My first week home from Paris and what did I bake in my kitchen? You would think that seeing pâtisserie after pâtisserie, and eating pastry after pastry, I would be inspired to pull out all of my French tinware and get to work on tarts, financiers, or éclairs.
( I think that Carl Marletti is my new favorite patisserie in Paris.)
I brought back a couple of tarts to the hotel for my sister and me. One was fresh berries piled atop pastry cream and the other, an orange curd tart with a sliver of silver leaf.
Oddly enough, I started baking cookies when I was home again... three different kinds. Usually, if I'm mixing up and baking this amount of cookies, it means the holiday season is approaching; but in this case, it was all about the empty, clear glass jars on my kitchen counter begging to be filled.
The first morning home from my trip, I made Chocolate Chip-Dried Cherry-Pecan Cookies. Most of those headed back to college with my youngest daughter who was home from school for the first time -- a BIG surprise last weekend when I returned! I followed those with Pecan & Butter Log Cookies, a favorite of mine. The third cookie has been bookmarked on my computer for almost 2 years now -- Swiss Cinnamon Crisps. This cookie was posted on Serious Eats by Gina DePalma (pastry chef at Mario Batali's Babbo in Manhattan) back in December of 2010. It's a great cookie for fall and cooler temperatures served with mugs of hot chocolate, fresh apple cider, or a big glass of cold milk.
:: Swiss Cinnamon Crisps
original recipe - McCall's Cookie Collection (1965) | via Gina DePalma
• 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
• 1 teaspoon kosher salt
• 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
• 1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
• 1/2 cup light or dark brown sugar
• 3/4 cup granulated sugar
• 1 large egg
• 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
• Finely grated zest of one lemon
• 1 egg
• 2 tablespoons milk
• 1/4 cup granulated sugar
• 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2. Place the butter and both sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer and use the paddle attachment on medium speed to cream them together until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Beat in the egg, vanilla, and lemon zest, stopping once to scrape down the sides of the bowl, until the egg is fully incorporated.
3. On low speed, slowly beat in the flour mixture, then increase the speed to medium and beat the dough until it comes away from the sides of the bowl. Shape the dough into a large disc and wrap it in a sheet of plastic; refrigerate at least one hour.
4. When you are ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350˚F. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and break off about 1/4 of the disc. Wrap and return the rest of the dough to the refrigerator. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
5. Make the topping by whisking the egg and milk together in a small bowl. In another bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Set both bowls aside.
6. On a lightly floured surface, roll the piece of dough 1/8-inch thick. Using a cookie cutter, cut out desired shape and transfer to the parchment-lined baking sheet, leaving about 1/2-inch between each cookie; fill cookie sheet, getting more dough from the refrigerator as needed. Brush the tops of the cookies with the egg-milk mixture and sprinkle each cookie generously with the cinnamon-sugar. Place the sheet on the center rack of the preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until they are golden brown. While these cookies are baking, continue to roll and cut the remaining dough, filling the second cookie sheet, and repeat the glazing and sprinkling of the cinnamon-sugar mixture.
7. When pulled from the oven, let the cookies cool on the baking sheet one minute before removing to a cooling rack.
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