Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Ethnic Flavor: Brooke's Mom's Mandelbrot

So, my friend Brooke has received a shout-out on this blog before, because she is the one who got me the great bowls that held the pudding.  However, I thought she deserved a proper posting because she is really an awesome person and a great friend.  And, she brought this mandelbrot into my life (via her mom), so just for that she gets a posting.

For those of you who are wondering what mandelbrot is, it is a lot like Jewish biscotti.  In fact, it might be the same thing.  However, this mandelbrot is not exactly like biscotti.  You see, I never thought I liked mandelbrot.  I don't go for the hard cookies, especially ones with nuts.  Then Brooke let me in on a little secret.  First, you don't have to put the nuts in.  Second, you don't have to bake it a second time.  So I don't, and it is delicious.  I'm not sure it is exactly mandelbrot, but it is delicious nonetheless.

When I moved here to Texas, I bought about 12 bags of parve (non-dairy) chocolate chips from Trader Joe's.  You see, I knew that I would be unable to get parve chips where I live (especially since there is no Trader Joe's -- yes, we are in mourning) so I decided that hoarding them was the answer.  And yes, I took them on the plane from New York to Texas, packed safely in my suitcase.

But back to the mandelbrot.  Usually this is a parve treat, served after Shabbat dinners of chicken or brisket, so you need the parve chips.  I have deemed this dessert good enough to use a bag of my precious chips, and that is really saying something.  I sub soy milk for the milk in the recipe, and they come out great.  You might think it is just a big chocolate chip cookie in a different shape, but once you make it, you'll see that it has a very pleasant crumbly texture, very much unlike a regular cookie.  It also freezes really well, so I will usually just make all three loaves and put one or two in the freezer until I need another parve dessert. 

Many thanks to Brooke and her mom for this recipe.

Brooke's Mom's Mandelbrot
Makes 3 loaves

1 stick margarine
1 cup sugar
3 beaten eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup walnuts (optional)
2 cups chocolate chips
3 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
Less than 1/4 cup milk (or soy milk)

Mix together the margarine and sugar.  Add the eggs, vanilla, nuts and chocolate chips and mix until combined.  Add the flour, one cup at a time, the baking powder and the salt and mix well.  Add the milk and mix until combined.

Take a foil covered baking sheet (I use a silpat, which works great) and make three moundy loaves.  These rise, so don't put them too close together, but you can probably fit them all on one cookie sheet.

Cook until golden brown, about 30 minutes.

If you want to make more traditional mandelbrot, slice them when cool and bake again for about 10 minutes.  If you don't want to bake them again, just slice and serve.


  1. This sounds really yummy. I think I'll give this one a try.

  2. Nancy - this is really yummy and very easy to make.

    All - My mom would like everyone to know that it is her sister Judie's recipe. Aunt Judie is also proud to get the shout out.

  3. Do you guys think that you could teach a class on melting chocolate? I seem to be completely inept (even with a double boiler).

  4. Oooh Mandelbrot! I was going to make this last year for my boyfriend's family and totally forgot about it! Looks like I'll be cooking up something for Hanukkah for them!


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