samedi, juillet 14, 2007

nanny's mandelbrot

Mandelbrot is a traditional Jewish cookie that resembles biscotti but isn't quite as hard.

Nanny's are the stuff of legend in my ex's family. (She once put Eric and Ben on a plane with a shoebox full of Mandelbrot for their dad and the two boys ate the whole thing on a 4-hour flight.) Although her grandson Eric and I are no longer married, she and I still speak on the phone once a week.

I called her and asked for the recipe for a fourth of July party this year. They disappeared immediately, with one guest saying that they were really a chocolate, raisin, and nut delivery mechanism.
Active time: 20 min
Start to finish: 2 hr

Makes about 40 cookies.

1 1/2 cups and 4 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 large eggs
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup chopped nuts (I prefer pecans, Nanny uses walnuts)
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

Whisk together eggs, butter, and vanilla in another bowl until combined, then stir wet mixture into dry mixture until combined well. (Dough will be crumbly.) Stir in nuts, chocolate chips, and raisins. Wet hands, then transfer mixture to a lightly floured surface and knead until a dough forms.

Split dough and firmly press each piece into two 10-by 2-inch logs. Arrange logs 2 inches apart on a greased and floured large baking sheet.

Bake in middle of oven until golden, about 30 minutes. Leave oven on.

Loosen logs from baking sheet with a metal spatula, then transfer to a cutting board and cool 5 minutes. Cut logs crosswise with a large heavy knife into 1/2-inch-wide slices and arrange on baking sheet, standing upright, 1/4 inch apart.

  • For crisp, biscotti-esque texture, bake cookies again in middle of oven until golden all over with firm centers, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely. (Cookies will crisp as they cool.)
  • Cookies keep in an airtight container at room temperature 2 weeks.
  • I'm considering making a variant with dried cranberries, toasted pistachios, and dark chocolate mini chips. Other recipes: Claire's Mandelbrot; Orange, Chocolate, and Hazelnut Mandelbrot

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