Monday, March 26, 2012

Ancient Grains & Modern Gadgets, My first giveaway


 There comes a time in every bloggers blog life when they announce that first giveaway & this is my moment. I'd like to say a big Thank You to OXO tools for sponsoring the gift, a digital kitchen scale that is indispensable for baking  great cakes & cookies.


I've been an ardent fan of OXO products ever since my graduate school days. My dad bought me a set of kitchen knives & peeler  from Bloomingdales way back in 1996 when I first moved to New York City. 15 + years later, the peeler works as great as ever. In time I've gone on to collect a vast arsenal of OXO from strawberry hullers to spatulas and have never been disappointed with any of them.

Perhaps, one of the reasons I've stayed away from creating recipes that involve weighing out ingredients was because I never bothered to invest in a good scale.Using one simply elevates the culinary experience to a refined high. And keeps you wanting more of the same. I'll definitely be posting more recipes that call for weighing ingredients, that's for sure!

 A big Thank You is in order to Zester Daily and Maria Speck for a wonderful giveaway gift that I received in the mail a couple of days ago. A copy of Ms. Specks new book 'Ancient Grains for Modern Meals'. I'm so in love with this book for all the wonderful information it contains and the awesome recipes. There will be a proper review of this book in the next couple of weeks, I promise. In the meantime, I've picked an amazing recipe to showcase from the book this week, a Greek Lenten cookie that was the highlight of my weekend baking.



Orange-Rosemary Cookies with Olive Oil
(Recipe Credit: Maria Speck, I've taken the liberty of writing the steps in my own words)


You need:
4 1/4 ounces white whole wheat flour (1 cup)
1 3/4 ounces Almond meal (1/2 cup, lightly packed
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 cup  packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh Rosemary
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla extract
2-3 tablespoons turbinado sugar for topping


Method:



Measure out the Flour and almond meal . Add to a large mixing bowl along with the baking powder and salt.

Whisk to combine evenly and break up any lumps of almond meal in the mixture. Make a 'well' in the center. to add the wet ingredients.

Grate the zest of an orange to obtain 1 teaspoon. Squeeze the orange to obtain 1/4 cup of juice. Mince the fresh Rosemary and set aside.




In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine the light brown sugar and olive oil and vigorously whisk for a minute till the sugar starts to dissolve and the color of the mixture lightens (about 1 minute of brisk arm cranking). Add the Orange juice, zest, rosemary & vanilla extract and whisk to combine.




Pour the oil/sugar mixture into the center of the flour mixture and combine with a wooden spoon until just mixed. DO not over mix, you do not want to activate the gluten in the wheat flour.


Place a sheet of parchment paper or plastic wrap in from f you on the work surface. Gently transfer the doughto the paper/wrap. Shape the dough into a log with your hands and roll the  paper/wrap around to completely wrap it. Twist the ends.



Place the log into the freezer for about 2 hours to chill & firm.  Preheat oven to 350 F. Place two oven racks in the lower and upper third of the oven. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Remove the 'log' from the freezer and cut it into thin slices less than 1/2 inch thick (this is tricky since the dough is still quite soft. I cut out thin portions of equal volume using a butter knife and basically flattened it on the baking sheets). Sprinkle liberally with the turbinado sugar.


 Bake both the sheets at the same time, one on the top rack, the other on the lower rack, swapping it half way through the baking, for about 16-18 minutes (8-9 minutes on each rack), until the edges & bottom of the cookies turn a golden brown. Transfer the cookies onto a wire rack to cool completely.  Store in an airtight container. The cookies tun crisp as they cool



Bon Appetit!



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Coming back to the Giveaway by OXO...

This giveaway is open only to residents of the United states (sorry, no overseas shipping possible).  just follow the instructions on the rafflecopter below.


a Rafflecopter giveaway  








16 comments:

  1. These look amazing and thank you for the giveaway opportunity!

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  2. these look really good, i am wondering if i could make them gluten free

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  3. I am yet to buy a digital scale and although I do not try my luck in such giveaways (owing to the fact my winning streak is almost 0), I am going to this time Niv. First time is always special - whatever it may be :)

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  4. Interesting combination for the cookies. Vegan too.
    And a very useful giveaway. Ever since I caught the baking bug last year, I've been converting all grams to remotely close cup measurements and going ahead. Have been meaning to get a scale & a stand mixer, but hubby isn't letting me; thinks it'll encourage me to bake even more & he doesn't want that to happen. (little does he know nothing is going to stop me anyway, lol).

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  5. Hi Denise,

    I'm the author of Ancient Grains. Contact Kathy Gori of the wonderful blog Colors of Indian cooking and say hello to her from me. She made these cookies gluten-free for her friend, and she might share the recipe with you.

    http://www.thecolorsofindiancooking.com/2010/11/flavors-of-fall-my-favorite.html

    I hope this helps!
    Best,
    Maria

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  6. This is fabulous! I've always wanted to use one of these scales but haven't had the chance. I'd be much more apt to trying new recipes!

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  7. So excited for your first giveaway, love OXO products just entered! Love the recipe and plan on getting the Ancient Grains book. The cookies look wonderful.

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  8. Hi,

    Please accept the award awaiting you at Square Meals :-)

    Aparna

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  9. Tracing my way from Aparna's blog. Your pictures are A M A Z I N G.
    do visit my space when time permits.
    Love Ash.

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  10. I'd love to win, thanks a ton. Claire

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  11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  12. thanks for the giveaway
    i need one :)
    aunteegem@yahoo.com

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  13. Awesome giveaway! congrats on the first one :) and those cookies look delish!

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  14. Really love OXO products. Big fan of it. And your ingredients are really different but sounds yummy plus vegan. It's on my list :)

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  15. Congrats on your first giveaway Niv !!!!! Lovely giveaway and i have my fingers crossed :)

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  16. Congrats & Best Wishes on your first giveaway Niv! I love the post & the step-by-step photos! The cookies look great -- I'm a big fan of Maria's too :-)

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