Throughout the week of December 20, Naomi Lewin talks with Rose Levy Beranbaum, the chef and author of Rose's Heavenly Cakes and Rose’s Christmas Cookies to explore Christmas cookie recipes based on Tchaikovsky’s beloved ballet, The Nutcracker. From gingerbread to sugar plums, expect a new recipe – and some insider baking tips – every day this week at 10:30 a.m.
December 24, 2010 Tiny Fruitcake Gems Listen Now >>More Information In America, fruitcake is so closely associated with Christmas that it almost becomes a necessary part of the celebration, even for those who don't like it! Here is a moist, flavorful, miniature version, which features more cake than candied fruit, that everyone loves. These gems keep for months, becoming ever more mellow, but they are also scrumptious right after baking. Get a head start on your holiday baking by making these in the fall. They are great for Thanksgiving feasts as well as Christmas and ship beautifully to loved ones who can't be home for the holidays.
December 23, 2010 Ginger Pennies Listen Now >>More Information Rose Levy Beranbaum's first Christmas present and first cookbook as a new bride was, at her request, The Joy of Cooking. It was from that book that she made her first cake (spice cake), her first bread (white bread), and her first pie (angel pie). Each was a great success; the book was everything its title promised. To this day, her favorite cookie recipe from Joy is for ginger thins, which inspired her recipe. These lovable little wafers are truly pennies from heaven: incredibly delicate, crispy, gingery, and addictive. Don't be tempted to make them too large as they will lose their unique daintiness.
December 22, 2010 Chocolate-Pistachio Marzipan Spirals Listen Now >>More Information Lora Brody, author of Cooking with Memories, developed these spirals from two recipes in Rose Levy Beranbaum's The Cake Bible: pistachio marzipan and ganache. It was Rose's fondest hope that people would use her recipes to create their own specialties in this way, and she is delighted that the silky-rich chocolate ganache, rolled together with chewy pistachio marzipan, is a combination that tastes every bit as good as it looks. Thank you, Lora. These candies are terrific to have on hand to serve with espresso to friends who drop in with holiday gifts and wishes.
December 21, 2010 Traditional Rolled Sugar Cookies Listen Now >>More Information These sugar cookies can be as simple or as decorative as your fancy dictates. The dough is ideal for rolling and cutting into special shapes. Now is the time to get out your favorite Christmas cookie cutters. For an extra-special touch, add to your loved ones' cookie cutter collection by tying one or two cutters with gold ribbons to the cookie tins when you give the cookies as gifts.
December 20, 2010 Mocha Cocoa Brownies Listen Now >>More Information There are many wonderful recipes for this American classic, and the truth is, chocolate doesn't ever get better than in the form of a brownie. Everyone has a favorite brownie recipe; in fact, I have several. But this one really is tops. It is chewy yet slightly spongy and cakey - a miracle of textures. Brigitte Weil, who created and ran Dean & Deluca's bakery department for years, commented that what makes these brownies particularly unusual is that they don't even need milk to wash them down.