Friday, August 6, 2010
How does it feel like to be one of the finalists of Leites Culinaria Photo Contest? I hardly thought I would get to experience it. From the onset, I realized the participants most probably would have come from a higher level of photography expertice (I mean look at the list of contest jury, wow... in the little dream of mine I had wished that once in my blog lifetime my photo would ever been viewed by Aran of Canelle et Vanille). Mostly I imagined I wasn't qualified enough to take part.
Therefore I wasn't thinking about participating. And during that one last week into the deadline I was so swamped with work at the office, plus trying to wrap up my website, and then came the DB Challenge and T.... T was hinting to me that I had been spending too much time on my work and website. As much as he showed he understood the situation, I had to put him back into one of my priorities..
So yes, I tried to make free time for T last Friday by not doing anything and comfortably staying by his side the whole evening. Just when the next day it happened that T had to go to work and suddenly I had free time in hand. I thought why not giving the contest a shot, got a few hours... so tried to make good use of them. And at the end of the day, if I did not pass the final, it was still nothing to lose cause I could use the material for a new post in my blog, right?
I quickly whipped up 2 recipes and as practical as I tried to be, both required time for refrigeration. So cut the story short, I managed to bake Mini Muffin Strawberry Financiers at lunch time and decided to just focus on one recipe instead of two. Next I frantically took photos like crazy and managed to get one photo sent after midnight (that shows how much time I had spent to shoot the right angle and selected the most appropriate photo, from like hundreds of them). And as I got the reply email informing my successful entry, I was relieved that I was officially taking my chance in the contest! One photo one chance!
And yes, my little wish came true. I made it to the final among other 9 finalists. I was so thrilleddddd! I actually shouted and quickly broke the great news to T!
Thanks to Deeba of Passionate about Baking for being the very source of information about the photo contest! Share the excitement with me by viewing the finalist photos here and at the same time you could also vote one of the photos to win People's Choice Award. Have fun!
So what was I going to do with my second recipe?... The batter was sitting in the fridge and I had to make time to bake it the following day and that is what I am going to share with you here. It is the recipe that I churned out from Leites Culinaria's recipe box that somehow did not make it to the contest due to my limited time.
CHOCOLATE GINGER CRINKLE COOKIES
by Jennifer Lindner McGlinn
from Gingerbread: Timeless Recipes for Cakes, Cookies, Desserts, Ice Cream and Candy (Chronicle Books, 2009)
Makes 40 cookies
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
- 7 1/2 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
- Confectioners’ sugar for rolling
1. Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, ginger, and cinnamon in a medium bowl.
2. Combine the butter and 3 ounces of the chocolate in a medium, heat-proof bowl. Set the bowl over a saucepan filled with about 1 1/2 inches of simmering water (being sure not to let the bottom of the bowl touch the water) and stir occasionally until the chocolate and butter have melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove the bowl from the saucepan and set aside to cool slightly, about 10 minutes. (You can also melt the mixture in the microwave, heating it at about 20-second intervals and stirring periodically until it is melted and smooth.)
3. Stir the granulated and brown sugars into the melted chocolate mixture, using a wooden spoon or heatproof spatula. Drop in the eggs, one at a time, mixing briskly until smooth. Stir in the vanilla extract and gradually incorporate the flour mixture. Fold in the remaining 4 1/2 ounces of chocolate and the crystallized ginger. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and set in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours or overnight.
4. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
5. Shape the chilled dough into walnut-size balls, roll in confectioners’ sugar, and arrange them about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. (If your kitchen is quite warm and the dough becomes too soft, return it to the refrigerator until chilled and fairly firm.) Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cookies have spread and the tops are cracked.
6. Cool the chocolate-ginger crinkle cookies on the baking sheets set on wire racks for about 2 minutes before removing them to the racks to cool completely. Store the crinkle cookies in an airtight container or in a zip-top bag for up to 4 days.