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baking, cooking, and other adventures

Daring Bakers’ Challenge: Doughnuts!!!!! October 29, 2010

Filed under: Baking,Doughnuts,The Daring Bakers' — pastrybrush @ 10:28 am
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The October 2010 Daring Bakers challenge was hosted by Lori of Butter Me Up. Lori chose to challenge DBers to make doughnuts. She used several sources for her recipes including Alton Brown, Nancy Silverton, Kate Neumann and Epicurious.

Lori provided us with four different recipes to choose from for this challenge: Yeast Doughnuts, Old-Fashion Buttermilk Cake Doughnuts, Bomboloni, and Pumpkin Doughnuts.  In a perfect world I probably would have made the yeast or the old-fashion cake, but because I procrastinated, YET AGAIN!!! I stuck to something I have done before and went with the pumpkin doughnuts.  Recipe wise, it was very similar to something I have made before (see regular version here, and vegan version), flavor wise I would stick with what I made before. (more…)


Tuesdays With Dorie: All-American, All-Delicious Apple Pie October 27, 2010

Filed under: Baking,Pie,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 7:53 pm
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This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie was chosen by Emily of Sandmuffin.  She picked Dorie’s All-American, All-Delicious Apple Pie which is located on pages 300-302 in Baking: From My Home to Yours.

Yes, I know today isn’t Tuesdays.

I have been taking part in procrastination station with regard to all my baking.  Today, I realized I hadn’t done my Daring Bakers either, so that is also in process.  Along with making a cherry cheesecake for one of Mike’s co-workers for their friends birthday.  For the cheesecake, I just stuck with a Dorie recipe and did her Tall and Creamy Cheesecake (Previous Post).  I added a little bit of lemon zest to the base of the batter, baked it up, and then made a cherry topping.  The cheesecake sans topping is in the freezer firming up so that I can slice it 🙂

In between making the cheesecake, I made the pie crust and kept it refrigerated.  Once the cheesecake was finally out of the oven, I went to finishing up the apple pie.  For this recipe, I actually only made 1/6 of the recipe which makes two perfectly sized mini pies.    While mixing the ingredients together for the filling, I discovered that I had either misplaced my tapioca or actually used all of it and never realized it.  So I went to my old pie standby, cornstarch.

The pies baked up in 40 minutes and as you will see from the picture of Mike, they slipped perfectly out of the ramekin and turned into a hand held apple pie 🙂  I had a couple of bites of Mike’s and the pie was great, and now I can say I have actually made a really good Apple Pie which has been a goal for me for a long time.

Thank you Dorie and thank you Emily for picking this recipe.

As a side note, Dorie’s Birthday was on the 24th and I completely missed it.  So Happy Late Birthday Dorie.  I hope you had a great one 🙂


French Fridays With Dorie: Hachis Parmentier and Vietnamese Spicy Chicken Noodle Soup October 22, 2010

Filed under: Casseroles,French Fridays With Dorie,Soup — pastrybrush @ 2:21 pm

This weeks French Fridays With Dorie is Hachis Parmentier.  The simple way to explain it would be a French version of Shepard’s Pie.  I actually made this this morning and we had it for lunch 🙂 I added a little too much liquid to it.  I also added the chopped up vegetables back to it so that I wouldn’t waste anything.  The flavor was great.  Mike said it smelled like Pizza.  I think that is because of the Italian sausage in the filling.

I would definitely make this again.

Last weeks French Fridays With Dorie was Vietnamese Spicy Chicken Noodle Soup.  I kinda dragged my butt on this one and made it a couple of days late, and then I forgot to post 🙂  I figured with this post that I could hit two birds with one stone.

This soup was actually extremely easy to make and both Mike and I enjoyed it.  I added a few squirts of hot red chili paste to mine, along with peanuts and extra cilantro 🙂

Be sure to pick up Dorie’s new book so that you can make this delicious recipes, Around My French Table.


Tuesdays With Dorie: Caramel Pumpkin Pie October 19, 2010

Filed under: Baking,Pie,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 10:30 pm
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This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie was chosen by Janell of Mortensen Family Memoirs. She picked Dorie’s Caramel Pumpkin Pie which is located on pages 322-323 in Baking: From My Home to Yours.

Okay, I am really running under the wire tonight so I am going to keep this short and sweet and amend it once I have a bit of this yummy pie.

I just pulled this baby out of the oven and the house smell fantastic.  It has hints of a butter crust and spiciness in the air.  I am sure I am going to love falling asleep with these smells in the house.

Tomorrow is my first day off in 6 days and unfortunately I am going to be driving 2 hours to go pay my respects to a college friend who recently passed away.  So, I am not sure when this post will get amended but it will happen in the next 2 days for sure.


After a day of driving in the rain for 4 hours, seeing old friends, saying goodbye to one, and then spending the rest of the night outside in the cold/rain at a seafood festival while God cried in my Beer and Coffee; I am glad to wake up to the sun shining and a piece of Caramel Pumpkin Pie in front of me.

I actually had the crust turn out perfect this time, it didn’t even shrink on me…YAY!!!  The crust is buttery and flaky, and the filling to the pie is smooth and has a hint of rum lingering on the middle of my tongue.  It is the breakfast of champions 🙂  Now I am just wishing for a angel or fairy to bring me a cup of coffee and I will be set.


Tuesdays With Dorie: Double Apple Bundt Cake October 6, 2010

Filed under: Baking,Cake,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 6:11 pm
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This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was chosen by Lynne of Honey Muffin.  Lynne picked Dorie’s Double Apple Bundt Cake, which is located on pages 184-815 in Baking: From My Home to Yours.

I started writing this yesterday, took pictures and everything.  Then I feel asleep on the couch.  So I did do this on Tuesday, I am just a slacker and love me some sleep 🙂

I really loved this recipe.  I ended up using the Apple Butter that I canned last month for the Daring Cooks Challenge, and it turned out fantastic.  I did leave out the pecans, which is a huge shock because I love nuts.  I actually didn’t have any on hand and figured Mike would eat more of the cake without the nuts.  He has this weird relationship with nuts, most of the time it is a bad one but every once in awhile they can be friends 🙂

The flavors of the cake were spot on, and reminded me why I love fall/autumn.  The cake was moist, and the lemon icing gave it just enough tartness to compliment the apples.  I am sure I will be making this again in the near future 🙂


French Fridays With Dorie: Gougeres October 1, 2010

Filed under: Appetizer,Baking,French Fridays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 8:48 pm
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Today is the first day of French Fridays With Dorie (FFwd) and Dorie picked the recipe!!!  The recipe comes from Dorie’s new cookbook that is out, Around My French Table.

She picked Gougeres, which are essentially a savory cream puff with cheese added to the dough.  Dorie suggests either Cheddar or Gruyere cheese, and I made Mike pick.  He decided on Gruyere, so I picked up a pre-shredded mix of Swiss and Gruyere Cheese.  I only made 1/3 of a recipe because we sure didn’t need 36 puffs of deliciousness in the house.

I procrastinated because I lost track of what day it was in the week, so we had these little puffs for dinner, and they were FANTASTIC.  I actually couldn’t get enough of them, so it was a good thing that I didn’t make a full recipe.  I would walk by the sheet pan and grab one off.  The little bit of crusty cheese on the bottom of each puff was the best part.  They tasted the best straight out of the oven.