Well, it’s that time of the year, where you are bombarded by holiday music, packed malls, bad drivers on the road and the cookie overload.
So, it was no surprise that Marie chose a cookie recipe for the bake along – and hold-on to your hats, because next week is ANOTHER cookie – she is two for two.
But this week, it’s The Ischler. A simple butter cookie with Almond in the dough and filled with chocolate ganache and Apricot Lekvar (fancy word for thick rich jam).
While the recipe is 4 pages long, they are not a big deal to make, I’m sure if Rose would not be the super-duper detailed oriented author that she is and we appreciate as bakers, this recipe can be summed up in 2 pages. But for now let’s dig in.
The Cookie Dough
I made mine in the Food Processor, and since I had almond flour, I use that instead of sliced almonds – maybe that is why my cookies pictures do not show those specks of brown that I’m sure are the almond coat. The dough came together pretty fast, then you take all that dough, put it in a plastic bag and use it to kneed it – I skipped this step (Raymond just sent me a virtual high-five – he knows, that like him, I like to cut corners when we can), I simply gave it a couple of turns and then quarter it, and wrapped it in plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator to chill out.
I know that I mentioned before, my like/hate affair of cooked fruit. Well, when it comes to jams, I’m in the “like” side of things. And the Apricot Lekvar is one of my favorites. We used it back during the Heavenly Cake days, specifically for the Chocolate Apricot Roll so making this was pretty stress-free. And guest what else I got to use? The apricot brandy, which has been sitting in my liquor filled cabinet for over a year.
I made the full recipe, I knew that I was not going to use that much – at the end, I probably used less than 1/3 cup to fill the cookies, but the rest went into a jar that is going to be eaten by all of us in the house with anything that is toasted, here is Casa P is all about the jams.
Last, but not least, the Chocolate Ganache
If you all know my dislike for cooking fruit, you all know my love affair with chocolate – love the stuff, I can eat it (ok, I fest-up I DO EAT IT) every. single. day. And my adoration of dark chocolate is known far and wide. The Ganache part of this recipe is what, took me the longest to do – simply because when I looked into my baking chocolate box, all the chocolate I had was over 70% cacao – I was totally in the dark side. And since my husband and my stepson do not like that strong chocolate, I had to get in the car and stock up on the semi-sweet variety. My go-to has always been IKEA chocolate, its cheap and very, very good baking chocolate.
Once you got all your different recipe component done, its time to build up this sandwiched cookie.
Rolling the dough for me was easy, before I did not understand the reason of quartering the dough at the beginning, but then as I was rolling the AHA moment struck me. This way, the dough stays cold, since you roll out one disk at a time – duh! I did add a step here, and it was to place my cut cookies into the freezer for about 5 minutes to firm them up before I put them in the oven to bake (old trick that never failed me yet)
Baking was easy, if there is one thing I know about cooking baking, is to keep a hawk watch over them once they are in the oven – they can go from light to dark in a blink of the eye. I’m proud to say that I did not over baked one. Yeah for me! (It’s the small victory people).
Filling them was the most time consuming part of this – once side the Lekvar, the other the ganache and this is where I, once more, confirmed that making cookies are a pain in the butt - I just don’t have the patience to do each one.
Taste test – I like them. My favorite? Nope. But that did not stop my husband, who is a cookie aficionado from eating 2-4 at a time. Since I now work a night shift, we do most our communications via text during the times we are apart and last night, after I texted him “Did you eat the cookies” his response was “I just tried them. There might be an issue. Is there a limit on how many I can eat tonight?”
That pretty much sums it up.
Here is another early present for you all – this recipe has been posted in various media around the web.. so I can share it… you can find it in Amazon Blog - Omnivoracious
You want to see more cookies? The Check out the rest of The Baking Bible Alpha Bakers doing their stuff by stopping at the bake along blog.