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Salted Tahini Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

When I see a recipe repeatedly I sometimes feel compelled to give it a try. Salted Tahini Chocolate Chip Cookies from Danielle Oron’s Modern Israeli Cooking is one of those recipes. It was published in the New York Times a little over a year ago, then Food52 got in on the act and reprinted it as well. 

Just recently David Lebovitz published his version of the recipe, which he had adapted and then raved that they were “some of the best chocolate chip cookies to ever come out of my oven.” His goal was to make the cookies a bit more chewy and to increase the chocolate. Those are goals I thoroughly support. While I pretty much used his recipe, I took it a bit further. Instead of using one half cup of light brown sugar in place of one half cup of white sugar as he did, I used one half cup dark brown sugar. I also increased the chocolate. While Lebovitz uses chocolate chunks, I used chocolate chips and the whole bag, why not? It’s 12 ounces and 340 grams of semisweet chocolate chips. Next time I might try 3/4 of a cup dark brown sugar and just one quarter cup white sugar for even chewier cookies. 
So the name really gives it away—the key to what makes these cookies so irresistable is the dusting of salt on the top and the tahini in the cookies which adds a particular richness. The cookies are chewiest on day one, but still delicious on day two. If you have any left. Speaking of which, I recommend portioning some of the dough into a zip top bag and freezing it so you can bake fresh “cookies on demand.” Simply heat the oven and put the frozen blobs of dough directly on a parchment lined baking sheet and minutes later you have fresh cookies.

Note: If you have a scale, I implore you to use it instead of measuring cups especially for the sugar and flour. It makes a big difference. 

Salty Tahini Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from David Lebovitz and Danielle Oron

8 Tablespoons (115g, 4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup (120ml) tahini, stirred
1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
1/2 cup (90g) packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (150g) flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 package 12 ounces (340g) semisweet chocolate chips
Flaky salt
Beat the butter, tahini, granulated sugar and brown sugar with an eletric mixer, until fluffy. Add the egg, the yolk, and vanilla, and continue to mix just until the eggs are incorporated. Add the dry ingredients until just combined, then stir in the chocolate chips. Do not over mix. Cover the dough and refrigerate overnight.
Heat the oven to 325ºF. Form the cookies using a scoop or spoon about 2 tablespoons in size (a #30 disher is perfect). Place them evenly spaced on a parchment lined baking sheets about 3-inches apart. Bake the cookies, turning the baking sheet in the oven midway during baking, until the cookies are golden brown around the edges but still pale in the center, about 13 minutes. Remove from the oven, sprinkle cookies with flaky sea salt, and let the cookies cool on the baking sheet. Store in a tin or air tight container. 

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Our 5 interchangeable blades are made of rust resistant stainless steel so they retain their razor sharpness slice after slice. For your safety, the Fullstar Mandolin and Spiral Slicer comes with its own molded vegetable holder / handle so fingers never are exposed to the blades. The non-skid base of the 1.1L catch tray holds the unit firmly in place to prevent sliding on your table or countertop during use. The blades and the non-toxic, BPA-free plastic housing are all dishwasher safe to expedite clean-up and get you out of the faster for more family time.

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Southwest Chicken Soup by Meseidy

Memorial Day Weekend Photo Diary

I hope that you had a lovely long holiday weekend! Did you grill, go strawberry picking, get an ice cream cone, watch a parade?

The weather here was gorgeous; we enjoyed a lot of great food, as well as a ton of family time. No parades or ice cream cones, but we had some fantastic homemade pizza, cookies, a s’mores cake, burgers and hot dogs on the grill, a mountain of fruit salad, and corn on the cob, the boys got haircuts, we visited my grandpap in the hospital, and we took a drive to my in-laws’ where Joseph ran and giggled in the yard all afternoon, and Dominic crashed on my mom.

(Spoiler alert: Dominic isn’t a fan of grass!)

A peek at our weekend…

Cookie dough for compost cookies!

The BEST homemade pizza I've ever made!

(pizza recipe: the best pan pizza)

S'mores layer cake a la Milk Bar

(recipe coming soon!)

Changing a poopy diaper in a parking lot.

Joseph with my grandma

Joseph steering us through the grocery store

Me and Dominic - Memorial Day 2017

Taking a little holiday drive...

Dominic is not a fan of sitting in the grass

Dominic crashed!

Watching the hockey playoffs!

How was your weekend? 

The post Memorial Day Weekend Photo Diary appeared first on Brown Eyed Baker.

Whole Wheat Persimmon Bread with Walnuts and Brandy

If you’ve never tried persimmon bread, you’re in for a treat! Rich with butter and filled with dried fruit, nuts, spices, and brandy, this persimmon quick bread is perfect for the holidays! I’ve added a healthy twist by using whole wheat pastry flour to add some extra flavor and nutrition, but you’d never guess that this is a healthy persimmon bread recipe. 

This post from the archives was originally published in November 2010. I’m sharing it again today with updated photos and a printable recipe. Enjoy!

Like most places around the country, autumn in California’s San Joaquin Valley is a beautiful time of year.  While we might not have as many vibrant colored leaves as other places, we do have fruit trees.  Pomegranates, persimmons, lemons – these are our fall colors.  Take a drive through the country or just about any older neighborhood and you’re bound to run across some of these beautiful trees with their red, orange, and yellow fruit.

Persimmon trees are my fall favorite.  The trees drop their leaves as the fruit ripens, leaving nothing but the spectacular glowing orange orbs— it’s quite a beautiful sight.

Hachiya Persimmons |

More than just autumn decorations, persimmons are wonderful to bake with.  The persimmons I’m talking about today are the larger, acorn-shaped Hachiya variety.

Hachiya persimmons can be very astringent and not suitable for eating raw until they are very, very ripe.  But by the time they are ripe enough to eat, the flesh is gooey and gelatinous.  Because of this, I find that Hachiya persimmon pulp is better for baking than for eating raw (although some people do like to eat it with a spoon).

The smaller, squat variety of persimmon that has been showing up at more and more grocery stores lately is the Fuyu.  These can be eaten raw while they are still firm, and their mild sweet flavor makes them easy to love.

Whole Wheat Persimmon Bread Recipe |

I like to bake cookies when I get my hands on some persimmons, but this year I decided to try something a little different.  I saw that David Lebovitz had written about a persimmon bread from James Beard’s book Beard on Bread. I happen to have my mom’s old battered copy of that book (it’s a year older than I am, actually), so I dug it out and looked at the recipe.

James Beard’s Persimmon Bread is a butter-rich quick bread filled with fruit, nuts, and booze.  It sounded great to me and seemed like a good way to use up some of the brandy that I bought for the Caramel Apple Pear Cake.

Whole Wheat Persimmon Bread Recipe |

The original recipe makes enough batter for two large loaves, but since I was afraid I would devour an entire large loaf myself, I decided to cut the recipe in half and bake it in three mini loaf pans. That way I could give two away, and eat one small loaf myself.

I had a big bag of mixed dried fruit that I bought for the Panettone I was making for The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge, so I decided to use that instead of just plain raisins.  I also chose to use whole wheat pastry flour in place of all-purpose—I thought it would add a bit of extra flavor and nutrition.  The original recipe calls for mace as the main spice, but I used a combination of ground cinnamon and nutmeg.

A new thing I learned from Beard on Bread is that you can use the persimmon skin along with the pulp.  I have always peeled the fruit before making the puree, but this time I used the skin, too.  It was much easier and I liked the tiny flecks of orange that the skin added to the bread.

You must use very ripe Hachiya persimmons for the puree.  To ripen persimmons, just leave them sitting out at room temperature until they are very soft and feel like they are turning to liquid inside the skin.  As David Lebovitz says, a completely ripe Hachiya persimmon should feel like a water balloon about to burst.  To make the puree, just blend the persimmon pulp (and skin, if you like) until smooth.

I have shared links to other persimmon recipes at the bottom of this post—check them out if you’d like more ideas for cooking with both hachiya and fuyu persimmons.

Yields one large loaf or three mini loaves

Whole Wheat Persimmon Bread

Save Recipe

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1 cup chopped dried mixed fruit or raisins

1/3 cup brandy

1 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg (use freshly ground nutmeg, if possible)

1 1/4 cups sugar

1/2 cup melted butter

2 eggs, lightly beaten

1 cup persimmon puree (from approximately 2 very ripe Hachiya persimmons)

1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans


1. Preaheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter one 9×5-inch loaf pan or three mini loaf pans.

2. In a small bowl, stir together mixed fruit and brandy; set aside.

3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sugar.

4. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in melted butter, eggs, persimmon puree, brandy-fruit mixture, and chopped nuts. Stir with a wooden spoon until well combined.

5. Pour batter into a greased 9×5-inch loaf pan or divide between three mini loaf pans. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for one hour (40-45 minutes for mini loaves) or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

6. Cool on a wire rack. Store well-wrapped bread at room temperature for up to a week or freeze for longer storage.


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Kitchen equipment used in this recipe:
(Amazon affiliate links)

Related Recipes:

Hachiya Persimmon Recipes around the Web:

Fuyu Persimmon Recipes around the Web:

Whole Wheat Persimmon Bread Recipe |

Eggplant Caviar

Eggplant lovers, unite! This deliciousness, known as Eggplant Caviar, from the heart of the Caucasus, will leave your wanting more and more of it after first try, because it is one of the best eggplant dishes on Earth, I dare say. It is essentially a spread, made with roasted eggplants, onions, and sometimes with tomatoes and peppers added to it (in some variations, it is just eggplants).

“Caviar from eggplant? Wait, isn’t caviar the roe of sturgeon?,” you may righteously ask. True, the real caviar does come from the sturgeon of the Caspian Sea. But because the delicacy comes with a hefty price that not everyone can afford, eggplant caviar, or “a poor man’s caviar” was born at one point in time in history. Just like with the sturgeon caviar, you would spread the eggplant caviar on a slice of bread and enjoy, plus, eggplant, too, has roe-like seeds, so, these may have contributed to the etymology of the dish, with “caviar” in the name.

When was eggplant caviar born? Unknown. Where? Believed to be somewhere in the Caucasus where eggplants are plentiful and are used in a myriad of dishes. Where exactly in the Caucasus?  Undocumented, too, although many sources claim the dish to be of Georgian origin. However, it is just as widely known in the neighboring Azerbaijan, too (which is by the Caspian Sea from where the real caviar comes), so go figure.

Eggplant Caviar |

continue reading

The post Eggplant Caviar appeared first on AZ Cookbook.

Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies

Olive oil can be a wonderful ingredient to bake with and I’ve used it in great success with a wide variety of cakes. You might not expect to see it turn up in a batch of chocolate chip cookies, however. These Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies use only olive oil – not butter or other vegetable oils – to create a subtly sophisticated twist on a classic.

The key to success with this recipe is picking out good quality olive oil that you like the flavor of. I’ve had some high quality olive oils that simply weren’t my favorites, so I would not want those flavors in my cookies. I used a California olive oil that has a bright acidity and a buttery, nutty flavor that worked well here. The bottom line is that you need to like your olive oil, so taste it before it goes into your cookie dough! The dough mixes up very easily, since no creaming is necessary. It is fairly stiff and, because it uses oil and not butter, it can be a bit difficult to stir in the chips. You might have to tuck in a chip here or there as you shape the dough into balls to bake them. That said, there are plenty of chocolate chips, so don’t worry if you lose a few.

The cookies are large and are baked at a relatively low temperature that allows for a thick, bakery-style cookie. They won’t brown as much as cookies made with butter, so you can’t rely on color alone to check for doneness. The cookies should be just set around the edge (you can touch them with your fingertip) and should not look wet in the center. If the cookies are firm in the center, they’re probably overdone. The cookies will continue to set up as they cool, finishing with a dense, chewy center and a crisp edge. You’ll be able to detect a brightness from the olive oil that pairs well with the chocolate chips. You can opt for darker chocolate chips in this recipe (though it isn’t overly sweet because of the olive oil), if you prefer them to semisweet. The cookies will keep well for a couple of days after baking if stored in an airtight container. .

Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 1/8 cups all purpose flour (2 cups + 2 tbsp)
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
In a large bowl, whisk together olive oil, sugars, egg, egg yolk and vanilla until smooth and well-combined. Stir in the flour mixture, along with the chocolate chips. Shape the dough into 2-inch balls and arrange on prepared baking sheet, leaving about 2-inches between the cookies to allow for spread (they don’t spread as much as some cookies do).
Bake for 16-18 minutes, until the cookies are set on the edges and do not look wet in the center. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes about 24 large cookies.

The Basque Culinary World Prize

Do you know a chef who is making a difference? The Basque Culinary World Prize is a competition not based on the typical achievements of the kitchen and dining room, but on  a ‘transformative project’ in gastronomy that has had a positive impact on society. This could be through culinary innovation, a commitment to social responsibility, sustainability or the economic development of their community. Nominees for the prize must have a background as a professional chef though they don’t currently need to be a chef and they can be from anywhere in the world. 

The winner will receive €100,000 to devote to a social project of their choice that demonstrates the wider role of the chef in society.

Credit: Cassie Borreson 

Back in March I attended an event with Dominique Crenn and Joxe Mari Aizega, the Head of the Basque Culinary Center, the host of the competition, to kick off the nominations in the US. They both emphasized the importance of setting a positive example and how crucial it is for chefs to have a public voice. This is the second year of the competition and they are looking for as many nominations as possible. 

Do you know a chef who is making a difference? Please take a moment to nominate them. Nominations are being accepted though May 19th and then between June 12-14 the Prize Committee will decide which nominations meet the judging criteria and finalize a list of the 10 strongest candidates to forward to the Prize Jury. 

Credit: Cassie Borreson 

The Prize Jury will be chaired by Joan Roca of Spain and will include some of the most well-known chefs in the world — Ferran Adrià of Spain, Michel Bras of France, Massimo Bottura of Italy, Dominique Crenn of the US, Yoshihiro Narisawa of Japan and Enrique Olvera of Mexio. Leaders from related disciplines will join the prize jury as well including celebrated Mexican novelist Laura Esquivel (author of Like Water for Chocolate); Kirmen Uribe, renowned Basque novelist, poet and playwright; and Cristina Francini, an expert on International Law and Human Rights.

Learn about the incredible work of the past winner, Maria Fernanda Di Giacobbe

Food, Friends, and Moms by PW Food & Friends