Jump to content


participating member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by skyflyer3

  1. I think I've had these as "Outrageous Cookie Bars". They were a recipe on one of the Nestle Tollhouse Chips bags, or something. http://www.ehow.com/how_12532_make-outrageous-cookie.html
  2. I did the Banana Bundt Cake this weekend, to rave reviews. I used 5 really overripe slimy bananas, as I usually do, and I had let it "age" overnight, per suggestion, which was so hard as the cake smelled and looked incredible. Even the batter was tasty. When I cut into it, I found the texture to be good but the flavor and sweetening was subtle, and I wanted a more pronounced banana flavor. I drizzled it with the maple-flavored icing from one of the other bundt cakes, and it was perfect! Next time, I may add another banana, and sprinkle turbinado sugar on the bottom of the cake for a little texture and sweetness. Will be trying biscuits, and cookies next.
  3. I second swapping out Wild Ginger and Chez Shea for Green Leaf and Lark.
  4. I just purchased a baking book utilizing palm fruit shortening, which supposedly has less trans fat than other vegetable shortening, and is different than palm oil. Anyone played with this type of oil/shortening? Like Rodney, I like oil-based cakes (like chiffon) because you can store them in the fridge without drying the crumb out too much. I use Enova oil, which is flavorless and somehow less fatty than other vegetable oils.
  5. I've heard this a lot and I wish I'd known about it years ago. My mom had a KA mixer from the early '70s in an avocado color that serviced us well when I was growing up. I used it in college, but gave it back to her (as I thought the color atrocious at the time) and bought a new one in 1999. Mom bought a new black one as well and donated the avocado one. I'm now guessing that the old one was manufactured by Hobart and probably a better machine than the new ones. Sigh. My Ultra Power 300W has done pretty well, but it does "walk" across the counter when kneading pizza dough. I recently bought one of the professional 600W machines but haven't used it yet. ← Hey - My mom also has an avocado one from the early 1970s, and I remember when we would bake together I thought it was the ugliest thing on earth. Then when I bought my new one 20 years later, and it broke promptly after making croissant dough, I borrowed my mother's and fell in love. When she took it back, I got my KA fixed and the guy there told me the new ones break all the time. If you find an antique - hold on to it! Or call me.
  6. He-he, I found another great chocolate cake. In Seattle, I had a fantastic chocolate cupcake from Macrina Bakery, frosted with maple buttercream. This cake, to me, was perfect - moist, dark, chocolatey and satisfyingly dense. Macrina also has a cookbook, and I was pleased to see the recipe for the cake printed there! So this week, I borrowed the book from the library and tried it out. I learned the recipe is very forgiving, as I measured my sugar out wrong, then added it right after I popped it into the oven, and it still came out great. Although I did the maple-flavored Neoclassic Buttercream and it wasn't as light as I'd hoped for. Anyway, if you've got a great maple buttercream recipe to share, please let me know as it goes great with chocolate cake. edited to say that the Neoclassic recipe was from RLB's Cake Bible. And, my usual standby chocolate cake was the Cook's Illustrated Sour Cream one I reveiwed earlier, as it's incredibly easy to make, tastes great, bakes up perfect and the crumb is exactly what I'm looking for. I've tried the Double Chocolate Cake too many times and it always ends up too crumbly for me. If anyone locally (or Ling, ehem) who has consistently baked up this cake well and loves it, would be willing to share a piece with me or critique my methods so I know if it's something I'm doing to make the end product not end up well, I'd love it. I'm just trying to make the world a better place with better chocolate cake.
  7. I agree wholeheartedly - I had a pistachio macaron there this Sunday, and it was wonderful! I've lived here all my life, and never considered it a contender, but I'll be frequenting Le Panier much more often.
  8. I think there was a fair review for Sand Point Grill in the Seattle Times or PI.
  9. I've been to both Cremant and Lark recently, and I'd have to agree with Ling that the trend at Cremant was heartier, rich food. It was really my fault - we had french onion soup, steak frites, chicken liver parfait, creme brulee and chocolate mousse, and felt like I was exuding fat at the end of the meal. The portions were huge - for me, at least. Now, it was all good, but at once - not to be done again! At Lark, though, I had a meal where we had roasted duck, foie gras, pork rillettes, the cheese sampler, and those full-fat Pommes de Robuchon, and I didn't feel nearly as fattened as my meal at Cremant. Everything seemed to be more balanced. Love, love love Lark, and plan on returning there many times.
  10. I picked up the Macrina baking book at the library last week, and have really enjoyed reading the recipes. Has anyone baked anything from this book, and would grace us with tips and outcomes? Thank you! p.s. Looks like there's a new paperback version to be released next month, with new recipes. Yup, I pre-ordered it. No, I'm not affiliated with the bakery in any way - just love to bake.
  11. Ok, I looked at this and said, Wow, 8 is a lot! Then I counted, and I have 9 different varieties at home, including: Pillsbury AP Bleached, Stone Buhr Bread Flour, Great Harvest Whole Wheat, KA Bread Flour, KA Whole Wheat, KA AP, KA High Gluten, KA Cake Flour, Robin Hood Pastry Flour, and a small bag of White Lily. I think I just ran out of Softasilk, so I might go out and get more of that too. Each of the different flours I get for different applications - the pastry flour I use for cakes or biscuits (same thing for the White Lily or Softasilk when cake flour is required), I use the Stone Buhr Bread Flour as it's local and it has a higher protein content then the KA, the High Gluten I use for bagels, and the others I use in various amounts in the bread I bake each week for my family. I would love to use KA all the time, though, since I also get consistent results from using it, and wish I could just get it in bulk since I buy so much. Has anyone ever wanted to start a baking cooperative, so they could get high quality chocolate and flour in bulk quantities to help keep prices low?
  12. I just read in the Seattle Times today that Barbacoa is closing. I'm bummed - this place had the best Sidecars. Really good appetizers, too.
  13. Ok, I'll take the bait. What's THE best chocolate cake recipe you've found so far?
  14. I like that Pistachio pinwheel they have, and the pain de campagne is my favorite bread.
  15. I love Fiori's chocolate coins - bought some at Espresso Vivace. I'm about to drop a payload to try out their chocolate bars, and I'm supposed to be getting their truffles for Mother's Day. By the way, where does everyone get their bulk chocolate here in Seattle? I've been picking up Felchin and El Rey at Thriftway, but man is it ever expensive. Ok, I'm lying - for the majority of my baking I use Trader Joe's Pound Plus 70%, because it's so cheap and actually decent to use. Is anyone getting around $4/lb for Guittard, Felchin or Cacao Barry anywhere around here?
  16. I made the NY Times Creamy Mac and Cheese today, with the cottage cheese, and it was tasty. Lighter than my standby (Martha Stewart's) but not as good as Martha's. Still very creamy, though, and so fast and easy to make - I love that you don't have to boil the noodles! Next time I do this, I'll probably use 3/4 lb total for the dish - about 1/8 on top and the rest in the mix.
  17. I use the 70% Pound Plus, Bitterweet and Milk chocolate bars from TJ's frequently for baking, and they are a pleasure to work with. I also bought a dark chocolate with almonds Pound Plus bar by mistake, and they are great to eat with, as well.
  18. Kiliki - The pastries are more comfort-foodie. Lemme see, each time I've gone there have been cookies, scones, and at least one specialty tart (banana cream was the last one I had, my favorite was a chocolate/strawberry/whipped cream concoction). I've also seen cupcakes, bagels, croissants, little cakes, and muffins. They also have cooking classes with a French chef coming up.
  19. Ling - Do try to hit Sweet and Savory in Mount Baker: http://seattlebonvivant.typepad.com/seattl.../post.html#more I'm in love with this place, it's so good. The owner has done pastry for 20 years, studied in Paris. I would hit Columbia City Bakery, too, but I like Sweet and Savory better, now. Are you going to stop in Portland, too? If so, Ken's Bakery (on 21st, I think, Downtown) is a must-visit. They have the best croissants outside of Paris. And their bread! I'm so glad they're down there, or I'd be so fat.
  20. skyflyer3

    Rendering Lard

    Andie - I'd like to try making lard in my crockpot, and am wondering what method you or others use to do so. Do you cook it over low heat all day? Add a couple of tablespoons of water? About how long does it take to melt completely? Thank you for helping out this lard making newbie. ← This is for a 5 or 6 quart crockpot. I add about 1/2 cup of water and fill the crockpot about 2/3 full of pork fat/leaf lard cut in 1/2 to 1 inch squares or chunks. I start it on high until it is hot then reduce it to low and cover it and usually let it cook overnight - (I set the crockpot on top of my washing machine so it is out of the way and my laundry room can be closed off so the aroma does not work its way throughout the house. There may also be some bubbling and spatters of fat which are easier to wash off the top of the machine than to clean off the butcher-block counters in the kitchen.) The following morning I turn the crockpot off and unplug it, pour off the rendered fat, then pulg it back in, turn it to high and continue cooking the fat chunks, stirring occasionally, until the fat bits have browned nicely. More fat will render out and I add that to the fat I removed earlier. The lard will be a creamy to beige color, however, if you beat it in a chilled bowl (I found one of the long cold packs that can be chilled in the freezer and are supposed to be placed on a person's back, at Walgreens drug) around which you place an ice bag or something that will keep the bowl chilled, and beat it as it cools, it will look white and fluffy. ← Andie - Thanks so muc for your assistance! I'm excited about this experiement, and will be sure to report my results.
  21. skyflyer3

    Rendering Lard

    Andie - I'd like to try making lard in my crockpot, and am wondering what method you or others use to do so. Do you cook it over low heat all day? Add a couple of tablespoons of water? About how long does it take to melt completely? Thank you for helping out this lard making newbie.
  22. Can lard be used to straight sub for shortening in any baked good? I have a banana bread recipe that calls for shortening, and was wondering if lard might affect the crumb in some way. Thanks!
  23. I, too, purchased a Kitchenaid Blender before I knew that it sucked - but I'm wondering if it's possible to get the blades sharpened on the bottom so that they actually crush ice and puree frozen fruit. Has anyone done this before with good results? Or should I toss it, and spring for a Vita-mix? (I just want to make Jamba style smoothies at home, every day).
  24. Hi Patrick - That glaze looks gorgeous - and I had no idea you could do one so shiny that was previously frozen. Did you let it come to room-temp, defrost in fridge, heat, or a combo? Thanks, Lani
  25. I read the extremely enthusiastic review on Seattle Bon Vivant, but haven't been there myself yet. ← I went last Saturday AND Sunday. Yes, it was that good. Saturday I had the carrot soup, with these thin ham and cheese sandwiches, a whipped cream strawberry tart (which a chocolate cream base), an orange date scone and the housemade french hot chocolate. All of the above was exceptionally good - although the housemade hot chocolate is in a very tiny espresso cup. It was still really good, with a little pepper in it for kick. And the scone! Wonderful. This woman is exceptional at pastries. On Sunday, I had a croissant and a coconut cream tart. The croissant was very good - about on par with Columbia City Bakery on their good days. The coconut cream tart wasn't like the Triple Coconut Cream at Etta's - it was very subtle, could have had more coconut or something flavoring for punch. But I think I'm going to make my weekend visits a habit, especially since it only took me 2 minutes to get there. Now I'm going to have to try Mioposto. That place was packaed when I drove by on Sunday with my Sweet and Savory goodies. Looks like it'll be a hit - for now.
  • Create New...