Friday, April 30, 2010

Food Friday: Japan 4/30

Carly Yuenger

On today's show, Sarah Marx Feldner gave us a peek into the many private Japanese kitchens that she talked her way into during her four month's of travel in the country. And she came bearing gifts--sesame cookies! I could tell you how yummy they are, but I think the best way to say it is with the recipe from her book, A Cook's Journey to Japan: Fish Tales and Rice Paddies, 100 Recipes from Japanese Kitchens.

Toasted Sesame Cookies (Goma Kukki)
(Makes 10 dozen)

2/3 cup toasted white sesame seeds

1/3 cup toasted black sesame seeds

½ teaspoon salt

1 cup sugar

1 egg white

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees with racks positioned in upper and lower thirds.

In medium bowl, add each ingredient, one at a time, stirring to combine after each addition. Let mixture rest 15 minutes at room temperature to allow butter to cool and batter to solidify.

Using a ½-teaspoon measure, drop batter onto 2 parchment-line baking sheets, leaving 3 inches between each cookie. Batter will spread a lot during baking.

Bake two sheets of cookies at a time in preheated oven, for 7 to 10 minutes, or until deep golden brown, rotating pans and switching their position halfway through baking. Slide parchment paper and cookies onto a rack to cool and repeat with remaining batter. Make sure you use a completely cool pan before dropping any new batter.

Store in airtight container.

Note: Excess batter will keep in freezer for up to one month. Thaw in refrigerator and bring to room temperature before using.

Toasting Sesame Seeds:

Place sesame seeds in a small dry skillet. Heat over medium heat. Shake pan or stir seeds often - they are quick to burn. As soon as seeds become aromatic and turn a light golden brown, about 3 to 5 minutes, remove them from skillet and set aside to cool. (This is important to do as the pan's carryover heat may burn the perfectly toasted seeds.)

Note: Black and white seeds may be toasted together.

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