Holiday Entertaining Guide - Page 18 - Bake batches of Christmas memories (5)

Holiday Entertaining Guide
- Page 18
Bake batches of Christmas memories (5)
saucepan, bring the cream and honey to a boil over medium heat, then remove from the heat. Pour a third of the hot cream into the melted chocolate. Using a spatula, stir briskly to incorporate the cream.The chocolate might look grainy and split at this point — don’t worry if it does. Repeat twice more, adding another third of the cream at a time.The chocolate should be smooth and glossy. Add the 2 tablespoons of softened butter and stir well.

2. Use the spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl and place a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the ganache to prevent a skin from forming. Leave to sit at room temperature for at least 6 hours, preferably 12 to 24 hours.

3. Make the cookies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together until just combined. Leave this to rest for 20 minutes.

4. Over low heat, melt the remaining 9 ounces chocolate and the 3 1/2 tablespoons of butter together in a pan, stirring until wellcombined. Whisk the melted chocolate into the egg and sugar mixture. Once incorporated, stir in the flour, baking powder and salt. Cover with plastic wrap directly touching the surface until the mixture sets, about 10 to 20 minutes (the cooler the spot the less time it takes, but do not be tempted to refrigerate it).

5. While the dough is resting, use a pencil to draw 30 circles 11/4 inches in diameter (about the size of a 50-cent piece) on each of 2 sheets of parchment paper, allowing room between them for the cookies to spread. Flip parchment over on 2 baking sheets, so the pencil drawings are face down. Use a piping bag and tip (or a resealable plastic bag with a small hole cut in one corner for the tip) and pipe out the mixture to cover each of the circles. Use a wet finger or the back of a spoon to smooth the tops of these mounds, as needed.

6. Bake 10 minutes, or until the cookies feel crisp on the edges but are still soft in the middle.The surfaces will look cracked. Leave to cool completely on the baking sheets.

7. To assemble, match the cookies in equalsized pairs. Use a piping bag and tip, a plastic bag and tip, or just a small spoon to portion out about 1 teaspoon of the ganache on to the center of the flat side of half the cookies.Then top with the remaining cookies and gently press the ganache to the edges.The cookies will keep for 3 days at room temperature in an airtight container.

Per cookie sandwich: 127 calories; 8 g fat; 5 g saturated fat; 22 mg cholesterol; 1 g protein; 12 g carbohydrate; 8 g sugar; 1 g fiber; 19 mg sodium; 19 mg calcium

Recipe from “Claridge’s:The Cookbook,” by Martyn Nail andMeredith Erickson

Sweet slices (tranches sucrées)
Yield: About 36 cookies
• 7 tablespoons butter, chilled and diced
• 12/3 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
• 3/4 cup superfine sugar, see note
• 2 eggs, divided
• 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
• 2 tablespoons sanding sugar (decorating sugar)

Note: To make superfine sugar, place granulated sugar in a blender and process on high for about 15 seconds, until almost powdery.

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment, or grease it with additional butter.

2. Place the chilled butter and flour in a mixing bowl and rub together until the mixture resembles bread crumbs. Stir in the sugar, 1 egg and the baking soda. Do not add water, because the dough should be firm. Knead the dough briefly until it all comes together.

3. Dust the counter with flour and roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/4 inch. Beat the