Sunday, November 21, 2004

Cookies, both savoury and sweet!

I am not normally a big eater or baker of cookies, or biscuits as we call them in English. As chance would have it, though, this month's IMBB coincides with a series of bake sales I have been organizing at work to raise money for the AEF/BCEF. And as we all know, cookies are the perfect items to make for bake sales.

The bake sales (there are 5 of them in total) all have themes which gave me a little more direction when looking for inspiration. For our "International" bake sale I was idly toying with the idea of making some Bourbons . I don't know why? I guess they were my favourite when I was a kid and although I'd never encountered a homemade one before I did manage to find a recipe online. True inspiration, however, came when I found an unread copy of Eating Well from Spring 2004. A recipe for Spanish Marzipan Pine Nut Cookies (Panellets de Pinyons) caught my eye. These were incredibly fun and easy to make, contained a bizarre ingredient (mashed cooked sweet potato), tasted amazing (I am a such sucker for marzipan) and sold extremely well at $2 each. I cheated by buying pre-ground almonds from Trader Joes. As I don't have a decent food processor, I am sure this made the procedure less painful.

jamie jamie

The following week our bake sale theme was "savoury". I wasn't planning on making cookies (as I was already making Spanakopita and bacon/corn muffins). But my December issue of Food and Wine arrived and I couldn't help noticing a recipe for Parmesan Prosciutto Biscotti that looked fairly simple to make. Indeed they were, although, as I found out, the Parmesan results in a lot of oil. I found I had to change my parchment sheets a couple of times and mop the tray of fat whilst cooking. I also had to leave the biscotti in the oven a lot longer than indicated so they would dry out and crisp a little more. If you don't keep these biscotti in an air tight container they will soften very quickly.

jamie jamie

Links to my other Bake Sale Posts

International Bake Sale - Almond Apple Marzipan Tart
International Bake Sale - Greek Baklava
Pot Luck - Lemon Drizzle Cake & Rich Little Chocolate Hazlenut Cakes

Read about the other entries in the Domestic Goddess's IMBB Cookie Challenge here
Cookies, both savoury and sweet!


  • At 21/11/04 15:07, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    its a biscuit - but its savoury... with parmesan...this is sounding very interesting, will have to try them at some point. cheers for this (btw, link on imbb fixed for your photo) [ronald]

  • At 22/11/04 07:23, Blogger Sam said…

    Ronald - they taste and smell quite like "cheese straws", if you are familiar with them...?

  • At 22/11/04 20:30, Blogger Cathy said…

    Sam - oh my gosh, both of these sound so good - especially the marzipan pine nut cookies. I may have to include these among my Christmas cookies this year. Thanks!

  • At 23/11/04 07:23, Blogger Sam said…

    Cai - the pine nut cookies are really excellent and easy and tasty. I think they would be great at Christmas. Unfortunately I can't publish the recipe because it is copyrighted to Living Well. We made them again at the weekend with much finer ground almonds without the skins mixed in (the trader joe ones are chunkier, with bits of skin) and we made smaller cookies too, and they were even more luxurious.

    i tried to do a search online to find you a similar available recipe but unfortunately they were all in Spanish, which I don't speak.

  • At 23/11/04 14:19, Blogger Carolyn said…

    Your parmesan biscotti would be fabulous with beer! Thanks for the idea.

  • At 23/11/04 21:31, Blogger Cathy said…

    Sam - that's OK 'cause I subscribe to Eating Well! I've fallen behind on my cooking magazines and hadn't noticed the recipe, but I've still got the issue.

  • At 23/11/04 21:36, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Sam - Those look very delicious! I really like your close-up shots. The way you were able to blur the background in the bourbons photo, and only keep the middle piece of biscotti in focus. Did you take them with your new camera? I have a hard time getting only selective parts of my photos in focus, so I usually take many photos, and hope for the best.

    Clement (

  • At 24/11/04 07:29, Blogger Sam said…

    these pics were taken with the little casio point and shoot I mentioned last week on my blog (Monday last week I think). It has a really really great macro function, which gives the effect you are looking for. I love that camera for close up food shots. It is great.
    The new camera arrived on friday and i haven't got used to it yet. The manual is a heavy tome. I hope to get accostomed with it this weekend.
    The candy pictures in today's post were taken on the new camera, but I didn't know what I was doing and I guess the functions weren't being used to their optimim effect.


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