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Sep 16, 2012 04:31 PM

What are you baking these days? September 2012, part deux! [old]

We've been baking up a storm lately, so let's go with a part 2 this always makes me happy when that is necessary.
I baked the pistachio shortbread dough I made last week and froze, yesterday (will take pic when i find out where they have been stashed by my everloving), and have Carol Field's l'Otto di Merano rye bread dough rising at the mo.
Here's my latest favourite iteration of white bread, the one that roxlet referred to -- a bit of a takeoff from the Field Pane di Como, with a potato angle thrown in...sorry this isn't exact, but if you bake bread at all (and if not, why not), you should be able to come up with a very nice bread that keeps extremely well and makes killer toast...
Make a preferment of about 2 c flour, 1 c water, tsp yeast (consistency about like pancake batter), let rise a couple of hours, then add another couple of cups of water to it, plus about 1/2 c milk, and 1/2 c potato flour (or a microwaved, peeled, mashed potato), salt to taste 2-3 tsp, 1/4 c olive oil, enough flour to make a softish dough (should take 6-7 cups total including the preferment).
Let rise once or twice, make into loaves, round or pan.
Bake at 400 deg F for 45 mins or so.
You can do any of the rises in the fridge or let the shaped loaves rise overnight in it, the longer this goes, the better. Within reason.

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  1. I am trying your great recipe is right along the lines of what I was thinking of putting together soon, myself! I am very pleased that you steered me back to Carol Field's book - it had been languishing in my bookcase for too long.

    One change: I like to rice potatoes that I put into bread - it seems to distribute more easily/lightly than mashed....

    1. I made chocolate chip cookies with Guittard chocolate chips. I have never been able to get my hands on Guittard before... so I was excited. To be honest, the only difference I noticed/tasted was that they seemed to be harder (?). The shell/composition of the 'chip' seemed "tighter" (if that is possible) than a Toll House chip. Obviously I liked it better ... I am not sure $5 a bag is realistic for ALL future baking, but definitely it is tasty.

      1. I baked up a batch of cranberry pistachio biscotti this afternoon for the holiday edition of Festivities magazine. Took some pretty photos and am going to pack some off with my husband as he heads out of town for work tomorrow morning. Or I will eat them all. ALL, I tell you. Yum.

        One of my daughter's Irish dancing instructors turned 21 this weekend, and so did her boyfriend. She asked if I would make a cake for both of them (of course!) and incorporate both Irish step dancing and skateboarding (their two passions). Uhhhh....yeah. That was a challenge. I finally decided that the common element was flight, and created two gumpaste silhouette toppers that flew above the cake. Chocolate mocha cake with Bailey's Irish Cream buttercream (the dance teacher's name is Bailee, I couldn't resist).

        4 Replies
        1. re: modthyrth

          What an accomplished cake! I just have to complement your artistic skills in both the cake decor, and the very graceful and lifelike toppers! Bravo!

          1. re: gingershelley

            Thank you! I'm just glad I had enough time (BARELY!) for the gumpaste to dry to make the idea work. I was seriously lacking inspiration until the last possible second. Typically I make gumpaste work at least for our five days ahead. I made these at about 7pm the night before the party, after the cake was baked! It's a good thing I live in arid Arizona. I'd have been out of luck if I'd lived anywhere with humidity.

            1. re: modthyrth

              nice work. if you need gumpaste to dry even quicker than it does, try adding a little extra Tylose powder (CMC) or even a bit of cream of tartar.

          2. re: modthyrth

            Uhhhh . . . WOW; that looks incredible.

            1. re: buttertart

              Yum! Thanks for the link buttertart, will have to try..

              1. My first contribution!! I made this cake in a belated birthday celebration for ... myself, ha ha. It was really, really good. My only change was that I had to double the peanut butter and add a tsp of salt to the frosting before it was nearly peanut buttery enough for me. Honestly, I could have added even MORE peanut butter, but I could tell I was messing up the consistency a bit. If I made it again, I'd pull back on the cream cheese and/or butter and just add more PB. Regardless, it was awesome.

                6 Replies
                    1. re: charmedgirl

                      Wow, HAPPY BIRTHDAY! That looks so deep dark 'n delish!

                        1. re: charmedgirl

                          That's one decadent-looking cake. HB charmedgirl--hope you enjoyed every bite.

                          1. re: charmedgirl

                            Oh, YES!! All those goodies on top!!