When in Doubt…Leave it at 350

baking, cooking, and other adventures

Daring Bakers’ Challenge: Traditional English Pudding April 27, 2010

Filed under: Pudding,The Daring Bakers' — pastrybrush @ 1:14 pm
Tags: , , ,

The April 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Esther of The Lilac Kitchen. She challenged everyone to make a traditional British pudding using, if possible, a very traditional British ingredient: suet.

I decided to go with one of the sweet puddings, and since I don’t have ready access to suet I just went with a handy substitute LARD 🙂  For the flavors I decided to make a Syrup Pudding (Golden Syrup) and a Marmalade Pudding (Homemade Orange Marmalade).  I was going to do a few others, but I procrastinated and didn’t start making these until this afternoon, so  I just stuck with what was simple. (more…)


Tuesdays With Dorie: Chockablock Cookies

Filed under: Baking,Cookies,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 1:13 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was chosen by Mary of Popsicles and Sandy Feet.  She chose Dorie’s Chockablock Cookies which are located on page 86 in Baking: From My Home to Yours.  I guess you could consider this cookie a throw all cookie…as in you throw a bunch of random yummy stuff in the batter (dried fruit, coconut, oats, chocolate, nuts, etc.) and bake it up 🙂

I have to hurry up and write this entry because I need to leave for work in 30 minutes.  I baked up these little monsters in the oven this afternoon, and the last batch just made its way out of the oven.  For the filling I ended up using golden raisins, coconut, oats, chocolate chips, and hazelnuts.

Why hazelnuts?

They were sitting in my freezer and I needed to use them.

Before baking, the molasses flavor was very prominent in the batter, but after they came out of them oven I couldn’t even taste the molasses.  All I could taste was the wonderful combination of hazelnuts and chocolate.  These giant cookies reminded me of a high ended oatmeal raisin cookie with the added yumminess of hazelnuts and chocolate.  I am sure Mike will grab one of these off the counter when he gets home and not even realize that they have coconut in them 🙂

Thank you for picking these this week Mary.  They were quick and easy to make and they were yummy 🙂


Tuesdays with Dorie: Sweet Cream Biscuits April 20, 2010

Filed under: Baking,Breakfast,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 12:43 pm

This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was chosen by Melissa of Love At First Bite.  She chose Dorie’s Sweet Cream Biscuits, which are located on page 23 of Baking: From My Home to Yours.

Who doesn’t love a warm flaky biscuit straight out of the oven?

Answer: No one because biscuits are fantastic 🙂

Back in college, Mandi and I would frequent Gillies, along with everyone else in Blacksburg, and their biscuits are fantastic.  That is the one thing I would look forward to when stopping in for breakfast.  The biscuits were huge, pillows of yumminess that were freshly baked and literally walked around the corner from Bollo’s.

I have tried my hand at making biscuits before, but they just don’t get as tender as I would like them.  With Dorie’s recipe they were easy and I didn’t even have to get out the tub of lard out of the pantry 🙂  Straight out of the oven, I pulled one apart and slathered butter and homemade peach-blackberry jam.  Wow, these were so perfect.  I even picked one up and ate it plain and it was still soft, tender, and yummy.

I think the keep to this recipe is not handling the dough very much, and you will get a perfect biscuit each time.  Melissa, thank you for picking the Sweet Cream Biscuits they were great.  I am definitely going to make this again 🙂


Another year goes by… April 16, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — pastrybrush @ 12:01 am

…and you are still missed.  Rest in Peace my love, and the other 31 that went with you.

Ryan "Stack" Clark


Daring Cooks Challenge: Brunswick Stew April 15, 2010

Filed under: Main Courses,Soup,The Daring Cooks' — pastrybrush @ 8:19 pm
Tags: ,

The 2010 April Daring Cooks challenge was hosted by Wolf of Wolf’s Den. She chose to challenge Daring Cooks to make Brunswick Stew. Wolf chose recipes for her challenge from The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook by Matt Lee and Ted Lee, and from the Callaway, Virginia Ruritan Club.

I have to say I was really looking forward to this challenge this month.  For one thing, my mom use to tell me stories about growing up and how they would go to the local firehouse and get Brunswick stew.  Since we lived in Texas, we didn’t have easy access to homemade or even canned Brunswick stew.  Which at any opportune moment, mostly when we would visit my Nanny in Virginia, mom would grab a couple of cans of Brunswick stew and some spoon bread mix at the local grocery store. (more…)


Tuesdays With Dorie: Swedish Visiting Cake April 13, 2010

Filed under: Baking,Cake,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 7:00 am

This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was chosen by Nancy of The Dogs Eat the Crumbs.  I love Nancy’s blog, not just because her banner picture is awesome, but because her food pictures are beautiful and she tells it like it is 🙂  This week Nancy chose Dorie’s Swedish Visiting Cake which is located on page 197 in Baking: From My Home to Yours.

I ended up making this cake on Monday before I went to work the closing shift.  This cake was quick and easy to make.  It reminded me of a pound cake but without all the beating…of butter that is 🙂  I used lemon zest, both vanilla and almond extract, and chose to bake it in a 9-inch glass pie dish because I didn’t want to go digging for the cast iron.

The cake turned out fantastic.  It made the entire kitchen smell of sweet lemons…yummy 🙂  Once cooled, I sliced into the cake and ate a slice.  It was perfect.  The cake has a nice tight crumb, reminiscent of pound cake, and a light lemon and almond flavor.  I would definitely make this again.  Thanks for choosing a great recipe Nancy.


Tuesdays With Dorie: Mocha-Walnut Marbled Bundt Cake April 6, 2010

This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was chosen by, “Drumroll please.”

:me banging on my desk:

Erin from When in Doubt…Leave it at 350.

Wait, that is me 🙂  Okay, so if you didn’t know before my name is Erin and I post as pastrybrush.  Now that the introduction is finished, we can get to the good stuff.

I choose Dorie’s Mocha-Walnut Marbled Bundt Cake, which is located on pages 180-181 in Baking: From My Home to Yours. Okay, the number one reason I picked this is that Mike recently bought me a new bundt pan for my birthday since we kept having mishaps with the old bundt pan.  By old bundt pan, I mean old.  It use to belong to his grandma, so it has seen better days and I am pretty certain it might be older than me 🙂  Reason number two, the picture of this bundt as been attracting me to it for 2 years and ended up on my, “I really need to make this” list. (more…)