

The need to bake overwhelmed me today.  My goal was to make biscotti.  I love the crunch and soakabililty (is that a word?) of the twice baked cookie.  After a quick search on the Internet, I printed off Giada De Laurentiis' recipe for Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti.  A trip to the grocery store and I was ready to start baking with just a few changes to the recipe.  But in my haste, I did not read the recipe completely, I zeroed in on just the ingredients.  This was not a recipe for the tradition biscotti - it was a recipe for biscotti cookies.  I was disappointed, but that disappointment was quickly replaced with satisfaction because these cookies are good!  I did make a few changes from the original recipe with the addition of espresso powder and substituting pecans for walnuts.  This is a delicious cruchy cookie and very easy to make.

Nutella Biscotti Cookies
1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup Nutella
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon espresso powder
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk to mix.
In another bowl, combine the butter, Nutella and sugars. Cream the ingredients with an electric mixer until well combined, about 4 minutes. Add the egg and vanille and beat until smooth. Stir in the flour mixture until just combined. Add the pecans and stir to combine.
Using a tablespoon scoop, spoon the cookie dough onto a parchment lined cookie sheet about 4 inches apart.  Press with a fork and bake for 15 to 20 minutes.