Since my words are meager, I will just "cut to" Baker Beth and her incredible Cookie O' The Month. Read below (gaze upon it's creamy/crumbly genius, left) and follow Beth's recipe to your new favorite March Madness. I'll be in the kitchen if anyone needs me.
Go Forth and Bake Well. -angelo
I thought this year might be about breads. It hasn't turned out that way. January's biscotti and February's madeleines started me down a path I deemed "Cookie But Not A Cookie" and that sent my brain into a bit of a spin. On the one hand, I was trying to think of desserts that are somewhat cookie-like but not cookies per se. On the other hand, I was deciding that pretty much anything involving a cookie would be fair game.
Which brings me to March.
You know that every offering here ties back to Angelo in some way. And more than once, he has revealed that he loves to dip shortbread into red wine.
So I thought about variations on that and landed on zabaglione. Made with Barbera, because Barbera just doesn't get enough love at home. And then I topped said zabaglione with crumbled shortbread. (By the way, a bit of whipped cream to finish off the presentation would not be a bad thing.)
Zabaglione is one of those dishes that sounds fancy and looks difficult but is super easy to make. And shortbread requires minimal effort if you make it at home. And even less effort if you buy it.
Make the zabaglione and portion it into serving dishes and then chill. Add the layer of crumbled shortbread just before serving to maintain contrast of textures.
And join me in wishing Angelo a very happy birthday month!
P.S. Please note that each recipe contains only three – three – ingredients, kids! Ingredients you probably have on hand all the time. So you can make this dessert whenever the mood strikes, which, once you try it, will be often, I promise you.
(Inspired by Marcella Hazan)
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup Barbera
Bring an inch or two of water to a simmer in a heavy saucepan. In a glass bowl, whisk egg yolks and sugar until they are pale yellow and creamy. Place the bowl atop the pan over the simmering water (the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl), add the wine, and whisk continuously until thickened moderately, about 15 minutes. The texture will be light and loose, like a very soft pudding. Spoon into serving dishes. Let cool slightly at room temperature and then put into the refrigerator to chill.
(From Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book, Published by Meredith Corporation,
1 1/4 C. all-purpose flour
3 T. sugar
1/2 C. butter
In a mixing bowl, combine flour and sugar. Cut in butter till mixture resembles
fine crumbs and starts to cling. Form mixture into a ball and knead till smooth.
To make wedges, on an ungreased cookie sheet pat or roll dough into an 8-inch
circle. Using your fingers, press to make a scalloped edge. With a knife, cut
circle into 16 pie-shape wedges. Leave wedges in the circle shape. Bake in a 325
oven for 25 to 30 minutes or till bottom just starts to brown and center is set.
Cut circle into wedges again while warm. Cool on the cookie sheet for five
minutes. Remove from cookie sheet; cool on a wire rack.
Beth Note: Since you'll be crumbling these later, you needn't necessarily be
fancy or precise in forming these, but you might have some left over and
"pretty" is never a bad thing.