Dienstag, 18. Dezember 2012

TWD: Finnish Pulla

 With the Finnish Pulla we finish (haha) this 2012-TWD-year.

When I saw the picture I was afraid it is one of these very much time consuming, almost not possible to knead with a hand-mixer brioche breads.

Well, it's not. It takes some time for resting and rising, but compared to other yeasted breads the rising times are not too long (two times 45 mins), so you can easily do it in a half a day.
And the dough is not so extremely dense as a brioche. Additionally, you can easily knead it with your hands. What is, after all, a nice experience.

The Pulla (is it simply called Pulla? or Pulla Bread?) is a basic recipe, not too much fuzz, and still a bit exraordinary due to the cardamom in it. The almonds and sugar on top makes it look very lovely.

I made only half the recipe, so my strands were not long enough to make a circle. But the book also gives a picture of a "loaf" so I guess it's ok to shape it like I did.

All in all, this is an excellent recipe for a brioche-like bread! And: Although I like to bake seasonally, I am also very thankful for having a recipe this week that is NOT overloaded with sugar, almond paste, cinamon and nuts. I was in the need of a break. Seriously.

For the recipe, head over to Erin's blog The Daily Morsel or have a look at pp 106/107 in Dorie Greenspan's book.

Dienstag, 4. Dezember 2012

TWD: Gingerbread Baby Cakes

I am moving - so this is my last post from my old kitchen.  I am used to cooking with gas what is not possible in the new house. No idea if I will ever get used to the induction cooker. I love the gas stove :o[
I'm going to miss it, as my whole apartment. However, the new one is wonderful. And I am going to get used to my new kitchen, too.
And: The new baking oven comes with pyrolysis (self)cleaning - so much looking forward!

Anyhow, the real topic today are Gingerbread Baby Cakes. I had to make some changes and adaption for this:

First, I have no baby-cake mold. And the flour-leftover I had was not enough for a whole recipe. So I made about 60% and filled the batter in pretty paper molds, more like for baby-pound cakes, but that was what I had (still) at hand. Calculating baking time was very difficult due to the different form and amount of batter in each mold. In the end it took about 45mins.

Than I had to sub the molasse as it is very uncommon in Austria. I used 3/4 maple syrup and 1/4 corn syrup, just what I had at hand. Hope it comes near what it should be.

I switched to ordinary sugar so I didn't have to open a new bag of brown sugar four days befor I move. I guess brown sugar is better, but the ordinary sugar did no harm.

I topped the cakes with "schudde buikjes" - a bread topping I recently buyed in Amsterdam. They come with speculos taste at this time of the year. Perfect match!

These cakes are very easy to make. The coffee taste is a bit more dominant than I am used to, maybe because there is no chocolate in it and most receipes I know use the coffee to support chocolate taste. The second unusual experience is that it is a bit spicy due to the black pepper and fresh ginger.

It is a bit uncommon, but really good and very seasonal.

For the recipe, have a look at Dorie Greenspan's book on pp. 247/248or head over to our host's blog Karen: Karen’s Kitchen Stories.

Samstag, 24. November 2012

(belated) TWD: Buttermilk-Crumb Muffins

I have to bake a week behind the rest of the group in November, therefore I'm not going to leave my link. But at least I want to have the record I made it for myself.

When I read the recipe for Buttermilk-Crumb Muffins I thought "How boring". I regularily tend to forget that it is very often the oddest-sounding recipes that turn out best.

And: These muffins are really a hit and a alltime-favourite!

They are more than easy in the making, delicious due to the crumbs and moist and soft on the inside. Perfect. Who needs more from a muffin?

For the recipe, got to Alisa's page Easier Than Pie  who hosted the November 6-recipe of TWD-"Baking with Julia"- or have a look at Dorie Greenspans book.

Dienstag, 30. Oktober 2012

TWD rewind: Chocolate-Crunched Caramel Tart and World Peace Cookies

I didn't do the Bagels lately, so I made two rewinds in October. Both recipes I wanted to try for a long time.

The Chocolate-Crunched Caramel Tart ist just marvellous. It is a bit work, because you have to chop nuts, prepare the caramel and make the chocolate ganache. But once you have all the parts ready, you just have to assemble them - and you're done! I stored it over night in the fridge and think this was a really good idea. Like that, the ganache got more dense and eventually a different texture to what was foreseen in the recipe. But it also gives you the chance to have a chocolate ganache that can be cut with a knife and a tart-filling that does not run out.

I liked it very muched, but would salt the caramel even more next time because I just love salt in sweets!
Besides: This was the first time I really REALLY managed the tart dough! Hooray! Finally! For the recipe, have a look at Carla of Chocolate Moosey who did host the week of Sept 29th 2009 (click), or buy the book by Dorie Greenspan and go to pp. 355-357.

My second rewind are World Peace Cookies. I am not so much a chocolate lover (funny both recipes this week are heavily chocolate loaded, though). But I wanted to try these because they are one of these "special" recipes. Some recipes in Dorie's book are paired with a special story, a very personal one. Like the Chocolate Armagnac Cake. The Rugelachs. Or - the World Peace Cookies. So I gave them a try.

For chocolate cookies, they are quite good. I'm not a chocolate lover, but a big shortbread/sablé-fan so I liked these. They are easy in the making. I used half bittersweet chocolate and half orange-infused bittersweet chocolate with tiny candied dried orange pieces.

Baking time was somewath shorter (more lik 6-10 mins, depending on the batch).
As so often, they do not look perfect but I really liked the texture - the cookie itself is more on the dry side, but there are very soft chocolate pieces in it, and I like texture-mixes.

Sorry for the bad pic. I am unable to get good pictures of chocoalte cookies. But if you google "World peace Cookies" and "Tuesdays with Dorie" you will get a hole lot of  of brilliant pictures! Some of them are by Jessica of cookbookhabit who did host the week of Feb. 3rd 2009 in "TWD-the first season". She has the recipe in her blog - or have a look on pp 138/139 in Dorie Greenspan's "Baking - From my home to yours".

Dienstag, 2. Oktober 2012

TWD: Cranberry Walnut Pumpkin Loaf

Bread-baking is great! Usually I'm more on the quick-bread side, but because I am ill I had some time to do this. I stretched the procedure over three days but you could do it in two.
This was the first time my dough did really rise. Maybe because it reckognized that I have time, too :o]
I read that for many other TWD-ers it dind't work and some didn't especially like the recipe - well, I'm one of the lovers! But I have to admit, that on the one side I am tempted to do this again and again, and on the other side I guess the Cranberry Walnut Pumpik Loaf is just too time consuming.

I made the pumpkin-puree myself as it is almost impossible to get canned one in Austria. But that's fine, because it's easy in the making anyways.

I quite like how it turned out. I made half the recipe and ended up with a mini and one normal loaf. Huge amount, for half the recipe... Besides the time-factor it is easy in the making  and the taste-combo of pumpkin (only slightly), nuts and cranberries (more dominant) is convincing. If you like bread-baking, try this perfect autumn-recipe!

For the recipe, head over to the blog by this weeks host Rebecca: This Bountiful Backyard.
Or have a look to the wonderful book "Baking with Julia" by Dorie Greenspan on pp. 108/109.

Dienstag, 4. September 2012

TWD: Nectarine Upside-Down Chiffon Cake

To make it short: The Nectarine Upside-Down Chiffon Cake is great. Not quick in the making and it involves some different stages, many pots and dishes and time to make some dressing up when you could also go an easier way. But the result is convincing and worth the time and effort.

The cake would have been even better if I would not have miscalculated the butter amount. In Austria, we do not messure in sticks, cups and spoons, but grams. And I know, know, know by heart after almost three years of baking with the group: a stick of butter is 120g. However, in my mind it turned out to be 240g, so I doubled the butter for the caramel. The effect: After baking and cooling the cake was so soft and greasy-moisty that it almost fell apart. I decided to go an unusal way, something that usually never works - but having no eggs left I was desperate: I baked the cake a second time. And now, it got firm!

Due to double baking, the caramel got even more intense in taste and the streusel in the middle did spread all over the batter, so it looked more like a nut cake and did not keep the almost white colour I found in my google research for examples pictures.

Never mind. The cake did taste excellent. With this huge amount of butter it turned out very soft and moisty, but also very butter-loaded so that you can eat only small pieces at a time. But nobody said you should only take one piece a day. :o]

So, thanks to the TWD-group for choosing this recipe. It was fun baking a slightly more difficile cake than in the recent weeks. If you want to find out more about the recipe (or what the cake looks like, if you are using the right amount of butter ;o]) head over the the blogs of Marlise of The Double Trouble Kitchen and Susan of The Little French Bakery, or buy the book "Baking with Julia" by Dorie Greenspan.

Dienstag, 21. August 2012

TWD: Popovers

Popovers are soemthing I never ate and saw only, uhm, maybe twice.  So I have no idea if what I made turned out right.

As I am completely clueless I followed the recipe (almost) completely. Because the recipe did sound a bit odd, I sprinkled some grated lemon zest over the dough and exchanged the melted butter for lemon infused olive oil. But I was very carefully with it, so in the end it was not enough to make a difference in taste.

The recipe is maybe the fastest and easiest I ever made. I don't have the right form for it so I used soufflé-forms.

This is a very basic recipe. To me, it was a bit boring in taste. I ate one as it was straight out of the oven. What made it special was the warm dough. The second one I ate cold and with some vanilla pudding and sour cream. Like that, it was far better.

I can imagine these more on a savory side. No idea, if that's "appropriate" for popovers (are popovers sweet? or savory? or both? - no idea...). But for me, a spice-loaded version could make a very good starter with a cold Rosé in the summer.

If you like popovers than this recipe is for sure perfect - quick, fast easy. Find out more about it on our hosts blogs: Paula of Vintage Kitchen Notes and Amy of Bake With Amy. Or buy the book and go to p. 213.

PS.: Even if this is not the most overwhelming recipe I ever made I am really glad the group picked it. Doing my favourite recipes over and over again is something I can do on my own - baking with the group means trying something new!

Dienstag, 7. August 2012

TWD: Berry Galette

 Berries, berries, berries. Can't get enough! The berry season is going to end soon anyways so I am going to profit from the remaining days. In the berry-universe, blueberries are by far my favourite so it was no big deal what fruits I would choose for the Berry Galette.

The galette itself is definitely a keeper for me. It is a kind of a "free-style" tarte and that makes it easy for me to handle. No fitting in a tart shell, no covering the tarte with a top. Just a bit of rolling and filling. And the best part is: There's no need to fold the dough over the berries in a regular, even pattern. The more irregular and unprecise it is, the better it looks - not too bad!

I made two mini-galettes (with a shorter baking time - about 15-20mins) and they were great! Not too sweet and good looking! Should be very pretty on a dessert table.

I stored one of them in the fridge and still liked them the next day. The recipe recommends not to do it. Right, the texture changes and the dough is not that crispy anymore. But different is not worse, in my eyes. Maybe it would not work with a big galette, but for the minis it was more than ok.

If you want to find out about the recipe have a look at the pages of the TWD-hosts this week: Lisa of Tomato Thymes in the Kitchen and Andrea of The Kitchen Lioness. Or simply by the book by Dorie Greenspan with the recipes of Julia Child, turn to page 377 and go for it!

Dienstag, 24. Juli 2012

TWD: Blueberry Nectarine Pie

I'm back from holidays and before I went back to work (yesterday was my last day off...) I made the last July recipe. Blueberries and nectarines are a wonderful combination! I remeber a recipe in one of Nigella Lawsons early books, a dessert containing of nothing else than nectarines and blueberries, shortly warmed/baked in the oven. Pure Perfection.

Therefore, I was very happy when I saw this recipe was chosen for July, although I still (even after 2,5 years of baking with the group) tartes and pies frighten me. Whatever crust we make, no matter which technique is employed, I never manage to get it right. Rolling the dough and bringing into the pan - that never works for me and I always have troubles with crusts getting too dark (or being not trough).

Anyways, nectarines and blueberries made me do this recipe.

The dough is interesting, as it does not involve any sugar. But don't worry, the filling has sugar enough :o]

As always, I had troubles with rolling and fitting the dough, but this is only my special topic and I am sure the dough works out fine and is simple for anybody else. In the end, my "pie" turned out more as a spoon dessert because the crust was more than "flaky".

But the filling is just marvelous - therefore, thanks to everybody for choosing this wonderful, season-perfect recipe. If you want to find out about the Blueberry Nectarine Pie go to the blog by Hilary (Manchego’s Kitchen) or the one by Liz (That Skinny Chick Can Bake) - or have a look at the book: "Baking with Julia" by Dorie Greenspan on p. 384.

Mittwoch, 4. Juli 2012

TWD: Hazelnut Biscotti (Pistacchio Cranberry Biscotti)

I am too late with posting, but I made them in time!For these biscotti did opt for the "playing around" options and made Pistachio-Cranberry Biscotti. The combo was great in colour and taste.

The biscotti are very very easy to make and can also be eaten by my lactose intolerant friends, as there is not even butter in the recipe.

I liked them very much and am sure to make them again. I am not sure if I would opt for any other ingredients the next time, because I was so convinced of these, and so were my colleagues at work!

To find out about the (original Hazelnut Biscotti) recipe have a look at our hosts blog: Jodi of Homemade and Wholesome and Katrina of Baking and Boys or have a look at "Baking with Julia" by Dorie Greenspan on pp 315-316.

Dienstag, 5. Juni 2012

TWD: Oasis Naan

What I really, really like about the new TWD-generation is that we often also bake savory stuff. I used to make a lot of bread some years ago and forgot why I stopped.

These Oasis Naans are really good. I prepared the dough the day before. It didn't rise a lot in the fridge - maybe more yeast is needed. But nevertheless I arrived at making 4 pieces (I made only half the recipe).
I played around a bit with the spices and made one with each: rosemary, coriander seed and nigella.
I made them in the morning and had two of them for breakfast - what a great way to start the day!

They are not a big fuzz, and are very short in the baking (about 10mins - my oven stops at about 450° so I left them in a bit longer), so perfect for making them just the moment before you eat them.

The one with nigella was an experiment, but turned out the best of all. I will definitely make them again, and use more scallion the next time!

For the recipe, have a look at Dorie Greenspan's book "Baking with Julia" - the recipe is on pp.
Or turn to this weeks host's blogs: Maggie of Always Add More Butter and Phyl of Of Cabbages & King Cakes.

Dienstag, 29. Mai 2012

TWD: Missed recipe make-up - Quick Berry Tarte

This is a three-tuesday-month, therefore we have a "free ride" today. Since we did not make so many recipe so far from "Baking with Julia" I decided to catch up with one of the recipe I missed with the first round of TWD - Baking: From my home to yours. I decided on the Apple Coconut Family-Cake. For the recipe, turn to Ambers blog "Cobbler du Monde" or have a look into Dorie Greenspan's book on p. 214.

I combined the playing around-version with the original and made a coconut-nut-apple cake. It's a simple, easy in the making and very tasty and moisty cake. Nothing too extraordinary, but that's not always necessary, in my view.
As it was so tasty, it went away at my office faster than I could take pictures :o[

But I made a second recipe, because one of my colleagues finished her master studies and we did celebrate a bit today. We are all pretty proud of her, because we have a quite busy job and she managed to finish her studies while working the same amoutn as everybody else of us. What is a pretty amazing hard piece of work!
I (re)made the Quick Berry Tarte, which looks great, taste delicious, but is not quick at all. Well, it is quick in the making itself as you just have to fill the tarte shell with the cream and spread berries over it. But tarte dough takes time (chilling the butter, freezing the dough, freezing the rolled out dough again, baking, cooling,...) and also for the cream to prepare. In the end, I always need two days for it. But it was a success and worth it anyways! You may find the recipe at Cristine's of Cooking with Cristine or on page 377 of Dorie Greenspan's book.

And I do have pictures of this :o]

Sonntag, 29. April 2012

TWD: Hungarian Shortbread

Shortbread is probably one of the best inventions ever! Althoug I am living next to Hungary I never recognised it's also a hungarian speciality.

The Hungarian Shortbread is two layers of shortbread dough and self-made rhubarb-jam in the middle. The rhubarb gives a perfect contrast to the sweet dough. I love rhubarb and it is just the perfect time of the year for it, because it grows everywhere at the moment. My jam didn't get the red colour, but that does make no difference for the taste.

I made only half the batch and reduced baking time tehrefore, probably a bit too much because it turned out almost too moisty. But besides that this is just great! I thought it's a bit time-consuming (the recipe is assembled fast, but you have to wait for the jam to cool down and the dough needs chilling, so it takes breaks) but still I am for sure going to do this again and angain!

If you want to find out about the recipe have a look at our TWD-hosts of the week: Lynette of 1smallkitchen and Cher of Exciting Adventures of a Dabbler… or just buy the book "Baking with Julia" by Dorie Greenspan and turn to pp.327/328.

Dienstag, 17. April 2012

TWD: Lemon Loaf Cake

Oh this was great! And as so often - the ones that sound least appealing to you are often the best recipes.
It was not really "not appelaing" to me but it did sound kind of boaring. Lemon Loaf, ok. But the resulty... yummi!

It was very easy in the making. I slightly reduced the amount of melted butter but kept the rest just as foreseen. Finally I did end up with a very moisty loaf cake, that had a perfect texture - soft, but dense enough to cut slices. And the taste was incredible! Three zested lemons make all the difference to an ordinary loaf cake.

If I were not that lazy I would have made an lemon icing (or white chocolate?) to dress it up. But I am. Lazy.

Because it's so easy and in the end so tasty this is really a keeper. What else can you ask for from a cake?

For the recipe have a look at our TWD-host's pages (Truc of Treats and Michelle of The Beauty of Life - both with wonderful pictures!) or open the book Baking with Julia by Dorie Greenspan on pp 252/253.

Dienstag, 3. April 2012

TWD: Pizza Rustica

It's Tuesday-with-Dorie-tuesday again and again I almost missed it. Maybe I should start baking something else in the weeks inbetween, because the 2-weekly-routine is just not made for me. Last time, I forgot to leave my link, this time, I almost forgot to blog.

Here is my Pizza Rustica attempt. I like that the new book includes also savory dishes and it perfectly fits the lenten season (I avoid sweets and alcohol during this time). As I don't eat meat I tried a vegetarian version, adding up more of the cheeses and a lot of spices, because the bacon would have brought a lot of salt and flavour I had to replace. (I wouldn't say I am vegetarian - I eat fish. And I would never say that I strictly deny meat always and forever. I just want it to be "worth" it, when I eat it. So, if it happens I eat some meat twice a year, that's still fine with me, but I want it to be "something special")

The "pizza" (I would rather call it a quiche, or tarte) was pretty pretty easy in the making and turned out fine. I liked the taste but am not completely satisfied with just putting in more cheese. I saw that some others used spinach or other vegetables. Dried tomatoes might be a good alternative, too.

If you want to find out about the original recipe, have a look into "Baking with Julia" by Dorie Greenspan (pp 430 and 431) or turn to the blogs of our hosts this week, Emily of Capitol Region Dining and Raelynn of The Place They Call Home.

Dienstag, 20. März 2012

TWD: Irish Soda Bread

On the one hand, I really like the new TWD-rules: Baking every other week sounds much more do-able than every week. On the other hand, I get a bit out of the routine and forget - is it baking week, or not?

Well, this week it is baking week and I am glad  I did remember, because I love bread baking.

As with so many american recipes I never heard of "soda bread" before, and have no idea if what I made is near anything it should be. But I followed the recipe as written so I hope I made it right.

However, I liked the bread I got out of the oven. I am especially a fan because it is easy, easy, easy in the making, doesn't involve any waiting time for rising, and I like the taste because I like "sour" breads. When I made some google-search what a soda bread might be, I saw that many are made with more ingredients to fold in and I can imagine doing some of these variatons very soon.

Dienstag, 6. März 2012

TWD: Rugelachs

This is Rugelachs, part II. I made the Rugelachs from Dorie Greenspan's "Baking" not too long ago as one of the rewinds end of 2011.

Rugelachs are not all that common where I live. But ever since I held "Baking" in my hands for the first time, I was very muched appealled by their looks. I really like them but had always been  a bit timid. They are not really hard in the making and even if you are no heroine in food presentation, they always look good anyways - but: it involves many steps and a lot of waiting time in between. Nevertehless, it is for sure worth the fuzz and if you have the time you should try them!

I made mine with orange marmelade and cranberries and loved them! If you are interested in the recipe, head over to Margarets page "The Urban Hiker" or Jessicas page "My baking heart" - or have a look at pp. 325-327 Dorie Greenspan's/Julia Childs Baking with Julia.

Dienstag, 21. Februar 2012

TWD: Chocolate Truffle Tartlets

I started the new generation of "Tuesdays with Dorie: Baking with Julia" with a  shortfall. I was on the road and didn't plan ahead, so I missed the first recipe of a long, long list of recipes to come. But I love bread baking, therefore I will for sure catch up with the White Loafs!

But let's talk about this week. The new rules for TWD include we only do two recipes a month, an easier one and one that is more difficult. The Chocolate Truffle Tartlets are for sure on the more difficult, at least more time-consuming, side.

I am not a huge fan of tarte-baking - not that I don't like them, au contraire! But I am the biggest looser in tart shell baking. This dough recipe took me a long, long time do do (I did freeze it a bit longer, shaved it and pressed the curls in the form. Time consuming, but easy!) And in the end it is the first tarte dough I managed not to burn or ruin in another way.  - I like!

The filling sounds more than decadent - and meets the expectations also in taste!

I had to do some changes: Instead of Cantuccini I used milk-nut chocolate and sesame brittle because that was what I had at hand. I made one big tarte instead of 6 tartlets, because I don't posess 6 tartlet forms. I don't think it made a big difference. I increased baking time to about 20 mins. Maybe I should have added  a bit more, because the filling was very, very moisty, almost liquid. But oh so good!! Think Mousse au chocolat made of theree different chocolates with crunchy pieces in tarte. Mhhhh!
I chilled it and brought it to my office the next day. The texture was different, more chewy, but again more than yummi!

It was really worth all the fuzz I had with the tart shell!

You may find the recipe on pages 382-383 in "Baking with Julia" or on the pages of this weeks hostesses:   Steph, Spike, Jaime and Jessica.