Too much coffee today, by far. Powering up and down the avenue in cowboy boots, shouting happy greetings construction workers and a totally unexpected flock of fat chickens in a Bed-Stuy front yard. Feeling so civic-minded I went and voted.
The oven debacle caused a little backup in the TWD action, but now I'm overcharged and moving forward. Skipped last week's peanut butter criss-crosses, having made them many times before and found them some of the best peanut butter cookies ever. I made the week before's shortbread on time, but had to freeze it until I could bake it. Those buttery little bars, minus the espresso and plus hazelnut syrup, looked a bit like this:
this one that I knocked out for the Heavenly Cake Bakers group. The main difference seems to be that for Rose's version, the sugar was caramelized before lining the pan, instead of just heated with butter. I liked both versions of this classic, but found that this most recent effort got a little soggy after one day. I used almonds in place of walnuts and didn't glaze it. I did, however, lay out an almost fanatically precise mise-en-place, which is not my usual way of working. I was inspired by Dorie's tutelage in the New York Times, and I wanted to take a perfect picture of it all.