I have been testing and loving many new recipes this summer, and here are a few of my favorites. I hope they become your favorites, too.
Debby’s Mocha Mistake Cookies
Debby Vivari shared this recipe with me. It seems when she tried a recipe someone had given her she made a mistake. This fabulous cookie was the result, showing that sometimes making a mistake can lead to something great. I am not a coffee drinker, but I love these cookies.
4 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 stick unsalted butter, cut into bits
1 cup flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
4 large eggs
1 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ tbsp instant espresso powder
2 tsp vanilla
In a double boiler, melt the unsweetened chocolate, the chocolate chips and the butter, stirring until smooth, then remove from heat. In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt.
In a bowl, beat the eggs with the sugar until the mixture is thick and pale and beat in the espresso powder and vanilla. Fold the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture, and fold in the flour mixture. Let the batter stand for 15 minutes.
Drop the batter by heaping tablespoons onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper and bake in the middle of a preheated 350-degree oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until they are puffed and shiny and cracked on top. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet a few minutes before transferring them to racks to cool completely.
What could be easier? If you have these ingredients in your pantry, you can whip these up in no time flat. I don’t remember who shared this with me, but it’s another quick and easy recipe.
1 (12-oz) package of chocolate chips
4 tbsp butter
1 can Eagle Brand Sweet Condensed Milk
1 cup flour
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Melt the chips, butter and milk in top of a double boiler over simmering water. Remove from the heat. In the same pot, add the flour, nuts and vanilla and mix well.
Drop by teaspoons on a cookie sheet sprayed with non-stick cooking spray or a piece of parchment paper. Bake for 7 minutes. Cool cookies on a wire rack.
Makes about 24 to 36 cookies, depending on the size.
One recent Sunday, I bought some Watermelon Gazpacho from Sexy Veggie at the Bethesda Farmers Market and loved it. The wonderful owner told me his ingredients, and I had an old recipe, so I kind of combined them both. The optionals are his, and the fresh-grated ginger and feta for serving are mine.
8 cups finely diced seedless watermelon (about 6 lbs.)
1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded, finely diced
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced (optional)
1 avocado, diced (optional)
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 tsp or more grated fresh ginger
3 tbsp red wine vinegar or balsamic (chocolate or fig for me)
2 tbsp minced shallot (or 1 Vidalia onion – optional)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3/4 tsp salt
squares of feta for serving
Mix watermelon, cucumber, bell pepper, avocado, basil, parsley, ginger, vinegar, shallot/onion, oil and salt in a bowl.
Puree in food processor or blender 3 cups of the fruit mixture until desired smoothness. Transfer to another large bowl. Puree another 3 cups and add to the bowl. Stir in the remaining 2 cups of diced mixture. Serve at room temperature or chilled.
Make ahead; cover and refrigerate for one day.
Norene’s BBQ Meatloaf
I love this quick way to use uncooked extra hamburgers I bought from Cosco for a BBQ. I also make it with ground bison. This great recipe is from my friend and famous author, Norene Gilletz.
2 lbs extra-lean ground beef (I used sirloin hamburgers)
2 large eggs or 1 large egg plus 2 egg whites
1/3 cup Sweet Baby Ray’s (what I used) BBQ sauce
1/3 cup rolled oats or matzo meal
1/2 tsp salt or more freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced or 2 tsp dried garlic powder
1 tsp dried basil
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch loaf pan or baking dish with cooking spray.
In a large bowl combine everything; mix lightly. Don’t overmix or meat will get tough.
Transfer meat mixture to prepared loaf pan (cover the whole pan with mixture) or baking dish (form into an oval-shaped loaf, wetting your hands for easier handling). Bake uncovered for 1 hour. Slice and serve. Serves 6 to 8.
Keeps for up to two days in refrigerator; reheats well. Freezes well for up to three months.
Editor’s Note: For more edible delights by Sheilah Kaufman, go to www.cookingwithsheilah.com.