Two Recipes from the Wonderful Orangette

# 1 - Chocolate Featherweight Cookies with Walnuts and Cocoa Nibs

Last week I stumbled upon these chocolate cookies from Orangette, and from her gorgeous photos and description of the chewy, dark and chocolatey cookies, I knew I wanted to make them. The cookies are basically flourless, and use only egg whites, icing sugar, and cocoa as the base. I used pecans instead of walnuts, and regretfully omitted the chocolate nibs, which I couldn't get a hold of. The batter is quite runny and the cookie that I ended up making turned out to be flat, pancake-like things, but the taste was out of this world. Fresh from the oven, the cookies had this miraculous crunch to them, and when they cooled, a chewy chocolateness developed. These puppies were basically gone in a day or two.

#2 - The 'Plumble'

I adore baked fruit desserts. They still are dessert, but without that richness or that sickening feeling you get when you've eaten something that's bad for you. I mean, it's fruit, right? There must be something good to it, even though it may contain a barrelful of butter and sugar. And here was the perfect recipe for plum crumble (or as Shane says, "Plumble") from Orangette (you order this from her new restaurant Delancey in Seattle, by the way).

When my mother-in-law visited I wanted to make this simple recipe, since it basically consisted of cutting up plum and making the topping. I didn't have the Italian plums that were demanded of in the recipe, so I used black plums instead. It turned out to be a great sucess. There was a crunchy, almost cookie-like crust, and the wonderfully not too sweet plums. This went great with ice cream!

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