How not to cook
Posted by zoechristodoulou
Anyone who knows me knows that I am a bit of a fail in the kitchen. I actually worked as a catering assistant for over a year at university and I was fine at that, but when it comes to actually getting into my own kitchen and putting a meal together things always seem to go terribly wrong. Firstly I find it rather difficult working out what food to even put together, so I had a habit of just getting out of my freezer a meat burger of some kind and then microwaving vegetables as a side dish. The one thing I have always been alright at (and yeah, I mean just alright) is making omelettes and baking cakes and cookies. I adored baking when I was a kid, I remember in junior school I once got to go into the staff room with a small group of other children and, under the supervision of a teacher, of course, baked some cookies.
I used to do the same thing at home occasionally with the help of my mum and sister. In secondary school we cooked these flapjack like biscuits called “stanhope firelighters” and me and my sister discovered we had somewhat of a flare for them and used to make them at home. I really want to find the recipe because they were amazing. They were even sweeter than most flapjacks. In fact after googling them a second a go, I discovered that they are from Durham, and were made only using Quakers Oats, sugar and butter. Quite a random thing to be making in a school in South East London. I think I’ll be making some soon though.
Well, today I decided it was time for me to do some baking again! When we were in Cyprus me and my sister decided to have a go at cooking Kourabedies. They are Greek cookies which are usually eaten at Christmas and on other occasions such as weddings. They sell them in gift boxes in Cyprus, which we were excited to find because the only time we really eat them is at weddings seeing as they arn’t exactly something you can easily find in Britain. Today I thought I would give them a go. Here is my attempt at making a recipe blog showing my step to step failings at cooking them. Would they turn out okay? Well you’ll have to wait and see…
Recipe nicked off of allrecipes.com courtesy of Ceil Wallace. http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/kourabiedes-i/detail.aspx
Well the ingrediants are listed on the site as:
- 250 g sifted all-purpose flour
- 2 g baking powder
- 225 g butter
- 30 g confectioners’ sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- 30 ml brandy
- 3 ml vanilla extract
- 70 g finely chopped blanched almonds
- 36 whole cloves
- 40 g confectioners’ sugar for decoration
In a seperate bowl cream the sugar and butter (or in my case marge) together until they are light and fluffy.
Add the egg yolk, then the brandy and vanilla essence. I don’t have any brandy so I added rum instead. Er yeah, no idea what kind of effect that has. But it’s probably a waste of precious rum. Mix it all together until ”light”.
Now is the time to add the almonds to the mix. I didn’t have chopped almonds, so I decided to chop my own. This is actually quite hard and I ended up accidently chucking almonds all over the floor
Mix this altogether until it forms a “soft smooth dough”. In my case this turned out to be more like cake mix that cookie mix. No idea whether this is right…but the mix didn’t taste good either and that’s never a good sign
Leave this mixture in the fridge for half an hour. Pre-heat your oven to gas mark 3/140 f.
After taking it out use a table spoon of dough and shape these into crescents/ Place these an inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Or in my case squash them into ordinary random cookie shapes and flatten them. I have no idea why I felt this was a good idea to do this. I also placed them onto a greased baking tray.
Leave them in the oven for 25-30 minutes. They shouldn’t go brown, no matter what my mum things.
So, these cookies are meant to look like this:
Came out looking like…erm:
Woooops. They also are missing the buttery melt in the mouth taste and texture. In fact they are really quite bland. In fact they need a lot more sugar to even taste like a half decent ordinary biscuit. The rum doesn’t appear to have added to the taste much. I may try sprinkling icing sugar on the top…maybe that will make them taste better. Or stick to making Stanhope Firelighters.