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What are you baking these days? May 2012 [old]

buttertart May 2, 2012 03:03 PM

Hi all, sorry I'm late (puff puff) -- this is a biggish month for me, with Himself's birthday tomorrow and our anniversary on the 12th both calling for cakes. And all the other usual suspects. How about you? What are YOU baking these days?

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  1. weezieduzzit RE: buttertart May 2, 2012 03:07 PM

    I will be making a Fraisier cake for MIL for Mother's Day. Other than that, I don't really eat baked goods anymore so I'll have to live vicariously through you.

    1. roxlet RE: buttertart May 2, 2012 03:10 PM

      I just made a lovely blueberry buckle from Carole Walter's coffee cake book. It's not very sweet, and you can really taste the blueberries, which add a tart note to the cake. A great breakfast option.

      I am on the hunt for a really good red velvet cake recipe. A friend of mine who is from Texas has a birthday next week, and I promised her that I would bake her a cake. I was hoping she would want a coconut cake, since I have that one in the bag, but red velvet is her favorite. My problem with most red velvet cakes (aside from all the red dye!) is that they seem to be neither fish nor fowl. There's not enough cocoa for them to be chocolate cakes, so I'm never sure what I'm actually eating. Plus they sometimes can be dry. I guess that I will take a look at RLB's recipe in Heavenly Cakes. She is usually so reliable...

      3 Replies
      1. re: roxlet
        buttertart RE: roxlet May 2, 2012 03:16 PM

        I doubt you'd go wrong w RLB. I especially like the reverse-creamed cakes (butter added to the dry ingredients).

        1. re: buttertart
          roxlet RE: buttertart May 2, 2012 03:18 PM

          Yes, I do love that method!

          1. re: roxlet
            sandylc RE: roxlet May 3, 2012 09:47 PM

            Me too!

      2. m
        mscoffee1 RE: buttertart May 2, 2012 04:29 PM

        I just made the Ricotta Apple Cake (Louisa's Cake) from Food 52. It is moist and wonderful. I added orange zest. I believe someone recommended it and I thank them.

        I also made the Oatmeal muffins from Quick Vegetarian Pleasures, I love these - simple and sweet, but not too sweet.

        1. shanagain RE: buttertart May 2, 2012 05:14 PM

          Plain old brownies - I'm on a quest for the chewy/crusty/dense kind but the kicker is that I have three cans of cocoa in my cabinets, so cocoa only. (Don't ask how I ended up with so many containers, I have no clue.) So far, the most annoying recipe for this super simple confection has been the best. (Annoying only in that it calls for 2/3'ds of a cup of this, 2 1/2 tsps. of that - it's like a quest to get every single measuring utensil dirty.)

          http://www.verybestbaking.com/recipes... I am using the Nestle cocoa powder for these (amongst one of three brands in said cupboard) and cannot stop eating the damn things. Only change to the recipe was to cut one of the eggs and no nuts.

          6 Replies
          1. re: shanagain
            kmlmgm RE: shanagain May 2, 2012 05:42 PM

            Man Catcher Brownies...2 cups cocoa....FABULOUS, I will never make another brownie recipe again. Easy, too.

            1. re: kmlmgm
              shanagain RE: kmlmgm May 2, 2012 06:57 PM

              Wow, googled it - that is unlike any brownie recipe I've ever seen, honestly.

              So are they fudgy-but-chewy with a crunchy edge, or fudgy and a little chewy, or chewy and... ?

              1. re: shanagain
                Caitlin McGrath RE: shanagain May 2, 2012 07:29 PM

                Not to answer for kmlmgm, but you might want to scroll through this old (long) thread all about the "mancatchers": http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/370281

                1. re: shanagain
                  kmlmgm RE: shanagain May 3, 2012 03:20 AM

                  The are fudgy, primarily. But, for some rmagical reason (the butter?), they seem to embody the qualities every brownie lover (despite their chewy/fudgy/cakey preferences) is looking for. In truth, they fill the brownie "wants" of every baker. I don't even like chocolate, (any variation of chocolate ice cream grosses me out, yet I can eat a half g. of any vanilla based type), and I like these buggers! There are a lot of eggs, a lot of butter, etc. but it makes a decent 9 X 13 or even 10 X 15 pan, you cut them very small because they are so satisfying you really don't need to eat more than a tiny bit. I have made them with and without nuts, my kds, "nut haters" eat them no matter what. Try them, I very rarely say this about a recipe, but I doubt you'll be disappointed.

              2. re: shanagain
                lockedhalo RE: shanagain May 15, 2012 12:29 AM


                1. re: lockedhalo
                  shanagain RE: lockedhalo May 22, 2012 11:46 AM

                  After all these brownies? Not a chance! ;)

              3. g
                greedywhiskers RE: buttertart May 3, 2012 03:44 AM

                Just moved to a new house and within the first week I accidentally ran my neighbour over. I was reversing and didn't see him behind the van. He wasn't badly hurt at all. Anyway, as an 'oh shit, I'm soo sorry!' gesture I baked him a chocolate, chilli and ginger cake.
                I used the Angela Nilsen Ultimate Chocolate Cake recipe and just added a finely diced, medium-hot chilli and a couple of table spoons of ginger powder.
                For the topping, I made a dark chocolate ganache and decorated it with diced pieces of stem ginger and dried chilli flakes.
                MMM cake makes everything better :)

                1 Reply
                1. re: greedywhiskers
                  nomadchowwoman RE: greedywhiskers May 4, 2012 08:58 AM

                  So glad you weren't taking that cake to his widow! (Joking aside, that sounds like a nice peace offering.)

                2. r
                  rstuart RE: buttertart May 3, 2012 08:24 AM

                  And what cakes are you planning on for these celebrations?

                  1. THewat RE: buttertart May 3, 2012 01:20 PM

                    Chocolate Pepper Cookies. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7837.... A little fudgy for my taste, but good. I liked them better on the second day. Next time 1/2 tsp black pepper & 1/2 tsp cayenne.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: THewat
                      THewat RE: THewat May 3, 2012 03:17 PM

                      Tonight is a first pass at Bessie's Walnut Cookies... http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8177...

                      1. re: THewat
                        classylady RE: THewat May 7, 2012 04:32 AM

                        I baked half and half cookies. Some people call them black and white cookies. Tried to use up the bag of unsweetened Bakers chocolate chips that I bought for .25.. Cookies were baked for 12 minutes and then dipped into melted chocolate mixed with a little butter and a few drops of milk. I had to add sugar to the melted chocolate.Small cookie but they were very good.

                        1. re: classylady
                          sandylc RE: classylady May 7, 2012 09:52 AM

                          I have never heard of UNSWEETENED chocolate chips.....?

                    2. sunangelmb RE: buttertart May 3, 2012 07:46 PM

                      Running a half marathon on Saturday morning (eeeek!) so I made some peanut butter cookies for protein, and chocolate Guinness brownies for carbs. It's no wonder why I run ;)

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: sunangelmb
                        THewat RE: sunangelmb May 4, 2012 06:57 AM

                        Laughing - I just made a loaf of Guinness gingerbread ostensibly to get some molasses into a friend who is having an operation. Well... actually... I made two loaves... Have an excellent run!!

                        1. re: sunangelmb
                          nomadchowwoman RE: sunangelmb May 4, 2012 08:56 AM

                          I know what you mean. I run to eat. Good luck on Saturday. And, of course, you need fuel!

                          1. re: nomadchowwoman
                            sunangelmb RE: nomadchowwoman May 5, 2012 04:45 PM

                            Went awesome. 13.1 in a taco costume. Lots of peanut butter cookies to fuel myself along the way. Guinness cake was a hit with the chocolate lovers. Can I get the guinness gingerbread recipe?

                            1. re: sunangelmb
                              nomadchowwoman RE: sunangelmb May 8, 2012 11:50 AM

                              In a taco costume?? That IS awesome!

                              1. re: sunangelmb
                                mscoffee1 RE: sunangelmb May 8, 2012 03:38 PM

                                Sunangelmb - in case you still want this - as you requested the Guinness Gingerbread.
                                There are two that I have seen (and made) and are similar:
                                this one has less sugar and I liked it better, but both were good-


                                1. re: mscoffee1
                                  sunangelmb RE: mscoffee1 May 8, 2012 04:19 PM

                                  Thank you. Totally making this. And yes, in a taco costume. My way of showing chow love to cinco de mayo, and tacos...I'm a little crazy

                                  1. re: sunangelmb
                                    nomadchowwoman RE: sunangelmb May 8, 2012 04:33 PM

                                    I've made that Ginger Cake a couple of times, and it is fabulous, sunangelmb.

                                  2. re: mscoffee1
                                    Caitlin McGrath RE: mscoffee1 May 8, 2012 05:00 PM

                                    I adore the Guinness Stout Ginger Cake; it not only has half the sugar of the other, it has lots more ginger!

                            2. nomadchowwoman RE: buttertart May 4, 2012 09:15 AM

                              Happy Birthday to Himself, bt. Can't wait to hear what his cake will be.

                              I've not done much baking lately except for yet another Lazy Mary's Lemon Tart (from Food52), a leek-goat cheese tart for my book club, and a couple of things for an hors d'oeuvres/tapas party in honor of a friend's sister visiting from France--fig-goat cheese-prosciutto tart (from 150 Best American Recipes) and blueberry cobbler.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: nomadchowwoman
                                Caitlin McGrath RE: nomadchowwoman May 4, 2012 09:59 AM

                                They all look tremendous, NCW

                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                  buttertart RE: Caitlin McGrath May 5, 2012 06:18 PM

                                  Even in my weakened state they look great.

                              2. buttertart RE: buttertart May 5, 2012 06:16 PM

                                No cake yet, I've been sick in bed with a rotten stomach bug which will no doubt lift just in time for me to go to work on Monday...bleah!

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: buttertart
                                  nomadchowwoman RE: buttertart May 8, 2012 11:48 AM

                                  Hope you're feeling better, bt.

                                2. Emme RE: buttertart May 5, 2012 09:25 PM

                                  been doing a lot of baking for clients, so haven't had a whole ton of personal baking time, but today i wanted to play around with the rest of a tub of ricotta, so with a brunch tomorrow, I made...
                                  Cannoli Cake (with white chocolate bits)
                                  Ricotta Loaf (with white chocolate bits and i meant to toss in dried bing cherry bits and totally forgot...i blame the dog.)
                                  and tomorrow morning I'm making a Ricotta Cream Custard Tart -- just need to decide on a crust... almond shortbread or puff pastry or something from some leftover pistachio cookies...

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: Emme
                                    sunangelmb RE: Emme May 6, 2012 06:53 AM

                                    Can I bother you for your cannoli cake recipe- its my favorite cake

                                    1. re: sunangelmb
                                      Emme RE: sunangelmb May 7, 2012 08:49 PM

                                      sure no problem.

                                      i do this amount in 3 custard cups (8-10 oz maybe?) -- you could certainly break it down into smaller ones or double the recipe and do it in a 9" springform.

                                      2 whole Eggs, separated
                                      1 tiny pinch Salt
                                      ½ cup (rounded) Ricotta Cheese (~150 - 160g, I don't drain mine, and prefer it that way)
                                      14 g Butter
                                      75 g Sugar
                                      15 g Flour
                                      60 milliliters Milk
                                      ¼ cup Mini White Chocolate Chips (feel free to use regular chocolate, but I prefer to use white chocolate)
                                      ¼ teaspoon Almond Extract
                                      ¼ teaspoon Vanilla
                                      [Orange Zest -- i never use it, but traditionally, the zest of an orange...]

                                      1. Stir together ricotta, milk and yolks. Fold in flour til blended. Pour in melted butter, sugar, zest (if using), and extracts. Stir til combined.
                                      2. Fold in chocolate chpis.
                                      3. Beat egg whites with salt til stiff but not dry. Fold into batter.
                                      4. Bake at 350 F in a water bath until golden brown and just starting to pull away from the sides. In individual cups, mine take about 30-35 minutes. For springform, recipe doubled, assume about an hour.

                                      I have baked them both day of, and let them sit over night in the fridge. both good. I just like that you've got that cakey layer on top of the custardyness.

                                  2. souschef RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 07:32 AM

                                    Sorry you're feeling under the weather, Battered tart. Please let us know what cakes you make for your nurse (M), and for your anniversary - or is it going to be just one?

                                    BTW you forgot to post a link to this thread.

                                    12 Replies
                                    1. re: souschef
                                      buttertart RE: souschef May 6, 2012 08:52 AM

                                      It'll probably just be one. Still sick, bleah! I read through most of Paula Peck's Art of Fine Baking while becalmed yesterday and have to say it's a hell of a book. It features a lot of the "new" ideas like reverse creaming and the written instructions are very clear. Funny, don't remember anybody crediting Peck in their newer works.

                                      1. re: buttertart
                                        sandylc RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 11:13 AM

                                        I'm looking up that book soonest....

                                      2. re: souschef
                                        buttertart RE: souschef May 6, 2012 08:54 AM

                                        Battered indeed.

                                        1. re: buttertart
                                          rstuart RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 02:58 PM

                                          Poor thing. I'm impressed that you are able to read a cookbook while sick with a stomach bug... hope that you are feeling better so you can whip up something impressive for your anniversary!

                                          1. re: rstuart
                                            buttertart RE: rstuart May 6, 2012 05:14 PM

                                            Thanks, rstuart. I found I could read about sweets (motivated because of the occasions) but couldn't bear the thought of savory stuff!

                                        2. re: souschef
                                          buttertart RE: souschef May 6, 2012 05:38 PM

                                          Re the link, no one has posted on April since it was magically marked "old" by the ever-vigilant mods (for which, thanks!).

                                          1. re: souschef
                                            gingershelley RE: souschef May 24, 2012 02:49 PM

                                            And she WAS a 'battered tart' in her sickened state.... sorry, an apropo typo. The kind of typo that is funny instead of iritating. Love it.

                                            Thanks Souschef!

                                            1. re: gingershelley
                                              buttertart RE: gingershelley May 24, 2012 04:42 PM

                                              The whole battered thing got me thinking (always a dangerous thing)...freeze a butter tart, batter it, and deepfry it? A la Twinkie or Mars bar? Concession stands at the Western Fair in London, Ont., watch out!!!

                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                rstuart RE: buttertart May 26, 2012 08:41 AM

                                                They had deep fried butter at the CNE last summer buttertart...a deep fried buttertart sounds better to me!

                                                1. re: rstuart
                                                  buttertart RE: rstuart May 26, 2012 05:36 PM

                                                  Does sound rather good, doesn't it?

                                                  1. re: buttertart
                                                    Breadcrumbs RE: buttertart May 28, 2012 06:17 PM

                                                    I couldn't stomach the butter but if there's a deep-fried buttertart this year, I'm in!! Can you imagine?!!! My cheeks are tingling!

                                              2. re: gingershelley
                                                souschef RE: gingershelley Jun 1, 2012 09:30 AM

                                                You're welcome, Gilligan........um sorry, I mean Ginger! Those darn typos!

                                            2. roxlet RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 09:52 AM

                                              In the never- ending quest to find an appealing breakfast for my son, I have in the oven Margaret's Espresso Cake from my new Sarabeth Bakery book. I think it's going to be great -- the batter had an amazingly strong coffee taste, and the baking cake smells like coffee too. It's finished with an espresso glaze. The cake is make with separated eggs, the whites being beaten separately and then folded into the batter. It's baking in my heritage bundt pan, and I've now taken to making a mini loaf with any bundt I bake in it, since it seems to be slightly small. I should measure it, but I haven't...

                                              16 Replies
                                              1. re: roxlet
                                                Caitlin McGrath RE: roxlet May 6, 2012 12:06 PM

                                                Williams-Sonoma says it's a 10-cup pan.

                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                  roxlet RE: Caitlin McGrath May 6, 2012 12:36 PM

                                                  Thanks. I have to check the volume of the cake when I get home, but doing a separate mini loaf was definitely the right thing to do since the cake rose to the top of the pan.

                                                  1. re: roxlet
                                                    buttertart RE: roxlet May 6, 2012 12:39 PM

                                                    I think it's really more like 8 cups. I want that cake recipe!

                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                      roxlet RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 01:58 PM

                                                      Here's a paraphrase of the recipe:

                                                      Coffee Bundt Cake

                                                      1 cup coffee mixed with 3 tablespoons instant espresso
                                                      3 cups AP flour
                                                      2½ teaspoons baking powder
                                                      ½ teaspoon salt
                                                      2 sticks unsalted butter
                                                      2 cups superfine sugar
                                                      1 teaspoon vanilla
                                                      4 eggs at room temperature, separated
                                                      Preheat the oven to 350; butter a 10-12 cup bundt
                                                      Sift dry ingredients (excluding sugar) together
                                                      Beat the butter until smooth, and gradually beat in the sugar and vanilla. Beat until light in color – about 4 minutes
                                                      Beat in the yolks one at a time
                                                      Add the flour mixture in thirds alternating with the espresso mixture (1/2 cup and ½ cup)
                                                      In another bowl, whip the egg whites until soft peaks form. Mix about ¼ of the egg whites into the batter, then fold the rest of the egg whites into the batter.
                                                      Bake for about 55-60 minutes (using less than a full recipe and the heritage pan, mine was done at 45 minutes). Let cool on a rack in the pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto the rack and continue cooling.
                                                      To make a glaze, mix about 2 tablespoons of coffee with ½ tsp of espresso powder with one tablespoon of milk. Mix in about 2 cups of confectioner’s sugar to reach the right consistency. Pour it over the cake and let set.

                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                        buttertart RE: roxlet May 6, 2012 05:14 PM

                                                        That looks and sounds super, thanks.

                                                      2. re: buttertart
                                                        Caitlin McGrath RE: buttertart May 8, 2012 05:06 PM

                                                        It's not. I just measured its volume by pouring in water from a Pyrex measuring cup, and 10 cups of water fills it to 1/4" below the rim.

                                                        Whether a recipe makes too much batter for it probably depends more on the recipe, how high it rises, how it interacts with the shape, and I don't know what else. The one time I've used it yet, I doubled a recipe calling for a 6-cup pan, so I hedged my bets and baked part of the batter in a mini loaf pan, but I could've fit all the batter in the Heritage pan after all.

                                                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                          buttertart RE: Caitlin McGrath May 9, 2012 02:55 PM

                                                          Hmm. The chocolate sour cream cake (CI More Best Recipes) I made filled it and one of my 3-cuppers.

                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                            janeh RE: buttertart May 9, 2012 05:54 PM

                                                            I just baked the CI lemon bundt cake in the heritage pan. I scraped all of the batter into the pan with some trepidation after reading these posts, but it was just right. Surprising, since I think that the recipe calls for a 12 cup pan. That coffee bundt recipe from Roxlet is next. All of this bundt talk reminds me of one of my favorite scenes from "My Big Fat Greek Wedding"....

                                                    2. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                      roxlet RE: Caitlin McGrath May 6, 2012 01:45 PM

                                                      The recipe says 10-12 cups, so I'm glad that I made the mini loaf since it would have certainly crested the pan. It has very full coffee flavor.

                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                        rstuart RE: roxlet May 6, 2012 02:59 PM

                                                        So pretty. So glad I have ordered that cookbook from the library!!

                                                        1. re: roxlet
                                                          buttertart RE: roxlet May 6, 2012 05:18 PM

                                                          Speaking of coffee cakes, there are 2 appealling ones in RLB's Heavenly Cakes, did you notice? Apple-Cinnamon Crumb Coffee Cake and Chocolate Streusel Coffee Cake.

                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                            roxlet RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 07:17 PM

                                                            I gave him a chocolate option, which he rejected. He is a chocoholic, so it is surprising he chose the coffe one. I'll have to check out the apple one, though!

                                                          2. re: roxlet
                                                            Chocolatechipkt RE: roxlet May 6, 2012 06:47 PM


                                                            1. re: roxlet
                                                              gingershelley RE: roxlet May 24, 2012 02:51 PM

                                                              Lovely Roxlet! Wow, I need to get on this baking thread more often...

                                                          3. re: roxlet
                                                            souschef RE: roxlet May 6, 2012 07:27 PM

                                                            Roxlet, maybe you're, um, barking up the wrong tree when it comes to breakfast for your son. I was never a breakfast eater until I was on holiday in Germany. It was then that I discovered that i like paté for breakfast. Maybe you should suggest it to him.

                                                            1. re: souschef
                                                              roxlet RE: souschef May 6, 2012 07:32 PM

                                                              He actually adores pâté, but he seems to want very, very plain things for breakfast these days, which is something new. He used to like nothing better than a left over veal cutlet Milanese sandwich for breakfast, but no longer. But thanks for the idea!

                                                          4. Chocolatechipkt RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 06:48 PM

                                                            I made the original Fat Witch brownies and also cream biscuits today. Haven't tasted the brownies yet, but it smells delicious in here.

                                                            12 Replies
                                                            1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                              Chocolatechipkt RE: Chocolatechipkt May 6, 2012 07:42 PM

                                                              Has anyone else made these brownies? I have to say I'm disappointed, after the rave reviews I've heard about them. I kinda knew going in that that they didn't have a lot of chocolate, but I followed the recipe since it was the first time. They're moist and good brownies consistency, just not very chocolatey, IMO.

                                                              1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                                Emme RE: Chocolatechipkt May 7, 2012 08:40 PM

                                                                years and years ago, i ordered fat witch brownies as a present for a chocoholic friend... she said they were not very good. and she's someone that isn't at all picky when it comes to chocolate.

                                                                1. re: Emme
                                                                  GraceW RE: Emme May 7, 2012 08:43 PM

                                                                  I went on a brownie-recipe testing spree a few years ago.. for better or worse, the best were the Baker's One Bowl kind.. and my mother;s rocky road ones--but I don't currently have the recipe.

                                                                  Let me know how the Fat Witches turn out.. I have been tempted to order just 1 from the website... but um, no. Resist!

                                                                  1. re: Emme
                                                                    Caitlin McGrath RE: Emme May 7, 2012 08:47 PM

                                                                    Yeah, I used to live near the shop, so I bought a few to try, and they weren't in the least impressive. I could never understand why people are gaga over them.

                                                                    1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                      GraceW RE: Caitlin McGrath May 7, 2012 08:57 PM

                                                                      Good to know. Somehow I never understand when people--especially masses--think something is great.. for example: those mini-packaged-trying-to-be-healthy (but processed) Fiber One brownies.. ew dry!

                                                                      1. re: GraceW
                                                                        Chocolatechipkt RE: GraceW May 8, 2012 05:50 AM

                                                                        Yeah, I just don't get it. I was thinking maybe the recipe in the book is different from what they use in the store -- but Caitlin's comment makes me think otherwise. I love brownies and have a number of favorite recipes, but there's always room for more. Next I think I'll try the ones from Flour.

                                                                        1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                                          GraceW RE: Chocolatechipkt May 8, 2012 05:18 PM

                                                                          To be honest, I also had very bad results with the Baked brownie.

                                                                          1. re: GraceW
                                                                            rstuart RE: GraceW May 9, 2012 06:25 AM

                                                                            The recipe? Or buying it at the bakery? I bought two from the bakery about 3 years ago when I was visiting NYC...they were excellent..

                                                                            1. re: rstuart
                                                                              GraceW RE: rstuart May 9, 2012 12:44 PM

                                                                              The recipe. I didn't think it was anything special.

                                                                  2. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                                    nomadchowwoman RE: Chocolatechipkt May 8, 2012 12:46 PM

                                                                    Last year I finally made it to the Fat Witch brownie store in Chelsea Market, planning to buy some small tins for gifts as I'd been reading/hearing about these brownies for a while. I'm glad I bought one to try first; I also tried the ones they were sampling. I thought they were pretty bad as brownies go and left w/out dropping the bucks. But I thought it might just be me.

                                                                    1. re: nomadchowwoman
                                                                      rstuart RE: nomadchowwoman May 8, 2012 01:34 PM

                                                                      This is good to know... one less cookbook for me to covet. I had been looking at it seriously...

                                                                      1. re: rstuart
                                                                        nomadchowwoman RE: rstuart May 8, 2012 01:48 PM

                                                                        Yes, I was planning to buy it too--until I tasted the brownies.

                                                                2. sarahjay RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 06:58 PM

                                                                  I've got caramel lava cakes in the works, as part of my effort to use as much caramel sauce as possible. I had to stash them in the fridge before baking as dinner didn't finish cooking on time (my crockpot is on its way out) but there isn't leavening so it should be okay as long as the sauce doesn't sink too much or mysteriously mix into the batter. Recipe from Food and Wine, I think last month?

                                                                  1. s
                                                                    shaebones RE: buttertart May 6, 2012 11:20 PM

                                                                    The coconut fudge brownies from the Melissa Clark COTM. OMG, I am obsessed w those brownies. Made them 3 times already.

                                                                    1. sbp RE: buttertart May 8, 2012 12:59 PM

                                                                      Made a big batch of salted caramel brownies. Cheated a bit, since it was part of a dinner for an entire softball team and parents. I made the fleur de sel caramels from Chow (no chocolate dip). Cooled and cut into pieces. Then made a boxed brownie mix, enhanced with some extra pudding of black cocoa, butter and espresso powder. Let the brownies bake for about 10 minutes, then dropped caramel squares throughout. Completed baking.

                                                                      I'll be making this again.

                                                                      1. buttertart RE: buttertart May 8, 2012 02:50 PM

                                                                        Nothing. Still dithering over the cake. And still feel lousy.

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: buttertart
                                                                          sunangelmb RE: buttertart May 8, 2012 04:20 PM

                                                                          Poor you. Being sick stinks. When mylife is not able to be consumed my food, I'm bored

                                                                          1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                            buttertart RE: sunangelmb May 8, 2012 04:30 PM

                                                                            Like depriving Sinatra of his voice! Thanks. (Taco costume sounds supercute.)

                                                                        2. BananaBirkLarsen RE: buttertart May 8, 2012 03:28 PM

                                                                          I've got a chocolate tart shell in the oven. It will be filled with the vanilla pastry cream that's chilling in the fridge and topped with the roasted balsamic strawberries that are in a dish on the counter.

                                                                          1. s
                                                                            sandylc RE: buttertart May 8, 2012 03:31 PM

                                                                            Does anyone here have a recipe for Flan Patisserie?

                                                                            1. Chocolatechipkt RE: buttertart May 8, 2012 06:49 PM

                                                                              I just made espresso brownies, basing my recipe on the KAF fudge brownie recipe. The recipe is excellent all on its own, but I added more espresso powder (2x the amt called for), white and semisweet chips, and walnuts. Oh, and I used KAF cocoa, which is so dark and yummy.

                                                                              1. e
                                                                                EllenMM RE: buttertart May 9, 2012 03:54 PM

                                                                                I just had a disappointing day of baking cooks from Martha Stewart's "Cookies". I made the chocolate/black-pepper cookies, to which my husband responded "meh", rum raisin shortbread - crumbly and greasy, and peanut and jelly bars that were nothing special. I may give the book to the local library sale.

                                                                                6 Replies
                                                                                1. re: EllenMM
                                                                                  sandylc RE: EllenMM May 9, 2012 05:16 PM

                                                                                  I felt the same way about that book.

                                                                                  1. re: sandylc
                                                                                    sunangelmb RE: sandylc May 9, 2012 05:33 PM

                                                                                    I always feel like she leaves SOMETHING out. Cookies are never excellent

                                                                                    1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                      EllenMM RE: sunangelmb May 9, 2012 05:40 PM

                                                                                      Her pictures are pretty, though. I just wonder if they ever really try out the recipes.

                                                                                      1. re: EllenMM
                                                                                        sandylc RE: EllenMM May 9, 2012 05:45 PM

                                                                                        My thought, as well.

                                                                                  2. re: EllenMM
                                                                                    rstuart RE: EllenMM May 9, 2012 06:39 PM

                                                                                    I've made a few really good ones from there.. the brown butter toffee blondies for sure. Another friend swears by the chocolate gingerbread on the cover.
                                                                                    I remember reading a blog where someone set out to bake every cookie in the book..
                                                                                    Just found it:
                                                                                    She didn't bake every one, but she got to quite a few...

                                                                                    1. re: rstuart
                                                                                      Bean Counter RE: rstuart May 11, 2012 09:02 PM

                                                                                      I've made some good ones from there as well. In particular the lemon madelines. Assuming the gingerbread chocolate ones are the same ones that appeared in the magazine ages ago my sister swears by them as well.

                                                                                  3. p
                                                                                    pavlova RE: buttertart May 9, 2012 07:41 PM

                                                                                    I made Flo Braker's pain d'amande from the Food 52 site today. Delicious, thin, crisp cookies and perfect with tea or coffee.

                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: pavlova
                                                                                      roxlet RE: pavlova May 10, 2012 04:07 AM

                                                                                      That's been on my list to try for some time. Glad to hear about this recipe!

                                                                                      1. re: pavlova
                                                                                        THewat RE: pavlova May 10, 2012 05:57 PM

                                                                                        that's been on my list, too.

                                                                                        1. re: pavlova
                                                                                          Emme RE: pavlova May 10, 2012 11:28 PM

                                                                                          it's funny the recipe looks a lot like my recipe to imitate the pepperidge farm Bordeaux cookies -- i don't use cinnamon and i use ground almonds instead of sliced or chopped...

                                                                                          1. re: Emme
                                                                                            roxlet RE: Emme May 12, 2012 06:18 AM

                                                                                            I'm not sure about that -- from the pictures I've seen, I remember these cookies as being flat and almost cracker-like.

                                                                                            1. re: roxlet
                                                                                              Emme RE: roxlet May 12, 2012 08:26 PM

                                                                                              they are very thin. almost lacy. if you use almond meal instead of sliced almonds (and a little tweaking), but slice them very thinly, you move toward the Bordeaux... thicker, not so much with the Bordeaux.

                                                                                        2. blue room RE: buttertart May 10, 2012 12:26 PM

                                                                                          Decided to try Smitten Kitchen's ice cream sandwiches -- except for mine being oversized and poorly shaped, so far so good! My house smells like chocolate, that's for sure.


                                                                                          edited to add -- these are very good, the recipe is straightforward, if you've wanted to try your own ice-cream sandwiches I'd say try these this summer!

                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                          1. re: blue room
                                                                                            auburnselkie RE: blue room May 10, 2012 02:02 PM

                                                                                            Ooh, neat! I've made ice cream sandwiches with just cookies, but how cool to make the "real" ones. I'll have to check it out.

                                                                                          2. sunangelmb RE: buttertart May 10, 2012 04:22 PM

                                                                                            Since the boy came home at 4 pm and asked me to bake something for his teacher (who also happens to be my neighbor) for teacher appreciation week, makind man-catcher brownies. Wow was that a lot of butter, and sugar. Plus they seemed super thick, and nearly mpossible to spread evenly in the pan. Fingers crossed. Also have some fabulous chocolate chip cookie dough chilling in the fridge, so will probably whip up a nice batch for lunch boxes. I'll never forget when my son went to target and begged me to try chips ahoy. Broke my heart...

                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                            1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                              sunangelmb RE: sunangelmb May 11, 2012 01:21 PM

                                                                                              Did not appreciate those stupid brownies. Too much of everything, and a pain to get out of the pan. No thank you. I'll stick with my Guinness brownies

                                                                                            2. auburnselkie RE: buttertart May 11, 2012 11:02 AM

                                                                                              I mentioned these on the WFD board, but I didn't want to say anything here until I actually made them (I wasn't sure I'd get to it) - peanut butter filled chocolate cupcakes with pretzel crust, ganache topping, and a caramel drizzle. I almost thought they'd be too much but they turned out really well. The salty-sweet worked really well, as did the combination of textures.

                                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                blue room RE: auburnselkie May 11, 2012 12:41 PM

                                                                                                OH my. These are famous? Or should be! Where is recipe please?

                                                                                                1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                  roxlet RE: auburnselkie May 12, 2012 06:25 AM

                                                                                                  auburnselkie -- I went to your web site, and now I have to go on a diet! What an amazing collection of cupcake recipes, and this one is no exception. Kudos!

                                                                                                  1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                    auburnselkie RE: roxlet May 15, 2012 02:23 PM

                                                                                                    Well, thank you very much! :)

                                                                                                  2. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                    gingershelley RE: auburnselkie May 24, 2012 02:54 PM

                                                                                                    OMG auburnselkie - those ROCK! You baking goddess you. I want to make those for a gift. Please do share the recipe...

                                                                                                  3. JerryMe RE: buttertart May 11, 2012 12:01 PM


                                                                                                    Just made these - the first time I've ever made curd. I think there's an omelet in my near future.

                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: JerryMe
                                                                                                      biondanonima RE: JerryMe May 11, 2012 01:21 PM

                                                                                                      Thank you for posting the rhubarb curd recipe - it looks divine, can't wait to try it!

                                                                                                      1. re: JerryMe
                                                                                                        biondanonima RE: JerryMe May 14, 2012 12:11 PM

                                                                                                        I made the rhubarb curd part of this recipe the other day - delicious. I will definitely use it as a tart filling at some point, but I'm currently enjoying it with just a spoon. It's great on ricotta, too.

                                                                                                        1. re: biondanonima
                                                                                                          gingershelley RE: biondanonima May 24, 2012 02:57 PM

                                                                                                          Plus 1 BDN; that rhubarb curd is DELISH! I have only managed the spoon myself... was going to put as topping on an only slightly-sweet goat cheese tart for dessert last weekend when I had the 'folks over for dinner, but then there wasn't enough left. Sigh.

                                                                                                          Very good. Want to make more of this, and perhaps a raspberry/rhubarb combo and jar it for gifts. The color is SO pretty!

                                                                                                        2. re: JerryMe
                                                                                                          modthyrth RE: JerryMe May 24, 2012 03:16 PM

                                                                                                          This looks absolutely divine! I'm a nut for all things rhubarb, and simply must try this NOW!

                                                                                                        3. biondanonima RE: buttertart May 11, 2012 12:50 PM

                                                                                                          Lemon bars today, no knead bread tomorrow. The lemon bars turned out quite well despite the fact that I'm in Germany, in a kitchen with almost no baking equipment and an oven that has no thermometer, so I totally had to wing the measurements and baking times. Even the cat approved (after eating a chunk straight from the pan as they were cooling - I knew this cat was a food whore but I didn't think she'd be into lemon bars!).

                                                                                                          1. GraceW RE: buttertart May 11, 2012 10:25 PM

                                                                                                            I made the Original Sin Bars again (See above--they are peanut butter no-bake bars topped with chocolate).

                                                                                                            I also made puppy chow using Biscoff spread instead of peanut butter... both items are part of a birthday package for a friend--thank goodness, or my stomach would pop.

                                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: GraceW
                                                                                                              sunangelmb RE: GraceW May 12, 2012 01:31 PM

                                                                                                              I love biscoff. Sick obsession of mine

                                                                                                              1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                                                GraceW RE: sunangelmb May 12, 2012 08:42 PM

                                                                                                                I AM NEVER BUYING IT AGAIN. Seriously, it is just asking myself to gain weight. And I would be ok with it if it had some nutritional value.. but 0.5 of a gram of protein... that isn't enough. --BUT I love to try new foods, so I am glad that I tried it (and used the rest of the jar on the gifted puppy chow). I will save the rest of the jars for you :)

                                                                                                                1. re: GraceW
                                                                                                                  sunangelmb RE: GraceW May 13, 2012 05:59 AM

                                                                                                                  I would have to run a marathon a week if I ate the stuff daily. I would love to try recipes with it, but enjoy it too much either straight out of the jar, or slathered on pretzels. Yum yum yum. Delicious non nutritious treat

                                                                                                                  1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                                                    gingershelley RE: sunangelmb May 24, 2012 03:00 PM

                                                                                                                    I will NEVER buy that biscoff spread - just at TJ's today, and warily kept my eyes averted as I passed the nut-butter section. I felt like Jason tied to the mast as he passed the land of the siren's.....

                                                                                                                    I make do with TJ's bistro biscuits. They taste like what that evil-yum spread is made of, but I can eat just one cookie with an afternoon espresso and be ok. No need for a 12-step program with those, but they taste like the same taste memory;)

                                                                                                                    1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                      sunangelmb RE: gingershelley May 25, 2012 08:41 PM

                                                                                                                      It's a sickness. Actually it's more of a delicious nightly treat. ;)

                                                                                                            2. r
                                                                                                              rstuart RE: buttertart May 13, 2012 01:27 PM

                                                                                                              Just made coffee crunch bars (a Bon Appetit recipe from a few years ago) for a colleague that's retiring this week.. made them a few years back and she loved them. And Melissa Clark's Maple Blueberry Tea Cake is in the oven right now...

                                                                                                              1. roxlet RE: buttertart May 13, 2012 02:22 PM

                                                                                                                Each Sunday I make some sort of coffee or pound cake for my son's breakfasts for the upcoming week. Today I made Ina Garten's lemon cake, which he really loved last time around. I can't imagine that there is a lemon cake that uses as much lemon as this does. Between the cake and the syrup, there is 3/4 of a cup of juice, plus 1/4 cup of grated rind in the cake, and a frosting made with a further 3 tablespoons of lemon juice and confectioners sugar. A whole lot of lemon and a whole lot of lemon taste.

                                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                  souschef RE: roxlet May 14, 2012 02:52 AM

                                                                                                                  Is the recipe online? It sounds like a cake I'd like to make using orange instead of lemon (I really like orange cakes).

                                                                                                                  1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                    roxlet RE: souschef May 14, 2012 03:57 AM

                                                                                                                    Here you go! If you make it with orange, I would be very interested to hear your thoughts!


                                                                                                                    1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                      souschef RE: roxlet May 14, 2012 06:31 AM

                                                                                                                      Thank you ma'am. Did you use the dip and sweep method for measuring the flour? You no doubt know my pet peeve by now.

                                                                                                                      1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                        roxlet RE: souschef May 14, 2012 07:04 AM

                                                                                                                        I know, and I did. I realized as I started baking that I had just under 90 minutes to get the cake mixed and in and out of the oven, so I took the path of least resistance. The cake was deemed delicious, and I have only one quibble, which seems to occur with loaf cakes and my oven: the exterior is darker than I would like. As a matter of fact, I sliced off the bottom when I served it to my son for breakfast. There were no complaints either way.

                                                                                                                2. sbp RE: buttertart May 13, 2012 04:29 PM

                                                                                                                  My daugther is not big on actual cake, so for her birthday she asked for something with peanut butter mousse. I'm in the midst of making an entremet with a brownie base, peanut butter mousse interspersed with layers of chocolate covered peanut daquoise, covered in a chocolate glacage. I need to freeze it, so I'm hoping covering the dacquoise in chocolate will keep it more stable.

                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: sbp
                                                                                                                    rstuart RE: sbp May 14, 2012 06:48 AM

                                                                                                                    Wow... that sounds truly fabulous. My birthday is also coming up soon.. don't suppose you ship ;)

                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                      sbp RE: rstuart May 14, 2012 10:03 AM

                                                                                                                      Never made it before, so I think I'll hold off retailing till I know if it's any good!

                                                                                                                    2. re: sbp
                                                                                                                      sandylc RE: sbp May 14, 2012 11:47 AM

                                                                                                                      sbp, you stumped me....I learned something new - very exciting at my age!

                                                                                                                      I had never before heard/seen the term glacage, so I asked Ms. Google.

                                                                                                                      Thank you!!!!

                                                                                                                      1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                        sbp RE: sandylc May 14, 2012 06:02 PM

                                                                                                                        De nada, hoping it works! Keep trying to get that shiny look and glacage seems to be the way to go.

                                                                                                                    3. buttertart RE: buttertart May 13, 2012 05:30 PM

                                                                                                                      Here's the cake I made for our occasions (finally, today) -- the walnut praline torte with espresso buttercream from Dede Wilson's "Unforgettable Desserts". The coating is the walnut praline...was supposed only to put it on the sides, but there was too much just for that, so I went whole hog. It's not difficult to make but there are quite a few steps. Can't wait to taste it!

                                                                                                                      16 Replies
                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                        blue room RE: buttertart May 13, 2012 05:47 PM

                                                                                                                        That's beautiful! Please post a word or two about the taste after coffee/champagne (happy anniversary) --
                                                                                                                        would you recommend the book?

                                                                                                                        1. re: blue room
                                                                                                                          roxlet RE: blue room May 13, 2012 07:04 PM

                                                                                                                          Yes! Enquiring minds want to know. Happy Anniversary!

                                                                                                                        2. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                          souschef RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 02:57 AM

                                                                                                                          Looks good, BT. Have you seen the walnut cake in "Cocolat" that's also decorated with caramelized walnuts? I made it once, and really enjoyed it. I think it's called "Lutece".

                                                                                                                          So how did "himself" enjoy your confection?

                                                                                                                          1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                            buttertart RE: souschef May 14, 2012 05:59 AM

                                                                                                                            This is a superb cake. The flavors are most haarmonious. Love it. The book is very worthwhile, yes.

                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                              rstuart RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 06:47 AM

                                                                                                                              Buttertart.. it's beautiful. Happy anniversary!

                                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                roxlet RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 07:09 AM

                                                                                                                                On your recommendation, I just purchased a new copy of this book on abebooks.com for $4.00, including shipping! I'm excited to get it!

                                                                                                                                1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                  buttertart RE: roxlet May 14, 2012 09:59 AM

                                                                                                                                  You'll love it. Several coconut recipes. I had this out of the library and then bought it. Now I want her other books...
                                                                                                                                  souschef -- I'll have a lok at Cocolat, this could not be chocolate because we just finished your girlfriend RLB's "Brownie Puddle" from the Pie and Pastry Bible.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                    souschef RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 01:59 PM

                                                                                                                                    Buttertart, I'm sure RLB is a sweetheart. Anyone who bakes like that has to be. BTW she has the mind of an engineer. Lucky Cynsa has met her !

                                                                                                                                    1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                      buttertart RE: souschef May 14, 2012 02:47 PM

                                                                                                                                      I know, it's evident from the precision.
                                                                                                                                      She refers to Dede Wilson in an approving fashion in Heavenly Cakes, so you can lke her too.

                                                                                                                              2. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                sandylc RE: souschef May 14, 2012 08:55 AM

                                                                                                                                Great book. That cake is very good!

                                                                                                                              3. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                Caitlin McGrath RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 12:13 PM

                                                                                                                                Would love to taste this cake.

                                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                  nomadchowwoman RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 08:42 AM

                                                                                                                                  That certainly looks celebration-worthy! Happy Anniversary, and glad you're back in baking mode.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: nomadchowwoman
                                                                                                                                    buttertart RE: nomadchowwoman May 15, 2012 04:24 PM

                                                                                                                                    Thanks all! Here is a link to the recipe...

                                                                                                                                  2. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                    gingershelley RE: buttertart May 24, 2012 03:03 PM

                                                                                                                                    Fabu Buttertart, and those glazed walnuts are very chic. Glad you are feeling better, and were able to bake such a prize for your celebrations.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                      buttertart RE: gingershelley May 24, 2012 04:38 PM

                                                                                                                                      Thank you!

                                                                                                                                    2. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                      buttertart RE: buttertart May 26, 2012 05:39 PM

                                                                                                                                      Finishing this up last night, himself said "my arteries and waistline aside, it would be nice to have one of these in the house all the time". A fabulous cake.

                                                                                                                                    3. Chocolatechipkt RE: buttertart May 13, 2012 07:19 PM

                                                                                                                                      Lemon bars, from the Barefoot Contessa. I halved the recipe but used a slightly larger pan (than the 8x8 half would use), so the crust was much thinner--and really good.

                                                                                                                                      1. r
                                                                                                                                        Roland Parker RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 05:14 AM

                                                                                                                                        Last week I made the blueberry boy bait from Smitten kitchen. Pleasant but not my favorite blueberry cake and the blueberry flavour didn't really come through. I much prefer the blueberry almond cake I made a few weeks back in April.

                                                                                                                                        I made a batch of David Lebovitz fruitcake bars to take with us on a long camping trip in the Oman mountains this past weekend. Went down as a real treat.

                                                                                                                                        Last night I made a plain rice pudding. In a few days I'll probably make another Victoria Sponge and will duly report back.

                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: Roland Parker
                                                                                                                                          rstuart RE: Roland Parker May 14, 2012 06:42 AM

                                                                                                                                          Hi Roland... I have also made the blueberry boy bait for work. I remember not thinking much of it, but I brought it into work and my colleagues went nuts.. they loved it! I'm always surprised at what people really love...

                                                                                                                                          1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                            nomadchowwoman RE: rstuart May 15, 2012 08:44 AM

                                                                                                                                            My husband adores the BBB, asks for it every time he sees blueberries hanging around.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: nomadchowwoman
                                                                                                                                              rstuart RE: nomadchowwoman May 15, 2012 12:30 PM

                                                                                                                                              Guess the name is apt then;)

                                                                                                                                        2. m
                                                                                                                                          MARISKANY RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 05:58 AM

                                                                                                                                          A few weeks ago I made Melissa D'Arabian's lemon tea cake and some raspberry sauce to go with it. I'm no baker, but it was easy to make and my friends loved it.

                                                                                                                                          1. ladyberd RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 06:53 AM

                                                                                                                                            just took out the ingredients for Devil's food cupcakes with peanut butter frosting. Last week I made lemon poppyseed muffins (need to use up leftover buttermilk, so that's going into the cupcakes!)


                                                                                                                                            1. Jpan99 RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 07:12 AM

                                                                                                                                              French macarons. Yum. Here are the chocolate ones.

                                                                                                                                              11 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: Jpan99
                                                                                                                                                buttertart RE: Jpan99 May 14, 2012 10:00 AM

                                                                                                                                                I must try my hand at those.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                  sandylc RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 10:04 AM

                                                                                                                                                  The baking obsessive in me wants to try making macarons, but they are foolishly trendy and I don't really like them....what to do?.....

                                                                                                                                                  On a similar note, have you seen the "macaroons" in the Flour book? Pastry cream is an ingredient!!!!! Looks very interesting.....

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                    buttertart RE: sandylc May 14, 2012 02:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                    I like them a lot. Maybe too much to consider making them. !!!
                                                                                                                                                    Have a friend in Paris who makes them as a hobby to sell, his are unbelievable. The salted caramel ones are heaven.
                                                                                                                                                    Macaroons as in coconut?

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                      nomadchowwoman RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 08:47 AM

                                                                                                                                                      There's a fancy sweet shop here that makes beautiful macarons in an array of flavors and colors, but the salted caramel ones are, hands down, the best.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                        sandylc RE: buttertart May 24, 2012 04:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                        Yes. Sorry for the delayed response!

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                        gingershelley RE: sandylc May 24, 2012 03:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                        I am not a big fan of maracarons, as in the trendy (IMO, too sweet) confections, but an american Macaroon I can truly get behind....

                                                                                                                                                        Made these first time a couple years ago after JF, aka 'the frenchman' and I returned from Paris. Thought he should eat the American version". LSS, he liked these alot although a bit too sweet. We laugh about the whole 'macaron' trend, as for a long time, apparently, the sandwich cookie was very out of fashion in France, and the main reason to speak of them was as in Michelin stars. In France, Michelin *starred resto's are reffered to as '1-macaron", "2-macaron",etc.....

                                                                                                                                                        Anyhoo, thought that would entertain all you CH bakers.

                                                                                                                                                        Here is my FAVORITE American macaroon recipe. Chocolate garnish, in this household, not optional:

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gingershelley
                                                                                                                                                          sandylc RE: gingershelley May 24, 2012 04:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                          That looks yummy - similar to my recipe, but probably a bit better than mine.....

                                                                                                                                                      3. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                        Jpan99 RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 11:37 AM

                                                                                                                                                        It was surprisingly easier than I thought. I think the most difficult part folding into the egg whites and mixing it enough to get the air out but not too much so that they come out too thin or too delicate. That, and forcing the ground almond flour through a fine sieve which took forever but is necessary for the proper texture. Practice makes perfect!

                                                                                                                                                      4. re: Jpan99
                                                                                                                                                        Emme RE: Jpan99 May 14, 2012 07:39 PM


                                                                                                                                                        these have become one of my favorite things to make ever since i switched to the French meringue version, and took to the secret of slightly overbaking them, then filling them and allowing them to soften and become chewy in the fridge for a couple of days... i find that people are always impressed by things that take no time at all.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                          Jpan99 RE: Emme May 15, 2012 11:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                          I think baking a little longer does help. The underbaked tend to cave in a little. I think I still have too much air in the batter. Some come out great, others cave in a bit once you pick them up. They all taste good though!

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Jpan99
                                                                                                                                                            Emme RE: Jpan99 May 15, 2012 07:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                            that's what i read somewhere... and i'd rather be safe and bake til crispy, knowing they'll soften when they pull moisture from the filling.

                                                                                                                                                            you mention the mixing above... the first couple of times i made macarons, i definitely undermixed them. i was so fixated on not overdoing it... then i realized that while finicky, they're not quite as finicky as some would have you believe... mazel tov.

                                                                                                                                                      5. Caitlin McGrath RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 10:27 AM

                                                                                                                                                        My brother is having a big decade-changing birthday, so naturally I offered cake. Big b-day = big party = big cake. I made two 9x13 chocolate layers (each a full recipe), with raspberry preserves and fresh raspberries between them, and covered it all with a boatload of cream cheese icing (2 lbs. cream cheese, 1/2 lb. butter, 4 cups confectioners' sugar, vanilla, salt). Even with the boatload of icing, I didn't have enough to do a proper crumb coat. The whole thing probably weighed five or six pounds, if not more. Fed many, was a hit.

                                                                                                                                                        The thumbnail photo is going to cut off the sides of the cake.

                                                                                                                                                        In other cake news, this weekend I looked through the cake chapters of Richard Sax's Classic Home Desserts and there were many appealing recipes.

                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                          blue room RE: Caitlin McGrath May 14, 2012 01:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                          Big curls, perfect for BIG cake. I love finding raspberry between layers, more than finding (acceptable) lemon.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                            Caitlin McGrath RE: Caitlin McGrath May 14, 2012 02:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                            Forgot I was going to mention that attaching two magi-cake strips end to end and wrapping the whole around the 9x13 pan worked great, resulting in nice, level cakes for layering.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                              buttertart RE: Caitlin McGrath May 14, 2012 02:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                              Nice, Caitlin!

                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                              roxlet RE: Caitlin McGrath May 14, 2012 04:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                              Lovely, and may I have a piece right now?

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                nomadchowwoman RE: Caitlin McGrath May 15, 2012 08:49 AM

                                                                                                                                                                That is lovely.

                                                                                                                                                              2. roxlet RE: buttertart May 14, 2012 04:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                My son has to do a presentation in French class in French tomorrow, so he photographed my husband making steak au poivre, and turned that into a power point. As a treat to go along, I made madeleines for the class, which my son will take to school tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                  buttertart RE: roxlet May 15, 2012 05:52 AM


                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                    silvergirl RE: roxlet May 20, 2012 05:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    I'm jealous - my son asked me to make some cookies for his class's last day party, but his school has a no homemade baked goods policy.

                                                                                                                                                                  2. m
                                                                                                                                                                    milklady RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 12:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    Big baking weekend, but I forgot to take pictures!

                                                                                                                                                                    I made a riff on Rose Levy Berenbaum's Chocolate Featherbed for a friend's birthday. It consists of 4 thin layers of flourless chocolate cake. She fills and frosts it with whipped chocolate ganache. I made a burnt caramel filling by making a salted caramel, letting it cool, and whipping it into whipped cream. I made a chocolate ganache for the frosting. I also added some toffee pieces to the filling, for some crunch. The birthday boy absolutely loves caramel, chocolate and crunch, and his wife is gluten free, so it was well received. (My kids did report that they like the "just chocolate" version better - they thought that the caramel was too burnt for their tastes.)

                                                                                                                                                                    I also made about 100 vanilla cupcakes for another birthday, some regular size and some minis. Due to the volume, I decided to use cake mix, but almost all the full size cupcakes fell! I ended up making white velvet cupcakes from scratch, and those turned out much better. They were frosted with a simple cooked buttercream, tinted pastel colors. These were nothing too exciting, but looked and tasted nice for a birthday.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. b
                                                                                                                                                                      burgeoningfoodie RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 12:48 PM

                                                                                                                                                                      Looking for a good chocolate and or Bailey's Irish Cream flavored cake for my wife's birthday. I thought I saw someone post it on here but may have been mistaken. Any suggestions with links?

                                                                                                                                                                      1. roxlet RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 01:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                        The cookie jar has been kind of empty for a while, but despite the request, I couldn't face another batch of chocolate chip cookies, so I tried the Cooks Illustrated pecan sandies instead. Having tasted just a bite, I'm a little on the fence about them, but I will have to see how they mellow out, and if the cookie eaters like them!

                                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                          sunangelmb RE: roxlet May 15, 2012 05:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                          But it's national chocolate chip cookie day. Of course everyday is chocolate chip cookie day in my house. Bake at least 1 huge batch weekly

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                                                                                                            roxlet RE: sunangelmb May 15, 2012 07:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            Shucks. Missed it!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                                                                                                              GraceW RE: sunangelmb May 15, 2012 07:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                              I am curious sunangelmb... if you use them so often: which chocolate chips are you partial towards?

                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                              roxlet RE: roxlet May 24, 2012 10:46 AM

                                                                                                                                                                              I wound up throwing most of these cookies away. They've pretty much sat in the tin for the better part of ten days, then I gave them the heave-ho. They weren't really that good. That's all I can say. That, and that I'll never make them again!

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                sandylc RE: roxlet May 24, 2012 04:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                You, know, sometimes those Cooks Illustrated people get so wrapped up in certain ideas about foods that they somehow defeat themselves.

                                                                                                                                                                            3. p
                                                                                                                                                                              paprkutr RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 05:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                              Just made 10 loaves of banana chocolate chip bread(cake). I have been cleaning out a house for weeks and needed some diversion. This is an easy quick bread recipe I have been makeing for years. Freezes really well.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. Chocolatechipkt RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 06:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                It's National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day - I *had* to make them, yk? Melted butter, 2 c of pecans, 1.5 c of semisweet (Ghirardelli) chips.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. Emme RE: buttertart May 15, 2012 08:01 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                  have to bake for a client this week for a bake sale. due to reasons not worth delving into, i won't be making my signature oatmeal cookies or brownies. i'm taking it as an opportunity to bake either the Mancatcher Brownies or Nick Malgieri's Supernatural Brownies... oh the decisions... thick and fudgy or thinner and chewy... i guess i'll let her pick, but i'm leaning toward Malgieri's, as I think they'll be more popular with a crowd... please state your case if you have an opinion either way!

                                                                                                                                                                                  for the oatmeal, i'm gonna do oatmeal raisin and then because she has some dates to use up, a sticky toffee oatmeal cookie, if you will...

                                                                                                                                                                                  and after roxlet above said she got Unforgettable Desserts for 4 bucks on AbeBooks, i did the same... along with a couple of others -- La Nouvelle Patisserie and I can't remember which other... i know what i'm doing this weekend!

                                                                                                                                                                                  20 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                                                    sunangelmb RE: Emme May 15, 2012 08:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                    Made the man catcher ones last week. A whole payload of eggs, butter, sugar , etc, and I was not impressed. Haven't heard back from the friend I gave them to so I imagine she wasn't either. Eeeek. Embarrassing

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                                                                                                                      sandylc RE: sunangelmb May 15, 2012 08:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                      Curious about what was wrong with the recipe? That really looks like a lot of cocoa!

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                                                        sunangelmb RE: sandylc May 16, 2012 07:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                        very heavy and dense. Although I lined the pan, still didn't come out cleanly. When I finally wrestled them out, and cut them up into brownies, I swear each small one weighed about a pound. There really is too much of a good thing sometimes.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                                                      roxlet RE: Emme May 16, 2012 05:08 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                      I love the Malgieri brownies, but I have to say that my chocoholic son (who ends each meal with a small piece of bittersweet chocolate) deemed them "too chocolatey," lol. I think you'll find some passionate opinions on the subject here!

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                        buttertart RE: roxlet May 16, 2012 10:25 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                        I love the Suoernaturals but the (non-famous-for-boobs) Pam Anderson Perfect Brownies are awfully good too...http://www.mybakingaddiction.com/amaz...
                                                                                                                                                                                        (giveaway is from 2010)

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                                                        biondanonima RE: Emme May 16, 2012 11:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                        I haven't made the Mancatchers, but the brownies from Thomas Keller's Ad Hoc at Home are probably one of the greatest baked goods I've ever made. I wasn't a huge fan of the Supernaturals - too much brown sugar chew, not enough chocolate.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: biondanonima
                                                                                                                                                                                          roxlet RE: biondanonima May 16, 2012 11:32 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                          Really? Not enough chocolate? My recipe calls for a half pound of bittersweet chocolate! As a matter of fact, my son, the chocoholic who must have a square of dark chocolate after each meal, described them as being "Too Chocolaty"!

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                            biondanonima RE: roxlet May 16, 2012 12:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                            Definitely not enough chocolate for my taste. The Supernaturals call for 8oz bittersweet chocolate to 2 cups of sugar and 1 cup of flour. Compare that to Thomas Keller's recipe, which calls for a full cup of cocoa PLUS 6oz of chocolate to 1 3/4 cups of sugar and 3/4 cup of flour, or my other favorite, Robert's Absolute Best Brownies from David Lebovitz, which calls for 8oz of bittersweet chocolate to only 3/4 cup of sugar and 1/4 cup of flour. To me, the Supernaturals tasted like a slightly chocolaty blondie - not bad, just not what I want from a brownie.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: biondanonima
                                                                                                                                                                                              roxlet RE: biondanonima May 16, 2012 12:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              That's what makes horse races. In a million years I wouldn't describe these as a "slightly chocolaty blondie." I would describe them as very fudgy and very chocolaty. To each his own.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                buttertart RE: roxlet May 16, 2012 02:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                I don't like cocoa in chocolate baked goods, myself. It always has a slightly soapy taste to me, even Valrhona and the other fancy ones. Whatever floats your boat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                  souschef RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 04:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Buttertart (kiindred spirit), as you know, I don't like cocoa in baked goods either. I find that it makes stuff too dry. I discussed it with a local German cakemeister, and he feels the same way; told me that he always mixes it with chocolate, something I have not tried.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                                                                                    buttertart RE: souschef May 16, 2012 04:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    There was a bit in the RLB "brownie puddle" I made from the pie and pastry book, and I could still taste it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                      sandylc RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 05:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      You guys are really right on in saying that cocoa is completely different from chocolate. I just finished torturing hubby with a harangue about how a recipe book called something "chocolate" when it was actually made with cocoa. That said, I like both.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                                                                        rstuart RE: sandylc May 16, 2012 06:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ditto... I like them both. there is room in my heart (and belly) for both. But if I want a really rich brownies.. I prefer chocolate. I still want to try the Supernatural brownies... and the Mancatcher. Oh, and the Baked sweet and salty. Phew... my standard has been Nigella's brownies from "how to be a domestic Goddess"..

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                          GraceW RE: rstuart May 16, 2012 08:26 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Supernatural are AMAZING in my opinion. Also, the Baker's one-bowl brownies are very very fudge-like and very very rich.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Emme RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 08:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        buttertart, do you have the same taste experience regardless of whether its dutch process or regular?

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                                                                          buttertart RE: Emme May 17, 2012 10:20 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yes, actually.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Emme RE: souschef May 16, 2012 08:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        i love the combo...

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                                                                                          biondanonima RE: souschef May 17, 2012 12:10 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I don't have a problem with cocoa powder in baked goods but no matter how a recipe is written, if there is cocoa powder called for I always bloom it in fat or liquid before adding it - makes a big difference. I also really like the combo of chocolate and cocoa and I'll often add chocolate to cocoa-only recipes for a little extra oomph.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                                                                Emme RE: Emme May 16, 2012 08:22 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                thanks for all the feedback... in the end, as i always do, i futzed. i started with the Supernaturals as my base. really because one of my friends said go fudgy, and the supernaturals called for fewer eggs :) but i ended up dropping the flour by a hair, then adding an extra 50-75 g of cocoa powder, dutch process. i tweaked the sugar a bit; added more vanilla, stirred in chocolate chips, and sprinkled with coarse sea salt before baking. client has been instructed not to cut them til tomorrow. we'll see how that goes. made two half-sheets, so effectively 4 batches.

                                                                                                                                                                                                i also made a cheesecake.

                                                                                                                                                                                                oatmeal cookies - did some with raisin (4 dozen), some with dates (2 1/2 dzn). they came out nicely.... would have preferred to have been able to chill the dough overnight, or at least for a few hours (got in about an hour - 90 minutes of chill time while the cheesecake baked). always makes me nervous to never have tested a recipe on my guineas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                chocolate chip cookies (requested this morning an hour ahead....) - made 6 or 7 dozen -- this caught me off guard because i didn't know what they had on hand, and the stuff i thought they for sure did, they didn't. plus, i always like to chill my chocolate chip cookie dough overnight to let the flavors meld. no dice. but even made up completely on the fly, they came out beautifully. i wish i'd snapped a picture for myself. client had the nerve to ask if there were enough chocolate chips in them, and how many bags did i use... i said yes there's plenty and i have no idea... i just throw chips in til it looks right.

                                                                                                                                                                                                being in someone else's kitchen always wears me out. particularly this one.

                                                                                                                                                                                                thanks everyone. someday i'll make Malgieri's true to form, as well as the Mancatchers. However, I have my recipe set, so I seldom have the need, desire, or opportunity to veer...

                                                                                                                                                                                                hope the bake sale makes money, as i think it's a noble cause.

                                                                                                                                                                                              3. claireooto RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 07:29 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Hello! I've been baking a lot lately. We've had quite few rainy days! I made peanut butter/banana/ chocolate chip cake, and linden tea madeleines, and nutella cake, with cocoa and ground hazelnuts and nutella and chocolate ganache, and a gateau basque, which is like a giant butter cookie-cake - mine had chocolate covered cherries in it, and carrot cake with a cardamom-pistachio crumble topping, and nutella-filled pretzels... It's been a rainy spring! Recipes available upon request!

                                                                                                                                                                                                9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: claireooto
                                                                                                                                                                                                  roxlet RE: claireooto May 16, 2012 08:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Whoa! You sure have been busy. I am very interested in the Gateau Basque -- I'd love to know more about how that's made.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                    buttertart RE: roxlet May 16, 2012 10:22 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Seems to me there's a gateau Basque in RLB's Heavenly Cakes? I know I saw a recipe recently. Wilson? Peck?

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                      roxlet RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 11:00 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I just checked my bookshelf on eatyourbooks.com, and I have 8 recipes for this. It's in Around My French Table, Sunday Suppers at Lucques, Ready for Dessert, The Pie and Pastry Bible, A Bakers Tour, etc. It sounds like it's a pie. Must go check!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Caitlin McGrath RE: roxlet May 16, 2012 11:10 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        It's interesting that preserves seem to be standard, as I've never had a piece with preserves (I've only had gateau Basque a few times in restaurants), but in my experience, it's like a dense-ish cake with a slightly custardy center. Preserves in the middle sounds like a good thing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                          claireooto RE: Caitlin McGrath May 16, 2012 11:21 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          In my book it you had the choice, in the recipe, of filling it with pastry cream, but, it said, “…ou mieux, avec de la confiture de cerises (ce gateau se prépare géneralement avec de la confiture…)” So I was going for the jam, because that was better, according to my book!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                            sandylc RE: Caitlin McGrath May 16, 2012 11:36 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I like a layer of pastry cream and a layer of preserves.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                            claireooto RE: roxlet May 16, 2012 11:19 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Oh - they're removed my reply with the recipe! Shucks. Oh well, it sounds like you've found plenty of others.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                              buttertart RE: roxlet May 16, 2012 02:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Seems to me that the time I had it in Paris at a Basque place that's been around forever it had sour cherry jam (confiture de griottes) and pastry cream.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: claireooto
                                                                                                                                                                                                          sandylc RE: claireooto May 16, 2012 11:06 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          LOVE Gateau Basque.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. buttertart RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 10:27 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I also made some more Pane di Como from Carol Field's Italian Baker -- a perfect white bread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                            sandylc RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 11:06 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks, I'll look it up - have the book on my shelf.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. majordanby RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 02:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            made banana bread - been doing this monthly to perfect it. im not the greatest baker, but damn you think even i could get a banana bread down after so many tries. i think it's really all about the bananas - simple as that. ive tested different ratios of flour to sugar to eggs to nuts to whatever. but, the determining factor between a great loaf and a good loaf was the banana - the amount and how ripe. 2 to 1 banana to flour ratio - and the bananas have to be RIPE - im not talking about semi ripe - a few brown spots here ripe - but, damn ripe. also, ive learned either to not put any nuts or put just a few - too many weighs the batter down and you get uneven baking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: majordanby
                                                                                                                                                                                                              sandylc RE: majordanby May 16, 2012 03:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I put a lot of nuts in mine and it bakes very well....? What's your recipe?

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: majordanby
                                                                                                                                                                                                                rstuart RE: majordanby May 16, 2012 06:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I don't know, I think that quick breads can be easy to mess up.. agree about the more bananas, the better. I wait until bananas are entirely black and bordering on offensive, then I freeze them. I find for me the key is not overmixing (as with bananas).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  rstuart RE: rstuart May 26, 2012 08:43 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I just reread this.. and my final sentence was meant to be "not overmixing... (as with muffins)". Geez...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    buttertart RE: rstuart May 26, 2012 05:35 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. GraceW RE: buttertart May 16, 2012 05:08 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I don't have time this week... but I plan to make German Chocolate Monkey bread when I have time...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: GraceW
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chocolatechipkt RE: GraceW May 16, 2012 05:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That sounds SO good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    GraceW RE: Chocolatechipkt May 16, 2012 08:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yes, I am also a BIG fan of strawberry shortcake.. so I want to figure out a 'strawberry-shortcake' version of Monkey Bread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. r
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Redstickchef RE: buttertart May 17, 2012 02:54 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I didn't realize how much I had been baking recently until I was reviewing everyone else's posts on this thread and realized, that yes, May seems like a busy baking month for me too. For Mother's day I made a Hummingbird cake, which was simply divine, some of Ina garten's oatmeal raisin cookies, and some choc chip cookies too. For my Mom's birthday, I made blueberry coffee cake and a strawberry shortcake trifle. And for my brother's graduation I will be making an Italian cream cake, and the epicurious s'more's cheesecake. I might also make some brownies after looking at the supernatural brownies. After looking at the posts above I know have a hankering for some brownies!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Redstickchef
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Redstickchef RE: Redstickchef May 28, 2012 08:59 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wanted to share some pics of the cream cake and smore's cheesecake. I highly recommend giving both recipes a try.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Redstickchef
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      roxlet RE: Redstickchef May 28, 2012 09:03 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Wow! They both look great!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        buttertart RE: roxlet May 28, 2012 04:40 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Redstickchef
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        modthyrth RE: Redstickchef May 29, 2012 08:00 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Gorgeous! That s'more cheesecake looks irresistible!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. auburnselkie RE: buttertart May 17, 2012 04:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Today I made molasses cookies and cheesy poufs. Both were requests...from the same person! The cheesy poufs are a lot like cheese straws but in round form. I call them cheesy poufs because to be honest I couldn't think of anything else to call them, and it's stuck!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I can only imagine that my friend is anticipating a snacky dinner tonight. I dunno - could be worse...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Emme RE: auburnselkie May 17, 2012 08:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        would you mind sharing the pouf recipe please?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          auburnselkie RE: Emme May 17, 2012 08:56 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Of course. This is wonderfully easy - you can always freeze them too. I've made them with many different combinations of cheeses and herbs. Gruyere and thyme was really good too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Cheesy Poufs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Makes about 2 dozen poufs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 ½ cups grated extra sharp cheddar cheese
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          ¼ cup blue cheese, crumbled
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 ¼ cups all purpose flour
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          ½ cup melted butter
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          hot sauce to taste

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Combine hot sauce with butter. Mix together cheeses, flour, and cayenne. Pour butter over mixture and combine well. Form into 1-inch balls, place 2 inches apart on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, and chill for one hour. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Caitlin McGrath RE: auburnselkie May 17, 2012 09:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            These sound great! Have you frozen them before or after baking?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              auburnselkie RE: Caitlin McGrath May 18, 2012 07:28 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Before, when they're still in little balls. You can just bake them straight from the freezer (maybe adding another five minutes). I nearly always have a bag of them stashed away.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Caitlin McGrath RE: auburnselkie May 18, 2012 09:50 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Thanks, that's what I figured. They sound like a great thing to have stashed away for last-minute snacks or hors d'oeurves.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  biondanonima RE: auburnselkie May 18, 2012 10:14 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This is very similar to the dough I use for making olive balls - I don't use blue cheese, though. Just wrap the dough around green olives and bake - and as you said, they bake up perfectly straight from the freezer. Now you've got me thinking about adding blue cheese to my dough...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: biondanonima
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    auburnselkie RE: biondanonima May 18, 2012 10:19 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    And you've got me thinking about adding olives to my cheesy poufs! :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Emme RE: auburnselkie May 18, 2012 12:28 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. s
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            shaebones RE: buttertart May 17, 2012 11:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Bake sale @ work on Monday. I'll be in the kitchen all weekend making granola, congo bars, Melissa Clark's coconut brownies and browned buttery chocolate chip cookies.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: shaebones
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              rstuart RE: shaebones May 18, 2012 02:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Those coconut brownies are also on the "must try" list... hmm... have you made them before? How are they?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                shaebones RE: rstuart May 19, 2012 01:22 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yes, twice and I just took my third batch out of the oven. I'm obsessed w them. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. souschef RE: buttertart May 18, 2012 09:11 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I haven't been doing much baking of late, but yesterday baked the RLB GM cake, with a difference. Instead of chocolate I used orange peel that I candied. I was pleased to see that the cake turned out great, unlike the Medrich apricot/Cognac cake from Cocolat that more often than not gets messed up when it's turned out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Unfortunately I don't get to eat this one. I poured a bit of extra GM over it, and am shipping it to my SIL in CA, with strict instructions to give me feedback.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: souschef
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                buttertart RE: souschef May 20, 2012 05:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                That sounds superb.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. buttertart RE: buttertart May 20, 2012 05:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                After going on and on and ON about Paula Peck, I finally broke down and made something from the book! "Berlin sticks" from the cookies and petits fours secs section. It's her rich tart dough (with 3 hardboiled and 2 raw egg yolks in it, I made it by hand for once because the food processor had bread starter in it), pressed into a 9x9 pan, baked for about 20 mins "until...more than half cooked" (I let it go 30 mins), topped with raspberry jam (I used my glorious Stasis jam from the St Lawrence market), then with a meringue into which 2 oz bittersweet chocolate, some vanilla, and 1/4 c ground almonds are folded, the whole shebang into the oven for about another 20 mins. Looks good...will try tonight and report on how it tastes. One is enjoined to cut it into small bars or squares, and the 9x9 pan is to yield about 72 pieces...not in this household...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  buttertart RE: buttertart May 21, 2012 02:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  These are delicious. "Not as good as my birthday cake" but excellent. The really good jam makes a big impression in this recipe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    rstuart RE: buttertart May 24, 2012 02:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    wow, does look very impressive. I'm a big meringue fan. I've always been avoided recipes that call for hardboiled eggs in the dough, on the grounds that it was too much work (I know). I really need to get over that..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      buttertart RE: rstuart May 24, 2012 02:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The hardboiled yolks give a sandy texture that nothing else does. Bang the eggs in a pan, cover them w cold water plus an inch or so, bring them to a boil, cover, let stand 12 mins. Put under cold tap,drain off the hot water, fill pan w cold, let stand. Shell and remove yolks. Eat up the whites with too much salt on them. Smoosh up the yolks with a fork.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Get the Stasis Preserves jam, totally divine. These are very nice squares all in all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. s
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  silvergirl RE: buttertart May 20, 2012 06:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Not exactly baking, but we spent the afternoon picking strawberries, so I made jam today. And then I threw a loaf of bread in the bread machine to be ready for breakfast. Tomorrow will be a strawberry tart and strawberry turnovers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Chocolatechipkt RE: buttertart May 20, 2012 06:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Caramelitas ... oat bars with caramel and chocolate chunks in the middle

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. sarahjay RE: buttertart May 20, 2012 08:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We had a chocolate brownie torte for dessert. Recipe is on my blog. I found the recipe ages ago, not sure where, and the original reviews said that the instructions to bake in a 9" pan made a super short cake, so I make it in a 6" pan.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Emme RE: buttertart May 20, 2012 09:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The discussion of Gateau Basque got me jonesing, so I made some mini ones... 3" mold sized filled with pastry cream. They came out super cute... I'm a fan of miniature looks like big things...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I also had some leftover cream cheese to use up. I ended up throwing it into a sweet cheese souffle (I usually do it with ricotta cheese), and they turned out great... almost exactly like the ricotta.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          nomadchowwoman RE: Emme May 22, 2012 01:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Those look great!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: nomadchowwoman
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Emme RE: nomadchowwoman May 22, 2012 07:09 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. roxlet RE: buttertart May 21, 2012 04:13 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My son's coach has been here almost a month, and since he is going back to Egypt on Saturday, I decided it was time to make him his favorite cake -- the epicurious.com double chocolate cake made with vanilla cooked flour frosting. Although the recipe calls for two 10" pans, I made the cake in 8" pans and used the rest of the batter to make a dozen cupcakes to give to friends who were stopping by to pick up BBQ that my husband made for them in his smoker. Surprisingly, with only 8 of us for dinner, the cake is nearly gone -- just enough for breakfasts for a few days for my son and his coach.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            sandylc RE: roxlet May 21, 2012 09:43 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I don't see that recipe on epicurioius.....it sounds like a good classic. Could you post a link?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Caitlin McGrath RE: sandylc May 21, 2012 10:00 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Lots of people would say so, given that it has 4 forks and 1500 reviews on Epicurious: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                sandylc RE: Caitlin McGrath May 21, 2012 10:51 AM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  sandylc RE: Caitlin McGrath May 21, 2012 12:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Caitlin, roxlet said the cake had a vanilla cooked flour frosting. I know how to make that, but if she has found the chocolate cake that goes best with it, I'd like to try that!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The one you linked to DOES look amazing, though!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    roxlet RE: sandylc May 21, 2012 01:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Sorry, sandylc! I make it with vanilla cooked flour frosting, even though the epicurious recipe has chocolate ganache. Caitlin is indeed correct. I believe that may have been why you were confused. I use 11/2 of this recipe to frost this cake, since it is so large. If you don't want to make cupcakes, I find that 3 8" pans work well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Flour Frosting

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1/4 cup flour
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 cup sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 cup milk (or coconut milk for coconut cake)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 cup butter cut in cubes (My butter was cool and firm, but I could still leave an indent when I pressed my finger into it)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 tsp vanilla
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    pinch of salt

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. In a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk the sugar, flour, salt together. Add the milk and cook over medium heat, whisking occasionally (I had to whisk constantly or else it started to stick and clump at the bottom) until the mixture has thickened into a paste and slightly bubbly at edges (You probably don't want it boiling because we all know how boiled milk tastes..)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on high speed until cool. Reduce the speed to low and add the butter; beat until thoroughly incorporated. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy. If the frosting is too soft, transfer the bowl to the refrigerator to chill slightly: then beat again until it is the proper consistency.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Add the vanilla and continue mixing until combined.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      sandylc RE: roxlet May 21, 2012 06:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks for clearing it up!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. j
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              John Francis RE: buttertart May 21, 2012 05:06 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Anadama bread. Lots of recipes around; I use the one from King Arthur Flour's web site. Slightly sweet from the molasses but it works as a sandwich bread with whatever you put between the siices.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: John Francis
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Chocolatechipkt RE: John Francis May 21, 2012 07:20 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yum ... I love anadama bread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. b
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                burgeoningfoodie RE: buttertart May 21, 2012 01:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Made Italian Rainbow Cookies for a Saturday birthday and then on Sunday made Vanilla Ice cream, Home made pizzas and Nigella's Flourless Nutella Hazelnut cake.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Caitlin McGrath RE: buttertart May 21, 2012 07:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Late last month, I made a quick applesauce cake with dried cranberries and walnuts that turned out a tad dry, and on the weekend I took the remainder from the freezer and made bread pudding with it, using maple syrup as the sweetener in the custard. Definitely better in its repurposed form.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Today I baked a very orange-y orange almond cake to give to someone I work with for her birthday. She and her housemates were among my first tasters of the recipe, and they were crazy about it, so I think it will go over well with a pack of birthday candles.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    auburnselkie RE: Caitlin McGrath May 22, 2012 01:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    That sounds lovely (both of them, I mean) - and I have a sister who would love the almond cake..Would you please share the recipe?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Caitlin McGrath RE: auburnselkie May 22, 2012 02:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Of course - here is a link to where I posted it previously: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8125...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        auburnselkie RE: Caitlin McGrath May 22, 2012 03:40 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Oh, thank you! I will definitely be making that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. auburnselkie RE: buttertart May 22, 2012 01:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Today, I've made Italian bread, molasses cookies, and am just about to start Blueberry Boy Bait for dessert tonight (we're having company and I wanted something easy). Tomorrow, Almond Joy cupcakes! My oven is finally working again so I am using it like there's no tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Incidentally, and slightly off topic - what happened to the oven is the ignition coil went out. We just had it replaced a year and a half ago. The electrician looked at me and, perfectly seriously, commented, "You must bake a lot. You know, these ovens will work for years without a problem if you don't use them all the time."


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      roxlet RE: auburnselkie May 22, 2012 01:37 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      And then the purpose of the oven would be what, exactly?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        auburnselkie RE: roxlet May 22, 2012 03:39 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        See, I didn't know just what to say to that because I was afraid I'd say too much. Even without being a baker, I still use my oven all the time for cooking. Maybe he just doesn't know anyone who likes to cook.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          roxlet RE: auburnselkie May 22, 2012 04:22 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ah, well. It's worth replacing the igniters for the pleasure of a good oven!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        sandylc RE: auburnselkie May 22, 2012 01:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yeah, home ovens are now made more cheaply by assuming that no one will use them, at least not very often. Disgusting.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          auburnselkie RE: sandylc May 22, 2012 03:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yeah...Not too long ago I lived in a teeny tiny house with an itty bitty oven (none of my baking sheets even fit; I had to find smaller ones) which I believe had been there since the 60's. Never had a problem with it. Newish oven? Big problems.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: auburnselkie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Emme RE: auburnselkie May 22, 2012 07:16 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          that's like buying a shirt that says "dry clean only," and the salesperson says, "oh no it won't cost you a lot in dry cleaning... you're not gonna wear it a lot, right?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          i wouldn't have know what to say either. i'd have been pissed though. i am far from high maintenance; i can sustain in almost any condition... but my oven better be functioning and consistent.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Emme
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            rstuart RE: Emme May 26, 2012 08:48 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I do think that things were made more sturdily in the past (and I'm not *that* old).. I have my mother's 40-year old mixmaster, and while she did have to have the motor fixed about 10 years ago, it's otherwise been in constant use (I got it when we gave her a Kitchenaid a few years ago).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. b
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          burgeoningfoodie RE: buttertart May 23, 2012 08:07 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Am going to try my hand again at a Meyer Lemon recipe courtesy of Food52 contributor. Last time I couldn't get the macaron off the parchment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: burgeoningfoodie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            sandylc RE: burgeoningfoodie May 23, 2012 10:49 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I think you're supposed to pour a bit of water under the parchment onto the hot pan to release it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              burgeoningfoodie RE: sandylc May 24, 2012 09:06 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              maybe but not in the instructions from what I can see.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. n
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            noodlepoodle RE: buttertart May 23, 2012 07:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I baked a pear tart today and enjoyed it warm with B & J vanilla ice cream.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. roxlet RE: buttertart May 23, 2012 07:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I baked a double recipe of pecan tassies to bring to the BBQ we're doing tomorrow for my son's crew team.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. m
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                modthyrth RE: buttertart May 23, 2012 10:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Holy cow, have I been baking. Graduation cookies for a friend's daughter. Surfboard cookies and icing covered pretzels that look like tiki poles for a friend's son (it's too hot for chocolate here in Phoenix). My daughter's 3rd birthday this Sunday (She requested a sprinkles theme. Awesome kid!): Homemade funfetti cake, a donut hole topiary, big soft sprinkle covered sugar cookies, cut out and decorated sugar cookies, Brigadeiros, funfetti cake batter fudge, and whoopie pies.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                And I teamed up with Frog Prince Paperie to create a new e-magazine called Festivities. Party planning, recipes, tutorials, and more. I staged three parties for the first issue.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Gold Rush BBQ: homemade apple pie; snickerdoodle blondies; sugar cookies in cowboy boot and cactus shapes; blueberry muffins; golden nuggets (decorated rock candy); and s'mores made with homemade marshmallows (recipe from Chow!), homemade graham crackers, and high quality chocolate. Mmmm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Blush. It was a brunch, so we had: homemade cinnamon roles, mini quiches, homemade scones with homemade strawberry jam, damask print chocolate covered oreos, vanilla puff pastry strips, and a crepe cake filled with homemade lemon curd and pastry cream.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Balloons party. Homemade cupcakes, meringues piped in cloud shapes, sugar cookies in balloon shapes, cloud parfaits (ok, that was just jello and whipped cream, not really baking).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Whew. I'm tired. Can someone make a birthday cake for *me* this month?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: modthyrth
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  sandylc RE: modthyrth May 24, 2012 10:48 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Wow! You are one busy baker! Very impressive! Those cinnamon rolls look killer....I only made measly bagels yesterday and a French yogurt cake a couple of days ago....I clearly have to step things up!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Beautiful scenery in your photos, too, BTW.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. roxlet RE: buttertart May 24, 2012 10:51 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  With only about two available hours before I had to be out for the rest of the day, I got a call from my son saying that everyone asked him to bring something baked by me to school tomorrow since it is the last day of classes. I couldn't say no, so I quickly whipped up two pans of chocolate chip cookie bars, and two pans of brownies. On buttertart's recommendation, I gave the Pan Anderson brownies a whirl.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Caitlin McGrath RE: roxlet May 24, 2012 11:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I have a feeling you are VERY popular at your son's school, roxlet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      buttertart RE: Caitlin McGrath May 24, 2012 02:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Oh yeah.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Did you try a Pam?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        roxlet RE: buttertart May 24, 2012 07:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I thinki I under baked them slightly since I was running late, but I did taste, and though they could have done with a few more minutes, I liked what I tasted.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          buttertart RE: roxlet May 25, 2012 05:12 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I made them to take to our friends' place and found myself getting at them repeatedly...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            roxlet RE: buttertart May 25, 2012 06:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            There was, not unexpectedly, not an iota left. I have more chocolate chip dough in the fridge to make my son's coach a batch of cookies before he leaves for Cairo tomorrow afternoon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      GraceW RE: roxlet May 24, 2012 03:23 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      (Why do my students never bring treats...? Instead they are always EXPECTING me to supply them with food... HALLO, I have 150+ students & four different course & it's the end of the quarter.. so if I bake anything it is for me--to help coax me through grading mounds of essays (for 150+ students... as mentioned..).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sorry for the rant: but what I mean is: as an educator, I am sure you not only are popular with the students but also the teacher! It is always nice when students have adequate energy to learn.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: GraceW
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        roxlet RE: GraceW May 24, 2012 07:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Glad to help out you hard- working and deserving teachers! L

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: GraceW
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          sandylc RE: GraceW May 24, 2012 07:57 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Do you think that this generation has been trained out of bringing homemade goodies because, 1. so few people bake anymore, and 2. too many schools have rules against homemade goods....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Both very sad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            SWISSAIRE RE: sandylc May 25, 2012 06:52 PM


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Years ago it was once a week, very early each Sunday morning. Now it is every three days, but I do enjoy it. One learns to get up and make time to enjoy a little baking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            It is unfortunate to hear from the educators that security restrictions might prevent homebaked items like cookies being taken to schools.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sandylc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              sunangelmb RE: sandylc May 25, 2012 08:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I bake for my sons teachers often. She's my new neighbor, and I baked her family a welcome tray. Every so often she'll drop a hint or two to my son " wow I loved your moms cc cookies/brownies/whatever chocolate treat she's craving." or at lunch she might tell him, "wow you're so lucky to have homemade baked goods everyday, I wish I had some." he tells me and voila, instant treats for the poor woman who has 20 10 year olds during the day, and 4 girls of her own after school. Not allowed to bake for the class due to allergy rules, but I'm happy to bake for anyone who loves to eat. Lord knows my family can only consume so much.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                GraceW RE: sunangelmb May 26, 2012 05:18 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                That's awesome! Thanks for being so generous--I am sure it is very helpful for her 4 girls. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. buttertart RE: buttertart May 26, 2012 05:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The thin choc chunk cookies from the new Medrich (and the cookie book) with hazelnuts and gianduja are to be baked tomorow am, along with madeleines, because I was informed we were all out of the latter. Some things need be rectified.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            buttertart RE: buttertart May 27, 2012 03:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The cookies are huge! Haven't tried them yet. The madeleines had to be shelved until tomorrow morning, because the cookies took a long time to bake.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              buttertart RE: buttertart May 28, 2012 09:07 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The cookies (which have already been judged scary-looking, in person they're much more attractive and tasty -- the gianduja melted more than chocolate would have), and the mads before sugar and with sugar. This is the Fannie Farmer baking book recipe, the one we like best. Génoise-style. Funny thing, I have 2 12-well pans, how come there are only 22 cooling? ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Chocolatechipkt RE: buttertart May 26, 2012 10:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            It's 1am, and I have a blueberry-buttermilk cake in the oven. I was going to wait to do it in the morning, before people came over for brunch, but I was on the phone with Comcast and I knew it was going to take a while ... so here I am waiting for this to come out of the oven. I used frozen wild blueberries from TJs--the only ones I've seen in stores so far are the big ones, and I like the smaller ones for something like this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Emme RE: buttertart May 26, 2012 11:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Friend brought me back some macadamia nuts from a trip... Planning to make some macadamia butter tomorrow with most of them, then turn that into Macadamia Blondies with white chocolate bits, lime zest, and a dash of garam masala... I like food-ouvenirs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. r
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Redstickchef RE: buttertart May 27, 2012 07:28 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I am going to attempt a Rhubarb Crisp today, because my Mom has been inundating me with requests. Hopefully it will live up to her memories!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. r
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  rstuart RE: buttertart May 27, 2012 12:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Made the Nigella Nutella cake yesterday for my birthday.. which the restaurant charged me a cutting fee for (I understand the rationale, but $20?? Especially considering how much we'd spent on booze). I make it without the toasted hazelnuts on top, due to my nut dislike. I can deal with them ground up in the cake... but not whole!!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  As always, it was wonderful, and it's almost all gone...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  13 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Chocolatechipkt RE: rstuart May 27, 2012 02:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Happy birthday!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      buttertart RE: rstuart May 27, 2012 03:53 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yes, happy birthday! Where did you find the recipe?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        rstuart RE: buttertart May 28, 2012 12:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks... it's so hard turning 21 again! Roxlet; I would be happy to have someone else make my cake, but no-one else has offered for the last 15 years! And to be honest, I like my cakes better than most people's... especially those really dry chocolate cakes. So I just make mine.. it's hardly a sacrifice on my part!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Recipes is from Nigella Lawson's "how to be a Domestic Goddess". First had it when I was living in the UK about a decade ago.. a friend did make it on that occasion. I loved it, and got the recipe... and eventually the cookbook. It's pretty easy, and everyone loves it..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Caitlin McGrath RE: rstuart May 28, 2012 12:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Looks like a delicious recipe: http://www.nigella.com/recipes/view/n...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          And happy birthday, rstuart!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            roxlet RE: Caitlin McGrath May 28, 2012 12:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Wow, that looks great! Maybe I should make this one for my birthday!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              rstuart RE: roxlet May 28, 2012 06:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yep, that's it Caitlin.. and thanks! I would highly recommend it Roxlet..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        roxlet RE: rstuart May 27, 2012 04:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Happy birthday! So I'm not the only one who makes her own birthday cake!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          sunangelmb RE: roxlet May 28, 2012 05:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Was going to make some snicker doodles, but after I started cooking, realized I didn't have cream of tartar. (I hate when I do that) being that it was already 9 pm, I turned them into cinnamon sugar cookies. Last night I whipped up a batch of 'Oreos.' I'm going to bring them to my brothers BBQ- they are an often requested favorite of his.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            buttertart RE: sunangelmb May 28, 2012 09:02 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            sunagelmb you did the right thing, no cream of tartar, cookies not at all the same.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              sunangelmb RE: buttertart May 28, 2012 07:02 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              They were yummy. The Oreos disappeared in 5 minutes flat. A new record. People go crazy for them....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            buttertart RE: roxlet May 28, 2012 09:01 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Me too! I'm now looking for the cake equivalent to the one for M for his mother's 89th on 7/1. Maybe coconut? Maybe the RLB Heavenly Cakes raspberry heart in round pans and as a 2-layer? I'm thinking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              roxlet RE: buttertart May 28, 2012 09:06 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Well, I do so love Malgieri's coconut cake. That, with the rest of the coconut milk used in the flour frosting, can't be beat. Raspberry heart made in a round pan appeals to me. Check the volume though. When I tried (and failed) with her Rose's Red Velvet cake, I didn't think there would be enough batter for two layers. Maybe if you made a small ( like 6") cake?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                buttertart RE: roxlet May 28, 2012 04:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                For that horde? I'd double or triple the heart pan amount, I think. I've made that cake 2x and it is great,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. s
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          shaebones RE: buttertart May 28, 2012 06:47 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Peanut butter cookies from CI. Amazingly chewey and good!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: shaebones
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            buttertart RE: shaebones May 28, 2012 09:04 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Mag or book?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              shaebones RE: buttertart May 28, 2012 12:57 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              From the on line mag. Its a tattered print out from 2007. A March, 1998 recipe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Breadcrumbs RE: buttertart May 28, 2012 06:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Strawberry-Rhubarb Breakfast Cake – Williams Sonoma Muffins - p. 76

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The first rhubarb of the season always has me searching for new recipes to put spring’s bounty to use. This sounded like a great recipe to do just that and I opted to up the rhubarb content in place of some of the strawberries (roughly a 50/50 mix) to ensure the rhubarb’s lovely tart flavours shone through. This recipe is quick and easy to prepare, especially if an electric mixer is used. My cake rose to almost 6 inches though my topping of cinnamon-sugar never did turn golden brown. The book suggests you use an angel food cake pan w a removable bottom. I just used a regular angel food cake pan that I buttered then dusted w breadcrumbs and hoped for the best. Happily the cake released without issue. This recipe produced a delicious cake. Light, airy and moist on the inside with a lovely crunchy exterior. This cake endured the morning commute and made for a perfect spring breakfast cake.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              rstuart RE: Breadcrumbs May 28, 2012 06:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              That looks gorgeous Breadcrumbs!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Breadcrumbs RE: rstuart May 28, 2012 06:45 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Thanks rstuart. I'm nowhere near in the same league as all you amazingly talented bakers here but I do enjoy baking and I'm so grateful for the inspiration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Breadcrumbs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                modthyrth RE: Breadcrumbs May 29, 2012 08:02 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oooh, that looks divine. I'm totally with you on just going straight rhubarb, no strawberries. Yum!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. blue room RE: buttertart May 30, 2012 12:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Ooh ooh I'd say keep these in mind for holiday baking. They're fast, no tricky techniques, and of course very tasty. Poster "ipsedixit" mentioned molasses bicotti the other day and I found this recipe on Epicurious:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I did use hazelnuts, used canola oil, used golden raisins, micro-grated actual ginger rather than using powdered, and the molasses is marked "full flavored" rather than light.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The recipe notes that these are baked just once, a chewy cookie -- not twice baked.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: blue room
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  buttertart RE: blue room May 30, 2012 02:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hey, nice!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: blue room
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Caitlin McGrath RE: blue room May 30, 2012 03:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks, saved this recipe. They sound similar to hermits, in ingredients (molasses, spices, nuts). I could see using crystallized ginger instead of the raisins, too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. sarahjay RE: buttertart May 30, 2012 05:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I made sugar cookies to send to my niece for her birthday. I will take pictures before they go in the mail, but will keep them off the blog until after her birthday. (don't want to ruin the surprise!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: sarahjay
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      sarahjay RE: sarahjay May 31, 2012 10:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Finally got pictures of the cookies!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Chocolatechipkt RE: buttertart May 30, 2012 07:56 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I made a birthday cake for my sister today. Lightly lemon layer cake, with strawberries and whipped cream in between, frosted with with more whipped cream and covered in more berries.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        blue room RE: Chocolatechipkt May 30, 2012 08:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The berries are "petaled" with sliced almonds on the side of the cake -- a very nice detail I've never seen before.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: blue room
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Chocolatechipkt RE: blue room May 31, 2012 07:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks! I saw a version of it on Pinterest, and then did my thing. Good to keep in mind the size of the berries and almonds (I seemed to have big berries and tiny almonds, lol.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. r
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        rstuart RE: buttertart May 31, 2012 03:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Just made some great banana peanut butter honey muffins.. very yummy and healthy. THe only odd thing was that it had a full Teaspoon of baking soda.. which I swear I could taste? Next time I might cut down...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          buttertart RE: rstuart May 31, 2012 04:44 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I bet you could taste it. How many cups of flour? That's a lot of soda.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            rstuart RE: buttertart Jun 1, 2012 08:58 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Less than 2! And a Ts of b. powder too...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            sunangelmb RE: rstuart May 31, 2012 07:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Would love this recipe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sunangelmb
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              rstuart RE: sunangelmb Jun 1, 2012 09:00 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Found it here:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I used 2 bananas though... which was nice.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                buttertart RE: rstuart Jun 1, 2012 05:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'd cut back on the soda, definitely. Do you have Bakewise, by Shirley Corriher? Lots of stuff on leaveners in it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  rstuart RE: buttertart Jun 1, 2012 06:59 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I've read Bakewise, but it was some time ago, and I don't own it. I actually though "wow, this seems like a lot of leavener" as I made it.. and yet that did not stop me from following the recipe faithfully! I will make it again, but cut the soda down to 1/2 ts... possible 1/4 ts, which is what I am used to in this type of recipe.....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    shaebones RE: rstuart Jun 1, 2012 11:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Made this recipe last night, Used 2 bananas, buttermilk vanilla yogurt and added toasted pecans. Ok, but probably won't make them again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      buttertart RE: rstuart Jun 2, 2012 07:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'll have a peep and see what she says. in this case i think the soda is there to neutralize(ish) the acid ingredients and 1/4-1/2 tsp should be enough (I'm telling a scientist?).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        rstuart RE: buttertart Jun 2, 2012 04:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        chemistry was never my best subject ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. buttertart RE: buttertart May 31, 2012 04:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              New thread, a tad early...at least here on the US right coast. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8518...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Antilope RE: buttertart Jun 1, 2012 11:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oops. I see this is the old thread. I moved my message to the new thread.

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