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baking, cooking, and other adventures

Tuesdays With Dorie: Vanilla Pound Cake July 15, 2014

Filed under: Baking,Baking With Julia,Cake,Pound Cake,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 2:38 pm
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This weeks recipe for Tuesdays With Dorie is the Vanilla Pound Cake which is located on pages 251-252 in Baking With Julia.  I was looking at the recipe it looked pretty straight forward and reminded me of the Pound Cake recipe my Mom and Nanny make.  I decided to compare those two recipes and only noticed a few differences.

My family’s recipes has

1) No baking powder.

2) 1 cup more sugar

3) 1 tsp more vanilla extract (total of 1 Tbsp)

4) 1/2 cup of vegetable oil (in addition to the 2 sticks of butter)

5) 2 more eggs

I guess the most notable different with regard to taste was sweetness and texture.  Of course with one cup less sugar this pound cake wouldn’t be as sweet, which I did actually mind.  It was the texture of the cake.  It was good, but when comparing the two I would prefer my family’s recipe because it yields a moister cake.  Which of course it would with the addition of vegetable oil. I have done the recipe with apple sauce instead of the oil and it turned out just as moist. I have also left it completely out of the recipe a few times and the cake turned out good just not really moist. Because the recipe doesn’t call for baking powder it yields a denser cake, but you are using sifting the dry ingredients and the creaming of the butter and sugar together instead of chemical leveners.

So in the end, it is a good recipe, but a bit too dry for my taste.  I will probably just stick with my family’s recipe and modify flavorings for the type of cake I want.

Vanilla Pound Cake

The cake looks WAY darker than it really was. I was using natural sunlight coming in from the skylight.

 

Tuesdays with Dorie: A Fig Cake For Fall November 1, 2011

Filed under: Baking,Cake,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 8:24 pm
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For the week of October 25th, Ursula of Cookie Rookie chose A Fig Cake for Fall, which is located on page 198 in Baking: From My Home to Yours.

I actually did this recipe on time for once but because it wasn’t Vegan I did not want to post it during Vegan MoFo.  I was trying to follow the rules and be respectful.  I was initially going to try to make this vegan, but the more I looked at the recipe…and the screw up with the brownies, I wanted to make sure it was right the first time.  So I opted to make it the omni way and forgo posting until October was over.

Funny thing is, when I decided I wanted to make this I had just been to Trader Joe’s and noticed that they had fresh figs…score.  Too bad I didn’t buy them at the time.  I went in a couple of days later and they didn’t have any.  Come to think of it, I was in there two days ago and they didn’t have any either.

After Mike heard me complaining about the lack of Fresh Figs, he ended up coming home one day with some.  I asked him where he got them and he said one of his co-workers actually has a fig tree and brought some to work.  Miracle thy name is Lisa.  I guess all the stars aligned and I got my figs 🙂  I decided to bake this cake in a pan that I wouldn’t have to turn it out of, and that was pretty.  Cut to the pie plate my mom brought me back from Poland….love it.  The Fig Cake actually fit perfectly into.  The cake came out nice and lovely, with a nice lemon and cornmeal notes in the cake.  This is a recipe that I would specifically buy figs just to make.  It showcases the fig on the top of the cake and then gives you a nice dense light lemon flavor in the cake.  Next time, I will get Mike to eat more of it, or just take it into work 🙂

 

Tuesdays With Dorie: Maple Nut Scones and Far Breton

Filed under: Baking,Breakfast,Cake,Scones,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 8:11 pm
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During the month of November there is going to be two recipes for each week for Tuesdays with Dorie.  I have decided that I am going to bake each option because Mike needs to gain weight 🙂  This will probably hurt me since I am trying to lose weight.  I am almost back to my  pre-baby weight, and then I have chosen to try to lose a couple more pounds 🙂  I am looking forward to the day when I can put back on my jeans and feel comfortable 🙂

So the two recipes chosen for this week were Honey Nut Scones, which I changed to Maple Hazelnut Scones, chosen by Jeannette of Whimsical Cupcake; and Far Breton chosen by Nicole of Cookies on Friday.  Both of these recipes can be found in Baking: From My Home to Yours on pages 31 and 202, respectively.

You ask why did I change the scone recipe, 1) I was being lazy and didn’t want to get the honey out, and 2) I was being lazy and I already had hazelnuts that were toasted (peels removed) and chopped.  It just made life so much easier.  The scones came together quite nicely, and baked up in no time.  I need to learn to not pat the dough out so thin.  I decided to dress them up a bit with some decorating sugar, which helped in the sweetness department.  Most scones that you come across today at coffee shops are doctored up to the nines in sugar, so it takes a little getting use to when there isn’t that much sweetness to a scone.  But I guess that is what toppings are for 🙂

I sat down this morning with some Irish Breakfast Tea and a Maple Nut Scone, and I was perfectly content with my choice.  I couldn’t really taste the maple, but the hazelnut flavor was very nice and the tea balanced everything out.  I had just enough time to eat my scone and drink half of my tea before Emma woke up and wanted feed.  I have to say, that it was very good timing.

The Far Breton, made my life so simple.  Especially since I was trying to make it the night before.  After I made the batter and placed it in the fridge, I decided that soaking the prunes and having them ready for today would make life easier.  So I walked over to the pantry, checked my bag of dried fruit, only to discover that I was mistaken and didn’t have any prunes…I had dates, CRAP!

I guess I will just have to drink the Earl Grey tea that I just made and wait until tomorrow since I really couldn’t/didn’t want  to do anything about it on HALLOWEEN.

Cut to this evening when my wonderful husband shows up with prunes for my recipe.  I promptly fix the tea, soak the prunes, and wait for them to come to room temperature.  The Far Breton just came out of the oven and smells FANTASTIC.  Now, it is time for the waiting game.  It must be the worst game ever when it comes to baked goods that have to cool before you can eat them.  The anticipation is excruciating, so I am trying to distract myself by writing this entry 🙂

 

Tuesdays With Dorie/Vegan MoFo: Vegan Apple Nut Muffin Cake October 4, 2011

Filed under: Baking,Cake,Quick Breads,Tuesdays With Dorie,Vegan — pastrybrush @ 11:10 pm
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This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was chosen by Katrina of Baking and Boys.  She picked Dorie’s Apple Nut Muffin Cake which is located on page 37 in Baking:From My Home to Yours.  Since this month is Vegan MoFo aka Vegan Month of Food, all of my post for October will be Vegan.  If I am given a recipe that is not vegan than I will make it vegan to abide by the rules, which I did for this recipe.

I am also going to be posting more this month because I have realized I have been neglecting my blog.  It will surprise you to know that I have already baked/cooked up a few vegan things already and now I just need to find time to sneak away from the baby to type them up 🙂

This cake turned out wonderful.  No one would be able to tell that it was vegan.  It was very moist because of the apples and the texture reminded me of a banana walnut cake without the banana flavor.  I would definitely make this again.  The changes to the recipe that I made were very easy, and actually made for a healthier version of the cake since I used vegetable oil instead of butter.  I took a few hints from the Ladies over at Post Punk Kitchen via Vegan with a Vengeance to make this recipe Vegan and it was perfect.

You can find the original recipe on Katrina’s blog, Baking and Boys.

Below is the vegan version that turned out FANTASTIC!!!

Vegan Apple Nut Muffin Cake

1/2 cup rice milk

1/2 cup apple juice

1 tbsp ground Flax Seed mixed with 3 tbsp water

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon pecan extract (I didn’t want to dig the almond extract out)

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

1  3/4 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar

3/4 cup old-fashioned oats

1 medium apple, peeled, cored and cut into small dice

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

1/3 cup dried figs, diced (I was out of raisins so I opted for figs)

Getting ready:  Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Use an 8-inch square silicone pan, or oil an 8-inch square baking pan.  Put the pan on a baking sheet.

Whisk together the rice milk, cider, ground flax seed with water, vanilla and pecan extracts, oil, and vinegar.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and soda, cinnamon and salt to combine thoroughly.  Toss in the brown sugar, making sure there aren’t any lumps by running it through your fingers, then add the oats and whisk the dry ingredients a few more times to mix.  Switch to a large rubber spatula and stir in the liquid ingredients, stirring just until everything is moistened—as with muffins, less mixing is better than more.  Gently stir in the apple, nuts and figs, and scrape the batter into the prepared pan.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown and a thin knife inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.  Transfer the pan to a rack and cool for a couple of minutes before running a knife around the sides of the pan and unmolding the cake; invert and cool until warm, or to room temperature.

 

Tuesdays With Dorie: Flip-Over Plum Cake September 27, 2011

Filed under: Baking,Cake,Cobbler,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 7:18 pm
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This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie was chosen by Becky of Project Domestication.  She picked Dorie’s Flip-Over Plum Cake, which is located on page 42 in Baking: From My Home To Yours.

This recipe is just like a cobbler recipe that one of my friends from college, Kim, use to make.  It was her grandmother recipes and we would just add berries instead of the plums.  It tastes exactly the same, and it is one of the quickest recipes that you will ever put together.  Best thing about this recipe is that it is so simple to make Vegan because there is no eggs, and you just substitute Earth Balance for the butter.

Dorie was right when she said that if you eat it after it has cooled a little then the fruit that has sunk to the bottom and baked in with the batter is like that of a pudding (so yummy).  But is you let it cool and serve the next day it is just as good.   This would be very good warm with vanilla ice cream over the top 🙂

 

Tuesdays With Dorie: Rewind: Cardamom Crumb Cake December 29, 2010

Filed under: Baking,Cake,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 7:21 pm
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Is it bad that I am rewinding last weeks recipe because I didn’t have enough time to do it 🙂

So, last weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was chosen by Jill of Jill’s Blog.  She picked Dorie’s Cardamom Crumb Cake which is located on page 38 in Baking: From My Home to Yours.

This Crumb Cake was actually really easy to make.  I used my last orange the other day while I was making Stollen and Candied Citrus Peel.  So instead of going out and buying more oranges, I just used the orange peel that I had in the pantry.  The cake was really good and moist, but I might cut back on the cardamom next time.  I will also use orange zest because there really wasn’t any orange flavor there….my bad.

 

Tuesdays With Dorie: Apple-Coconut Family Cake December 15, 2010

Filed under: Baking,Cake,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 11:23 am
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This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie was chosen by Amber of Cobbler du Monde.  She picked Dorie’s Apple-Coconut Family Cake which is located on page 214 in Baking: From My Home to Yours.

Holy Crap!!! I am only a day late 🙂   I actually made this yesterday during the day and then Mike and I had it for dessert.  The construction of the whole dessert was very easy.  I was actually unable to find Golden Delicious Apples so I just used some Granny Smith Apple instead.  The surprising revelation about this cake is that Mike actually ate it 🙂  He has this whole coconut texture thing that I have explained many times before.  This time I actually used a different type of coconut.  I used unsweetened, finely shredding, dehydrated coconut.  So the texture is actually not as coarse 🙂

The cake was fantastic.  In the first bite you get a hint of rum, with a slight spice of cinnamon, and the crunch and sweetness from the apples just rounds out the flavor.

Now, to finish up yesterdays Daring Cooks’ Challenge, and start my annual Holiday Cookie Baking 🙂