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Recipe – Cookies Aux Fruits

Posted by Emily / January 4, 2008

I knew it would come. And now, it’s here. The Post-Holiday Blues is upon me.

Every year around this time, I long to travel back in time to that blissful week between Christmas and New Year’s when I did nothing but hang with the fam, go to movies, and eat. I’m forced to abruptly forgo the holiday mirth snap back to reality practically the second the clock strikes twelve on New Year’s Eve.

But this year, I refuse to give up my holiday cheer without a fight. I’ve discovered a new weapon against the Blues: cookies.

My newfound determination started the day before my family’s New Year’s Eve party when I was asked to make a dessert that would go well with my aunt’s pudding. As I was munching on kettle corn, waiting for inspiration, my grandmother opened the freezer to grab some pre-dinner Ben & Jerry’s, and I saw some pine nuts on the freezer door.

The nuts reminded me of the tarte aux fruits I’d learned to make in a French cooking class a few summers ago. It had a simple, buttery crust with crushed pine nuts and a topping of fresh fruit. Wouldn’t it be cool, I thought, if I could miniaturize the tart aux fruits to make cookies?

I set to work and mixed up the batter for the tarte just as I had learned in class. It was much too liquidy to be used for cookies, so I chucked in another handful of flour and sugar.

When the batter seemed to be the right consistency, I placed a single dollop of batter on a cookie sheet to make a test cookie. When the lone cookie emerged from the oven, I tentatively took a bite. It was soft, buttery, with a subtle hint of nutty taste from the pine nuts. But it needed something.

I tried to remember what had made the tarte aux fruits so good. Oh yeah…fruit! I scanned my kitchen for something to top off the cookies, and saw two over-ripe pears sitting in the fruit bowl. I grabbed them, peeled them, and sliced them extra-thin. I scooped the cookie dough onto a baking sheet, and placed a pear slice on top of each little dollop of dough.

Fifteen minutes later, I had a dozen perfect cookies aux fruits. The center of each cookie had soaked up the pear juices and was extra-moist. My cookies were a hit, and their number was markedly diminished by the time they made it to the dining room table.

They were so good, in fact, that I couldn’t resist whipping up another batch today. So as I sit here, enjoying the buttery goodness and getting crumbs all over my keyboard, I can hold onto my holiday cheer and keep the Post-Holiday Blues at bay a little longer.

Cookies Aux Fruits

2/3 cup butter (softened)
2 eggs (beaten)
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup pine nuts
1 cup flour
2 pears or apples (or any kind of juicy fruit, sliced thin)

If you have a food processor, mix the first three ingredients in the food processor, then add the pine nuts ad mix until they are ground up. Slowly add the flour and mix just to incorporate. Scoop the batter onto a baking sheet with wax paper and place a slice of fruit on top of each dollop. Bake at 350F for 13-15 minutes.

If you don’t have a food processor, grind the nuts first. Mix the butter, eggs, and sugar together, then add the ground nuts and flour.



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