tea cookies

Russian tea cookies, Mexican wedding cookies, almond crescents… whatever you call them, I am a sucker for a good nut flour cookie. I used toasted hazelnut flour for these, and I increased the ratio of nut flour to all purpose flour. This is a good, easy recipe to quickly satisfy a cookie craving. It’s easy to scale these up, too.

hazelnut tea cookies

Makes about 18-20

1 stick butter, softened
1/2 c confectioner’s sugar, divided
1 t vanilla extract (or hazelnut flavor!)
1 c hazelnut flour (any nut flour will do)
1/2 c all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Using electric mixer, beat butter, 1/4 c powdered sugar, and vanilla until homogenous. Add flours and mix until thoroughly combined.

Chill dough for at least 10 minutes (if your kitchen is on the chilly side, this may not be necessary.)

Roll dough into balls – less than a tablespoon of dough per cookie. Arrange balls on a silpat or parchment paper-covered cookie sheet, allowing an inch between cookies. Bake for 15 minutes.

Cool cookies for 5 minutes before rolling in remaining powdered sugar.



smoky tomato and chorizo soup

I can’t always make it out to the grocery store as often as I’d like, so I am always happy to find a recipe that calls for ingredients that I always have on hand. Joanne Chang’s Smoky Tomato and Potato soup from Flour, Too is just such a recipe. As an added bonus, you cook it all in one pot – fewer dirty dishes! The original recipe is vegan; all I did was add chorizo and smoked paprika.

Smoky Tomato and Chorizo Soup

Serves 4 as a main course

2 links of chorizo, removed from casings (roughly 1/2 lb)
3 garlic cloves, smashed
1 T olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
1 small russet potato, peeled and diced
2 T tomato paste
1 t smoked paprika
2 28-oz cans tomatoes (fire roasted works really well)
2.5-3 c vegetable stock (water works just fine)
1 t red pepper flakes
Smoked salt and black pepper to taste


Heat a dutch oven (or large saucepan) over medium heat. Brown the ground chorizo, breaking up any chunks as you cook. Once the sausage is fully cooked, remove the sausage from the pot, leaving the fat in the pot. Add garlic to the pot, cooking for 3-4 minutes, being careful not to let it burn. Add the garlic to the sausage, leaving the fat in the pot; set aside.

Add 1 T olive oil to the pot. Add onion, carrot, potato, tomato paste, and paprika to the pot; stir over medium heat for 5-6 minutes until the onion is soft. Return the garlic and chorizo to the pot, followed by the tomatoes. Add 2.5 cups of water – you can always add more later if you prefer a thinner soup. Add the red pepper flakes, smoked salt, and pepper, and bring the soup to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 15 minutes. If you’re not sure if the soup is ready, test a potato chunk – you should be able to smash it very easily against the side of the pot.

Remove soup from heat. If you have an immersion blender, puree the soup. Alternately, puree the soup in a blender in batches (be sure to leave the hole at the top of the blender open since the soup is still hot!) 

Add additional smoked salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately, preferably with a little garnish of grated manchego or parmesan. More preferably, with a grilled cheese sandwich of manchego on a fresh multigrain bread. 🙂