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danlepard

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  1. Devlin, they look pretty amazing!! Excellent crumb. I remember, not that many years ago on one of the newsgroup bread threads, someone suggesting that breads like yours owed more to photo-shop than baking. If only they knew! Dan
  2. and if you do make some, enter this competition here: http://www.marmaladefestival.com Was up there last year and it was extraordinary. Will there be any egullet member entries this year? Dan
  3. danlepard

    Making pie crust with boiling water

    I stayed clear of the whole "definitive pork pie" thing, and the one in the newspaper tomorrow is a gammon and pork pie. The gammon (uncooked cured pork) is mixed with the fresh pork overnight in the refrigerator, together with the spices, and this makes the pork go a little pink. It isn't nearly as hard as traditional wisdom says it should be, and I suspect the pork pie establishment put out scare stories to ward off renegade home bakers whipping up pork pies in their kitchens. I let the dough get to room temperature, and make it with lard and a little butter. I would even say it was easier to make a good hot water crust pie than you might imagine. A world-class championship one? That might be difficult. But a very good one should be an easy task for anyone willing to put a bit of time into it. Dan
  4. danlepard

    Bristol Cream Sherry Pound Cake

    Try this one: http://www.guardian.co.uk/weekend/story/0,,1591172,00.html It has a pound cake texture and the sherry/cherry combination work well, but you could just leave the cherries out to give you a simple sherry pound cake. Dan
  5. Really very good, not too expensive, intimate without being fusty. Perfect steak, the hottest and crispest freshly made shoestring potatoes I've ever had; no menu, just "how would you like your steak cooked). Delicate small salad of tender mixed baby leaves to start, desserts (a warm soft moist chocolate cake and a creme brulee) very fine. Superb red wine list. Thanks Filipe, one of the best meals I've had in a while. Dan
  6. What if we work towards an "Egullet guide to recipe writing"? There has been other threads that I remember that have tackled this, maybe it would be good to put together a online guide? We know that authors, editors and publishers snoop around egullet. Why not give them something that might change things? Dan
  7. danlepard

    Cooking from The Cook's Book

    Hi Chris, We were all asked, back in September 2003, for a set personal recipes that would fit the chapter heading and that list was then refined once everyone had sent theirs in, so if there were any gaps then ideas could be suggested. I wouldn't have expected a chef from a European country with a strong culinary identity (like France, Italy, Germany, etc) to have an international outlook - so Pierre Herme's recipes were just what you would expect to get from him beyond flavours and combinations. To have a chef from the US devote his life to deeply understanding Mexican food like Rick Bayless has done and sharing that knowledge; I can't imagine (for example) a French chef living in France devoting his life to understanding German cooking and becoming well known in Germany for that. This forum is a testament to the fascination so many of us have for the food of other cultures, far removed from putting curry powder in a baguette dough and treating foreign culinary traditions like mere condiments. Once the recipes were agreed an overall edit by Jill Norman was done (in April 2004) to get the style right. This is typical on old style book production. However, Dorling Kindersley are one of a type of publisher we call a book "packager" in the UK (like Hachette, Mitchell Beazley, Kyle Cathie, Quadrille etc) who start with a format and commission the content to fit - as opposed to starting with a manuscript and asking the designers to find the best format for the work - and these type of publishers are now very common the book publishing world. From this point on the design dominated the project and everything done to fit with the predetermined format. Text would be run in to the layout, cut to fit by another editor who would then go through the text and suggest the content for the photography. On the shoots for my section (October 3rd ,4th and 5th 2004) there was a prop stylist to keep with the pale colour theme, a home economist to make sure the recipes followed the text, a text editor from the publisher to check that the steps would fit the words, a junior art director to check that the images matched the specification sent to every photographer around the world working on the project. The final text and image matching was finished by March 2005 By September 2005 we had copies, and by the end of the year it was in the bookshops. Dan
  8. danlepard

    Cooking from The Cook's Book

    It's would be hard to give a definitive answer without comparing each chef's published recipes with those in the book. Certainly all the chefs involved signed contracts with the publishers saying that the work is original, but when your talking about generic recipes and methods it gets a bit tricky as you could end up adding a trick or twist for the sake of the copyright agreement. Jill Norman is a very knowledgeable and somewhat tough old-school editor, and I don't imagine she'd let old published recipes slip through no matter how big the ego of the chef was. I noticed a few very polite cc'd emails from chefs to Jill, from chefs not known for politeness, so I'd assume they worked a bit harder on this book. The original brief each chef was given was to... Now I've got some distance from the project I've become a big fan of it (and others have too; it's sold about a quarter of a million copies worldwide in half a dozen languages) and I've learned so much from the other chefs work in it. If you bought it and found there was too much overlap with books you already have then I'm sure you'd think of someone to give it to as a starting-out present. Dan
  9. Lorinda, I was trying to explain that the recipe authors don't have their own way when it comes to recipes. Editors can and do insist on changes to suit different markets and the author has to submit. Back in middle of 2004 this was one battle I was involved in. I received an email from an editor working on a US edition explaining: and my reply Can't say I've ever met any authors who patronise their readers. The number I've met care passionately about their recipes and want the reader to get the best result every time. Send emails to publishing house and magazine editors, let them know you're out there. Dan
  10. kit, My guess is that it was printed that way because it was originally written that way. When recipes are subjected to a house format they do need to be tested again, and I'd imagine that rather than do that the recipe was left in its original state. Reformatting recipes is very time consuming, and on the modern scaled-down publication there just isn't the time (or the money to pay for it) any more. So if a recipe comes in written in cups, spoons, bottle tops and ounces then it stays that way. There is an enduring assumption amongst editors that readers want instructions that sounds homely and comforting. 16 tablespoons sounds easy and comfortable whereas 225g sounds threatening if you've never baked before. That's the assumption behind that approach. But I get emails from readers asking both "why do you weigh X" and why don't you weigh X", so I prefer the 50g rule: anything under write as spoons, anything over write as weight. Dan
  11. You can do either. The idea is to gently disturb the aeration so the newly formed bubbles and slightly stretched and elongated. Either a very gentle knead without trying to knock the gas out too much (nothing vigourous), or the slightly more elaborate patting the dough out on a lightly oiled or floured surface and folding it in on itself as if your making puff pastry. Yes. It should read "6.30 pm Bake at 220C for 40 minutes covered with foil for the last 10 minutes (see note) and the missing note should say Cover the loaves with a small sheet of aluminium foil if they start to brown too much, but don't just remove them from the oven early as the baking is as much about building a crust through prolonged heat as it is about achieving a certain crumb temperature. I judge the baking time of the loaf by the development of the crust. Hmmm. Perhaps it's a bit steep but I went through a heavy dark crust phase back then. If you look at the loaves that the great Parisian baker Poujaran is sitting next to in the "Rose Bakery" book out last year, they look quite perfect to me, charred blossomed loaves. But 45 minutes sounds a little short for 800g loaf to build up a thick crust. Try reducing the temperature to 170C and bake for 50 min to an hour. Dan
  12. I recommend Judges Bakery in Hastings (not too far). Ask head baker Emmanuel whether he will make a special order for you. The website is here: http://www.judgesbakery.com Dan
  13. danlepard

    Lemon juice, pectin

    Hi Rhubarb, Lemon juice contains (virtually) no pectin, but as an acid is used in jam and preserve recipes in order to release pectin from the pith or flesh of the fruit. So concentrated lemon juice is fine for providing this acid, but no good for providing pectin. Under-ripe apples, picked from the tree, are great. But I've used crisp new season apples, like granny smiths, just brought from the shop and they've worked really well. You can see the result here: http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?act=ST...dpost&p=1258293 Redcurrants and whitecurrants are good for pectin too. Dan
  14. The other way you could do it with your existing recipe is to mix all of the water, oil, and an equal weight of flour with a fraction of the yeast and leave this to bubble for 4 - 6 hours. Then later, with the children, they would mix the remaining flour and salt into it, knead it, and so on. This should soften the final dough to give a much more pleasant taste to the bread. Adding a hard fat like butter will give a softer texture than oil (and crisco or similar will make it even softer). fyi, here is a recipe you might want to try from my my guardian column back in Feb this year: Pigs in duvets The hefty dose of yeast in this quick brioche-like dough keeps it working fast despite all the butter. You could replace the butter with olive oil, the milk with water and the yolks with 50g mashed potato (and extra water to make a soft dough*), and halve the yeast. Or fill these with strips of roasted vegetables, leaving the little pigs to play undisturbed. 2 sachets easy-blend yeast 100ml warm milk (about 35C) 1/2 tsp sugar 550g strong white flour 150g melted butter 6 egg yolks 1 1/2 tsp fine sea salt 8 warm cooked sausages (from a 450g pack) English or Dijon mustard a beaten egg Stir the yeast, warm milk and 50g flour together and leave for 30 minutes to bubble. Beat in the butter and yolks till smooth, tip the remaining flour and salt into a big warm bowl and work the buttery mixture into a soft dough. Leave for 30 minutes, kneading the dough for 10 seconds every 10 minutes. Then cover and chill the dough for 30 minutes to make it smoother to roll. Flour the worksurface and roll the dough to about 40cm x 20cm, then cut into 10cm squares. Spread a little mustard on each square then roll a sausage in each, lengthways not diagonally, and seal it tight. Rest seam-side down on a paper lined tray, cover with a cloth, for 45 minutes or until doubled in height. Heat the oven to 200C (fan assisted), brush with beaten egg and bake for 15 - 20 minutes until puffed and golden.
  15. Bob's idea is a good one. It's very difficult to get tenderness in a dough that only has a hour from mix to bake, whereas a buttermilk biscuit or scone dough will be very quick and taste great too. Dan
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