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Anna N

Your Daily Sweets: What are you making and baking? (2014)

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I use candied ginger a lot in fruit cakes (when it's not called for in the recipe) - it should work just fine in this one, I suspect.  Chop it into small pieces first.

 

Fresh zest would give a different taste/feel to candied and you'd want to use far less, but I think it's worth doing.  Let us know how it goes.


Leslie Craven, aka "lesliec"
Host, eG Forumslcraven@egstaff.org

After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relatives ~ Oscar Wilde

My eG Foodblog

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andiesenji,

 That looks fabulous and I have everything in house at the moment but the mixed peel. How much different would it taste if it were omitted, or could you recommend a substitute to balance the flavors??  I do have some fresh limes and lemons, but no candied rinds. ( Do have candied ginger)    Could any of these be subbed??

You can use any dried fruit - chopped to the size of (smallish) raisins.  Candied ginger works fine - I've made it with ginger and dried apricots - those flavors "marry" well - just use the same volume (not by weight) of dried fruits and make sure they are distributed evenly throughout the flour mixture before adding to the (very stiff) batter.  You don't want big chunks of fruit that will not allow nice even slices. 

I've used the same basic recipe to make a "tropical" cake with finely chopped pineapple and mango. 

 

I added the following statement when I posted the recipe on my Facebook page:

This is a very "forgiving" cake. You can add flavors to it and it is not sensitive at all. On one occasion I had the power go off right in the middle of baking - I left it in the oven and restarted the oven and finished baking it when the power came back on two hours later. The cake was fine. Try and do that with most cakes - box cakes - and one would have a mess.

 

On one occasion, when I was pressed for time, I put the cake in the microwave (using the paper baking mold) for 8 minutes and then transferred it to the regular oven (preheated to 325°F) and finished baking it for about 35 minutes. 

I tested it with a probe thermometer to make sure the center was 205°F.   

It turned out quite nice. 

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"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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I suspect too that you can make a good substitute from your fresh lemons & limes, by chopping the pith-trimmed peel and candying it over a low heat for 5 minutes, as for lemon slices under Demerara Lemon Cake  here.

 

And, hey, then you can make lemonade too.

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QUIET!  People are trying to pontificate.

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Anna – I think those cheese muffins look and sound great.  How about adding some chives to them?

 

Matthew – I think that your strawberry creation looks and sounds extremely special!

 

Andie – your Dundee cake is gorgeous.  I know that Ted, my English stepdad would have approved!

 

Mr. Kim had a birthday in his office this week and she requested dulce de leche brownies:

med_gallery_3331_119_111630.jpg

Very good, but VERY sweet.

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Made banana cookies from Martha Stewart's website http://www.marthastewart.com/338169/banana-walnut-chocolate-chunk-cookies

My son loved them. I didn't use any nuts and added some caramelized white chocolate. For my taste, I'd lower sugar a bit, pulse the oatmeal, add walnuts and dark chocolate chunks. And bake just 6 at the time freezing the rest.

image.jpg

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Have a choice as to where to post this dessert:  Capirotada, the traditional Mexican bread pudding, the Lenten variety without milk or eggs.  Love it.  (The big spoon is hiding the hole where we 'tested' the pudding.) 

 

Capirotada #1.jpg

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Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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Made banana cookies from Martha Stewart's website http://www.marthastewart.com/338169/banana-walnut-chocolate-chunk-cookies

My son loved them. I didn't use any nuts and added some caramelized white chocolate. For my taste, I'd lower sugar a bit, pulse the oatmeal, add walnuts and dark chocolate chunks. And bake just 6 at the time freezing the rest.

 

I was just looking at that recipe the other day too. I'm definitely going to have to give it a try.


I'm gonna go bake something…

wanna come with?

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I was just looking at that recipe the other day too. I'm definitely going to have to give it a try.

Hi Emmalish, the recipe is very good, as everybody already mentioned in the reviews it's like a banana bread in cookie form, my only complain is that doesn't keep that well.

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So I made the demerara lemon cake again (yes, repetitive, isn't it ?). I used a lighter flour and I made an effort to really whip the butter & sugar, and then to whip in the eggs. As the cake baked I watched the decorative lemon slices on the top sink without trace.

 

The cake itself is significantly lighter. I made some lemon curd, too, and with that and a spoonful of yoghurt, it still looks fine and is ridiculously good:

 

2014-04-17%2019.53.51.jpg

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QUIET!  People are trying to pontificate.

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Hi Emmalish, the recipe is very good, as everybody already mentioned in the reviews it's like a banana bread in cookie form, my only complain is that doesn't keep that well.

 

Franci, what type of banana are you using?  It will make all the difference - there are some varieties that are less prone to oxidation than others, and honestly the Gran Nain (Chiquita standard banana) and Cavendish (Dole/Corbana standard banana) are the worst offenders when it comes to oxidation after baking.

 

If you're still in NYC, you should have access to "ethnic" groceries.  Look for Latin American ones and ask for Plátano Limón, Plátano Burro, or Plátano Orinoco.  In Filipino or Malaysian groceries, ask for Saba.  And if you can find a Hawaiian grocer, cross your fingers and ask for either Iholena Lele or Maoli Popo'ulu.  The latter is a huge banana considered to be the gold standard for baking as it retains its gold colour for days.

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Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.

My eG Food Blog (2011)My eG Foodblog (2012)

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I have been waiting a long time to make this cake,but I finally got around to it.  Vanilla Genoise, Housemade Raspberry jam, Italian Meringue Frosting, toasted Almonds Fresh Raspberry pile.  I  think the reason why I don't make this cake is it does not last long, it was sold in less then 20 mins after putting on display.  i don't have the man power to make a lot of Meringue, but here it is!!

genoise.JPG

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Franci, what type of banana are you using?  It will make all the difference - there are some varieties that are less prone to oxidation than others, and honestly the Gran Nain (Chiquita standard banana) and Cavendish (Dole/Corbana standard banana) are the worst offenders when it comes to oxidation after baking.

 

If you're still in NYC, you should have access to "ethnic" groceries.  Look for Latin American ones and ask for Plátano Limón, Plátano Burro, or Plátano Orinoco.  In Filipino or Malaysian groceries, ask for Saba.  And if you can find a Hawaiian grocer, cross your fingers and ask for either Iholena Lele or Maoli Popo'ulu.  The latter is a huge banana considered to be the gold standard for baking as it retains its gold colour for days.

Very interesting Panaderia. Unfortunately I don't have any ethnic grocery nearby but I'll keep in mind for the future.

You are lucky to be able to buy so many fresh and interesting fruits.

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I have been waiting a long time to make this cake,but I finally got around to it.  Vanilla Genoise, Housemade Raspberry jam, Italian Meringue Frosting, toasted Almonds Fresh Raspberry pile.  I  think the reason why I don't make this cake is it does not last long, it was sold in less then 20 mins after putting on display.  i don't have the man power to make a lot of Meringue, but here it is!!

 

Looks good- do you soak your génoise before adding the jam and frosting, or just leave it plain?  While I like génoise, they can frequently be bone dry (even when not overbaked).

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Matthew – gorgeous cake!  I wouldn’t have been able to resist buying it either!

 

I tried out my friend Christa’s German Shortbread recipe for a board meeting of the VA Episcopal Church Women our church is hosting in May:

med_gallery_3331_119_100568.jpg

Three different shapes – will decide which one to use tonight at church with some other members.  Detail of lettering:

med_gallery_3331_119_47085.jpg

This is a fantastic cooky – fragrant with almond paste and such an easy dough to work with.  It holds its shape when baked – even those tiny little letters!

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Looks good- do you soak your génoise before adding the jam and frosting, or just leave it plain?  While I like génoise, they can frequently be bone dry (even when not overbaked).

 

I soak the layers in a raspberry syrup before sandwiching.  I understand what you mean by the dryness factor, I usually add a little more butter when I fold it in. 

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Mr. Kim had a birthday in his office this week and she requested dulce de leche brownies:

med_gallery_3331_119_111630.jpg

Very good, but VERY sweet.

 

Oooo!  That is a great idea.  Toots, being from Argentina, loves dulce de leche.  There's a brownie recipe I make in which I add fudge to the mixture.  Do you think I could use DDL instead, and bake as usual, or might there be anything different  that has to be done?

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 ... Shel


 

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Oooo!  That is a great idea.  Toots, being from Argentina, loves dulce de leche.  There's a brownie recipe I make in which I add fudge to the mixture.  Do you think I could use DDL instead, and bake as usual, or might there be anything different  that has to be done?

I confess that I used a brownie mix - Ghirardelli is so good that I don't bother making from scratch usually.  I smoothed the batter in the pan and for the DDL I used a can of the La Lechera brand.  I nuked it for a few seconds to soften, spaced out a few plops of it over the batter and swirled it in with a chopstick.  Multinational brownies  :laugh: !

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I confess that I used a brownie mix - Ghirardelli is so good that I don't bother making from scratch usually.  I smoothed the batter in the pan and for the DDL I used a can of the La Lechera brand.  I nuked it for a few seconds to soften, spaced out a few plops of it over the batter and swirled it in with a chopstick.  Multinational brownies  :laugh: !

 

:cool:   About half the time I make brownies, I use a Ghirardelli mix - the Triple Fudge mix.  It is very good, and Toots likes it quite a bit, so that's what I use when making brownies for her.  I'll have to play around with the DDL a bit, and see what works best for our taste and preferences.  Should be a nice project .  Thanks so much for the idea!


 ... Shel


 

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I confess that I used a brownie mix - Ghirardelli is so good that I don't bother making from scratch usually.  I smoothed the batter in the pan and for the DDL I used a can of the La Lechera brand.  I nuked it for a few seconds to soften, spaced out a few plops of it over the batter and swirled it in with a chopstick.  Multinational brownies  :laugh: !

You can call them "Fusion" brownies.  A true instance of two cultural food favorites being "fused" into a cohesive new flavor excitement.

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"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Matthew – gorgeous cake!  I wouldn’t have been able to resist buying it either!

 

I tried out my friend Christa’s German Shortbread recipe for a board meeting of the VA Episcopal Church Women our church is hosting in May:

med_gallery_3331_119_100568.jpg

Three different shapes – will decide which one to use tonight at church with some other members.  Detail of lettering:

med_gallery_3331_119_47085.jpg

This is a fantastic cooky – fragrant with almond paste and such an easy dough to work with.  It holds its shape when baked – even those tiny little letters!

Looks like it doesn't piffling up either. Would you're be willing to share?
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Kim....would you be willing to share that formula? I'm looking for such a cookie that will hold it's shape ... Those look awesome!

Thank You!

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What oven temperature should these beauties be baked at.?  Anxious to try them and thanks for sharing.

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Hallo! I've been lurking on eGullet for quite a while learning and reading about interesting stuff but never really shared much. I'm currently on holiday (ah...the woes of being a student ^^) and so have been doing some baking...

 

DSC_0539.jpg

 

Yann Menguy's Brownie Chocolat from a French TV patisserie competition. The only French I know are for food and cooking terms, so I pretty much just ogle at the video and use Google translate to get the recipes. Sadly, I can't pipe for nuts, and made it look rather like someone took a dump >.> Still tasted nice, though. 

 

DSC_0535.jpg

 

Below is Amauary Guichon's Finger Praline, from the same show. It's basically a dressed up brownie. Very French, I suppose...

 

DSC_0546.JPG

 

DSC_0549.JPG

 

Goodness, my pictures are ginormous (I'll try to rescale)

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      I use a different lace mold to make a pattern on the top pot. Now it's time to do the rims. When I did the lace impressions around the pots, I used fondant, because I needed the stretchability of it to conform easily to the shape of the pot. A little stretchiness in this case is good. But when it's time to do the rims, I don't want ANY stretching going on whatsoever.....I want uniformly thick and perfectly straight strips, so for this I'm going to use modeling chocolate, which of course has been colored the same color as the fondant. See the neato embossing on my strip? I found that little embossing wheel at Seattle Pottery Supply, believe it or not, and it was cheap too. The embossers are interchangeable and it came with about 10 different patterns! I rolled out my strip, then embossed the pattern twice (one next to the other) then used my pizza wheel to cut nice straight even edges. I made two top strips and two bottom strips....the bottom strips are just plain.

      And here are the pots with all their details.....

      These guys are going into the walk-in for a while while I work on the other details. Gotta make the baby! First I start with a styrofoam core. The reason for this is for stability and less weight. There was a time in my career when I thought I shouldn't use ANYTHING that wasn't edible, but talk about making life hard. I've made things out of solid modeling chocolate, but they were very heavy and hard to support. Then over the years, I realized that people really don't eat the decorations anyway (except for a few overzealous kids), so I decided to reduce my chocolate expenses and weight by using styrofoam to bulk things out more and more. I pat out a disk of flesh colored modeling chocolate, and place my styrofoam ball in the middle.

      Then I bring the edges up around the ball and squeeze the chocolate together so that no seams show. I stick a couple of skewers in it so that I can hold it in one hand and model it with the other. Then I manipulate it in my surgeon-scrubbed hands to model the face, add a little nose, eyes, mouth, ears, hair and of course, a dimple. The baby head needs to go somewhere while I work on other stuff.....oh, here's a good place.....right in the edge of my equipment box.

      I've been so good about taking pictures at nearly every step! But here's where I fail you.......when I get "in the zone"......meaning that I'm so intent on my little details....I sort of forget about the camera! Here's what I did in between this picture and the next two:
      *made the baby's shoulders and neck and arms out of modeling chocolate
      *sprinkled my cookie dirt inside the pots
      *dusted the centers of my flowers with luster and color, made the calyx's (sp?) and mounted *them on my green skewers
      *rolled modeling chocolate onto a skewer to form the umbrella stem
      *made the bottom banner and wrote on it
      *made the baby's flower bonnet
      I modeled the baby's neck and shoulders, then stuck that right on the top pot. Then I cut the skewers that are coming out of his head to the right length and pushed it down through the neck and shoulders.

      I placed the arms and formed the hands. I stuck my umbrella stem through the arm and down into the cake so there would be adequate support......but darn, I wasn't watching carefully, and the skewer came out of the side of the pot because my angle was a bit off. Oh well, I'll cover that up with a leaf. At least you can see where the umbrella stem is on the skewer. On top of the umbrella stem is a little half dome of modeling chocolate, to support the gumpaste umbrella. I dab a bit of melted white chocolate on that, and stick the umbrella on top. Now all I have to do is place my flowers, mount the banner, and put his little bonnet on.

      And here we have the finished product. It's sort of hard to read the banner....it says, "May Showers Bring Adorable Flowers". One thing I always seem to to do.....I'll shoot the picture of my finished cake and I'm always tired.....so I'm too lazy to find a good backdrop. Then I curse myself later when there's that yukky kitcheny background. God, in one picture I took, my cake had a dirty mop bucket behind it! All I can say is, thank god for Photoshop......I can always "fix" it later.
      It took me 8 hours to put this together and that's not counting all the prep I did the whole week prior. I don't think a whole lot of people realize the time that goes into this stuff.....and it's also why you don't see it very often.
      Anyway, the girl that's getting the baby shower has NO IDEA this is coming. Surprising her is going to be the best part!
      Fast forward to the next day. My boss's wife and I are bringing the box inside the house, then removing the cake from the box. Kids are dancing around us....."is that a CAKE? Is that a CAKE?" People gather round, and the girl who's getting the shower sees it and starts crying. She gives me a big hug and says "I don't know how to thank you!" I told her she just did.
      The shower went on, presents were opened, food was eaten, champagne was sipped.......and then.....it was time......the part that the kids almost couldn't wait for.....time to eat cake! Which of course, means, time to cut cake. And guess who gets to do it. Yep. Me. I don't have to cut my own cakes very often, and that's a good thing. Usually I'm nowhere in the vicinity when my cakes are cut and consumed.....I have only the memory of a photograph and my labor. This time I also do the deconstructing.....and I gotta say it was bittersweet. Especially since knowing it took me 8 hours to build it and only 15 minutes to take it apart. May I say.......wah? Yes. Wah. Luckily I'd had a couple glasses of Mumm's so my "pain" was numbed a bit.......
      Hope you all have enjoyed this bit of cake sculpting. Now back to our regular programming.......
    • By Nn, M.D.
      I'm very excited to share with you all a recipe that I developed for a double crust apple pie.  I had been inspired a few weeks ago to come up with a series of 3-ingredient recipes that would focus on technique and flavor but still be simple enough for the unseasoned chef.  I decided to make an apple pie as a challenge to myself--never having made one before--and as a way to show those who might find pastry intimidating how easy and adaptable it can be.
       
      Basic Shortcrust Pastry
      Ingredients:
      - 300g flour
      - 227g salted butter, cold
      - 2 lemons, zested with juice reserved
       
      1. Cut butter into small chunks.  Beat butter, zest of the 2 lemons, and flour together with an electric mixer OR combine with pastry blender OR rub together with fingers OR blitz in a food processor until it resembles sand.
      2. Add just enough water to bring the mix together into a dough (about 20g for me).  You'll know your pastry is ready when you can press it together and it stays in one piece.
      3. Divide dough in two and wrap tightly with plastic.  Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
      4. When ready to use, roll out each portion to 13 inches in diameter. (I do this between two sheets of parchment paper.  Don't worry too much if the parchment sticks to the pastry. I periodically placed mine in the freezer to help keep everything cold, and the butter will separate from the parchment when frozen.)
      5. Take 1 portion of rolled dough and place it in a 9-inch tart tin with a removable bottom.  Gently press into the sides to ensure even coverage.  Place in the freezer for 30 minutes.  Freeze the other portion of dough in-between the parchment pieces.
       
      Apple Filling (and Assembly)
      - 1 kg apples (I used about 7 apples for this recipe.)
      - 220g dark brown sugar, divided
      - 1 egg, separated
       
      Making the apple butter: 
      1. Cut and core 500g of your apples, but do not peel.  Add cut apples, juice of the one lemon, about 100g or so of water, and 170g of sugar to a large saucepan.
      2. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce to a simmer and cover.  Let the apples cook for 20-30 minutes or until tender.
      3. Remove from heat and blend until smooth.
      4. Return puree to saucepan and simmer uncovered over low heat, stirring occasionally, for an hour.  Color should deepen and the mixture should thicken slightly, but do not allow it to scorch.
      5. Remove from heat and refrigerate until cool.
       
      Apple filling:
      1. Peel, quarter, and core the remaining 500g of apples. Slice on a mandolin to about 1/8th inch thickness. Place sliced apples in a large bowl of cold water while slicing remaining apples.
      2. Once apples are sliced, drain water and add the juice from the remaining lemon, as well as the remaining 50g of sugar, over the apples. Stir to coat.
       
         
       
      Assembly:
      1. Remove pie base from the freezer.  Dock with a fork and brush on egg white.  Place back in the freezer and allow to set for for about 5-10 minutes.
      2. Pour the entire recipe of apple butter into the pie base and even out with an offset spatula.
      3. Arrange apple slices over the apple butter.
      4. Remove remaining pie dough from the freezer and cut designs in while still cold. Transfer to the surface of the pie and seal overhanging edges.  Trim excess dough.
      5. Brush top pastry with egg yolk (beaten with any remaining egg white) and bake in a 365˚F oven for 60-70 minutes.  Crust should be shiny and golden brown.
      6. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before removing from tin.
       
      Some notes:
      The reason for using salted butter is I think the flavor incorporates a little better into the mix than if I were to use unsalted butter and added salt.  That being said, you could do that instead, though your recipe would then have 7 ingredients The addition of apple butter here takes the place of the normal apple pie filling, which is usually thickened with cornstarch and is typically quite sweet.  By using the apple butter, I push the flavor of apple forward beyond what you would find in a typically apple pie.  Also, the apple butter acts as a glue of sorts so that my slices are always clean, so no need to resort to adding thickeners or extra sweeteners. I'm always looking for a way around blind baking, and using an egg white seal has worked out very well for me. The egg white creates a water-tight layer between the crust and the filling, so no matter how wet my filling is, the crust will always bake crispy and won't get soggy for as long as the pie is around. Feel free to change this up as you see fit.  Obviously you can spices to this (I recommend cinnamon, clove, and cardamom) but the beauty of this pie is that it's really not necessary.  Although at first blush it may seem one-noted, the harmony between the flaky, almost savory crust and the bright and refreshing filling is one that doesn't need any help, in my honest opinion.  

       
      So there you have it! My 6-ingredient apple pie, sure to become a go-to for me, and hopefully for you as well!
       
    • By ResearchBunny
      Posted 6 hours ago Dear EGulleters,
      ResearchBunny here. I've just found you today. I've been lolling in bed with a bad cold, lost voice, wads of tissues, pillows, bedding around me. I spent all of yesterday binge-watching Season 2 of Zumbo's Just Desserts on Netflix from beginning to grand finale. I have been a hardcore devotee of Rose Levy Beranbaum since the beginning of my baking passion -- after learning that she wrote her master's thesis comparing the textural differences in cake crumb when using bleached versus unbleached flour. I sit up and pay attention to that level of serious and precision! While Beranbaum did study for a short while at a French pastry school, she hasn't taken on the challenge of writing recipes for entremets style cakes. That is, multi-layer desserts with cake, mousse, gelatin, nougatine or dacquoise layers all embedded in one form embellished with ice cream, granita, chocolate, coulis. After watching hours of the Zumbo contest, I became curious about the experience of designing these cakes. Some of the offered desserts struck me as far too busy, others were delightful combinations. I was surprised that a few contestants were eliminated when their offerings were considered too simple or, too sophisticated. So I'd like to hear from you about your suggestions for learning more about how to make entremets. And also, what you think about the show. And/or Zumbo.
      Many thanks.
      RB
      ps. The show sparked a fantasy entremet for my cold. Consider a fluffy matzo ball exterior, with interior layers of carrot, celery, a chicken mince, and a gelatin of dilled chicken broth at its heart!
    • By TexasMBA02
      After batting about .500 with my previous approach to macarons, I came across Pierre Herme's base recipe online.  After two flawless batches of macarons, I've been re-energized to continue to work at mastering them.  Specifically, I want to try more of his recipes.  My conundrum is that he has, as far as I can tell, two macaron cookbooks and I don't know which one I should get.  I can't tell if one is just an updated version of the other or a reissue or what the differences really are.  I was hoping somebody had some insight.  I have searched online and haven't seen both books referenced in the same context or contrasted at all.
       
      This one appears to be older.

       
      And this one appears to be the newer of the two.

       
      Any insight would be helpful.
       
      Thanks,
       
    • By pastrygirl
      Anyone have a favorite recipe for chocolate cake using semisweet chocolate?  My usual chocolate cake recipe uses cocoa, but I have some samples of chocolate I want to use up for a workplace party.  Yes, I could make brownies or ganache frosting, or chocolate mousse or chocolate chunk cookies, just feeling like cake this weekend ...
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