FFWD – Cocoa Sablés

The finished cookies, in a glass dish with a gold stencil, on a doily atop a grey and silver plate.

Something I’ve been appreciating now that I’ve been participating in French Fridays for the last year-and-a-half are the benefits of taking my time. Not that I always manage it. There have been many rushed dishes, quickly photographed so that I can get a post up in time for the deadline. But, when I do take my time, it’s worth it.

This is particularly true when it comes to butter doughs. What starts as a crumbly mess turns into something rich and pliable. The flavours develop, too, when you wait. Don’t get me wrong, I love baking things that you can turn out on a whim (like this week’s Irish soda bread over at Tuesdays with Dorie), but I have a growing appreciation for the recipes in which time is one of the ingredients.

These sablés are just that sort of thing. The night before the big bake-a-thon (bake-o-rama? bakestravaganza?) with my family, I made the dough for these cookies and rolled them, with difficulty, into logs. The dough was truly sandy and I was worried that I might overwork it while trying to get the logs to stay together. But after a night in the refrigerator, the dough was fine. Easy to cut and not crumbly at all, with a denseness that made me want to get them into the oven as soon as possible. Baked, they had a lovely crumb and a satisfying thickness. They’re pretty, too. A perfect vehicle for cocoa and chopped chocolate.

Life lessons aside, I’m more willing now to explore recipes that don’t provide immediate gratification. They’ve got their own rewards.

Sliced dough on parchment paper.

You can find many other blogged descriptions of this week’s FFWD recipe here: Cocoa Sablés


23 thoughts on “FFWD – Cocoa Sablés

  1. The beautiful thing about items like this, is that the time factor is non-active. There is something to be said about starting something – throwing it in the fridge or setting it aside to do “it’s thing” and then coming back to it. It seems very practical from a time management standpoint (I think that’s one of the reasons I love making bread).
    Lovely job, Teresa.

  2. That last photo looks like a plate of sliced fudge, but I love the display of the finished
    version in the bowl. Lovely. I would like to attempt the vanilla version of these sometime
    just to see if I have better luck. Great job.

  3. Yes, they were worth the trouble, and I am starting to like the ones where I have time to do it right, as you say. I liked the over night wait, just because I could do part of the recipe, and not have to devote all the hours at one time. They look perfect.

  4. A time. The ingredient I seem to have the least of these days but must always find when it comes to cookies. I adore baked goods that have one of life’s lessons baked in. I just wish they wouldn’t be obnoxious when teaching me such things.

  5. Your sablés look great Teresa – very substantial! I really enjoy these recipes where the dough rests overnight. There’s something comforting about waking up, cutting up some cookies, and wake up to these great smells.

  6. French Friday! How fun! I get to take my daughters to Paris next week for Spring Break. It’s a trip of a lifetime for them. Your treats look delicious!

  7. I happen to appreciate mixing and putting the dough in the fridge for baking when I have more time! I mixed mine in the morning before I went to lunch with my friend and baked them after dinner. Your cookies look beautiful…perfectly shaped! Have a nice weekend!

  8. I vote for bakestravaganza, what a great word!

    Your cookies look wonderful. I think that my cocoa powder was old or something because mine came out a little bland.

  9. I love how pensive you are about the little things. To me, it’s the little things in life that make all the difference. Lovely picture of the cookies. Can I come for tea?

  10. I so appreciate the time factor. Many times I am rushing to get my post up to, and sometimes I think my post suffers for it. But I rush the writing, not the cooking or baking. Your sables look delicious!

  11. Teresa, Your little French delights looked amazing and I hope you shared them with everyone. (I know you did.) They looked a bit thicker than mine and other Doristas made very thin sablés. Wondering about cooking time and if you liked the thicker cookie. Interesting. Mary

  12. Beautifully said, Teresa. Yes, it is wonderful to have instant gratification from some of the recipes we have made, but sometimes the best are those that require a little bit of patience and time. Your sables look wonderful and I am so glad you enjoyed making these.

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