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your favorite Maida Heatter recipe

  • t

Guess I've been living under a rock (or just in the habit of using Mom's tried and true recipes)but I've only recently discovered Maida. I've taken 2 of her books out of the library and am wondering what are some chowhound favorites. It's going to rain in New England for the next 5 days so it's either gather animals 2 by 2 or do some serious baking.

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  1. look for a chocolate confection titled something like Ande's best chocolate cake- it is my fav- from the Best Deserts cookbook. A very simple( do not let the long instructiions fool you. She is a detail lady)- a flour-less cake; chocolate flavored egg bake with a glaze( she wants you to put curls on top to mask the uneven top- hardly needed. glorious with fruit, caramel or sorbet...

    1. All Maida Heatter's recipes are wonderful. Her Brownies and Pound Cake are great. The recipe for the "better than sex" pie is really good.

      Have a great weekend cooking.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Fleur

        Without consulting my books and they are packed, alas, I can only say I have made her brownies and they are simply wonderful.

        i like her recipes as they appear to have been very well tested.

      2. Santa Fe Wafers. These are terrific chocolate cookies, that I think are in the Dessert book.

        2 Replies
        1. re: heidipie

          My favorite too! Everyone who tastes them wants the recipe.

          It's in MH's Cookies book (as well).

          1. re: banana2ndgen

            Are these any similar to the famous [commercial] chocolate wafers? can you use them as a cookie crust?

            I just made her "chocolate wafers" and while they are fine, they are not as good as I thought- also at 400 degrees it's hard to bake them evenly. The texture is great though.

        2. Pennies from Heaven in one of the cookie books. I make them every year for Xmas although there's nothing intrinsically Xmassy about them. They are crisp shortbread wafers sandwiched around buttercream (for cookie fans, they're similar to Rose Beranbaum's Mother Bauer's buttered rum cookies without the puverized almonds plus it's a sliced log instead of rolled & cut).

          1. Hi, I love her books as well! I think her biscotti recipies are excellent. i've also learned over the years that biscotti can be formed into loaves and frozen before baking. I do this at holiday time a lot, it allows me to make the logs early, and then back them when I'm ready! I'll post more later if I get a chance to leaf through the books. I'm in NE as well so I will be with you on the Ark:(

            5 Replies
            1. re: therunner

              Ditto on the biscotti recipes, esp. Chocolate Chip and Almond from M.H.'s Brand-New Book of Great Cookies and the Honey Biscotti from M.H.'s Best Dessert Book Ever. Sounds like a good use of wet weather.

              1. re: therunner

                Hi, just read your post regarding freezing the biscotti logs, do you thaw them before baking and if not how long do you bake and what temp.? I've never done this before but it sounds like a brillant idea in planning ahead! Save room for me on the ark...heard today the rest of May is supposed to be like this in N.E.!!!

                1. re: 4chowpups

                  hi, I usually don't thaw them first, but you probably could - just put them in the fridge for a day prior to baking. I usaully bake the frozen log at the original temp called for in the recipie, the log just might need a little extra baking time if frozen, but biscotti are very forgiving! Good luck!

                  1. re: therunner

                    Instead of freezing the unbaked logs, I do the first bake and then freeze. Then I defrost, slice and bake which can be accomplished with an hour. Great for having something for surprise guests as are slice and bake cookies.

              2. Palm Beach Brownies! Especially if you make them with the York Peppermint Patties in the middle. There's another variation she calls Bali Hai brownies with crystalized ginger, coconut, and macadamia nuts.
                The King's Pound Cake is great too. The Black & White Pound Cake is really stunning.

                1. East 62nd Street lemon cake. One of the best lemon cakes I've had.

                  1. One of my Dad's favorites from one of her older books (can't remember which) was the Amaretto-Amaretti Chocolate Cheesecake. Crust is chocolate and crushed Amaretti; cake is a chocolate cheesecake flavored with Amaretto. The ingredients are pricey, but it's so good!

                    1. I love the Snowball (real name - Abby Mandel's Boule de Neige) recipe from her Book of Great Chocolate Desserts. She says "It is in a class by itself - not a pudding, not a mousse, not a cake, yet vaguely like three." I don't have the patience for covering it in the whipped cream rosettes so I just serve with whipped cream. Although to be honest, I never served it - it's a "me alone" dessert so far! Let me know if you're interested in the recipe.

                      The chocolate chip and almond biscotti from the same book are awesome as well. I usually take out some of the flour and add cocoa powder instead to make them double chocolate. I have served these and everyone loves them - they've become my only Christmas cookie contribution.

                      1. A few of my favorite Maida Heater recipes are:
                        the cake recipe for New Orleans Chocolate Layer Cake (a very easy delicious one bowl chocolate cake)with the frosting from the County-Fair Chocolate Layer Cake-both from her Book of Great Chocolate Desserts
                        Supremes always get a rave and are great for bake sales since it makes a lot. That is from the Book of Great Cookies
                        My husband loves the Mulattos a mocha chocolate chip cooky that is based on whipped eggs rather than creamed butter. That is from her Book of Great Desserts.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: AGM/Cape Cod

                          I'd like to give a gift of a maida heatter book to someone who doesn't know her work. Which would you choose of all hers- that is not a cookie book? thanks so much!

                          1. re: opinionatedchef

                            Taking the liberty of answering - her chocolate book is great if the person is a chocolate lover as is the American desserts one. I also like the Best Dessert Book Ever. You really can't go wrong with any of the books, they all have super recipes for great baked goods.

                            1. re: opinionatedchef

                              l am blessed to have all her books. If l would have pick a gift one, l would use Best Dessert Book Ever as well, with Greatest Desserts close behind.

                              My two favorite recipes are the biscotti as well,both white and chocolate. l add candied orange rind to the chocolate, and
                              tada- Southern Nut Cake, like a fruitcake without the fruit.

                              1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                Good to know -- That cake has been on my list for the longest, I am Going to Make It!!! (caps to indicate resolve)

                          2. I grew up with Maida Heatter recipes as my dad bought her books for my mom in the 1970's when they were dating. Each book has cute love letters inside...
                            Anyway..I love her:
                            -Vienesse Marzipan Squares, always a hit at parties.
                            -Royal Viennese walnut torte is a great cake that happens to be gluten free for anyone who avoids gluten in their diet.
                            -Florida cream cheese squares are lemony cheesecakey goodness
                            -Queen Mother Cake, mother of all chocolate cakes.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: snowgirl51

                              So cute (re the love letters).
                              Which books are these from?

                              1. re: buttertart

                                Marzipan squares and Florida cream cheese squares are in book of great cookies
                                Both the queen mother and the royal torte are in great desserts.

                                  1. re: buttertart

                                    I used the Viennese square recipe to use up some sour cherries I had made into a lightly-thickened sauce (instead of the apricot jam called for)...didn't put a chocolate glaze on them, but man oh man are they good. Thanks for reminding me of the recipe.

                            2. Strawberry Raspberry Bavarian from her book of Great Desserts

                              1. hi tweetie, boy i bet last month we both would have been willing to take a 5 day deluge over the week of 90-100 we had, eh?! anyway, for me it has to be her "Better than Sex"- (her wording,not mine) Coffee buttercrunch pie. The (old) Frog Commissary cookbook has a riff on it and i can never remember which i prefer, but i know t's the one w/ less sugar.

                                Maida is a true icon but a reflection of her time, in an all-white-flour way, so i change all her recipes to include some whole grain flour (and kosher salt and unsalted butter.)

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: opinionatedchef

                                  Poses in the 'Frog Commissary' book also does my fav carrot cake which Maida changed a bit and made her own. Still like the Poses version better.

                                2. My personal favorite was from her first or second book. The "Norman Rockwell Cookies". They are wispy, fragile oatmeal crisps.

                                  The recipe must be made with care [that's true always, I think] or they will come out too thick.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings chocolate cookie recipe from Maida Heatter's New Book of Great Desserts. Think a brownie in cookie form.

                                    1. Lemon mousse. She says "it's like eating a cloud", and it's true. Love it, and have successfully subbed Splenda for a friend who's diabetic. Messes up several bowls, but I serve it on a try in different-sized wine glasses so folks can have a little or a lot, and it always dazzles.

                                      1. I have never made any of her recipes but now anxious to try!
                                        One question though- how much does one cup of Maida's flour weigh? I see that she sifts first, then measures.
                                        Do you sift into the measuring cup, like Rose Levy Beranbaum? or does she sift into a bowl and then scoop the flour into the cup?

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: McBrownie

                                          Hi McBrownie,
                                          I've noted (although I can't remember the source) that Maida's cups of flour weigh 4 ounces. Definitely on the low end of the bell shaped curve of various weights per cup flour!

                                          1. re: soccermom13

                                            Thanks soccermom13!
                                            I googled a bit and found out her measuring method. It's in her "Maida Heatter's Cookies" book, and I don't know if you're allowed to quite an entire paragraph here, but basically she sifts into a sheet of parhment, then scoops lightly into the measuring cup.
                                            So 4 ounces sound just about right- dip and sweep is about 5 ounces and scooping without sifting first is about 4.5 ounces- at least in my kitchen.
                                            Thanks again. Now I'm off to make some chocolate wafers!

                                            1. re: McBrownie

                                              Maida would have appreciated your attention to detail!

                                        2. http://www.saveur.com/article/Kitchen...

                                          Cue Rose Levy Beranbaum gnashing her teeth.

                                          In case you missed this. I believe this goddess still walks among us, no?

                                          There's also...