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Everything posted by SweetSide

  1. Beautiful and well done! I would love to try that plate of goodies and experience the tastes of another world!
  2. Cream cheese is one of those things that are heaven sent (guess that's why they use the angels in those ads!). Those salmon cornets above have me drooling on my keyboard. Bagels with gobs of cream cheese -- YUM! Cheesecake -- be still my heart. The one exception for me is chocolate cheesecake -- I just don't care for it much. I don't like the tang of the cheese with the chocolate.
  3. Thanks for all your suggestions! It's tough to choose, but in the France forum, the idea of the Galette de Rois (Kings cake) was also mentioned and struck a chord with me. I love the idea of the little feve in the cake for the kids to find. And, it is definately a very seasonal cake. Funny how we don't celebrate the Epiphany here in the US, but I did make one of these in pastry school and loved it. Thanks for the other ideas -- if my daughter nixes this one (better not!) at least I have others to choose from.
  4. Beautiful! Thanks for the Galette de Rois idea. Funny how we don't celebrate the Epiphany here in the US, but I did make one of these in pastry school. Forgot about it until now -- I loved that, and the kids will love finding the feve. I'm excited now!
  5. WHAT are the grains? I've made mousse a time or two where my cream was very cold and caused the chocolate to set too fast making little "chips" in the mousse. What filipe was referring to when the chocolate+milk+gelatin sets up more than desired.... But, I never use gelatin in chocolate mousse, so I KNOW mine was the chocolate and not the gelatin.
  6. (also posted in the France forum) My daughter is having a party in her French class at school and I need to prepare a dessert for the class that would traditionally be served in France during the Christmas season. However, the Buche de Noel has already been "taken" by another student, so that one is out. As for other things, while I can name and prepare a long list of French pastries, I haven't a clue as to what would be most popular during the Christmas season. Thanks for your suggestions!
  7. My daughter is having a party in her French class at school and I need to prepare a dessert for the class that would traditionally be served in France during the Christmas season. However, the Buche de Noel has already been "taken" by another student, so that one is out. As for other things, while I can name and prepare a long list of French pastries, I haven't a clue as to what would be most popular during the Christmas season. Thanks for your suggestions!
  8. SweetSide


    I have almond flour and I have powdered sugar, so along your lines, I was planning on making the TPT by taking 25g almond flour and whisking it with 25g powdered sugar. I pay the same price per pound for almond flour and slivered almonds and sliced almonds... so there is no reason for me to do more work than I have to....
  9. I third the e guittard and will also say that I don't particularly care for the Scharffenberger either. I also prefer Cacao Barry over Callebaut -- same parent company, and I get them for the same price. I think the Cacao Barry has a better texture and flavor profile.
  10. SweetSide


    Thanks everyone!
  11. SweetSide


    I was just reading a new recipe and it called for 50 grams Almond TPT. I'm looking for some clarification on this -- wasn't taught it in school. I believe I've read that TPT is "tant pour tant" or equal measures of something. And is it equal measures of almond flour and powdered sugar? It would appear that in the recipe -- for a tart dough, that this would be the case. Thanks!
  12. Nice explanation -- I knew a little made it seize, a lot was ok, but this explanation made it suddenly become clear (at least for me) the process going on in there!
  13. I haven't even seen it, but I so want to eat this dessert! There is a beautiful tea from Harney and Sons -- if you have time to order with express delivery -- that would be wonderful: White Christmas Tea Flavored with almonds, vanilla, and cardomom. Mmmm....
  14. I think K8 summed it up pretty well with that line! It is truly a festive dessert, and those curliques so remind me of the streamers in Times Square being thrown from the windows above. That dessert is cool, light, and very refreshing looking -- just what is needed after a long holiday season of rich food. Beautiful Michael!
  15. Welcome to the Corporate world. I come from a position that had nothing to do with cooking, food, or hospitality. Just change the title, and you have the same system.
  16. I am sooo looking forward to this one! I agree with K8 and Alana -- great pairing of challenge and challengee.
  17. Bravo! Beautiful job! Just what I was thinking when I came up with the challenge -- fruitcake on a plate where you don't even think "fruitcake". Just a beatiful dessert -- any preconceived notion that a fruitcake non-fan would have doesn't have a chance to pop to mind. I, too, am interested in that sugar tower... Funny how you mention you didn't think you did enough -- I felt the same way, especially when I look at some of the platings and complexity out there. But, the greatest part of the challenge is that there is the opportunity for each person to step out of their own box.
  18. First off, let me say that I wholeheartedly agree with Chiantiglace's comments. But, until every cookbook is rewritten, we'll have to live with volumetric measuments. I try to read a given cookbook and see what the author says about measuring flour. Some dip and sweep, some lightly spoon. Some "fluff" the flour first. Some people "fluff" the flour into the cup. But, the first and second times I make a recipe, I write down how much my volume measure weighs and if I like the outcome of the recipe. If the book doesn't specify how an author measures, I do it my way, and MY cup of AP flour is 4.5 oz. And we continue to wonder why some people's recipes flop and others come out perfect every time -- the ART of baking....
  19. Thin ganache is fluid at room temp. Think chocolate milk....
  20. It's hard to believe, but week 7 has passed and it's time to find out the new challenge! I've had enough of corn to last me until next summer.... I feel like keeping this on a holiday theme, and going back to the style of the Round 1 challenge -- updating a classic. That's not to say that all the other challenges haven't been interesting with fantastic results. This week, I challenge alanamoana to take FRUITCAKE out of the land of misfits! Take it apart, turn it around, deconstruct it, reconstruct it, but remove the stigma and show us the beauty that lies within. (Am I in the minority? -- I actually like fruitcake despite its bad reputation.) So, I am pleased to present our next contestant -- alanamoana, a pastry chef and instructor in northern California. Prior Challenges: Round 1 (Kerry Beal challenges Ling in Vancouver BC)- Take pineapple upside down cake and bring it into this century Round 2 (Ling Challenges Gfron1 in Silver City NM) - Make a dessert containing an animal ingredient or product other than lard or bacon Round 3 (Gronf1 challenges Mette in Copenhagen Denmark)- Create a deconstructed beer dessert Round 4 (Mette Challenges Shalmanese in Seattle WA) - Create a dessert tapas plate consisting of 7 items in 7 days, using local and seasonal flavours Round 5 (Shalmanese challenges Chiantiglace in West Palm Beach FL) - create a dessert involving smoke that evokes Autumn Round 6 (Chiantiglace challenges K8Memphis in Memphis, TN) - create a dessert using Southern Sweet Tea Round 7 (K8Memphis challenges SweetSide in rural CT) - create a desset using 5 kernels of corn representing the 5 blessing of the Pilgrims
  21. Well, I don't think this has the POW impact of K8's Sweet Tea caviar, but I've completed my 5 Kernels of CORN. In the challenge, K8 challenged me to make a dessert using 5 kernels of corn, a challenge she came up with based on a Thanksgiving story. I’ve come up with a plating of 5 desserts, each using a different form of corn, and each to represent the 5 blessings in the story. “... the Pilgrims placed five kernels of corn beside each plate to remind them of their blessings.” Autumn beauty – Fall leaves made from modelling chocolate. Modelling chocolate is made using chocolate (in this case white) and CORN SYRUP. Their love for each other – A crepe made from CORN FLOUR, filled with vanilla pastry cream (CORN STARCH) and pears sauteed in brown sugar, butter, and ginger. The folding of the crepe represents the enveloping of the community – a necessity for them to survive those early years. Their family's love – A tart made with a CORN MEAL crust which includes orange peel to complement the flavor of the cranberry walnut filling made using CORN SYRUP. Cranberry filling is the color of blood representing family. Their friends, especially their Indian brothers – Indian pudding made from CORN MEAL, molasses and ginger, topped with candied WHOLE CORN. Obvious representation – Indian pudding. Their freedom – Corn ice cream made with PUREED CORN and cream infused with CORN COBS. Topped with Jack Daniels (CORN WHISKEY) clear caramel sauce. Bad symbolism here. I had wanted to do a corn soup for the sailing across the ocean, but that didn’t work out because of timing. Then, I wanted the ice cream to be white enough for the sails of their ships, but because I had to use yellow corn, the ice cream is pale yellow. Oh, well. In all, this was a lot of fun. The tart is going on my Christmas menu, and the crepes and Indian pudding were good, but not things that fall into my favorites. Corn ice cream – well, I’ll try it again with in season sweet white corn. But, for now, it tastes like frozen corn soup. Maybe I’ve found my symbolism of soup here.... And please pardon my photography -- it is not my forte... The next Iron Baker Challenge will be posted shortly..... Happy Thanksgiving!
  22. I'm not a chocolatier, so I'm sure some of the pros out there can give you more advice... The best chocolate to use would be a fluid couverture -- the one that best suits your taste buds. You'll still need to thin it some for the fountain. I used a chocolate fountain at work, and in order to keep our chocolate "pure", we added cocoa butter to the tempered chocolate to increase the fluidity. We were dipping items and wanted the chocolate to form a hard shell. You can add some vegetable oil to the chocolate for the fluidity. The disadvantage to that is that you won't get a hard shell. The advantage is that you won't need to temper the chocolate. With water you need to be careful -- you'd need to add enough so that your chocolate doesn't seize, but not so much that you end up with soup. What are you going for with the fountain -- chocolate that hardens once the item is dipped or just a chocolate sauce?
  23. I envy those of you who live in foodie places or in areas where the grocery stores actually have a selection. I had to drive 45 minutes, one way, to get my corn flour today. Already had the ice cream base made, so am SOL on the frozen white corn. All my grocery had was yellow. Now I'm thinking of things to offset the overly corny flavor of the ice cream....
  24. Notes on Corn Ice Cream... The intro to the recipe I used said to use sweet corn, fresh, and at the peak of season. Umm, welll, since it is November, I am obviously out of luck on that one. At the peak of season, growing up in NJ, Silver Queen corn was an addiction. In fact I hadn't had it for years until a few summers ago. Then, eating it, I was euphoric. No other corn I've had compares. Beautiful, sweet, and white. So, ice cream made with THAT corn would be far superior to the one I just made with IQF yellow corn. Is it bad? No. It just tastes like corn. Will I make it again in season -- yes, to see how much of a difference it will make, even though it won't be Jersey Silver Queen.
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