Thursday, July 14, 2011

Jam Thumbprint Coconut Cookies ( Eggless)





Coconut coconut coconut.......this is driving me nuts.  I think I'm falling in love with coconut.  I am really amazed at the versatility of this great nut. I had known that coconut was widely used in southern part of India but being from the north  my knowledge of coconut usage was very limited. I only knew that it could be used for pooja, coconut oil for oiling hair & ofcourse I used to make the famous Coconut barfi & I always had a hard time grating the dry whole coconut.  On moving to the US I saw this nut being used in varied ways.......coconut milk for soups , shredded coconut for cake decoration, powdered coconut as cup cake topping, coconut icecream, coconut water as thirst quencher ........I think I should stop  the list is endless. During my last 2 visits to India My sister brought me coconut cookies from a local bakery & they were so good that ever since my return I had been thinking of how to make those delicious cookies & finally I saw "Ina Garten  of Barefoot Contessa" bake" Jam thumbprint shortbread cookies "in one of her shows. She rolled the cookies in shredded coconut  & the name "thumbprint" comes from the thumb impression made on the cookies which is later filled  with jam.......hence the name Jam thumbprint. I could hardly wait for the show to be over & I was in the Kitchen knowing this is something I wanted to try.......at the same time I was thinking hard on how to make the cookies eggless & more coconutty.....so I modified the recipe a little & here is my version of these delectable coconut cookies that have become a permanent part of my snack pantry now...........I have added coconut powder to the dough & some baking soda as well . Also instead of the eggwash that the original recipe called for I have dipped the dough balls in milk to make an eggless version.


Ingredients: This will  make around 25-30 cookies

  1. 1 cup all purpose flour
  2. 1/4th tsp baking soda
  3. pinch of salt
  4. 1/3rd  cup coconut powder/ 1/2 cup more  for rolling in the cookie balls
  5. 1 stick of butter / 4 oz/ 120 gms ( at room temperature)
  6. 1/3rd cup  confectioners sugar ( the cookies are very lightly sweet , the amount of sugar  can be increased acc. to taste)
  7. 1/4th tsp  pure vanilla extract
  8. 1/2 cup of milk 
  9. 2 tablespoons of any fruit jam ( i used raspberry jam)
Preparation:

  1. Mix the 1st 4 ingredients together , flour, soda, salt & 1/3rd cup of coconut powder , keep aside
  2.  In the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment  whisk butter & sugar together until light & fluffy. Mix in the vanilla extract & mix till well blended.
  3. Start adding the dry ingredients mixing until just well blended , the dough will be very soft.
  4. Transfer the dough to a work surface ....roll into a ball , cover with cling wrap & refrigerate for atleast 15  mins .
  5. Now take out the dough & cut it into 25-30 equal parts ( can be done with a knife), roll each part into a small ball .
  6. Take half cup of milk in a bowl & the remaining 1/2 cup of coconut powder in another bowl .  
  7. Dip each ball of dough in the milk & then roll it in the coconut powder, make an impression with your thumb in the centre of each ball & place  them on a well greased baking tray. (  this time I made the impression  with a 1/4 measuring teaspoon as my thumb starts hurting by the time all the cookies are done)
  8. With the help of a tea spoon or the tip of a knife place a small amount of jam in the centre of each cookie (  can also  be done with a piping bag )
  9. Preheat oven to 350 F & bake for 12-15 mins until cookies are golden at the top. 
  10. Transfer to a cooling rack & let cool completely before  storing them.
 I cannot wait for them to cool completely & generally grab a couple just out of the oven.......ha ha 

Nutella Swirl Cookies ( Eggless)


Nutella.........I was introduced to this heavenly goodness just a few days ago.  Living for 8 years now in NJ I had always seen the nutella jars at the supermarket  but I just thought of it as a spread that could be spread on bread or sandwiched between cookies until I bought my 1st jar few days ago for the Banana stuffed croissant  ( recipe already posted). And for those of you who do not know what Nutella is ( I am saying this coz I myself did not know ) it is a hazlenut spread with skim milk & cocoa  & sooooooo yummy ,better than any chocolate I wud say. And as I keep browsing the net for cookie recipe these days especially cookies that look fresh out a bakery .....I came across these Nutella pinwheel cookies, a simple butter cookie with Nutella slathered on it , rolled & baked......what more could I ask for. I tweaked the recipe a little by excluding the eggs & adding a pinch of baking soda .My husband who is not a big fan of sweets grabs a couple of these cookies as soon as he's back from work  & this makes me all the more happy. With very few ingredients these cookies are a real treat.

Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup all purpose flour
  2. 1/4 tsp baking soda
  3. 1stick butter / 120 gms ( at room temp.)
  4. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  5. 1/2 cup light brown powdered sugar
  6. 1/4 cup nutella 

Preparation:

  1. Start by beating the butter & sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment , beat until light & fluffy.
  2. Mix in the vanilla extract & start mixing in the flour combined with the baking soda. Mix until just well blended.
  3. Transfer the dough onto a work surface, roll it into a ball , wrap with cling foil & refrigerate for 30 mins. to make the rolling & cutting easy as the dough is very soft.
  4. Roll out the dough into a 1/4th inch thick rectangle inbetween 2 cling wraps to avoid the dough from sticking to the rolling pin, now remove the upper cling foil .
  5. Spread the nutella on this rectangular sheet of dough  leaving 1/4 of an inch on all sides so nutella dosen't ooz out when rolling the dough.
  6. Roll the dough into a log starting form the longest side , can also be done with the help of the lower layer of the cling foil....just holding the edges of the cling foil start rolling .
  7. Place the rolled dough log into the refrigerator for another 5-10 mins.
  8. Cut the dough into 1/3rd inch slices with the help of a sharp knife & place them on a well greased baking sheet.
  9. Bake at 350 F for 12-15 mins or until they turn golden brown, let them rest on the baking sheet for about 5 mins. before transferring them to the cooling rack. This recipe makes about 25-30 cookies .
Note: Sprinkle some coarsely chopped hazlenuts on the nutella spread before rolling the dough , I did not coz I wanted some plain crunchy cookies. Next time I will also be trying these cookies by adding some cream cheese.