Dienstag, 24. Mai 2011

TWD: Oatmeal Nutmeg Scones (and rewind: Hidden Berry Cream Cheese Torte)

Breakfast treats, breakfast treats, breakfast treats. This month is full of ... right: Breakfast treats! I love them. I admire them. I adore to eat them, I adore their easiness in the making, they are just perfect for me. Scones (just like biscuits) are more or less unknown in Austria, where I live, so I am never sure if I get the shape and size right. But as far as I remember from my trips to New York, scones look like triangles in the States (and more like american biscuits in England, but that's another story...)

I wasn't sure if oatmeal and nutmeg are ingredients I could fall in love with, but they match wonderfully. I made these scones with dried apricots and I am very happy I've chosen them as an extra ingredient. They make this more or less savory delight a tiny little bit sweet. And dried apricots still work perfect with cheese, so you have all options for what to eat with them still open - jam, butter, ham, cheese, whatever you like!

For my part I got to say that I like these scones best plain, or with a bit goat cheese. I know, that's not very American. But after all - I am not, so: Oatmeal Nutmeg Scones with dried apricots and goat cheese - we are going to have several dates in the future!!

For the original recipe of the Oatmeal Nutmeg Scones , go to Patricia's page Life with a Whisk - she has chosen this amazing recipe for this week's TWD. or - buy Dorie's book and have a look at page 30.

P.S.: Football season is oer now, so I don't really know what to do with my time (same problem every year - last for about, uhm, 10 days :o]). I made the Hidden Berry Cream Cheese Torte, from pages 240-242 - a recipe I was always wondering what it is like. It was originally due way way back in January 2008. In fact, it was the second recipe on the rotation, can you imagine? Jamie of Good Eats n' Sweet Treats did choose it. She has 136 posts labeled with "TWD" - gosh, what a great record!

This cheesecake is just wonderful! I used blueberry jam and added some fresh berries, too. Cheesecake is great anyways, but this recipe is maybe the best cheesecake I ever ate (at least, it is the best I ever made). If you haven't - go and bake it! 

Montag, 16. Mai 2011

TWD: Maple Cornmeal Biscuits

Hmmm, biscuits! I adore biscuits! And I very much like corn-meal, or polenta, what I used instead. Let's make it short and simple, just as these biscuits: They are adorable! The maple syrup gives them a very special touch, and with the polenta they get a bit crunchy, but not too much.

They come together in a snap, it's almost impossible to make something wrong, and they don't have a long baking time. Even though I made them in the evening (lack of time on the last week-end...), I am sure they are perfectperfectperfect for breakfast due to the fastness and simpleness of this recipe.

This was really the right recipe on the right time. I spent my week-end (my usual baking time) in Dortmund in Germany, because even though I am Austrian, my favourite soccer team is a german one. They won the championship this week-end (well, in fact they already "won" it two weeks ago, but on Saturday was the last game and the big party), so I HAD to travel to Dortmund. Luckily, I won tickets (teh stadium has 86.000 seats, but only about 20.000 "free" seats because all the others are reserved for abos and regular visitors - so 400.000 people asking for tickets participated in a lottery for the available seats. Lucky me, I got two for me and a friend...)

Well, nobody who is going to read this knows about european soccer, so - let's not bore you any further. Just so much: Thanks a lot to Lindsay from A Little Something… Sweet for chosing these simple and easy to make Maple Cornmeal Biscuits - I would not have found the time for anything more time-consuming! Go to her page for the recipe or have a look at Dorie's book on page 24.

Dienstag, 10. Mai 2011

TWD: Brown Sugar Bundt Cake

When I read "Brown Sugar Bundt Cake" I thought: Hm. Dunno. Sounds not too exciting. I usually use brown sugar anyways. But then I read that the recipe calls for prunes and pears - complete change of mind! Prunes and pears are some of my favourite ingredients.

To make it short: This cake tastes wonderful and is easy in the making! I halved the recipe and still got two little children-bundts and three minis. (I use minis as "test-pieces" because I don't want to give somehting to my co-workers I have not tested before.) I made no changes to the original recipe but did cut the baking time due to the smaller mold I used.

Dorie says, the cake will be even better tomorrow, because the taste will spread through the cake. Well - I am looking forward to it! [P.S.: Now it is tomorrow - and Dorie is right, as so often!]
Thanks to Peggy from Pantry Revisited who has chosen this recipe for this week's TWD. Go to her page for the recipe or have a look at Dorie's book page 179.

P.S.: This was a big cooking and baking day for me. First, I made the bundt. Then I made some vanilla frozen yogurt (taken from David Lebovitz great book "Perfect Scoop") - my first frozen yougurt ever. Then I went to the monthly "Guerilla Bakery" - three friends baking once a month in a pop-up "store" (in fact it is their flat) and did taste some great little cakes: mini-cheescake with crumbles, peanutbutter cookies, lime cakelettes, lemon ricotta muffins and coconut-almond muffins. And no, I didn't eat all of it alone ;o]. Back home I started making vegetable soup, which is still simmering in my kitchen, made some strawberry-champagne-sorbet (also adapted from the champagne-raspberry-sorbet by David L.) and strawberry-rhubarb-compote. I guess my duty for this week is done :o] 

Dienstag, 3. Mai 2011

TWD: Basic Marbled Loaf Cake

Marbled Cake. How odd. I thought. Am I really going to do this? Hmpf. I got to. I missed so much during pre-Easter lentening. So I thought.

Well, I should have learned by now that it is very often the most unexpected of Dorie's wonderful recipes that leave you most astonished and excited. Again, this time.

I am not so creative as many of my fellow bakers who experimented with colourful variations. Funnily, in fact I thought about using my red and blue sugar for a second, but did not follow this idea. I made the chocolate-orange version.
For the orange batter I took aranzini (Not sure if this word exists in english. I am talking about thick pieces of candied orange peel cut in stripes with a lot of sugar around. They are widely used in fruit loafs for christmas in Europe; picture source: www.gewuerzhaus-altstadt.de) and orange aroma. Next time I would also use some orange flavoured chocolate to support the taste, but it was also very, very good like that.

I just do not understand why all my cakes, no matter what mold I use, tend to form a tent. A friend suggested that I might not butter the mold enough, because obviously the batter sticks to the mold. But today I buttered the mold like mad, but still - there is a tent. If anybody has a hint, I would be grateful!

I followed the "lay stripes and zigzag 6-7 times"-method, but it didn't marble a lot, so it looks more like checkers-cake than marble cake, but who cares.

So, thanks a lot to Carol from The Bake More for chosing this surprisingly good recipe. Have a look at her page for the recipe, or go to Dorie's book to pages 230 and 231.