Saturday, January 2, 2010

Beef Stroganoff and Toasted Pine Nut Cookies

Just a warning, this recipe does NOT go into my normal healthy category! It does however, fit into the special occasion, oh-so-tasty-good, can I please have seconds, where did you get this recipe category! And since it was New Year's day and I wanted to start us off on the right foot (with a delicious meal), I decided to give into a craving I've been having for several months now.

I seem to remember my Mom making some sort of stroganoff when I was a kid and absolutely loving it! So when I came across this version last week there was no question it was exactly what I had been looking for! And I definitely got bonus points for making this because for about two weeks now, Chris has been dropping hints that he wouldn't mind having red meat...

I prefer this dish with whole wheat egg noodles, but most any kind of pasta would soak up the creamy sauce. And it is also important to use a nice cut of beef, such as top sirloin. Whatever you do though, you are in for a some definite comfort food!

Allow me to direct you over to the recipe from Simply Recipes: Beef Stroganoff

And for dessert I made Giada's Pine nut cookies (with vanilla gelato, of course!), a favorite since I discovered the recipe in college! And because I think no girl should be without it, I have posted the recipe below. It is extremely simple, but the chilling time for the dough is very important!

Giada's Pine Nut Cookies

1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground fennel seed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup pine nuts
Using an electric mixer, beat the butter, sugar, vanilla, fennel seed, and salt in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg. Add the flour and mix just until blended.
Transfer the dough to a sheet of plastic wrap. Shape the dough into an 8-inch-long log. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line heavy large baking sheets with a silpat or parchment paper. Cut the dough log crosswise into 1/8 to 1/4-inch thick slices. Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets, spacing evenly apart. Press the pine nuts decoratively atop the cookies. Bake until the cookies are golden around the edges, about 15 minutes.

FYI~ I discovered this morning that these cookies make lovely coffee dippers!

Hope you had a spectacular New Year's day!

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