Easy (after) dinner recipes: It's Friday! Celebrate with cookies

Homemade cookies are a great way to celebrate the end of the week

It's Friday. You've made it. So celebrate! These tempting cookies are sure to start any weekend off right.

Chocolate chip cookies: Crisp on the edges yet soft and chewy in the center, these gigantic chocolate chip-studded cookies are large enough to share. But why would you? 

Oatmeal currant cookies: These generous oatmeal cookies are big on size and flavor, sweetened with brown sugar. It may seem like there's a lot of cinnamon, but it balances nicely with the vanilla and fruit. And don't be deceived: Though they are generously sized, after one bite you may realize one cookie's not enough. Plan to have an extra handy just in case.

Pistachio madeleines: These madeleines are light in texture and delicately flavored, the subtle nuttiness of the pistachios perfectly balanced by the clarified butter. You can find the recipe below.


Total time: 45 minutes | Makes 3 1/2 dozen cookies

Note: Adapted from Keswick Hall in Virginia. To make the clarified butter, heat 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter in a small saucepan over low heat; allow the butter to melt and separate, then spoon off any foam on the top and remove the pan from the heat. Gently ladle out the clear (clarified) butter, leaving the milky residue in the bottom of the pan. Refrigerate the butter until it is firm but not hard, about 2 hours.

    1 1/4 cups clarified butter (the butter should be firm but not hard), plus more for greasing
    1 1/3 cups sugar
    4 eggs
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup chopped pistachios
    2 cups flour

1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees. In the bowl of a stand mixer using a paddle attachment, or in a medium bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer running, add the eggs, one at a time. Mix in the vanilla and salt, then fold in the pistachios and flour just until fully incorporated.

2. Pipe or spoon the batter into greased madeleine molds. Bake until set and light brown, about 10 minutes. Cool the cookies in the trays 10 minutes before removing from the molds.

Each cookie: 115 calories; 2 grams protein; 11 grams carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 7 grams fat; 4 grams saturated fat; 36 mg. cholesterol; 14 mg. sodium.

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