Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Lengua de Gato Cookies

As far as I remember, there were only a few cookie varieties being sold at my aunts' bakeshop before.  They specialized mainly on pastries.  However, especially during the Christmas season, the cookie orders were abundant.  I can still picture those plastic jars with yellow lids on the bakeshop counter in my mind.  I cannot imagine how my aunts managed to press, pipe, bake and pack all those cookies!

If I am not wrong, their bestsellers then were the spritz, arrowroot and lengua de gato (cat's tongue) cookies.  As I have been in cookie-making mode lately, I decided to give these cookies (using the bakeshop recipes) a go one by one.

I loved making these two using the KitchenAid cookie press I recently bought from Costco for only $14!

Yesterday, as I had a cup of eggwhites stored in the freezer, I excitedly tried making the lengua de gato cookies.  These are Filipino butter cookies but considering how it's called, it's probably of Spanish origin.

Since these cookies are very thin and light, I kept on "testing" them after every tray came out of the oven.  I don't know just how much I ate but I had to skip lunch as I was already full!

Before I share the recipe, just a last note.  I tried using baking paper and silpat to line my baking trays and also tried putting the cookie dough straight onto non-stick baking trays (without lining).  The resulting cookies had different looks.

As seen from the photo above, I had the best results with the silpat-lined.  The cookies had straight edges.  The ones baked in baking paper all had wonky edges while the ones baked with no liner spread and browned more but were still as easy to remove.  Taste and crunchiness were the same for all. 

Here now is the lengua de gato cookies recipe so next time you have leftover eggwhites, you would know what to do with them.  

LENGUA DE GATO COOKIES (makes 300+ pieces)

2 cups (4 sticks, 1 pound, 454 grams) salted butter, softened
2 1/4 cups white sugar
1 cup eggwhites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon orange flavouring
3 1/2 cups cake flour

Preheat oven to 160 degrees C (325F).  Line baking trays with baking paper or silicone mats.

In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer at high speed, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Lower mixer speed to medium then add eggwhites gradually followed by the vanilla and orange flavourings.  

Slowly mix in the flour.  Beat until everything is well combined and batter is smooth.

Fit a piping bag with a plain round or star tip (#12 or #21).  Spoon cookie batter into the piping bag.

Pipe out thin strips of batter onto lined baking trays, about 3 inches long and 1 1/2 inches apart.

Bake for about 15 minutes or until the cookie edges start to brown.

Loosen cookies from the trays while still warm.  When completely cool, pack them in airtight containers.


Saturday, August 17, 2013

World Vision's 40-Hour Famine

This is not baking or sewing related but is of much more significance so please read on.

40 Hour Famine is one of Australia’s biggest youth events, raising community awareness and much-needed funds to help fight global hunger.  This year the fundraising will help support projects that fight hunger in Malawi, Ethiopia, East Timor, Nepal, Tanzania, and Uganda and helps World Vision respond to emergencies and other needs around the world.  You can read more about it on World Vision's website here.

For the first time, my 16-year old daughter Marie (or Missy, as we call her at home) is doing the 40-hour famine this weekend with some of her friends.  They have chosen to give up food from Friday night to Sunday lunch to experience, even for a while, how it is to go hungry.  I personally think this is something very powerful and meaningful to do, especially for the youth of today.

If you would like to donate, you can do so by going to Marie's fundraising page, the Hungry Hungry Hippos. Any amount, big or small, will be be much appreciated! $40 can actually help feed a family of six for a month!

Donations can be made online till the end of September. Thank you in advance for your generosity!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

The Frosted Heaven eBook is here!

Someone once told me that the recipes on this blog make Filipinos all over the world "closer to home".  Isn't that such a nice thing to know?  When I first posted the Ube Macapuno cake recipe, I never expected such a huge response.  That inspired me to post more recipes.  I have lost count of how many people I have corresponded with because of the recipes - some had one-off questions but some had gone further and formed friendships with me, even just through constant exchanges of emails.

Not too long ago, I took a break from selling cakes.  In my down time, I thought of working on compiling my recipes into a book.  As it is, I have a lot of my recipes scribbled in different sheets, scattered in different parts of our house.  The more used ones have been stuck in the fridge door for years!  I thought it would be a great idea to have something concrete to pass on to my children, just in case they would be interested in baking in the future.  Another thought was to share them to the rest of the world, in particular, to those who have faithfully followed me through the years, trying one recipe after another, sharing cake photos, and giving me feedback or telling me of their experiences.

So finally, I finished it!  An eBook containing the most popular chiffon cake recipes from this blog PLUS more new ones.

Front cover

I am very happy with the way the book turned out.  It does look like it was very professionally-made.  In the near future, I will have this printed into an actual book.  But for now, the eBook will suffice.

To see a preview of the eBook, for more information about it and how to purchase it, please click here or on the image link at the sidebar.

Here's hoping for your kind support.  Please help me spread the word! Thank you!