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Tuesdays With Dorie: Orange Madeleines and Pebble Bread March 18, 2015

Last weeks Tuesdays With Dorie was Lemon Madeleines which are located on page 212 in Baking Chez Moi.  I did actually did makes these on time and like most things I forget to post.  Funny thing was is that I made my husband a Lemon-Blueberry Bundt Cake that day, so I was out of lemons.  However, I did happen to have grated orange zest in my freezer.

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So, I was about to make orange Madeleines but since I didn’t actually have an orange on hand I couldn’t make the glaze. So they got the powdered sugar treatment.  When I made these I was actually on a 10 day cleanse, so I was unable to try them until they were almost a week old.  They still tasted really good especially since I hadn’t had any sugar in awhile 🙂

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On Sunday, I made the starter for the pebble bread.  I had ever intention of finishing them on Monday, but I was also prepping for Saint Patrick’s Day.  I ended up running out of time by the time I had to leave for work at 4:30 pm.  But I did end up making Irish Soda Bread, Irish Brown Bread, Guinness Chocolate Cupcakes, and Jameson Chocolate Ganache.  I ended up leaving for work and I forgot to tell Mike to put the rising dough in the refrigerator. But he noticed it and gave me a call. The fully risen dough ended up taking an overnight rest in the refrigerator.

On Saint Patrick’s Day, in the midst of making Cornbeef and Cabbage, Steamed Kale with Lemon zest and Chives, Roasted Leeks, Colcanon, Irish Rarebit, Cauliflower Gratin, and finishing the cupcakes my filling them with the ganache and icing them with Irish Cream Icing; I was able to finished the Pebble Bread. I did modify the recipe slightly so that it wasn’t as complicated. Well for starters, we couldn’t find Barley Flour so Mike picked up a bag of barley and I ended up grinding it in the dry blender of my Vitamix.  It worked perfectly.  When cooking the bread, I did a slight modification.  I placed a pizza stone in the oven and set it for 475 degrees Fahrenheit. I did do the dip in water and cook in a skillet until the bottom was firm, but then I threw them in the oven on the pizza stone until they were brown.  It made it easier because I could fit more than one in the oven at a time. They did puff up more than they should have, but that was fine by me.

I ended up snacking on one of the breads while I was finishing up making dinner. The girls also snag themselves a quarter of one and really liked the bread.  So did Eomer, one of our dogs, because he kept stealing Maureen’s bread.  Mike said it reminded him of French bread.  I wouldn’t mind making this dough again but the baking method is a little involved especially with one person.

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Tuesdays With Dorie: Poppy Seed Torte August 5, 2014

Filed under: Baking,Baking With Julia,Cake,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 11:17 am
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IMG_4688 IMG_4692This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie recipe is the Poppy Seed Torte which is located on pages 258-260 in Baking With Julia.  The contributing baker for the recipe is Markus Farbinger.  I actually went online and watched the PBS episode of Julia and Markus making this recipe and it was very helpful.

The recipe was actually pretty simple to make, it just required a few extra steps: grinding poppy seeds, cake crumbs, and peeling and poaching apricots.  I figured I would not have any problems with the recipe. Little did I know that my apricots refused to have themselves peeling. I boiled them for the 10 seconds, a little bit longer, and A LOT longer and still it was hit or miss.  Some would only peel halfway and most would not peel at all. Because some of the apricots cooked longer than they were suppose to I ended up just soaking them in the Ginger-Vanilla Syrup instead of cooking them longer.

After the apricot peeling fiasco, everything went very smoothly.  The final product of the torte looked just like the picture.  The final test was the taste and it was actually very good. It had a slight lemony flavor from the juice/zest and I also used a left over lemon cake for the crumbs.

 

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: Cantuccini April 29, 2014

This month I haven’t been posting very much but I did make the recipe for the week of April 15th, but as usual I just didn’t have time to post.  While I type this up, I am about to punch my computer in the face because the spacebar doesn’t want to work so I keep having to push it more than once.

Funny thing is I can hear it click every time I hit it but it doesn’t register the action.

ANNOYING!!!!!

Okay, back to Tuesdays With Dorie and Baking with Julia.  The recipe for the week of April 15th was for Cantuccini, which is essentially a biscotti made with almonds.  Which is located on pages 113-114 in Baking With Julia.  I love recipes that are simple, especially when I have all of the ingredients. Best thing about this recipe is that there is no added fat with regard to butter or oil. Great biscotti recipe for those days when you realize that you just ran out of butter.  Which surprisingly didn’t happen to me this time, but I was out of one important ingredient, ALMONDS. I usually have all types of different nuts hanging out in my freezer and I had almonds just not nearly enough.  However, I did have plenty of hazelnuts and just substituted them in for the almonds. I didn’t peel or toast them or anything, just straight up raw hazelnuts from the freezer.

This recipe was especially appreciated because of how quick everything came together.  Mike took Emma outside to play and I was able to mix the dough up, form the logs, and put them in the oven, in less than 20 minutes.  Which was ideal since I was also watching Maureen, 11 months old, crawl around the kitchen and living room.  She was actually really well behaved and didn’t try to play with the dog food or the dog’s water 🙂 The biscotti turned out fantastic, slightly sweet with the perfect amount of crunch. They are especially good with coffee and just as good with tea.Image

 

Tuesdays With Dorie: Chocolate Mascarpone Cheesecake February 18, 2014

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This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is the Chocolate Mascarpone Cheesecake, which is located on pages 256-258 in Baking With Julia. Of course I made this recipe for Valentine’s Day because, really, who doesn’t want a creamy piece of chocolate cheesecake on their Birthday.

Oh, did I mention that it also happens to be my Birthday.

Yep, unfortunately for me it does. But I imagine that having your birthday on Christmas is probably worse. I guess for me it goes back to those angsty teenage years where you see all the girls getting flowers/balloons in high school and you don’t get anything. But then again, my husband was my first Valentine, and that was in college. So, I guess I got the better end of the deal. Especially, since he insists that we don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day, we celebrate my birthday. Which I am fine with, but I still get him something anyways.

Back to the Cheesecake.

This was probably one of the easiest cheesecakes that I have ever made. The key was to have all cold ingredients at room temperature, and to mix everything on low speed so as not to incorporate too much air. You bake the cake in a buttered 8-inch Cheesecake Pan with 3 inch sides. I actually just used an 8 x 3-inch cake pan because I figured they were the same thing because usually if they want you to use a springform pan then it is specifically stated. Also, since this was baked in a water bath (bain marie) it makes it harder to use a springform pan without water getting in. You bake the cheesecake until it is just set and jiggles like pudding then you cool it to room temperature. Then you turn it out, sprinkle the bottom with cookie crumbs, flip it back over, and refrigerate for a few hours. I was actually very surprise how easily the cheesecake came out of the pan.

Once the cake had been refrigerated for the appropriate time, I used a hot knife to slice it. The cake came out great. The inside was perfectly creamy. I was impressed with the texture because it is hard to get the right texture with other recipes and not have the cheesecake crack on top. This recipe is definitely going to be my go to for Chocolate Cheesecake.

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Tuesdays With Dorie: Challah December 3, 2013

Filed under: Baking,Baking With Julia,Bread,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 10:26 pm
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This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is Challah bread, which is located on page 93 in Baking With Julia.

Does anyone else want to yell CHALLAH like Holla when they see the bread or the word. I, or course, am either yelling it out loud or in my head. I yell it at home, in public I say it in my head or whisper it. I guess I am just weird that way.

This recipe worked out really well. I used my mixer for the most part, but then I was convinced the motor was about to go out so I finished the kneading by hand. Since I started making the bread pretty late at night and didn’t notice the 3 different rises it has to go through, I made a small adjustment. After the first rise, I punched it down and then covered the dough and placed it in the fridge for the second rise. Which of course it doubled it size perfectly, so when I woke up in the morning I let it come almost to room temperature. Hindsight, I should have let it completely come to room temperature, so the last rise took a bit long to double in size. Which was fine because I was taking care of the girls.

The bread actually turned out great, and I am looking forward to some French Toast and/or Bread Pudding later this week.

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Tuesdays With Dorie: Double Chocolate Cookies November 19, 2013

Filed under: Baking,Baking With Julia,Cookies,Tuesdays With Dorie — pastrybrush @ 10:50 pm
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This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie recipe comes from page 329 in Baking With Julia and is Rick Katz’s Double Chocolate Cookies. These cookies are more like a brownie. They are the best parts of a brownie: crunchy edge and fudgy center. The key to this recipe is to not bake them too much. My oven has actually been running on the cool side so these took a little longer than the 10-12 minutes the recipe suggested. I find these are best when they are still slightly warm because the chocolate chips are still soft.

I had to change a few things in the recipe because of a mishap with some instant espresso powder. By mishap, I mean my powder solidified because of the conditions in my pantry, i.e. someone left the light on which the powder sits next to and I think humidity had a factor too. If I would have used it, I would have only used half the amount because the recipe actually calls for instant coffee which is milder. I did add some Irish Creme flavoring just for the heck of it and it worked perfectly.

These are what comforted me and feed my cold today 🙂

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