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What are you baking these days? September 2011, part 1 [old]

buttertart Sep 1, 2011 06:20 AM

Hello everybody, so the summer is slipping by and fall is tuning up, with all of its lovely apples and other cool-weather delights.
Even though the summer was SO (dang) HOT in my and many other parts of the US and my native land, Canada, these threads were remarkably active with tons of great ideas and recipes.
So...with cool fall breezes and occasions in mind, what are you baking these days?

  1. buttertart Sep 15, 2011 08:40 AM

    And awaaaay we go, to September, Part Deux...
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8073...

    1. souschef Sep 14, 2011 08:03 PM

      Today I once again baked RLB's Golden Grand Marnier Cake, and this time I almost pulled a Cynsa...almost. I ate the first slice after it had cooled for about 90 minutes but there was still residual heat in it. It was amazingly moist and delicious. I ate another slice about 7 hours later, and this time it was still very nice, but not quite as nice as that first slice. I feel sorry for people who don't bake - they can't taste stuff at its absolute peak !

      While eating it I had a pleasant crunch from some of the ground almonds that did not get ground fine enough. This makes me think that the next time I make it I should include toasted slivered almonds. I'm also thinking that I should substitute some of the Felchlin white chocolate that I like in place of the dark (maybe 1/3). Marzipan might also be an idea !

      Infortunately I'm unable to try Cynsa's breakfast of champions consisting of that cake and Ciao Bella Blood Orange Sorbet as I could not find the sorbet here. The search continues.....

      3 Replies
      1. re: souschef
        buttertart Sep 15, 2011 08:33 AM

        Yum! White chocolate...
        And here's an NYT article with your name all over it, sir:
        http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/14/din...

        1. re: buttertart
          souschef Sep 15, 2011 09:34 AM

          Yes'm, I could not have said it better myself than the article does. I find it amusing when a recipe asks you to sift flour into a cup. Who has the time for that? Weigh the damn thing and be done with it, THEN sift it.

          1. re: souschef
            buttertart Sep 15, 2011 10:24 AM

            Precisely.

      2. g
        gembellina Sep 13, 2011 08:53 AM

        After my revolting Turkish Delight cupcakes last week, this week's Lemon Polenta cake was a hit. Though I mixed up the quanities of ground almonds and polenta, it didn't seem to do any harm.

        Also, a question about Angel Food Cake, if I may: I've never had AFC but like the idea of it. The pics I've seen tend to have a much browner layer on the outside. I'm concerned that this brown layer might be like the awful leathery eggy skin you get on over-cooked souffles, or low-fat baked cheesecake. Can someone reassure me? (Or tell me to avoid AFC!)

        4 Replies
        1. re: gembellina
          kattyeyes Sep 13, 2011 08:59 AM

          No, no...angel food cake is light as a cloud. It's just a color thing, that outer browned layer--not leathery or eggy or anything of the sort.

          1. re: gembellina
            buttertart Sep 13, 2011 09:03 AM

            I don't like AFC for that precise reason...have never made one. My mother-in-law used to make one on their then-Westie Alex McTavish's birthday and make a mini one for him. That's the only occasion on which I could choke it down.

            1. re: buttertart
              r
              rstuart Sep 14, 2011 01:37 PM

              Wow.. a cake for a dog's birthday? Now that's a family with the right priorities! I adore angel food, but have cheated and bought it/used a mix more than once, because I find separating that many eggs/beating something for long so tedious... especially when it's just used as an ingredient in something else. Maybe now that I have a mixmaster I'll have to try making one again...

              1. re: rstuart
                buttertart Sep 15, 2011 08:32 AM

                My great-aunt-in-law always said that she wanted to come back as a pet at their house - this dog got EVERYTHING cooked for him (and lived to be 21). The now dogs get cooked meat as treats but eat mainly (good) dog food. We don't tell them about Alex.

          2. kattyeyes Sep 13, 2011 05:51 AM

            Almond shortbread to start the day sweetly. Never pretty, yet always AHM NOM NOM NOM!

            5 Replies
            1. re: kattyeyes
              buttertart Sep 13, 2011 06:28 AM

              And how do you make your almond nom nom noms, Madame Cookie Monsteress?

              1. re: buttertart
                kattyeyes Sep 13, 2011 06:40 AM

                It's a halved recipe--modified only to add almond extract--from one clipped from The Hartford Courant. Combine almond flour, flour, sugar, salt in a mini food processor (or mixer, of course). Add a stick of softened butter and 3/4 tsp. almond extract. Bake in buttered pan at 325 degrees F for 25-30 minutes. I use a 4x6" indi-casserole dish rather than the 9" pan the full recipe calls for. Deliver to favorite tasters ASAP before you eat them all...they go down WAY too easy (she said, having sampled three pieces already)! >>^..^<<

                1. re: kattyeyes
                  buttertart Sep 13, 2011 07:26 AM

                  How much of the dry ingredients, honeybunch?

                  1. re: buttertart
                    kattyeyes Sep 13, 2011 08:20 AM

                    Here is the whole recipe:
                    http://articles.courant.com/2010-04-2...

                    I never use unsalted butter and still add the salt without cutting back as I like the flavor. I've never bothered to top these with melted chocolate. They stand on their own without chocolate getting in the way. Don't forget the almond extract!

                    The half recipe is on Katty's Kitchen and simple enough to calculate if you prefer a small batch, of course, but now you have the whole enchilada!

                    1. re: kattyeyes
                      buttertart Sep 13, 2011 08:38 AM

                      Thanking you kindly, almond is my favorite flavor. No chocolate needed.

            2. THewat Sep 12, 2011 02:25 PM

              Loaf of bread, batch of pecan / oat / chocolate chunk cookies. Someday I'll bake something new, I swear.

              5 Replies
              1. re: THewat
                THewat Sep 13, 2011 06:17 AM

                Photos:

                 
                 
                1. re: THewat
                  buttertart Sep 13, 2011 06:27 AM

                  V nice!

                  1. re: THewat
                    g
                    gembellina Sep 13, 2011 08:48 AM

                    Lovely, I'm getting inspired to bake some bread.

                    1. re: THewat
                      trolley Sep 13, 2011 08:58 PM

                      the bread looks great! what kind is it?

                      1. re: trolley
                        THewat Sep 14, 2011 05:22 AM

                        Trolley: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7952...

                  2. r
                    rstuart Sep 12, 2011 01:44 PM

                    This week-end make cinnamon rhubarb muffins (good recipe that I made slightly more healthy by replacing half the butter with applesauce, and the sour cream with a mixture of low fat sour cream and yogourt), and plum friands (modified from a Donna Hay recipe, I think).

                    1. roxlet Sep 12, 2011 06:04 AM

                      I baked my classic cheesecake and pecan tassies for a dinner on Saturday. My Egyptian houseguest came home from the club yesterday saying that he had been dreaming of the cheesecake and tassies all day. We had sent half the tassies and a big portion of cheesecake home with our dinner guests, and yesterday my son's friend came over and inhaled the remaining tassies. Poor Ahmed was so disappointed, but at least he learned that there is life beyond chocolate chip cookies. There was cheesecake left, however, and he happily tucked into a good slice after dinner. One piece left, and it has Ahmed's name on it. Maybe I should make him a cheesecake for a birthday cake for his 21st birthday next week.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: roxlet
                        buttertart Sep 13, 2011 12:51 PM

                        Great idea, are you going to?

                      2. b
                        burgeoningfoodie Sep 12, 2011 06:02 AM

                        lemon semifreddo cake with homemade curd

                         
                        1 Reply
                        1. re: burgeoningfoodie
                          buttertart Sep 13, 2011 12:51 PM

                          I'll take some, please.

                        2. m
                          milklady Sep 11, 2011 08:20 PM

                          Lots of baking this weekend. All very simple and straightforward.

                          -Rustic Plum Tart from Alice Medrich's Just Desserts (last one of the summer?)
                          -Bittersweet brownies (same cookbook!)
                          -Chocolate cake with Whipped chocolate ganache
                          -homemade granola

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: milklady
                            r
                            rstuart Sep 12, 2011 01:40 PM

                            I love baking with plums.. the problem is I tend to eat them all before they make into a cake/tart!

                            1. re: rstuart
                              m
                              milklady Sep 12, 2011 02:04 PM

                              Well, if they were 89 cents a pound like mine were, you would have bought way too many, like I did, and it wouldn't be a problem!

                          2. Chocolatechipkt Sep 11, 2011 08:11 PM

                            I baked nothing this weekend ... but I'm going to report for my mother, who very sweetly baked me TWO birthday cakes (vanilla with chocolate frosting and chocolate with vanilla.) She wanted people to have choices. :)

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                              buttertart Sep 12, 2011 06:05 AM

                              Aww.

                            2. p
                              paprkutr Sep 11, 2011 06:51 PM

                              My little neighbor, 7 years old, loves to come over and bake. So yesterday we made a s'mores pie. Graham Cracker crust, brownie filling, put chocolate chips on top when it came out of the oven to melt. She spread it then put marshmallows on top and put back in oven to brown. It really came out good, and she loved it.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: paprkutr
                                buttertart Sep 12, 2011 06:07 AM

                                I used to bake with my then boss's little girls ages ago. That was fun. No littles in the family or in striking range at the moment, although I'm on a campaign to encourage my teenaged niece to bake.

                                1. re: buttertart
                                  r
                                  rstuart Sep 12, 2011 01:38 PM

                                  I learned to bake from working my mother.. and she learned from her grandmothers. It seems to have skipped a generation; my sainted grandmother was a terrible cook and baker. She always bought us Kit-Kats though, so we never minded...

                                  1. re: rstuart
                                    buttertart Sep 12, 2011 04:01 PM

                                    A Kit-Kat goes a long way. My mom learned from her grandmother and great-aunt. I don't know anything about my grandmother's cooking because she died when my mom was two.

                              2. buttertart Sep 11, 2011 05:33 PM

                                Got into a cooking frenzy today (very soothing) and made the Favorite Apple Pie from the King Arthur Baker's Companion. Added a few currants because I was in the mood. Haven't tried it yet but it looks good (CI vodka crust, rolled out very easily for once, even achieved a less Hello Kitty face shape for once). Will post photo.

                                About to bake a pizza caccia nanza (pizza dough to be topped with olive oiul, garlic slivers, and salt, maybe a little oregano) roughly based on the Ed Giobbi one in Beard on Bread to go with a pork and red pepper stew (roughly based on a Joyce Godstein recipe) that's been moseying along since around 4 today.

                                16 Replies
                                1. re: buttertart
                                  kattyeyes Sep 12, 2011 05:09 AM

                                  You make pie crusts that look like Hello Kitty? TEE HEE HEE, now this I'd like to see! MEOWWWWW! >>^..^<<

                                  1. re: kattyeyes
                                    buttertart Sep 12, 2011 06:05 AM

                                    I can never roll out a perfect circle like my sainted mother used to do with one hand tied behind her back. They look variously like a map of China or Australia or Hello Kitty's face...this time I did get closer to le beau idéal. For once.

                                    1. re: buttertart
                                      kattyeyes Sep 12, 2011 06:25 AM

                                      So funny. My mom is also quite adept at rolling and pie doughs. I'm sure it comes from years of practice (like IRONING, as she would remind me). I lack skills in both rolling and ironing, but like to think I make up for it in other ways. Baking a pie is on my mental list of "development opportunities" for sure.

                                      I could really go for a slice of your apple pie right now...

                                      1. re: kattyeyes
                                        buttertart Sep 12, 2011 06:53 AM

                                        Ironing is a lost art in itself, I cannot remember the last time I ironed anything, to tell the truth. Beaming a virtual slice up your way, k-e!

                                        1. re: buttertart
                                          souschef Sep 12, 2011 07:05 AM

                                          ironing is easy; I do it all the time. Just make sure that if you are right-handed but learned from a left-handed person that you place the board correctly. I have seen people struggling to iron when all they had to do was rotate the board.

                                          Now rolling pie dough, that's a different matter. I bet Butterytart's map of Australia looks like a perfect circle compared to mine.

                                  2. re: buttertart
                                    roxlet Sep 12, 2011 05:59 AM

                                    the pizza caccia nanza is news to me! How'd it turn out, and how'd you cook it -- oven, grill?

                                    1. re: roxlet
                                      kattyeyes Sep 12, 2011 06:06 AM

                                      I was curious, too, and found this link:
                                      http://www.brooksbakesbread.com/?p=476

                                      I love rosemary and garlic, but am not sure I'd feel like painstakingly placing each stem/slice, then REMOVING them all! Definitely sounds delicious, though. Have you made it before, roxlet?

                                      1. re: kattyeyes
                                        buttertart Sep 13, 2011 12:53 PM

                                        You kiddin? Just bang that sh-- on there, no fussyfuss needed.

                                        1. re: buttertart
                                          souschef Sep 13, 2011 01:05 PM

                                          Are you allowed to say that on this genteel site ? :)

                                          1. re: souschef
                                            kattyeyes Sep 13, 2011 01:21 PM

                                            Shit, yeah, souschef!

                                            Hey, Miss B., so you left the garlic and herbs in? I'm all for keeping rather than removing...didn't remember if you disliked rosemary or just wanted to be different when you chose oregano. You roll as I do--lack of fuss noted and appreciated. ;)

                                            1. re: kattyeyes
                                              buttertart Sep 13, 2011 01:29 PM

                                              I do, because I like to eat the garlic. I don't like rosemary very much so seldom use it. I don't think the original recipe calls for removing the garlic or herbs, will have a look tonight.

                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                kattyeyes Sep 13, 2011 03:25 PM

                                                I thought it kinda looked like a porcupine all decked out in its rosemary and garlic. Now that I might have a little fun with! ;)

                                                1. re: kattyeyes
                                                  buttertart Sep 13, 2011 04:06 PM

                                                  The sky's the limit in the shaping department!

                                                  1. re: buttertart
                                                    kattyeyes Sep 13, 2011 05:25 PM

                                                    Who needs a Chia pet? LOLOL! :)

                                      2. re: roxlet
                                        buttertart Sep 12, 2011 06:12 AM

                                        http://blushinghostess.blogspot.com/2... for example.
                                        I've been making this since the book came out (it was a wedding present from my mom). It went in the oven, no grill yet. Goes very well with soups and stews.

                                      3. re: buttertart
                                        buttertart Sep 12, 2011 06:17 AM

                                        The pie. Very tasty indeed. Even if not terrifically attractive.

                                         
                                      4. BabsW Sep 11, 2011 03:49 PM

                                        I've been in a brownie mood lately. Last week I made trutle brownies and peanut butter cup brownies.

                                        I'm fiddling with my standard brownie recipe which uses both melted chocolate and cocoa powder and adding gobs of dulce de leche to it for Dulce de leche brownies.

                                        We'll see how it comes out. :)

                                        1. b
                                          bakeanything Sep 10, 2011 06:41 PM

                                          Tarte Tatin. Something a little warm but can be topped with a cold creamy ice cream. Banana tarte tatin anyone?

                                           
                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: bakeanything
                                            souschef Sep 10, 2011 07:18 PM

                                            I like Tarte Tatin topped with both whipped cream and ice cream.

                                            1. re: souschef
                                              b
                                              bakeanything Sep 10, 2011 11:31 PM

                                              Are there any specific fruits you prefer it? I tried both puff pastry and pate sucree. Up till now, I dont even know why i tried pate sucree.

                                              1. re: bakeanything
                                                souschef Sep 11, 2011 04:35 AM

                                                I have only made it with apples (Granny Smith). It's been a long time since I last made one, so I can't remember what I have used besides puff pastry.

                                          2. souschef Sep 10, 2011 06:38 PM

                                            I had to make a birthday cake today, and, not having much time to spend on it, decided to once again make the DG amaretti torte as it's so easy. I was out of home-made amaretti, so I bought some. They were ridiculously sweet, so I halved the sugar. This time the batter was not liquid as usual, but had to be spread. I find you can't tell with this batter how it will turn out. It baked fine, though. I glazed it with the glaze Medrich uses for her Queen of Sheba. Turned out great.

                                            I had some wonderful scones yesterday - very cakey, and very yellow. So, I plan to experiment with my usual scone recipe tomorrow, throwing in some cornmeal and maybe an egg as well.

                                            6 Replies
                                            1. re: souschef
                                              buttertart Sep 11, 2011 05:29 PM

                                              That's a nice glaze. How about just yolks in the scones?

                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                souschef Sep 11, 2011 06:32 PM

                                                My recipe experiment with cornmeal was a disaster. The scones just sat there, refusing to rise, and they had a mealy texture. They got tossed out. I have to find a REAL recipe for cornmeal scones. If anyone has one they like please post it here or in the scone thread.

                                                I started off with cornmeal instead of flour, but it would not bind, so I threw in a whole egg, and then it was too wet, so I threw in more cornmeal. Shows you how much I REALLY know about baking. The ones I liked are readily available, but a 45 minute drive away, and I balk at paying $3.25 for one scone.

                                                1. re: souschef
                                                  Cynsa Sep 11, 2011 06:50 PM

                                                  http://www.mycookingblog.com/post/1-cookie/14248/Corn-Cherry-Scones--Arizmendi--Cheese-Board-Collective

                                                  http://www.joyofbaking.com/SconesCorn...

                                                  1. re: Cynsa
                                                    souschef Sep 11, 2011 07:46 PM

                                                    Thanks Cynsa. I'll be sure to make them ........ though you will probably make them before I do, if I know you well :)

                                                    1. re: souschef
                                                      buttertart Sep 12, 2011 06:03 AM

                                                      Maybe they had butter flavour Crisco in them, that's quite yellow (yanking your chain here, sc).

                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                        souschef Sep 12, 2011 06:14 AM

                                                        Heh heh! At least you didn't tell me to use food colouring. BTW I don't "get" red velvet cake; it is mostly chemicals (food colouring).

                                                        I wish I were one of those people who can taste food and tell you exactly what's in it.

                                            2. buttertart Sep 10, 2011 01:29 PM

                                              The PBC (very crunchy and more-ish) -

                                               
                                              1. buttertart Sep 10, 2011 01:28 PM

                                                The peanut butter cookies turned out a-ok, tarted up with dark chocolate in a 9x9 pan (baked for 30 mins) and as cookies rolled in chopped peanuts with a little fleur de sel on top. All this to abet the reduced-fat PB...

                                                1 c unsalted butter, room temp

                                                1 c white sugar

                                                1 c light brown sugar

                                                1 3/4 c crunchy PB (a jar, more or less)

                                                2 eggs

                                                1 tsp vanilla (I added 1/4 tsp almond extract)

                                                2 2/3 c ap flour

                                                1 tsp baking soda

                                                1 tsp kosher (I used regular) salt

                                                Cream butter and sugar until fluffy.

                                                Beat in eggs one at a time.

                                                Beat in extract(s).

                                                Beat in PB.

                                                Stir in dry ingredients.

                                                Chill overnight (or longer) (dough lasted a week in my fridge).

                                                Form into balls, flatten, and bake at 350 deg F.

                                                In my oven at 350 1 oz cookies (the size of a small walnut) took 18 mins, more or less.

                                                If you portion the dough roughly, then take up a handful of chopped peanuts and the piece of dough, you can form balls nicely coated in peanuts by the time the unneeded nuts sift out of your hands.

                                                .

                                                1. Cynsa Sep 10, 2011 09:08 AM

                                                  How do I plate these for birthday dinner tonight? RLB's Grand Marnier bundt. Claudia Roden's orange almond cake. Booneville Hotel orange almond cake.
                                                  Basil honey? Powdered sugar? Ganache? Raspberry Gel? Orange blossom water Whipped Cream? fresh strawberries? chocolate curls? (photo will not post)
                                                  Shall I make a chocolate tic-tac-toe grid on the plate with small pieces of cakes and the above flavors? or, just a slice of cake on a plate? cake fingers/logs?

                                                  4 Replies
                                                  1. re: Cynsa
                                                    buttertart Sep 10, 2011 01:18 PM

                                                    Ciao Bella blood orange sorbet in the center and the cakes surrounding?

                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                      Cynsa Sep 10, 2011 02:59 PM

                                                      :^) thank you - I can shop on the way to the dinner party.

                                                      1. re: Cynsa
                                                        buttertart Sep 11, 2011 05:28 PM

                                                        I had it with the amaretti torte on friday night, V good. Did it work for you?

                                                        1. re: buttertart
                                                          Cynsa Sep 12, 2011 08:00 AM

                                                          it's working for me for breakfast - cake, sorbet, coffee - thank you :^)

                                                  2. RUK Sep 10, 2011 09:00 AM

                                                    The Italian Prunes looked really nice and ripe the last couple of weeks around here, so today I made my second Plum cake this season. The Italian prunes come close to what my Thuringian MIL called Zwetschgen and they make a very delicious Sheet-cake. The somewhat sweetened yeast dough is rolled out, covered with cut fruits and dusted with Cinnamon and a sprinkle of sugar ( as needed) and a little bit of sweet butter is touched here and there over the plums before baking.
                                                    (Peaches, Blueberries etc can be used here too, but I usually soak those in Rum first)
                                                    My family likes it very much.

                                                     
                                                    1. kattyeyes Sep 10, 2011 07:11 AM

                                                      Chocolate Crinkles! 1st batch, pre-Irene, all cocoa powder. However, the ones I remember from childhood on my mom's recipe card are half cocoa, half Baker's chocolate...but I'm a Valrhona girl now, so that's what the 2nd batch was: 1/2 this EXTRA SPECIAL DARK cocoa powder my buddy brought me from Quebec, 1/2 dark Valrhona feves. They're delicious either way, but especially so with both cocoa powder AND melted chocolate. They're like deep, dark brownies in cookie costumes!

                                                      P.S. Remember, don't inhale. :) This will only resonate with you if you've ever accidentally inhaled powdered sugar while taking a bite of something topped with it...really no fun to choke, especially as your friends point and laugh.

                                                      P.P.S. Last week I made the red velvet cake on Joy of Baking. The same recipe has appeared on epi, via Bon Appétit, adapted from B. Smith, who surely knows a thing or three about baking. It was very moist, definitely RED, but it tasted like NOTHING--a mere two tablespoons of cocoa would explain that. Never having made it before, I followed the recipe to a T, ran out especially for cake flour and even did the "sift then measure" thing, completely outside my usual M.O. Maybe I just don't like red velvet! I'd rather eat chocolate cake and think red thoughts! :P

                                                       
                                                      4 Replies
                                                      1. re: kattyeyes
                                                        kattyeyes Sep 10, 2011 07:23 AM

                                                        Evidence from the crime scene...

                                                         
                                                         
                                                        1. re: kattyeyes
                                                          sarahjay Sep 11, 2011 05:38 PM

                                                          I don't like red velvet much either. It just tastes like cake, not chocolate, not vanilla, not butter, just plain cake. I make red velvet whoopie pies, that I don't like much but other people seem to love them, they always disappear first when I bring them.

                                                          1. re: sarahjay
                                                            kattyeyes Sep 12, 2011 05:03 AM

                                                            Thank you for validating--your second sentence sums it up perfectly for me!

                                                            1. re: kattyeyes
                                                              biondanonima Sep 14, 2011 01:47 PM

                                                              Ditto sarahjay, except that I find that most red velvet has a nasty food coloring aftertaste in addition to the "plain cake" flavor. There are MUCH better ways to get my cream cheese icing fix!

                                                      2. EWSflash Sep 8, 2011 09:22 PM

                                                        Nothing. It's been really really hot and humid here and only the real dedicated or professional bakers here are doing any baking. January will be a different story, at least I hope to hell it is.

                                                        1. Emme Sep 7, 2011 08:55 PM

                                                          after some interesting macaron results today, i must issue the following statement (under duress, as demanded by my macarons):
                                                          1. they do not like this hot humid weird weather we are having
                                                          2. they prefer to be piped

                                                          i used the italian meringue method, and if it's possible, i believe i might have undermixed them... sigh. more egg whites to use up. maybe i'll try again tomorrow, weather permitting.

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: Emme
                                                            Chocolatechipkt Sep 7, 2011 11:25 PM

                                                            Both are true! With all this rain we've been having here, I'm thinking I might not get to make them again for a long while. Maybe a cold, dry winter day? They're simple and yet quite the process to make, IMO.

                                                            1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                              Emme Sep 8, 2011 08:34 PM

                                                              made another batch today. using french meringue method. not hollow, a few cracked, but no feet. i didn't think i'd overmixed as they held shape when piped, but the lack of feet leads me to believe that i did slightly overmix. i might try again once more tomorrow and also open the door after 8 minutes to release steam. also gonna try double baking sheet. i don't really love eating them, as they're very sweet. but i like making them because they're so pretty.

                                                              1. re: Emme
                                                                Chocolatechipkt Sep 9, 2011 12:52 PM

                                                                I agree on the sweetness/eating. They're just so pretty.

                                                          2. souschef Sep 7, 2011 08:43 PM

                                                            For my wife's birthday today I made her favourite cake - the Chocolate Chestnut cake.

                                                            It was the first time I used Omega-3 eggs for the Génoise. The yolks are very orange, and they made a very yellow cake, which I'm not used to, but it was fine.

                                                            Not wanting to drive 10 miles to get chestnut puree, I threw some vacuum-packed whole chestnuts I had into the the food processor. The puree was grainy, whereas the commercial stuff I usually buy is smooth. The filling on its own was grainy, but it was not noticeable when in the cake.

                                                            This was the first time I used Felchlin (Bolivia 68%) chocolate in the cake. My wife (and I) felt that it was not chestnutty enough; the chocolate was too pronounced (I never thought that this could ever be possible, but it's a question of balance). So it's back to Callebaut 62% for this cake. Nevertheless, I was really delighted with the cake. It was moist and had just the right amount of sweetness. And it was delicious ! Something that every chocolate/chestnut lover should stop procrastinating about and make ♪

                                                            Attached is a picture of what was left after 15 pieces were sliced from the (10-inch) cake.

                                                             
                                                            5 Replies
                                                            1. re: souschef
                                                              buttertart Sep 8, 2011 05:31 AM

                                                              Happy birthday to Mme souschef.
                                                              I will make it, honest!!! And there IS such a thing as too chocolatey, see? (Link to recipe possible?)

                                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                                souschef Sep 8, 2011 06:50 PM

                                                                Mme Souschef thanks you

                                                                You will not regret it when you make it; you will be positively kicking yourself for not making it earlier.

                                                                Here's the link:

                                                                http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7903...

                                                                1. re: souschef
                                                                  buttertart Sep 9, 2011 06:40 AM

                                                                  Merci mille fois, monsieur, I will make it.

                                                              2. re: souschef
                                                                g
                                                                gembellina Sep 13, 2011 08:44 AM

                                                                Looks fabulous, this is going in the recipe box for closer to Xmas (no I didn't just say the dreaded word in September!)

                                                                Thanks for the link :)

                                                                1. re: gembellina
                                                                  souschef Sep 14, 2011 05:56 AM

                                                                  It would be great for a Christmas dessert.

                                                              3. r
                                                                rstuart Sep 7, 2011 01:45 PM

                                                                My freezer is still too full, so I defrosted a bag of frozen berries and made "Berry pie bars".. recipes is originally from the Pastry Queen (as blackberry pie bars).. found via Joy the baker a few years ago. Cut the recipe in half and used a 9x9... easy and yummy.. brought to work.
                                                                Now I have more room to freeze baked goods!

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: rstuart
                                                                  buttertart Sep 7, 2011 01:57 PM

                                                                  That's the spirit!

                                                                2. s
                                                                  shaebones Sep 7, 2011 12:48 PM

                                                                  Made Joy the Bakers peanut butter banana bread. On her blog today. Extraordinary version of BB. Soooooooo good!!!

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: shaebones
                                                                    d
                                                                    dalmadarling Sep 7, 2011 01:07 PM

                                                                    peanut butter + banana bread = my favorite flavors mixed into one! Great tip shaebone - I'll look for it and try that this weekend. thanks!

                                                                    1. re: dalmadarling
                                                                      r
                                                                      rstuart Sep 7, 2011 02:34 PM

                                                                      I made that a few months ago (I find her recipes very reliable... along with Smitten Kitchen). Agree that it was great! Think that it's originally a Cooking Light recipe!

                                                                  2. d
                                                                    dalmadarling Sep 7, 2011 11:14 AM

                                                                    I'm whipping up some banana bread tonight - Martha's recipe with sour cream as the secret ingredient - so delicious! I got that baking bug this weekend too - something about fall on the way and cooler days. I don't cook, but I love to bake!
                                                                    Love to hear the other recipies - so inspired. @nancygirl4ever, blueberry muffins sounds divine! Might have to make those for the upcoming weekend!

                                                                    1. Chocolatechipkt Sep 7, 2011 10:54 AM

                                                                      Challah twists (with sesame and poppy seeds) and one big fluffy loaf of challah

                                                                       
                                                                       
                                                                      1. b
                                                                        burgeoningfoodie Sep 7, 2011 09:58 AM

                                                                        Has anyone made David Lebovitz's Lemon Semifreddo cake from Ready for Dessert? Secondly, have you tried it as a round?

                                                                        1. BananaBirkLarsen Sep 6, 2011 10:43 PM

                                                                          I keep thinking that I've finally found a recipe that will use up the last of my figs, but the bowl never seems to get any emptier.

                                                                          Right now I have this (http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/fresh-fi...) fresh fig cake in the the oven. The filling/topping is just starting to heat on the stove. The cake I made pretty much to the recipe (only sans almond extract). I added a vanilla bean to the filling, and replaced half the water with lemon juice and then added more sugar to compensate for the extra sour.

                                                                          I think I might serve it with whipped cream. Would it be too much to layer of sliced fresh figs on top of the cream? It would be so pretty and would get me that much closer to using up my figs before they go bad (so many are already at the about-to-burst stage)

                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                          1. re: BananaBirkLarsen
                                                                            buttertart Sep 7, 2011 06:40 AM

                                                                            I'd do it. I love figs.

                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                              BananaBirkLarsen Sep 7, 2011 10:15 AM

                                                                              It was so pretty with just the topping, I couldn't bring myself to do it.

                                                                          2. Caitlin McGrath Sep 6, 2011 08:35 PM

                                                                            I had a container of cottage cheese that needed using, so I made cottage cheese muffins with nectarines. These aren't like typical quick bread or cakey muffins; there is relatively little flour to the amount of eggs, cheese, and fat, and they are dense and kind of puddingish. I like the result, and they're a good breakfast choice, as they are relatively high in protein from the high dairy content, and not real sweet.

                                                                            10 Replies
                                                                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                              Emme Sep 6, 2011 10:41 PM

                                                                              would love to see the recipe if you wouldn't mind and would be so kind!

                                                                              1. re: Emme
                                                                                Caitlin McGrath Sep 7, 2011 10:07 AM

                                                                                Of course! I got the base recipe from a Chowhound poster, millygirl. It's one of those blank canvas recipes, very plain, but endlessly adaptable with fruit and spices/flavorings. As I had nectarines, I used brown sugar and added some nutmeg. Next time, I'm going to use half the butter.

                                                                                2 eggs
                                                                                1 pint cottage cheese
                                                                                4 oz (1 stick) butter, melted
                                                                                1/4 tsp. salt
                                                                                3 T. sugar
                                                                                1 cup flour
                                                                                2 tsp. baking powder

                                                                                Oven at 350F. Whisk eggs, cottage cheese, butter, and salt. Stir the flour and baking soda together and mix them into the egg mixture (a spoon or spatula works best). Spoon into greased muffin tin; you can fill the cups pretty full. Bake about 25 minutes, until lightly browned. The tops will puff up a bit, then fall. Let them cool completely in the pan before you take them out.

                                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                  buttertart Sep 7, 2011 10:26 AM

                                                                                  Those sound terrific for breakfast - would be good to take to work.

                                                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                    Emme Sep 7, 2011 08:46 PM

                                                                                    wonderful thanks! out of curiosity, how many did you make from that?

                                                                                    1. re: Emme
                                                                                      Caitlin McGrath Sep 7, 2011 09:23 PM

                                                                                      I made a dozen (filling the muffin cups 3/4 full), plus another slightly larger in a pyrex custard cup. My addition of two diced nectarines upped the batter volume beyond what filled the muffin tin.

                                                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                        Emme Sep 8, 2011 08:29 PM

                                                                                        great thanks! and did you use strictly brown sugar? ...sorry for the third degree...

                                                                                        1. re: Emme
                                                                                          Caitlin McGrath Sep 8, 2011 08:43 PM

                                                                                          Ha, no problem. I used just brown sugar, as I decided it would be nicest with the nectarines I had, but to be honest, I'm not sure how much it comes through, flavorwise given there is only 3 T. in the whole batch.

                                                                                          I kept these in a tin on my kitchen counter, and two days later, the texture was just the same as the day they were baked.

                                                                                          1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                            Emme Sep 10, 2011 10:24 AM

                                                                                            thanks... playing with these today.... making a bunch of variations...
                                                                                            some with browned butter
                                                                                            some with buckwheat flour
                                                                                            mostly dark brown sugar with a little white
                                                                                            may use ricotta next time instead of cottage cheese...
                                                                                            cinnamon sugar coating

                                                                                            thanks for the base recipe... totally right it's malleable and a good starting point.

                                                                                            1. re: Emme
                                                                                              Caitlin McGrath Sep 10, 2011 03:35 PM

                                                                                              I'll be interested to hear your assessment of the variations, Emme. Browned butter is never a bad idea, IMO, but I thought these needed fruit...too plain, otherwise.

                                                                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                Emme Sep 11, 2011 09:27 PM

                                                                                                really didn't care for the plain... they have an almost bitter taste to them. perhaps it's the cottage cheese. i think the ricotta will go a long way if and when i do them again. buckwheat added a more interesting note. i'd also consider adding some teff flour as well. maybe i overbaked them, but didn't find they a "pudding" texture. i pulled them out as soon as they weren't seemingly undone, pretty sure i only baked for like 20 min ... maybe i'll underbake a bit more the next go as well.

                                                                              2. g
                                                                                girlwonder88 Sep 6, 2011 05:59 PM

                                                                                The fabulous oatmeal scones from the New Best Recipe for breakfast tomorrow, and then a peach upside down cake with cornmeal from Martha Stewart last night for a friend's birthday last night. The cake was easy and pretty and went over well; I loved the texture and it held up well today. However, it has lavender in it, which I normally like; I think it was just a little too much lavender, as it had a medicinal taste to it-other folks disagreed, but I still think I'd lcut it back next time.

                                                                                Still have most of a box of peaches left, but now am thinking of ice cream and canning with the rest :)

                                                                                1. buttertart Sep 6, 2011 06:07 AM

                                                                                  Two things, one a revelation:
                                                                                  The DG "Baking From My Home To Yours" plum cardamom brown sugar dimple cake. With peaches. DG Baking from my home to yours plum cardamom brown sugar dimple cake. With peaches. Very nice just baked, haven't had any room temp yet. Pic below.
                                                                                  ♥ The revelation ♥
                                                                                  The DG amaretti torte (15-minute miracle from the same book), done in an 8 inch loose-bottomed pan. A Lindt milk chocolate with cream filling bar (friend this was for is a chocolate but not too chocolate, prefer milk kind of guy) was broken up and put on top, cake fresh from the oven. Spread when melted. Cake separated from edge of pan, chocolate scooched down over the edges of the cake, let sit an hour, rim of pan removed. Sides of cake are glazed. Easiest total glaze job ever, could be adapted to other glazes or icings? Pic below.

                                                                                   
                                                                                   
                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: buttertart
                                                                                    souschef Sep 6, 2011 08:30 AM

                                                                                    Buttertart, I had a deja vu experience while reading your post. :)

                                                                                    1. re: souschef
                                                                                      buttertart Sep 6, 2011 08:47 AM

                                                                                      ;-) I bet this is one of those things that people have been doing for ages and I just twigged to it. At loooong last.

                                                                                    2. re: buttertart
                                                                                      b
                                                                                      burgeoningfoodie Sep 6, 2011 09:37 AM

                                                                                      I had made the that torte the other week. Very easy, but I got the recipe from Serious Eats which lists it as flourless which is true, but still not a gluten free cake which I was hoping.

                                                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                                                        j
                                                                                        jlhinwa Sep 6, 2011 11:36 AM

                                                                                        That plum cardamom cake sounds soooo good! I love cardamom but don't use it often. How difficult was the cake to make?

                                                                                        1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                                          buttertart Sep 6, 2011 11:51 AM

                                                                                          Very easy. Just a regular butter cake kind of thing, but no liquid other than oil. I used cardamom extract (had some old cardamom pods lying around, soaked them in vodka). You can really tell they're related to ginger when you smell the extract. Here's the recipe:

                                                                                          http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

                                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                                            j
                                                                                            jlhinwa Sep 6, 2011 08:47 PM

                                                                                            Thanks for the recipe! That looks very simple and delicious. How clever are you? Making your own extract. It makes total sense that soaking a spice in vodka would make a nice extract but I had never, ever even considered that. The possibilities are endless!

                                                                                            1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                                              buttertart Sep 7, 2011 06:38 AM

                                                                                              I got the idea for the extract here on CH - !!!

                                                                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                j
                                                                                                jlhinwa Sep 7, 2011 10:15 AM

                                                                                                Brilliant! Just brilliant!

                                                                                      2. j
                                                                                        jlhinwa Sep 5, 2011 09:25 PM

                                                                                        I just made potato lefse for the first time this evening. It is a Norwegian tradition, and my dad's favorite thing to eat. I have never been a fan of lefse, so have not felt compelled to learn how to make it until now--for my folks' 50th anniversary celebration (in three weeks...nothing like procrastinating!).

                                                                                        My sweet husband helped me with the rolling and handling the dough and I will be relying on him to help me make the amount I need for the party. I am pleased to say that the lefse turned out quite tasty according to the rest of the family. My mom was a bit peeved because I used heavy cream instead of milk as the liquid, but she liked the end product.

                                                                                        I am so relieved! I think I am going to be able to pull this off. Whew.

                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                                          buttertart Sep 6, 2011 05:40 AM

                                                                                          Hurray! It's just great you're able to do this for your mom and dad.

                                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                                            j
                                                                                            jlhinwa Sep 6, 2011 11:33 AM

                                                                                            Buttertart, thanks...I am so relieved! I don't know why I have been so stressed out--maybe it's the pressure of knowing there will be a good number of lefse-making & eating veterans in attendance. I rarely let myself get psyched out about a menu item but I was getting freaked out to the point of being ridiculous!

                                                                                            I am actually just now leaving work for a short break to take my dad a sample. He has pretty severe dementia, though he knows his immediate family 98% of the time, and he still loves to eat and loves his favorites. If he has a smile on his face after eating it, then I know I'm going to be okay with this one.

                                                                                            1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                                              buttertart Sep 6, 2011 11:48 AM

                                                                                              Here's hoping.

                                                                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                j
                                                                                                jlhinwa Sep 6, 2011 08:46 PM

                                                                                                He loved it. Even better, he remembered this evening that I had been by earlier to give him some. His short-term memory is abysmal so the fact that he remembered I had been by and he had eaten my lefse was huge. I am going to call this one a win!

                                                                                                1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                                                  THewat Sep 7, 2011 04:56 AM

                                                                                                  Yay!

                                                                                                  1. re: jlhinwa
                                                                                                    buttertart Sep 7, 2011 06:38 AM

                                                                                                    That is just wonderful. I'm very happy for you. Food is love.

                                                                                          2. b
                                                                                            Billy33 Sep 3, 2011 11:42 PM

                                                                                            I'm useless at baking so tend to opt for idiot-proof recipes. It's Father's Day in NZ today so I had the parents over for lunch and made these to have with coffee: http://www.healthyfood.co.nz/recipes/...

                                                                                            They were mighty tasty - my Mum even asked to take some home. They tasted really decadent but are actually not too unhealthy.

                                                                                            I love the fact that you preheat the oven and then turn it off when you put the cookies in. Great for power-saving!
                                                                                            I chopped up the almonds yesterday afternoon and then whisked up the mixture after dinner last night and then took them out this morning.

                                                                                            1. trolley Sep 3, 2011 10:45 PM

                                                                                              Simple things like chocolate krinkle cookies and vanilla cupcakes but ALL WITHOUT EGGS! it's quite a challenge but my dear 3 yr old has an egg allergy so i have to work around it. it's very interesting since you can't just use egg substitute and hope a sponge cake will taste and work well. it certainly has exercised my skills in baking....

                                                                                              1. THewat Sep 3, 2011 03:56 PM

                                                                                                Souschef, what's the soufflé dish size on the cheese soufflé you like from "The Creative Cook"? http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7991... Thanks!

                                                                                                15 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: THewat
                                                                                                  souschef Sep 3, 2011 04:27 PM

                                                                                                  It's 6 inches in diameter and 3 inches high.

                                                                                                  1. re: souschef
                                                                                                    THewat Sep 3, 2011 05:22 PM

                                                                                                    Thank you, thank you. I have it cued up to try along with this (Jacques Pépin) http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/sa...

                                                                                                    1. re: THewat
                                                                                                      souschef Sep 3, 2011 05:43 PM

                                                                                                      Curious - Pépin makes the soufflé without separating the eggs and beating the whites separately, but he's one of the last people whose technique I would question. Do let us know how it turns out.

                                                                                                      Edit: Whoops ! Just saw his explanation !

                                                                                                      1. re: souschef
                                                                                                        THewat Sep 3, 2011 06:27 PM

                                                                                                        I thought it would be fun to try both. I live next to a lot of chickens.

                                                                                                        1. re: souschef
                                                                                                          buttertart Sep 4, 2011 09:07 AM

                                                                                                          I just saw a recipe for a no-fail cheese soufflé in "Heartland" by Judith Fertig.

                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                            THewat Sep 4, 2011 11:55 AM

                                                                                                            Thanks buttertart. I particularly love that it "bakes best in an oblong pan."

                                                                                                      2. re: souschef
                                                                                                        THewat Sep 13, 2011 06:39 AM

                                                                                                        Souschef, tonight may be the night for the Creative Cook cheese soufflé - please think airy thoughts in my direction. -t

                                                                                                        1. re: THewat
                                                                                                          souschef Sep 13, 2011 08:00 AM

                                                                                                          Consider it done, T.

                                                                                                          1. re: souschef
                                                                                                            buttertart Sep 13, 2011 08:09 AM

                                                                                                            That's the one with the unbeaten egg whites? Since I recently saw baking soda raise cookies after a week in the fridge, anything is possible. Looking forward to hearing about it.

                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                              souschef Sep 13, 2011 09:06 AM

                                                                                                              No, that's the one with the beaten egg white. The one with the unbeaten white is from Jacques Pepin.

                                                                                                              1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                buttertart Sep 13, 2011 11:13 AM

                                                                                                                I'd be more nervous about the latter myself.

                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                  souschef Sep 13, 2011 12:38 PM

                                                                                                                  Agreed, but personally I would be careful about questioning Jacques Pepin. He's up there (almost) with Anne WiIlan and RLB :)

                                                                                                                  1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                    buttertart Sep 13, 2011 12:49 PM

                                                                                                                    I love him too. New show coming out soon!

                                                                                                            2. re: souschef
                                                                                                              THewat Sep 13, 2011 07:10 PM

                                                                                                              Thanks Souschef! Excellent dinner.

                                                                                                               
                                                                                                              1. re: THewat
                                                                                                                souschef Sep 14, 2011 05:55 AM

                                                                                                                That looks great. Glad it worked out. Wish I were there !

                                                                                                      3. Candy Sep 3, 2011 02:16 PM

                                                                                                        Mostly pound cakes, lemon and chocolate. i made a Cannoli Cheesecake last week and made the ricotta for it too.

                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: Candy
                                                                                                          roxlet Sep 4, 2011 05:55 AM

                                                                                                          I love that, Candy! WOuld you share the recipe for cannoli cheesecake?

                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                            buttertart Sep 4, 2011 09:06 AM

                                                                                                            That sounds great, indeed.

                                                                                                            1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                              Candy Sep 4, 2011 02:13 PM

                                                                                                              The recipe is at Epicurious. The recipe for making ricotta was there too. I used the one that called for buttermilk for the acid in the ricotta. Next time I make it I think I'll use half and half instead of whole milk. I will never buy ricotta again. You can't beat homemade and it is a snap to make. You just need to plan ahead a little, like a couple of hours before you want to use it.

                                                                                                            2. re: Candy
                                                                                                              j
                                                                                                              jlhinwa Sep 5, 2011 09:20 PM

                                                                                                              Oh my gosh, Candy, Cannoli Cheesecake sounds awesome. I am going to have to check that one out!

                                                                                                            3. buttertart Sep 3, 2011 08:25 AM

                                                                                                              Have Joanne Chang's PB cookie dough chilling - I don't know whether my sniffer is off or the lower-fat PB I used is (it was within date, but wasn't very good on bread to begin with), but the dough smells odd. Will bake some and see.

                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                Emme Sep 3, 2011 11:17 AM

                                                                                                                what brand of low-fat PB did you use?

                                                                                                                1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                  buttertart Sep 4, 2011 09:06 AM

                                                                                                                  Skippy. Haven't baked them yet.

                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                    Gooseberry Sep 4, 2011 02:28 PM

                                                                                                                    How did the cookies come out? I'm in the market for a new PB cookies recipe, esp something that would make a good ice cream sandwich...

                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                      Emme Sep 4, 2011 08:19 PM

                                                                                                                      Skippy reduced fat is quite sweet, but no idea if that's the culprit. i know a heck of a lot of recipes warn against using natural, fresh ground stuff, but i personally prefer using almost all freshly ground with just a bit of Skippy for stabilizing. it seems to produce, at least for those I feed, that the less artificial flavor is supreme. YMMV.

                                                                                                                      what's the verdict?

                                                                                                                      1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                        buttertart Sep 6, 2011 05:42 AM

                                                                                                                        I think it was that my stomach was a bit upset, the dough (while sweet) soesn't have an off taste. Got busy on other things and didn't bake them yet - will report when I do.

                                                                                                                2. Emme Sep 2, 2011 10:22 PM

                                                                                                                  i'm trying to mentally gear up to tackle Caneles, but for now, for this week...

                                                                                                                  been going thru trials of gluten free cookie doughs, tinkering with my own flour blends, and refusing to use xanthan or guar gums. i've almost got my basic dough where i want it, and am very grateful to my loving group of guinea pigs.

                                                                                                                  for fun,
                                                                                                                  white chocolate pot de cremes
                                                                                                                  Thomas Keller's Bouchons - made batter today, will bake tomorrow
                                                                                                                  probably something or some things to use up buttermilk and panko crumbs
                                                                                                                  cheese souffle to use up cheese... and egg whites

                                                                                                                  also hoping to do the zuni onion panade
                                                                                                                  and likely some tuiles or almond florentines to turn into cups in which to serve the browned butter ice cream i made

                                                                                                                  ...i don't understand people who are estranged from their kitchens...

                                                                                                                  14 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                    THewat Sep 3, 2011 06:38 AM

                                                                                                                    Emme, have you made the Keller Bouchons before? I'd love to hear your description of them. I'm only getting so-so results from fussing with a David Lebovitz recipe. Thanks!

                                                                                                                    1. re: THewat
                                                                                                                      Emme Sep 3, 2011 10:27 AM

                                                                                                                      stay tuned. they're going into the oven in about 20 minutes.

                                                                                                                      1. re: THewat
                                                                                                                        Emme Sep 3, 2011 11:16 AM

                                                                                                                        okay, mine are out... what is so-so about yours?

                                                                                                                        1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                          THewat Sep 3, 2011 02:38 PM

                                                                                                                          Mine are a little too dry & a little too dense. I've messed around with the time a lot & don't think it's about overcooking. I hear people complain about some recipes producing something much like a brownie, which doesn't appeal to me either, but i could err a little more in that direction...

                                                                                                                          I used to live in Cambridge, MA near Hi-Rise Bakery & they made a version I liked; I might swing by there in the next month or two & see if they are still making them & what I think.

                                                                                                                          1. re: THewat
                                                                                                                            Emme Sep 3, 2011 08:26 PM

                                                                                                                            mine weren't a bit dry... almost like a fudgier mousse inside. much denser than souffle, with a deep chocolate flavor. i suppose closest in family to a brownie, but really not... somewhere in between a flourless chocolate cake and fudgy brownie (but a wee bit cakier in notion)... don't know if that helps, but they went over very well!

                                                                                                                            1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                              THewat Sep 4, 2011 11:39 AM

                                                                                                                              I'm curious about how durable they are (picnic food or plate-them-carefully food?) and how sweet they are. But I'll give them a shot - I'm SO BAD at gauging if I'll like an outcome from reading the recipe.

                                                                                                                              1. re: THewat
                                                                                                                                Emme Sep 4, 2011 08:15 PM

                                                                                                                                very durable. not plate them carefully at all. i did mine in paper cups, as i didn't have enough or the right type of molds. made mine the day before baking, and stored in fridge. only had to bake mine for 10-15 minutes.

                                                                                                                                worth a shot... ridiculously easy to make. and the results quite lovely. had actually planned to make again for dinner tonight, but guest of honor insisted on brownies. didn't want to disappoint. but do try!

                                                                                                                                1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                  THewat Sep 5, 2011 03:22 PM

                                                                                                                                  Oh dear - I did a comedy routine producing these. Right around the time I realized I had chosen a pastry tip that was too small or chopped my chocolate too large, I had a vision of some of my favorite chowhounds standing around like the greek chorus, looking bemused. "Why would anyone ever do it THAT way?" I imagined them thinking. Or "Do you always make a mess like this when you cook?" or perhaps just "Wow. Chaos."

                                                                                                                                  I did them in a mini-popover pan (2 oz), used Lake Champlain dutched cocoa powder & ghirardelli chocolate. I cooked them for 20 minutes, but wish I'd gone a little short. I appreciate that they aren't super sweet. When I've recovered from making them, I look forward to eating another.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: THewat
                                                                                                                                    Emme Sep 5, 2011 07:26 PM

                                                                                                                                    oh my... yes to be honest, i didn't pipe them, esp not after having refrigerated the dough. i broke off hunks and plopped in my cups in vertical towers of sort, figuring they'd melt and fall to fill out their paper beds as they were. i'd definitely recommend baking less. i wish i'd measured my dough to know. i did not use dutch process cocoa. can't remember if i used ghiradelli or scharffenberger cocoa... oh my, or even Trader Joe's brand? i don't remember what i had on hand and finished. too much baking and flour have gone to the brain, i fear! how would you describe the texture of yours?

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                      THewat Sep 5, 2011 07:46 PM

                                                                                                                                      I don't think there is any earthly reason to pipe them, even if you don't refrigerate. I'll give it another shot & cook them less; this batch is not a fair texture example. Did you get any oven rise from yours? Mine are very stubby... I think the ones I've purchased are more handsome. If yours rose, I'll chalk it up to my mistreatment of the batter.

                                                                                                                      2. re: Emme
                                                                                                                        souschef Sep 3, 2011 09:41 AM

                                                                                                                        "...i don't understand people who are estranged from their kitchens..."

                                                                                                                        Their husbands cook for them ! :)

                                                                                                                        1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                          Emme Sep 3, 2011 10:27 AM

                                                                                                                          touche! i guess i find it cooking and baking relaxing, exciting, and certainly not as frightening or complex as others make it out to be... certain recipes/preparations excluded of course. i have a few single friends that don't cook as a rule. i was showing one friend a few things, and i started another and she said, "okay that's enough for now. this feels like being forced against my will to become a mechanic." she does however now have a fiance that loves to cook, so she will continue to be well fed. they still come to for dairy free and non dairy free sweet things.
                                                                                                                          another funny anecdote, a friend was over and really craving cookies. i said i'd throw some dough together! baffled, she said, "really? i don't want wait 3 hours." and i told her i could have cookies hot and ready in half an hour. to which she said, "how come it took me all afternoon last time i tried to make cookies?" i shrugged.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                            souschef Sep 6, 2011 01:46 AM

                                                                                                                            One thing I have not yet mastered is speed in the kitchen while baking; perhaps I'm too finnicky.

                                                                                                                            1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                              Emme Sep 6, 2011 07:36 AM

                                                                                                                              certain things i can make with my eyes closed... some staples. a few where the base procedure is basically set, and any tweaking occurs pre-bake.

                                                                                                                              maybe i should be more finnicky.

                                                                                                                      3. THewat Sep 2, 2011 10:08 AM

                                                                                                                        Big batch of oatmeal cookies for the folks replanting lost crops at one of the organic farms in Kent, CT. I'd like to do more baking for them over the weekend, but I'm moving pretty slowly on it.

                                                                                                                        1. BananaBirkLarsen Sep 1, 2011 07:12 PM

                                                                                                                          I'm attempting to make 2 individual serving brownies for dessert tonight. I only made a third of the regular recipe, since I only had one egg, and see no reason why it shouldn't work, but the batter seems extremely stiff.

                                                                                                                          I'm tired, so I probably forgot to adjust the measurement of something or other.

                                                                                                                          Ah well. I'm sure they'll still be edible, especially with freshly picked strawberries sliced over the top.

                                                                                                                          8 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: BananaBirkLarsen
                                                                                                                            r
                                                                                                                            rstuart Sep 2, 2011 11:08 AM

                                                                                                                            I find scaling down recipes with eggs in them very stressful... I am never quite sure how to cut one egg or 3 eggs in half!

                                                                                                                            1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                              souschef Sep 2, 2011 01:35 PM

                                                                                                                              Easy. Go by weight.

                                                                                                                              1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                r
                                                                                                                                rstuart Sep 2, 2011 04:51 PM

                                                                                                                                Sigh.. just not that technically proficient. ;)

                                                                                                                                1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                  blue room Sep 7, 2011 04:02 PM

                                                                                                                                  rstuart -- a "large" egg is about 3 1/4 tablespoons of liquid if you beat it --

                                                                                                                                  so
                                                                                                                                  * 1 tablespoon AND 2 teaspoons* of beaten egg will get you very close to 1/2 egg.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: blue room
                                                                                                                                    r
                                                                                                                                    rstuart Sep 7, 2011 06:43 PM

                                                                                                                                    That's good to know. I have actually just beaten an egg and eyeballed "half" in the past.. but 1 TB and 2 ts is much more accurate!

                                                                                                                              2. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                BananaBirkLarsen Sep 2, 2011 01:59 PM

                                                                                                                                I didn't think I'd have a problem with this recipe, since it called for three eggs and I was making a third of the recipe. Nevertheless, the batter turned out stiff. I think I must have messed up the math somewhere along the line and put in twice as much flour or some such nonsense.

                                                                                                                                Surprisingly, they turned out fine in the end. A bit greasy, actually (perhaps I messed up the butter measurement as well?), but very dense and chewy. The lesson here is that I shouldn't mess with recipes when I'm really tired.

                                                                                                                                1. re: BananaBirkLarsen
                                                                                                                                  r
                                                                                                                                  rstuart Sep 2, 2011 04:52 PM

                                                                                                                                  I've always found that even "bad" brownies get eaten!

                                                                                                                                  1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                    BananaBirkLarsen Sep 2, 2011 05:16 PM

                                                                                                                                    The fact that there is no brownie left proves your point.

                                                                                                                            2. j
                                                                                                                              jalapenocheese Sep 1, 2011 02:12 PM

                                                                                                                              It's spring in NZ and I feel like making a decadent chocolate cake... I haven't selected a recipe yet... still on the lookout for a fudgy-brownie like cake. I think I should go with a flourless cake since I like my cakes/brownies to be rich/decadent. I made Hershey's Black Magic Cake the other day and wasn't really impressed with the taste... it was moist but I thought it lacked the oomph. Not sure what it is... probably butter. :)

                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                              1. re: jalapenocheese
                                                                                                                                nancygirl4ever Sep 7, 2011 10:18 AM

                                                                                                                                I have had the baking bug myself, in the last three weeks I have made a carrot cake, old fashioned blueberry muffins, and 2 triple chocolate cakes; I am so going to gain a few pounds this year.

                                                                                                                                My chocolate cake is so dense it really doesn't need any icing, but I had to go all the way and drizzle some chocolate glaze over the dark beauty!

                                                                                                                              2. Chocolatechipkt Sep 1, 2011 09:09 AM

                                                                                                                                I'm making a double recipe of Kattyeyes' mounds brownies today and maybe some bread if there's time during/after that.

                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                                                                                                  Chocolatechipkt Sep 1, 2011 05:52 PM

                                                                                                                                  These are a big hit, thanks Kattyeyes! I added almonds in the middle, so they're kind of like a mounds and almond joy collided. Yum.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                                                                                                    kattyeyes Sep 7, 2011 06:59 AM

                                                                                                                                    Just saw this--I'm thrilled to hear/read! Definitely almond JOY! :)

                                                                                                                                2. b
                                                                                                                                  burgeoningfoodie Sep 1, 2011 08:55 AM

                                                                                                                                  Still planning to bake the 2 cakes and the mochi.

                                                                                                                                  1. souschef Sep 1, 2011 06:59 AM

                                                                                                                                    I'm going to take another stab at the Pierre Hermé chestnut pie this weekend, with a tweaked recipe and chestnuts I have caramelized. And using a slightly larger pan. I may even use Devon cream instead of whipping cream as the texture of the whipping cream compared to the rest of the ingredients just didn't seem right. The leftover Devon cream could be used on scones - have you made my recipe for almond scones yet? Remember, they have to be round.

                                                                                                                                    9 Replies
                                                                                                                                    1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                      buttertart Sep 1, 2011 07:01 AM

                                                                                                                                      No I haven't - could you please link the recipe again? Your biscotti are terrific.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                        souschef Sep 1, 2011 09:43 AM

                                                                                                                                        I'm glad that you who does not like biscotti think that mine are terrific.

                                                                                                                                        Here's the permalink to the scones recipe. If you want to enjoy them as I do, please make them into rounds; don't take the lazy route and make them into wedges with concrete points.

                                                                                                                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7236...

                                                                                                                                        1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                          buttertart Sep 1, 2011 10:22 AM

                                                                                                                                          Mercy buckets as we used to say, mon chef. Well noted.

                                                                                                                                      2. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                        r
                                                                                                                                        rstuart Sep 2, 2011 11:16 AM

                                                                                                                                        Took a look at my freezer, stuffed so full of frozen fruit I could barely close it, and realised it was time to start baking with it.. so I made a rhubarb struesel cake from Lauren Chattman's "Cake Keepers Cakes", which was quick and very tasty. For rhubarb cakes I still prefer the NYT Big Crumb Cake, but I was out of cake flour, and wanted to try something new.
                                                                                                                                        Very tasty, and my co-workers seem to like it!

                                                                                                                                        1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                          souschef Sep 3, 2011 04:36 PM

                                                                                                                                          I made the chestnut pie again. This time I followed the recommendation of the infallible Buttertart and used a 10-inch pan; the height of the pie was perfect.

                                                                                                                                          As much as pressing the dough into the pan is easy, I'm not too crazy about doing it as I get an uneven crust. Very nice crust though.

                                                                                                                                          I baked the pie for 30 minutes instead of 20 minutes before filling it. This time the crust was very brown, as I like it.

                                                                                                                                          The last time I found that it was not sweet enough, so this time I switched the amounts of the chestnut puree and paste. I also made sure that the chestnuts were caramelized; they were not rubbery this time. The sweetness is just right. This is one that the resident pie expert, Roxlet, should make.

                                                                                                                                          I used Devon cream, and added 2 tbsp of rum, just because run goes well with chestnuts.

                                                                                                                                          The pie is very tasty, but I have come to the conclusion that I'm not a pie person; I'm very definitely a cake person. My wife is shying away from sweet stuff, so I'm faced with a 10-inch pie and a single non-pie face to feed. Gotta find me some victims to feed, heh heh heh !

                                                                                                                                          1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                            souschef Sep 4, 2011 05:53 AM

                                                                                                                                            I tried a piece of pie again last night, and decided that despite my love of chestnuts, I don't like it after all. Maybe it's a texture thing - not cakey and too much like pumpkin pie (I can just hear Buttertart saying, "Quelle horreur!". Sorry Buttertart.

                                                                                                                                            I will be tossing out the leftovers. BTW it's a very expensive pie to make.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                              buttertart Sep 4, 2011 09:05 AM

                                                                                                                                              That's a shame. We loved it and as far as we're concerned it's nothing whatsoever like pumpkin pie (shudder). We're more pro-pie here than you are, souschef.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                souschef Sep 5, 2011 08:27 AM

                                                                                                                                                I can just imagine you shudder. I must say, though, that the crust is really nice. It would be great to work some marzipan into it - easy, as I make it in a food processor. I just realized that the summer has almost gone by and I haven't yet made a fruit tart. I should rectify that, using this crust.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                                  buttertart Sep 6, 2011 06:26 AM

                                                                                                                                                  That's be terrific, but I remember it being one of the best crusts ever just as it was.

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