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Anna N

Meeting-friendly snacks to bake

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I love reading about and reflecting on how we are all such a good "fit".    Corner piece and center cut people.   

I often smile as I stand next to someone picking out green beans or English peas or zucchini.    They often look at me suspiciously and speed up snatching the biggest ones until they notice that I'm reaching for the smallest ones.   Everybody happy.

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eGullet member #80.

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So it seems sensible to suspend snacks for meetings both because many of those who normally attend are now working from home and I do not want to put anybody in a position of needing to refuse my snacks.  But I would like to keep my hand in so that I can resume when things return to normal. Today I made these gluten-free brownies for my daughter. Even she and I are trying to maintain social distance so I will put them outside on top of my air conditioner when she tells me she’s going to be driving by. Next week I will see about making something for my granddaughter. 

 

 

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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This is a great idea, Anna!  Mr. Kim is an associate director of his state agency and only the associate directors and the director of his agency are working in the office - all staff is working from home.  He took in some of the strawberry/almond pastries I made on Monday and not one person touched them.  I should check with family and see if something would be welcome before making a batch of something.  

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A friend who's still at my former company told me they'd been asked not to leave out any shared treats.  Moot point now - as of today, the whole site has been shuttered. 

I have been taking my baked treats to the library but this is out now as well.  

A couple of friends with kids at home have told me they'd welcome anything I bake so I may have a few takers if I get into a baking mood. 

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On 2/27/2017 at 7:41 PM, dscheidt said:

My freezer is full of vacuum bags of cookies ready to bake.  I put a sheet pan's worth of cookies in each bag, but you could do fewer if you want smaller batches.  Labeling is important; it's pretty hard to tell many cookies apart when they're in frozen balls.  I also label with full date and baking instructions.  In a good vacuum bag (I have a chamber machine) and a cold frreezer, they seem to be good for at least four months, probably quite a bit longer but we turn them over faster than that.

Oh, if you ever need to get a two year old really mad, let her help you make cookies and then not bake any!

 

Ok, sometimes things hang out for a while in the freezer.  Baked these tonight, from December 2018.  They were indistinguishable from freshly made.  

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On 3/10/2020 at 3:13 PM, Anna N said:

So I consulted with my favourite baking buddy who diagnosed over-baking but whose treatment seem to be a bit drastic: reduce the cooking time from 45 to 18 minutes.  Seemed a bit drastic. 
 

So this morning I made a half recipe. I used an 8 x 8 pan versus a 13 x 9 pan. I reduced the oven temperature from 350°F to 325°F and reduced the cooking time to 35 minutes.

 

Wow. I also bake at 350 and mine are almost always done at 25-28 minutes. Must be the difference between US and Canadian minutes. Let me check. Yep, the exchange rate today is 1.43, so 25 x 1.43 = 35.75

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"There is no sincerer love than the love of food."  -George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman, Act 1

 

Gene Weingarten, writing in the Washington Post about online news stories and the accompanying readers' comments: "I basically like 'comments,' though they can seem a little jarring: spit-flecked rants that are appended to a product that at least tries for a measure of objectivity and dignity. It's as though when you order a sirloin steak, it comes with a side of maggots."

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Have you heard of and considered pão de queijo?  It's a brazilian cheese bread/bun.  Can be made gluten free, or, with flour.  It's a little tricky to mix, but once you have the technique down, rather quick.  Best when fresh out of the oven, however, a friend of mine does bake them for her office, and they are pretty good this way (the brazilian bbq places serve them cold, too).  Goes very well with coffee or tea for breakfast, a pat of butter and honey!

pao de quiejo.jpg

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36 minutes ago, jedovaty said:

Have you heard of and considered pão de queijo?  It's a brazilian cheese bread/bun.  Can be made gluten free, or, with flour.  It's a little tricky to mix, but once you have the technique down, rather quick.  Best when fresh out of the oven, however, a friend of mine does bake them for her office, and they are pretty good this way (the brazilian bbq places serve them cold, too).  Goes very well with coffee or tea for breakfast, a pat of butter and honey!

pao de quiejo.jpg

 

I made these exactly once and to be honest, we weren't all that fond of them.  I used a recipe from either Serious Eats or Cook's Illustrated, I can't remember which one.

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On 3/10/2020 at 12:57 PM, Kim Shook said:

I have a really hard time with brownies.  They are my favorite dessert when cooked right (to me).  That means cooked longer than most people like.  I don't care for gooey brownies.  I don't want hard and dry, but I like them really, really chewy and firm.  I adore corner pieces and love using that funny all edges brownie pan.  But the chance you take with drier, chewier brownies is they sometimes end up like your nail driving batch.😉

 

My favorite brownies are also crazy, crazy chewy.  They’ve gotta have some bite to ‘em.  Texture-wise, I really like the chew of boxed brownies, which I haven’t been able to recreate.  I know sugar lends to a chewy brownie, but the problem is that I don’t like very sweet brownies (which boxed brownies usually are).  So how do you get that fabulous, toothsome chew without a ton of sugar?  Any recipes out there with less sugar and more chew?

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On 7/27/2020 at 1:59 PM, pastryani said:

 

My favorite brownies are also crazy, crazy chewy.  They’ve gotta have some bite to ‘em.  Texture-wise, I really like the chew of boxed brownies, which I haven’t been able to recreate.  I know sugar lends to a chewy brownie, but the problem is that I don’t like very sweet brownies (which boxed brownies usually are).  So how do you get that fabulous, toothsome chew without a ton of sugar?  Any recipes out there with less sugar and more chew?

 

I'm also seeking this chewy, rather than underbaked brownie. I never had a boxed brownie to compare to (I don't think we have those here). For my next attempt I plan on trying mochi brownies.

 


~ Shai N.

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9 hours ago, shain said:

 

I'm also seeking this chewy, rather than underbaked brownie. I never had a boxed brownie to compare to (I don't think we have those here). For my next attempt I plan on trying mochi brownies.

 

Now that's a fascinating idea.  Please share if you do it.  I'm curious whether it'd be necessary to make a "starter" like they do for mochi donuts (basically you take small portion of the rice flour and gelatinize it with the liquid by nuking in microwave or just heating it on the stove, and mix that into the dough, similar to tang zhong for bread).

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@shain, that Koda Farms Blue Star brand of mochiko flour is what my family used for making mochi things. I think your brownies will definitely be chewy. Not sure if it will be chewy in the way you want it, i.e., won't really be cakey / chewy. Should be simple, though, like you said. IIRC, that flour is not very expensive.

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