This 4th of July dessert is either the largest cookie, or one of the smallest cakes I ever made. That is not to say it is either the least flavorful, or not the prettiest cookie/cake I ever made. I am very happy with the result in both attractiveness and flavor.
There were no real trick in making this. Once the cookie cooled a few minutes in the pan I turned it out onto a cooling rack to let it cool to room temperature. I trimmed it to fit the available serving tray and to remove the more well done edges.
I coated the cookie with a thin layer (<1/4”) of white buttercream and first outlined the upper left corner and set blueberries in a rectangle approximating the aspect ratio of Old Glory.
I just noticed I squeezed some raspberries into the third from the bottom row on the left. Probably should have used a larger berry there and left a bit more white showing. Judgement call, could have gone either way.
Chocolate Chip Cookies/Sheet Cake
INGREDIENTS • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour • 1 teaspoon baking soda • 1 teaspoon salt • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened • ¾ cup granulated sugar • ¾ cup packed brown sugar • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract • 2 large eggs • 2 cups (12 oz) chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl.
Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Gradually beat in flour mixture.
Stir in morsels and nuts.
Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.
Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown.
Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Pan Cookie Variation: Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan. Prepare dough as above. Spread into prepared pan. It’s easier to pat down into an even layer with wet/damp hands. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan on wire rack.
Pavlovas are a meringue type confection with a crisp exterior and marshmallow like interior. They were named for ballerina Anna Pavlova and are quick and easy to make. They will keep at room temperature for 3-5 days if sealed in an airtight container in low humidity.
I made them for Independence Day and topped them with red (fresh raspberry or strawberry sauce) and blue (fresh blueberries) for the red, white and blue theme, and chocolate because, well….it’s chocolate!
The tartness of the sauces compliments and tempers the sweetness of the pavlova. These are a delicious, light, refreshing dessert.
• 6 (180 g) large egg whites, room temperature • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar • 2 tsp corn starch • ½ tsp cream of tartar • ½ Tbsp lemon juice • ½ Tbsp vanilla extract
Preheat the Oven to (I used 215˚ F as my oven runs hot. Many recipes call for 250˚ F. But my pavlovas were over baked and light brown at this temperature. Because this contains eggs, it should be heated to more than 160˚ F. at a minimum.)
Line a large baking sheet with parchment (or Silpat) paper. Using your stand mixer, beat 6 egg whites on high speed until soft peaks form. With the mixer on high, gradually add 1 ½ cups sugar and cream of tartar and beat 10 min on high speed, or until soft peaks form. It will be smooth and glossy.
Add the cornstarch, lemon juice and vanilla extract. The mini pavlovas can be formed by piping, or for a more irregular look I used a spoon.
Bake for 30-45 min. If the temperature is too high, or you leave them in the oven to long they will begin to brown. After 30 minutes add 15 additional minutes if necessary for the surface to no longer tacky.
Slide the pavlova with the parchment paper onto the counter or a cooling rack and allow it to come to room temperature.
Once cool, you can top them with your choice of topping or store in an airtight container for 3-5 days at room temperature (in a low humidity place).
• ½ cup water • 1 tsp corn starch • 1 cup blueberries, raspberries or strawberries • ½ cup granulated sugar • 1 Tbl lemon juice • ½ tsp vanilla extract
Combine water and cornstarch in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring until the cornstarch dissolves
Add the berries, sugar and lemon juice. Crush the berries with a potato masher.
Place over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat and using an immersion blender blend the sauce for 30 to 60 seconds
Strain the sauce through a fine-mesh sieve, pushing the berries to extract as much juice as possible. Stir in vanilla extract.
Cover with plastic wrap directly on the sauce to prevent skimming