Canada 150 Sugar Cookies

Canada 150 Sugar Cookies – Candy Coated Culinista

Since its Canada’s 150th birthday this was my push to do something I have never done before. This is the first time I have ever attempted to make a sugar cookie as I seem to have an aversion to rolling out doughs; whether cookie or pie. My cooking dreams have been filled of me making sugar cookies for two plus years now. Visions of these perfectly decorated cookies that I see in the shops and I just never tackled it in fear of a terrible finished product.

Yield/Serving: 16-20 cookies depending on size
Prep Time: 15 min.
Cook Time: 12 min.
Difficulty level is: Medium, and time consuming and much patience

• ¾ cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
• ½ tsp baking powder
• Pinch of seas salt
• 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
• ¼ granulated sugar
• 1 egg yolk
• ½ tsp vanilla extract
• ½ tsp almond extract
• 3 tbsp of milk
Red Icing
• ¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
• 2 tsp milk
• ½ tsp vanilla extract
• 1 tsp red food colouring
White Icing
• ¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
• 2 tsp milk

1. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and sea salt.
2. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together using the paddle attachment.
3. Once the butter and sugar is fluffy and light and pale in colour, add in the egg yolk and extracts until well incorporated.
4. Pour in over half the flour mixture and combine and then add the remaining flour mixture remaining.
5. Add milk and allow the dough to come together.
6. Preheat oven to 350°F.
7. Place parchment paper onto cookie sheets.
8. Sprinkle flour onto a marble pastry board or floured clean counter top and over rolling pin and roll out dough.
9. Cut out cookies and place on the cookie sheets.
10. Gather the dough scraps and re-roll and cut more cookies.
11. Continue step 10 until all the dough has been used up.
12. Place cookies on the cookie sheet in the freezer for 5 minutes.
13. Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes, until the edges of the cookies are golden brown.
14. Let the cookies remain on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before moving them to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
15. Prepare the icing and first outline the cookies and let that icing dry before flooding the interior with icing and then let that dry. (Ensure the icing isn’t too runny as it will run off the cookie. There is a subtle balance regarding the consistency of the border icing and flooding icing. You may want to add a touch more milk after doing the borders to get the icing to flood across the cookie easier.)

• Add more or less milk depending on how your dough is coming together.
• Don’t add vanilla extract to white icing as then the icing will lose its white colour.
• You can make the cookies ahead of time and decorate the next day.
• Sprinkle flour onto cookie cutters to minimize sticking.
• Remember you will need to set aside a nice chunk of time to decorate.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I made a test run recipe to see how everything would come together and I was almost annoyed. I knew I couldn’t use my own recipe as I have no clue how to make a sugar cookie and yet the recipe didn’t turn out well at all. The cookies were floury and I wasted way to much butter, egg yolks and flour; which is why I could make the meringue cookies recipe last week. I had 7 egg whites to use from all the fails for this recipe. Since I had already purchased two specialty cookie cutters from the U.S. months ago and I wasn’t going to waste that money; I just persevered. In the end I used another recipe and it still was too crumbly and the dough didn’t come together. Was it a humidity thing? Not today as it wasn’t humid; so I did my own thing and adjusted to my needs. For the next time I have to work on my finer lettering and decorating skills; but for my first go I’m happy with how it turned out. These are decent enough to give away to my friends for Canada Day celebrations. Everyone enjoyed the look of the cookies and even figured out the shape of Canada. The Ontario cookie shape was a litter harder to distinguish; even with my “x marks the sport” on Toronto where we live lol. Overall the Canadians did well in my book and these were not to sugary, which I liked. I’m excited to make another batch soon and keep refining my skills as I have 50 plus cookie cutters to my name and they’ve been in my cooking box for 7 years now unused sadly.

Canada 150 Sugar Cookies – Candy Coated Culinista

Canada 150 Sugar Cookies – Candy Coated Culinista

Meringue Nests with Rhubarb Curd

Meringue Nests with Rhubarb Curd – Candy Coated Culinista

A trip to St. Lawrence Market had me excited to use a particular ingredient I have wanted to cook with for years. I have searched at many different markets over the past 3 years all over the GTA and I could never find them. I was always being told, “We had them yesterday or just sold the last bunch.” Not to mention there is this fear associated with rhubarb as the leaves are poisonous; which of course had me a little apprehensive. Let’s face it I have ackee all the time and I’m actually consuming the poisonous pieces if they were picked to early and here I’m not even touching the rhubarb leaves, so those fears were quelled and I carried on.

Yield/Serving: 750 ml to 1 liter
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 45 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

Meringue Nests
Yield/Serving: 20
Prep Time: 15 min.
Cook Time: 2 hrs.
Difficulty level is: Medium

• 2 eggs
• ¾ cup granulated sugar
• 2 cups of rhubarb, shopped, about 6 stalks
• ¼ cup water
• Juice from half a lemon
• ¼ cup cold unsalted butter, cut into pats
• 7 egg whites
• 1 cup granulated sugar
• 2 tbsp cornstarch
• 2 tsp white vinegar
• 2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Whisk eggs with 1/ cup of sugar in a medium sized bowl.
2. Using a medium sized saucepan add rhubarb with the remaining ¼ cup of sugar and water over medium-high heat.
3. Bring to a boil and then reduce to medium heat for 8 minutes.
4. Then whisk rhubarb until smooth and squeeze in lemon juice.
5. Ladle in the rhubarb into the egg mixture and slowly incorporate.
6. Add mixture back into the saucepan over low heat and continue to cook for 10 minutes, stirring constantly using a wooden spoon until mixture thickens.
7. Remove mixture from heat and stir in pats of butter one at a time allowing each pat to melt before adding the next.
8. Blender mixture for 30 to 45 seconds to achieve a smoother texture.
9. Pour into a jar and place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd.
1. Pre-heat over to 250°F.
2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
3. Using an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, beat eggs on high until soft peaks are formed about 2 minutes.
4. Slowly add in sugar 1 tablespoon at a time until stiff glossy peak have formed. About 2 more minutes.
5. Beat in the cornstarch, vinegar and vanilla until combined.
6. Pipe meringue into nests and bake for 2 hours.
7. Turn off the oven and let them dry in the oven for one more hour and leave on the parchment paper to completely cool.

• Blend the curd just before pouring into a jar to cool to achieve a smoother texture if desired.
• Let meringue cool in oven over night.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
Rhubarb is a fibrous vegetable and I highly recommend blending the curd, especially if you are using it in a tart or topping a pavlova, meringue cookies, macaron, pancakes or crepes. You’re really going to want that smooth creamy texture to the curd. The meringue cookies were crispy, chewy and marshmallowy and with the addition of the tart silky curd it balances out the sweetness of the cookies. I loved that I got to practice my piping skills and it was enjoyed by all who had and this is a perfect summer recipe. I really wish I knew someone who had rhubarb in the backyard garden though as these sell at a premium. I paid 3.99 a pound, which came to $9.50 for seven stalks. As this has such a small season a splurge once a season is ok; but still it’s so pricy. If you want an eye-catching seasonal dessert to catch the eye; this is a must make.

Easter Egg Brownie Bars

Easter Egg Brownie Bars – Candy Coated Culinista

Yield/Serving: 12
Prep Time: 15 min.
Cook Time: 25 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy


• 2 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour
• 1 ½ tsp baking powder
• 1 tsp salt
• 1 ½ stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
• 1 ¾ cup golden brown sugar, packed
• 2 eggs
• 2 tsp vanilla extract
• ¾ cup whoppers, coarsely chopped
• ½ cup whoppers, to place on top

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Spray 9” x 9” pan with non-stick cooking spray.
3. In a medium bowl, add flour, baking powder and salt and mix together.
4. Cream butter and sugar using an electric mixer at medium speed until well combined.
5. Add eggs and vanilla and incorporate.
6. On low speed at the flour mixture until combined.
7. Fold in whoppers and then pour batter into baking pan.
8. Bake for 25-30 min. or until a cake tester inserted comes out clean.
9. Let cool, cut and serve.

• If you prefer your cookies more chewy then under bake them by 2-5 minutes.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
As usual too sweet for me; but enjoyed by others. I like that bars give off that Easter feel. This was a mix of a brownie and a cookie and great for children and adults alike.

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Sandwich Cookies

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Sandwhich Cookies - Candy Coated Culinista

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Sandwhich Cookies – Candy Coated Culinista

I made these cookies for a friend as a part of their birthday dinner. I just love preparing a meal as part of a birthday celebration.

Yield/Serving: 14-16 cookies (7-8 sandwich cookies)
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 9 – 11 min
Difficulty level is: Medium

• 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
• ¼ tsp baking soda
• ½ tsp salt
• ¼ cup butter, at room temperature
• ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
• ¼ cup granulated sugar
• ¼ cup golden brown sugar
• 2 eggs, at room temperature
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
Cookie Dough
• 3 tbsp butter; softened
• 3 tbsp creamy peanut butter
• 3 tbsp golden brown sugar
• 3 tbsp all-purpose flour
• 3 tbsp confectioners’’ sugar
• 1/8 tsp salt
• 1 ½ tbsp heavy cream
• ½ tsp vanilla extract
• Semi-sweet chocolate chips, to decorate

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
3. Using a medium sized bowl whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
4. Using an electric mixer with the whisk attachment, whisk together the butter, peanut butter, sugar and brown sugar until creamy, about 2 to 3 minutes.
5. Add in the eggs and vanilla and slowly beat in the flour mixture.
6. Once the mixture has reach a dough consistency roll into 1” sized balls and arrange on cookie sheets.
7. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown.
8. Let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to let cool completely.
Cookie Dough
1. Using the electric mixer beat together the butter, peanut butter, brown sugar until light and creamy, about 2 to 3 minutes.
2. Add flour, confectioners’ sugar and salt until incorporated.
3. Add in the heavy cream and vanilla extract until light and fluffy, about 2 more minutes.
4. Add some cookie dough to the flat side of the cookies and top with another cookie.
5. Decorate the sides of the exposed cookie dough with chocolate chips.
6. Repeat until all the cookies are filled.
7. Serve

• You can add the chocolate chips into the cookie dough if you prefer; but I like the esthetic of the chocolate chips along the sides.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
These were mentioned in passing as a favourite cookie and I just took note and filed that info away until the right time. Reviews were “these are awesome and you’re the best” and “I never expected these on top of dinner.” I also tucked one away for a co-worker who loves sweets. The review was “surprisingly soft; as I was expecting a firmer cookie”. I enjoyed a halfie (half of a sandwich cookie) and it was soft and very tasty; as my first time making this it came out so good.

Confetti Cookies with Birthday Cake Crumbs

Confetti Cookies with Birthday Cake Crumbs - Candy Coated Culinista

Confetti Cookies with Birthday Cake Crumbs – Candy Coated Culinista

For my birthday this past weekend I made myself some birthday cookies. I wanted a simpler non-cake recipe to just make life easier on myself and this recipe fit the bill as I wanted a special cookie. I have had the Toronto Cooks cookbook since its release in the fall of 2014. I have my list of must makes and yet I haven’t actually tried a recipe yet because these are signature recipes from Toronto’s best restaurants; which means some of these ingredients may not be the easiest to find when I want or are a tad pricy. When I first saw this recipe from Momofuku Milk Bar (a place on my must visit list) I had no idea who Christina Tosi was; a year plus later and I she is a judge on Masterchef and when I revisit this cookbook I recognize her face and get some context. It’s funny how somethings come together like this because if I had made this recipe before I wouldn’t have appreciated the recipe as I didn’t know all that Christina Tosi is in the culinary world.

Slightly altered From Toronto Cooks

Yield/Serving: 16 big cookies
Prep Time: 30 min.
Inactive Time: 1 hour to 1 week
Cook Time: 18 min.
Difficulty level is: Medium

Birthday Cake Crumb
• ¼ cup granulated sugar
• 1/3 tbsp golden brown sugar
• 6 tbsp cake/pastry flour
• ¼ tsp baking powder
• ¼ tsp kosher salt
• 2 tbsp confetti sprinkles
• 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
• 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
Confetti Cookies
• 2 sticks butter, as room temperature
• 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
• 1 tbsp corn syrup
• 2 eggs
• 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
• 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
• 2/3 cup milk powder
• 2 tsp cream of tartar
• 1 tsp baking powder
• 1 ¼ tsp kosher salt
• ¼ cup rainbow sprinkles
• birthday cake crumb recipe

Birthday Cake Crumb
1. Preheat oven to 300°F.
2. Line a baking sheet with a silpat.
3. Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment mix the sugars, flour, baking powder, salt and sprinkles on low speed until well combined.
4. Add in the oil and vanilla extract and mix until the ingredients start to become moist and form clusters.
5. Drop clusters onto silpat and bake for 20 minutes, breaking up into cluster occasionally.
6. Remove from the oven and let cool on baking sheet completely before removing.
7. Place in an air-tight container.
Confetti Cookies
8. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
9. Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment cream the butter, sugar and corn syrup on medium-high speed for 2 – 3 minutes; scrapping down the sides as needed.
10. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat for 7 – 8 minutes; until the batter is fluffy and pale.
11. Reduce speed to low and add flour, milk powder, cream of tartar, baking powder, salt and sprinkles.
12. Mix until dough just comes together; but no longer than 1 minute.
13. Scrape down the sides and add the cake crumbs on low speed, for about 30 seconds.
14. Using a tablespoon and scoop dough onto parchment paper 4” apart and pat the tops down.
15. Wrap the baking sheet with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour and up to 1 week. (Do not bake a room temperature as they will not bake properly.)
16. Preheat oven to 375°F.
17. Baking one pan at a time bake for 18 minutes. The cookies should be a light brown and the tops puffed and crackled.
18. Remove from the oven and let remain on the parchment paper for 1 more minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack to cool.
19. Repeat until all cookies are baked.

• An easy cream of tartar substitute is for every ½ tsp of baking soda use 1 tsp of lemon juice or white vinegar.
• Crumbs will keep for up to 1 week in an airtight container or for 1 month in the freezer.
• Cookies will keep for 5 days in an airtight container.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This recipe has lots of steps and requires some accuracy, yet it didn’t feel like it took that long; but it kind of did. The cookies itself were crunchy on the outside and soft in the centre. The cookie crumbs didn’t really form clusters but there were still a great crunchy addition to the recipe. The shelf life wasn’t 5 days as listed as I’m on day 4 of my leftover test cookie and it’s pretty hard. For me the shelf life is more at the 2 to 3 day mark; but they won’t last that long as all of my cookies were gone by day 2. However; if you like your cookies on the harder side then none of this will really matter to you I just prefer a softer cookie. I also didn’t use milk powder as this is an expensive ingredient that comes in big quantities so I skipped this ingredient and the recipe turned out good. I also thought I had cream of tartar on hand as this is a baking staple ingredient for me and I had actually run out. With all of the above being said this was a great recipe and easy to follow and even all of these adjustments the cookies still turned out well. I’m not sure if it’s because I feel comfortable enough in my baking that I can make adjustments on the fly and still expect good results or this recipe has a larger margin of error lol. In any event this is a great recipe I will be making again and I could see myself baking these as an alternative to a birthday cake again.

Confetti Cookies with Birthday Cake Crumbs - Candy Coated Culinista

Confetti Cookies with Birthday Cake Crumbs – Candy Coated Culinista

Confetti Cookies with Birthday Cake Crumbs - Candy Coated Culinista

Confetti Cookies with Birthday Cake Crumbs – Candy Coated Culinista

Bouchon Bakery Chocolate Chunk and Chip Cookies

Bouchon Bakery Chocolate Chip & Chunk Cookies - Candy Coated Culinista

Bouchon Bakery Chocolate Chip & Chunk Cookies – Candy Coated Culinista

I pretty much have my own chocolate cookie recipe squared away, but it doesn’t mean I don’t mind trying others recipes. Sometimes other chefs and home chefs alike put in different ingredients that I wouldn’t think of and as I am always striving to learn and grow I gave this recipe a try.

From Bouchon bakery – Sebastien Rouxel & Thomas Keller

Yield/Serving: 12 cookies
Prep Time: 20 min.
Cook Time: 16 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

• 238 grams all-purpose flour
• ½ tsp baking soda
• 1 tsp salt
• 134 grams dark brown sugar
• 1 3/4 tsp unsulfured blackstrap molasses
• 104 g sugar
• 167 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
• 2/3 cup bittersweet (70-72%) chocolate chunks
• 1/2 cup chocolate chips

1. Whisk together flour, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.
2. Whisk together the brown sugar, molasses and granulated sugar breaking up any lumps.
3. Using a mixer with the paddle attachment cream the butter until it holds a peak when the paddle is lifted, and add in the sugar mixture and mix for 3 to 4 minutes on medium speed until fluffy. Don’t forget to scrape the sides of the bowl.
4. On low-speed add in the eggs and mix for 15-30 seconds. Don’t overmix or the cookies will spread out too much and scrape the sides of the bowl.
5. Add in half the dry ingredients and mix for 15-30 seconds and then add the remaining dry ingredients until just combined.
6. Cover with saran wrap and chill the dough for 30 minutes.
7. Preheat oven to 325°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
8. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions and place of the cookie sheets leaving space for spreading.
9. Bake for 16 minutes, until golden brown.
10. Let cool for five minutes on the pan and then transfer to a wire cooling rack.
11. Serve

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
This was one of the few recipes I have done where a scale was required, but I learned Bouchon Bakery is all about exact measurement with certain ingredients. To be honest, I was a little underwhelmed with this recipe, as it was a Thomas Keller recipe and people rave about him I was expecting something out of this world. I personally like my cookies better as these weren’t anything special. This was a comment I heard from my testers. I will say though that these were the roundest cookies I’ve ever made. I was worried that the molasses was creating too much of a puddle in the oven, but they turned out perfectly round and cooked. I would use this as a base recipe just for the roundness of the cookie factor and put my spin on it to ramp up the flavour.

Bouchon Bakery Chocolate Chip & Chunk Cookies - Candy Coated Culinista

Bouchon Bakery Chocolate Chip & Chunk Cookies – Candy Coated Culinista

Easter Whopper Robin Eggs & Butterscotch Cookies

Easter Whopper Robin Eggs & Butterscotch Cookies - Candy Coated Culinista

Easter Whopper Robin Eggs & Butterscotch Cookies – Candy Coated Culinista

Easter is one of my favourite times of the year. As a candy lover this is a holiday where there is the most non-chocolate candies available and I even enjoy the chocolate covered malted candy.

Yield/Serving: Approx. 12 cookies
Prep Time: 10 min.
Cook Time: 8-10 min.
Difficulty level is: Easy

• ¾ cup butter, at room temperature
• ¾ cup light brown sugar
• ¼ cup granulated sugar
• 1 large egg
• 2 tsp vanilla extract
• 2 tsp cornstarch
• 1 tsp baking soda
• 1 ¼ cups all purpose flour
• ¾ cup pastry flour
• ½ cup or Whoppers Robin Eggs Malted Milk candy, crushed
• ¼ cup butterscotch chips

1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F.
2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
3. Using a stand mixer, cream butter and sugars until fluffy.
4. Add in the egg and vanilla until combined.
5. Add in cornstarch and baking soda until combined.
6. Slowly add in the flour.
7. Mix in the crushed Robin Eggs Whoppers and butterscotch chips.
8. Roll a tablespoon sized ball of dough onto the baking sheet.
9. Bake for 8 – 10 minutes.
10. Let cool on a baking sheet for 5 minutes.
11. Transfer to wire rack.

• These cookies stayed soft for four days later and maybe longer if they weren’t all gone already.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
I loved how these cookies turned out and I have a new favourite cookie. I have loved Ovaltine since my childhood and this soft cookie with the crunch of the whoppers and the candy shell was amazing. These cookies look and taste how I like my cookies: flat, thin, round and equally sized. I was questioning the addition of cornstarch in the recipe I saw but I decided to go with it and then alter the recipe. I found the cookie to be lighter and airier, however I am not sure if this is attributed to the cornstarch or not. This is also a great new base and I will add whatever I want to this recipe. Mr. C. Liked these so much he wouldn’t let them go to his work place and he graciously allowed me (the baker) to have three cookies from the batch lol.

M&M Cookie Bars

M&M Cookie Bars - Candy Coated Culinista

M&M Cookie Bars – Candy Coated Culinista

Sometimes I have leftover candy. This doesn’t usually happen at home but when I have leftovers I like to incorporate them into a recipe.

From Rustic Joyful Food Blog

• 1 cup soft butter
• 1 cup white sugar
• 1 cup brown sugar
• 1 tsp. kosher salt
• 2 eggs
• 1/2 tsp. baking soda
• 2 – 1/4 cups of all purpose flour
• 2 cups M&M’s candies

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Line a 9” x 13” baking dish with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
3. Using a mixer with the whisk attachment cream butter, salt and eggs one at a time.
4. Now add the flour, baking soda and M&M’s until just combined.
5. Spread mixture onto pan and bake for 18-22 minutes. (Per instructions these will be a little underbaked, as that’s the way she like them.)

Please Enjoy

My thoughts
For me these were way too under baked so I baked them for a little longer. These would be perfect for the kids and this is such an easy recipe they could be little sous chef.

Cupcake Diaries: Yummy Stuff

Cupcake Diaries: Yummy Stuff Bakery - Candy Coated Culinista

Cupcake Diaries: Yummy Stuff Bakery – Candy Coated Culinista

Location: 1660 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario, 416-531-9732

When I can hit a few quest shops in one trip is always a good day for me. When I visited Gloryhole Doughnuts; half a block away was Yummy Stuff and I couldn’t have been happier to visit.

Since it was the week of my birthday I choose a few selections: Pecan Lace Cookies, Raspberry Cupcake with Raspberry Buttercream, Gingerbread Cookie and a Sugar Cookie that said “Happy Birthday” on it. The Pecan Lace Sandwhich Cookie was light and airy and didn’t taste like a dessert to me, even with the buttercream in the middle. The Gingerbread and Sugar cookies were quite tasty and my favourite items from the bakery. Mr. C. had the cupcake and he wasn’t really that impressed as the cupcake fell apart in his hands. It seems that the only thing keeping the cupcake together was the baking liner. As for the buttercream he felt the same way, it was just ok and nothing special. For these four items it came to about $20 with tax; which I found to be a tad pricy.

I went here specifically for the cupcakes, but that in my opinion isn’t the best thing on their menu. I visited based on an article of the Best Cupcakes in Toronto, but somehow I think some other bakeries and shops have come up in the meantime to eclipse these cupcakes, including my own on a good day. Go for the cookies, lemon bars, and brownies and other treats I say.

Eggnog Trifle

Eggnog Trifle - Candy Coated Culinista

Eggnog Trifle – Candy Coated Culinista

I made my first trip to Honest Ed’s that I can remember, even though I know my parents used to frequent there when they first came to Canada as the prices couldn’t be beat. I’d say that today prices still can’t be beat as I know many a university student who frequents Honest Ed’s. When I went in it probably looked the exact same way as when parents shopped here and that’s fine with me. I came to Honest Ed’s to see what deals were to be had and I found something I always wanted. Mr. C. went one way and I of course gravitated to the cooking section where I found my Trifle Bowl. I remember trifle from my childhood and of course that episode of Friends “The One Where Ross Got High” where Rachel messes up the Trifle for Thanksgiving Dinner. I never thought to make one myself because two people can’t finish off a trifle themselves; but now I had mini trifle bowls along with the regular size one and no excuse but to make a Christmas trifle.

Yield/Serving: 2-4
Prep Time: 15 min.
Cook Time: 30 min.
Difficulty level is: Medium

Amaretti Cookies – makes 24 cookies
• 1& 1/3 cups ground almonds or whole almonds
• 2 egg whites
• ¾ cups granulated sugar
• ¼ tsp almond extract
Custard – makes about 1 cup
• 1 ¼ cups egg nog
• 2 large egg yolks
• 2 tbsp cornstarch
• 2 tbsp confectioner’s sugar
• 1 tbsp dark rum
• ¼ tsp vanilla extract
Pastry Cream – makes 2 cups
• 4 egg yolks
• ½ cup granulated sugar
• ¼ tsp cornstarch
• ¼ tsp kosher salt
• 1 ½ cups eggnog
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
• 4 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
• Raspberries
• Blueberries
• strawberries

Amaretti Cookies
1. Pre-heat oven to 300°F.
2. Place whole almonds in a food processor and grind until a fine consistency is achieved, if you don’t have or can find ground almonds.
3. Using an electric mixer with the whisk attachment beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.
4. Add in the sugar a little at a time until stiff peak form.
5. Add in the almond extract.
6. Gently fold in the ground almonds.
7. Place the mixture into a piping bag and pipe cookies into a lady finger shape and bake for about 20 minutes, or until firm to the touch.
Eggnog Custard
8. Pour the eggnog into a saucepan and heat, but not boil.
9. Using a medium size bowl put in the egg yolks, cornstarch and sugar in and whisk together until well incorporated.
10. Pour the warm milk over the egg mixture and whisk until combined.
11. Return to the pan and stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens, but do not let boil.
12. Pour mixture into a boil and add in the rum and vanilla extract.
13. Let cool.
Eggnog Pastry Cream
14. Using a medium saucepan whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch and salt.
15. Whisk in the eggnog and cook over medium-high heat whisking constantly until the mixture has thickened to a consistency of pudding. 2 to 4 minutes.
16. Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla and then the butter until melted and smooth.
17. Cover pastry cream and refrigerate until completely cool, at least 2 hours and up to 2 days.
Trifle Assembly
18. Place amaretti cookies along the side on a trifle bowl.
19. Pour a small amount of pastry cream in. (enough to hold up the cookies)
20. Place in a layer of blackberries.
21. Layer more pastry cream.
22. Place a layer of raspberries.
23. Make a layer of amaretti cookies.
24. Layer more pastry cream.
25. Place a layer of blueberries.
26. Layer the final layer of pastry cream and decorate with additional berries.

• If you let the custard sit for more than one day I noticed it was harder than I expected. Add in a little custard or eggnog and thin a little to get it back to that pudding consistency.
• You can layer this anyway you like and also using any of your favourite fruits.
• There will be leftover amaretti cookies.

Please Enjoy

My thoughts

I found my ground almonds weren’t fine enough from the food processor as they still seemed too big for the cookie. Next time I will buy ground almonds which will be a finer consistency.
The recipe I followed said to use a custard for the trifle but I found the custard was too runny for the trifle, however if you prefer a custard to a pastry cream use that. I use the custard recipe to help thin out the pastry cream when it got too thick for me.
This was not a pretty looking trifle to me and I had already cast it off when Mr. C. said he wanted to taste it and he said “it’s taste great, why are you so hard on yourself”. I took a small piece and it did taste great. The creaminess of the pastry cream mixed in with the crunch of the cookies and the freshness of the fruit it was delightful and with the taste of eggnog it’s a great Christmas dessert.

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