Tag Archives: Baked

Fresh Fruit Tartlets

Apricot Raspberry Tart

Much has happened since I last posted and ironically, most of it has had nothing to do with food.

Shocking, isn’t it?

No, I haven’t stopped cooking and yes, our waistlines confirm we’ve continued to eat, but I’ve chosen not to:  1) take time to jot down notes about a recipe when I’m fiddling around with it;  2) shoot process steps and results, and  3) upload and edit photos.   Do you have any idea how completely fabulous it is to eat dinner without having to do any of that?

But I digress.  I haven’t lost interest — I’ve wanted to squeeze as much out of this last summer as possible having my youngest son at home before he ventures off to college, so have saved some time for family instead.  Even the big guys have been around more than they normally are.  It’s been great having a house full of menfolk again, if only for a few evenings, and sometimes, when no one’s looking, I’m a bit of a mess.  You know, having trouble with the stiff upper lip and all.

I’m not quite back in the thinking-about-food-all-day-every-day mode, but I’ll get there — I’m busy processing how different my life will be from this point forward.  I’m a bit drifty, a tad obsessed with organization, and taking yet another look at my diet and the amount of exercise I subject my body to.  For those of you who know me, I understand  you’re thinking, so what’s new?

Right.  Shall we talk about food?  And because I’m avoiding carbs, and anything baked in particular, let’s discuss pie.

Perfect little lingering wisp of summer fruit pies.

Yes.

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Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread Yesterday in between segments on the television about who would be slotted into which bracket of this year’s NCAA tournament and my husband’s less than thrilled reaction at the spread being focused on mega conference teams, I decided to make soda bread.  I’d spotted the recipe a few weeks ago and turned down the page in the magazine hoping not to forget.  No sooner had I put the liberally flour-sprinkled loaves into the oven  that he commented like he always does.  “Mmm…smells good.  What is it?”

“Soda bread,” I answered, smiling because it hadn’t been in the oven long enough to smell like anything other than the flour which had begun to brown on the baking sheet.

“Oh, yah.  It is about that time of the year, isn’t it?” he finished, eyes never leaving the television, his Sony perched in his lap, fingers busy filling in the bracket slots for the tournament.  Ahh…March Madness.  Yes, even I fill out one of those brackets hoping from one year to the next that pure luck will outsmart basketball brilliance and that I will walk away with the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

Or something like that.

I didn’t grow up eating soda bread but probably should have since it doesn’t require much beyond flour, milk, and baking soda and would have fit right into our meals.  Definitely simple fare.  Although I can remember my mother’s corned beef and cabbage, I’m not all together sure we had it for St. Patrick’s Day dinner — but must have because from my own experience it’s not often that I see it at the grocery store at any other point in the year.  No, I started the St. Patrick’s Day dinner when we lived at our old house, not too far from my husband’s parents who would come to enjoy it with us.  Even though our idea of a corned beef dinner isn’t Irish at all, that’s what we’d have — with soda bread.

Many of the soda bread recipes I’ve tried are anything but light and fluffy.  The dough can be fairly sticky and wet and sometimes it never quite got done in the middle as it baked.  The bite of baking soda could be noticed in each bite.  Not very appetizing.

But I think I’ve found the perfect recipe.

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Chocolate Valentino Cake with Strawberry Banana Ice Cream

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As the morning unfolds on this the day of the February Daring Baker’s reveal, I’m proud to say I finished my challenge a few weeks ago, which could imply that this post was written and ready to auto publish at midnight.  But no.  I guess that with respect to me, it is possible to be too organized.  Best laid plans, right?

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Gourmet’s Rye Walnut Rolls

Walnutbuns
I don't know that I've had walnuts in anything that I didn't like.  I just like walnuts.  I like the bite on the side of my tongue that doesn't come when I chew into a pecan which is much more sweet.

Walnuts in cookies, salad, and pasta get my full, undivided attention, so it seems reasonable that I'd like them in bread, too.  And what a surprise that the bread isn't sweet, or filled with raisins and flavored with cinnamon.  But I wouldn't complain if that's what was put in front of me.  How could I?

No, it's a savory bread, and one filled with onions, too.  As I worked my way through this recipe, I wondered about how thyme, or a bit of cheese might taste.

And bacon.  Life is too short to not include a bit of pork fat when one can.

But I resisted, so it looks like I just may have to revisit this recipe, the third of four I've chosen to bake this month and featured in Gourmet.  I've enjoyed making bread once a week so far this month and am considering keeping up with it since the possibilities are endless and I have so much to learn.

I love possibilities.  They're just hovering out there, waiting for someone to take notice.

Unfortunately, it takes some motivation, doesn't it?  And my motivation failed me after I purchased the rye flour I was happy to have in my pantry for these lovely rolls.  It was to have been used in a starter that I promised to make and never did.

I'll get around to that one of these days, but in the meantime, it was nice to have the rye flour just waiting.

This recipe for Rye Walnut Rolls is the third of four for
the month of February as part of "Let Us Eat Bread," featuring recipes
from Gourmet's "Roll With It."  Our bread baking group includes:  Judy of No Fear Entertaining, Courtney of Coco Cooks, Andrea of Andrea's Recipes, Claire of The Barefoot Kitchen, and our fearless leader, Sandy of At the Baker's Bench. 

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Ginger Sandwich Cookies with Lemon Cream Filling

Dear Nick Malgieri,

I saw your Ginger Sandwich Cookies filled with lemon cream in a recent issue of Food & Wine magazine and decided I’d give them a try.  Although gingersnaps have never been and will never be a cookie I find myself craving, the lemon filling did catch my attention and I thought that with the ginger, the flavor could be exceptional.

Although that did not disappoint, the molasses, on the other hand, gave me pause because the last time I made cookies that had molasses in them, the results were less than appealing until I bent them into submission after much trial and error.

Now I know I’m far from perfect on most days, but I have had a modest amount of experience cooking and baking with great success — thankfully more times than not.  I also use excellent equipment and so cannot blame poor result on either of those factors.

What I’m left with is a question, and I’m asking it of you since this is your recipe and the photograph chosen to illustrate the intended results looks far different than mine — especially my first batch.Ginglemoncook

  • When baking cookies with molasses, is there something I just don’t understand?  What causes them to spread so?  I know sugar in general causes that, and when using molasses, a smaller quantity is needed, as in this recipe which calls for only 1/4 cup.  Could it be the brand of molasses?  I use Grandma’s which is just about the only kind I’ve ever used, and the jar I used for this batch was opened recently.
  • Although keeping a very close eye on the Ginger Sandwich cookies during the required bake time, I realized I needed to remove them from the oven only half way through the expected 20-minute baking time, and even then, the cookies were far too done.  Actually, burnt.
  • I prefer to use convection settings for everything except for recipes with a high quantity of egg, so am used to reducing the heat and cooking time to compensate for that choice. However, because of the previous results, I chose not to use convection heat for this recipe.  On the second batch, again, with only 7 minutes of the baking time elapsed, I had to remove the cookies.

Mr. Malgieri, I know that often, baking is an adventure, and I accept that most of the time.  Because I’m used to reading recipes, I can usually spot one that I think could be problematic, and with this recipe, the cooking time did get my attention.  Cookies rarely bake that long.  Nevertheless, I proceeded like the trusting home cook I am.

I will say your ginger cookies are lovely tasting with a nice bite — chewy, with a pleasant tartness from the lemon cream which blends well with the overall sweetness.  Very, very nice.  I just wish I’d done them justice.  So I’m curious and would enjoy trying these again, but detest wasting food so need some direction.

Did Food & Wine misprint the recipe?  Or am I just someone who should step away from the molasses?

With the utmost respect,
Kelly

p.s.  They stack very well, though!

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