Posted on

Crunchy Toffee Triangles

toffee

Chewy and moist on the inside, these indulgent bars get crunch from toffee pieces mixed into the dough and a generous sprinkling of almonds on top. Great for dessert or afternoon tea, these treats also pack well in lunch boxes.

Crunchy Toffee Triangles

2 1/4 cups (11 1/2 oz./360 g.) all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

1 cup (8 oz./250 g.) unsalted butter

1 cup (8 oz./250 g.) granulated sugar

1 cup (7 oz./220 g.) firmly packed dark brown sugar

2 large eggs

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

8 oz. (250 g.) toffee pieces

3/4 cup (3 oz./90 g.) whole almonds, lightly toasted and coarsely chopped

 

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter a 9-by-13-inch (23-by-33-cm.) baking pan. Line with parchment paper, letting the paper overhang the long sides by 1 inch (2.5 cm.).

 

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugars on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat on low speed until the eggs are completely incorporated. Beating on low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients and continue to beat until almost incorporated. Add the toffee pieces and beat on low speed just until incorporated. Spread the dough evenly in the prepared pan. Sprinkle the top evenly with the almonds.

 

Bake until golden around the edges and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only moist crumbs attached, about 25 minutes. Let cool completely in the pan on a wire rack, about 1 hour. Run a metal spatula around the edges of the pan and use the parchment paper to lift the dessert from the pan. Cut into 18 triangles and serve. Makes 18 cookies.

Posted on

Weekend Project: Crusty Country Loaf

loaf

Cold winter weekends are the perfect excuse to cozy up inside with a baking project. This one will make your kitchen smell like heaven: a country-style loaf of bread baked in a stoneware cloche, with a golden brown crust and a tender crumb. The time-tested recipe comes from our founder, Chuck Williams, who fell in love with the rustic country loaves he first tried in France and Italy. The secret is in the cloche: it duplicates the even, intense heat produced by a brick-lined oven.

 

Crusty Country Loaf

1 package active dry yeast

1 tsp. sugar

1 3/4 cups warm water (110°F), plus more as needed

5 cups (1 lb. 9 oz.) country French, rustic wheat or all-purpose flour, plus more as needed

1 Tbs. salt

Cornmeal for sprinkling

 

In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast and sugar in 1/4 cup of the warm water and let stand until bubbly, 5 to 10 minutes.

 

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the 5 cups flour and the salt and beat on low speed for 30 seconds. Add the yeast mixture and the remaining 1 1/2 cups water and beat until thoroughly combined, 6 to 8 minutes, adding more water or flour if needed. Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead until soft, silky and elastic.

 

Spray the inside of the mixer bowl with nonstick cooking spray and return the dough to the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, 45 to 60 minutes. Punch down the dough and transfer to a work surface. Knead the dough a few times. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes, then shape into a ball.

 

Sprinkle the base of a round bread cloche with cornmeal and place the ball of dough in the center. Cover with the lid and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, 45 to 60 minutes.

 

Preheat an oven to 450°F.

 

Using a sharp knife, cut several slashes on top of the loaf. Cover the cloche, transfer to the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 400°F and continue baking until the bread is crusty, golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped, 30 to 40 minutes more, removing the lid during the last 5 to 10 minutes of baking. Transfer the loaf to a wire rack and serve while still warm. Makes 1 loaf.

Posted on

Hazelnut Streusel Bread

WS_HBC_hazelnutstreuse-0154-652x810

This breakfast bread is a hazelnut lover’s dream: a tender, nutty texture studded with melty chocolate chips and a thick layer of crunchy hazelnut streusel on top.

If you can find them, purchase already peeled hazelnuts. Otherwise, spread them on a baking sheet and toast in a 325ºF (165ºC) oven for about 10 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally. Then, pour the warm nuts into a kitchen towel and rub them together to remove the skins. Don’t worry about removing all of the skins — the bread will still taste great.

 

Hazelnut Streusel Bread

For the streusel:

3 Tbs. all-purpose flour

1/4 cup (2 oz./60 g.) firmly packed light brown sugar

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

3 Tbs. cold unsalted butter

1/2 cup (2 1/2 oz./75 g.) hazelnuts, toasted, peeled and roughly chopped

For the batter:

1/3 cup (2 oz./60 g.) hazelnuts, toasted and peeled

2/3 cup (5 oz./155 g.) granulated sugar

1 1/4 cups (6 1/2 oz./200 g.) all-purpose flour

2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

Scant 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

6 Tbs. (3 oz./90 g.) unsalted butter, softened

2 large eggs

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

3/4 cup (6 oz./185 g.) sour cream or plain yogurt

1/2 cup (3 oz./90 g.) miniature semisweet chocolate chips or chunks (optional)

To make the streusel, in a food processor, combine the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and butter and process until crumbly. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts. Set aside.

Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350ºF (180ºC). Generously butter a 9-by-5-inch (23-by-13-cm.) loaf pan.

To make the batter, in the food processor, process the 1/3 cup whole hazelnuts and half of the granulated sugar until finely ground. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Process to combine and transfer to a large bowl.

In the food processor, process the butter and remaining granulated sugar until light and creamy, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as you go. Add the eggs and vanilla and process until fully combined. Add the sour cream and process until combined. Scrape into the bowl with the dry ingredients and stir together. Stir in the chocolate chips, if using.

Scrape about half of the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with about half of the reserved streusel. Dollop the rest of the batter over the streusel and spread it evenly in the pan, then top with the remaining streusel.

Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Let cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then remove from the pan and let cool completely on a wire rack. Cut into slices to serve. Makes 1 large loaf.

Posted on

Best of the Web: Chocolate Treats

Ribbet-collage5-652x652

What better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than with rich, dark, decadent chocolate? For creative ways to savor the holiday’s signature flavor, we turned to some of our favorite bloggers, where we found mouthwatering inspiration for truffles, cakes, cookies, brownies and more. Here are a handful that made us swoon.

 

Chocolate Hazelnut Linzer HeartsChocolate Hazelnut Linzer Hearts by Smitten Kitchen
These nutty cookie sandwiches are cut into hearts and spread with Nutella — perfect for a Valentine’s Day party.
Dark Chocolate Whipped CreamDark Chocolate Whipped Cream by Food52
No matter what you’re baking for Valentine’s Day, a dollop of this will take it over the top.
Dried Cherry and Cacao Nib BrowniesDried Cherry and Cacao Nib Brownies by Brooklyn Supper
These brownies are filled with festive (and colorful!) surprises: tart dried cherries and crunchy cocoa nibs.
Nibby Chocolate Rye MuffinsNibby Chocolate Rye Muffins by A Sweet Spoonful
These chocolatey muffins rely on whole-grain rye flour for an extra dose of hearty flavor.
Chocolate Shortbread Heart CookiesChocolate Shortbread Heart Cookies by Two Peas & Their Pod
A smattering of red, pink and white sprinkles gives these crispy shortbread cookies a touch of charm.
Chocolate Chocolate DonutChocolate Chocolate Donut by Table for Two
Surprise your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day with a breakfast of one of these cakey, creamy doughnuts, and you’ll earn big brownie points.
Red Velvet Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes with Chocolate Ganache Center.Red Velvet Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes with Chocolate Ganache Center by Half Baked Harvest
Filled with gooey chocolate ganache, these crimson cakes would make a gorgeous finale to a special dinner.
Chocolate Covered Strawberry CupcakesChocolate Covered Strawberry Cupcakes by Heather Christo
Moist chocolate cupcakes, a layer of strawberry-cream cheese frosting, and a fresh chocolate-dipped strawberry — these cupcakes were meant for a V-day celebration.
Dark Chocolate BrowniesDark Chocolate Brownies by The Pioneer Woman
No need to mess with a classic — these rich and decadent brownies will delight any chocoholic.
Flourless Chocolate Almond CakesFlourless Chocolate Almond Cakes by A Couple Cooks
These gluten-free treats are filled with ground almonds instead of flour, and they get an extra kick from a pinch of cinnamon and cayenne.
Raspberry Cheesecake Brownie BitesRaspberry Cheesecake Brownie Bites by Just a Taste
A swirl of raspberry-laced cream cheese gives brownie bites a pop of color. These would make great gifts!
Raw Chamomile + Lavender + Bee Pollen Chocolate TrufflesRaw Chamomile + Lavender + Bee Pollen Chocolate Truffles by Local Milk
The mild, natural flavors of chamomile, lavender and bee pollen are unexpected pairings for rich chocolate truffles. (P.S.: T