Thursday, January 18, 2007

Light Cookies and Turkish Coffee

Our friends Y his wife K and their daughter J invited us for lunch in their new home last Sunday. I was looking forward to spending a nice afternoon with them, watching the kids playing together (their daughter is only 5 months older than my son) and eating his famous Pasta with Clam Sauce. I baked some light cookies for dessert. I found two recipes for light and low fat cookies and loved them. Y and K just moved to a new and much larger house in a quiet neighborhood. The house is beautiful, very spacious, and their newly renovated kitchen is gorgeous.
When we got at there, we went straight to the kitchen. I gave him a hand making bruschetta while he taught me to make the clam sauce. This is definitely my kind of get-together. We all took our shoes off, I helped in the kitchen, and the kids played on the floor. After lunch we had dessert with Turkish Coffee. The cookies were chocolaty and light. They went really well after the mouth-watering clam sauce. Y brought Turkish Coffee from a trip to Jerusalem he returned from last week. It’s very flavorful, strong, and thick and unlike any other coffee I tasted before. The coffee beans are finely ground with cardamom. The coffee is prepared in a very specific way and served in espresso cups. My husband and I are hooked. We are going to some ethnic stores to look for more Turkish Coffee soon.

Chewy Chocolate-Coconut Macaroons

2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup sifted cake flour
2 tablespoons sifted unsweetened cocoa
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups flaked sweetened coconut
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (14-ounce) can fat-free sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 250º.
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place unsweetened chocolate in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at high for 30 seconds and stir well, repeat the process until completely melted.
Combine flour, unsweetened cocoa, and salt in a large bowl. Add coconut, and toss well. Stir in melted chocolate, vanilla extract, and sweetened condensed milk (the mixture will be stiff). Drop 1 tablespoon 2 inches apart onto prepared baking sheet. Bake at 250º for 45 minutes or until edges of cookies are firm and center of cookies are soft. Remove from oven, and cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Remove the cookies from the parchment paper, and cool completely on rack. Store in an airtight container.

Yield: 3 dozen cookies (serving size: 1 cookie - 84 calories)

Mini Chocolate-Chip Meringue Cookies

3 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
3 tablespoons semisweet chocolate minichips

Preheat oven to 300°.
Beat egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt at high speed of a mixer until soft peaks form. Add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Sift cocoa over egg white mixture; beat until mixed. Fold in minichips.
Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a pastry bag, pipe 1 inch rounds of meringue onto prepared baking sheet. Bake at 300° for 40 minutes or until crisp. Cool on a wire rack. Store in an airtight container.

Yield: 4 dozen (serving size: 1 cookie - 22 calories)


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