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Your Daily Sweets: What Are You Making and Baking? (2016 – 2017)

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As of right now, this is the last wedding cake I have until February. Nice to have a little break with the holidays coming up. 

I love fall leaves and was excited someone finally asked for them. 

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On 10/24/2016 at 7:35 PM, teonzo said:

crostata_melecotogne_coriandolo_sorgo.jp

 

Crostata Metla

A pie made with:

- sorghum shortbread

- coriander seed cake (thin layer between the other 2)

- quince cheese (it's quince season so I'm abusing them)

I'm happy with the result. Taste is really good and balanced, there's the fruity/honeylike of the quince cheese, citrusy spiciness of the coriander seeds, hearthiness of the sorghum flour, all 3 complement and work fine together. It's a vegan recipe that uses forgotten ingredients (at least here in Italy quinces and sorghum have disappeared from the kitchens), so I think it has a good marketing appeal.

 

 

 

Teo

 

That's a very cool and creative design!

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On 10/29/2016 at 1:45 PM, shain said:

Basbousa (semolina cake), with coconut and lemon zest. Baked until crisp and lightly soaked in a syrup of honey, rose geranium, rose extract and lemon juice. Served warm with lightly sweetened tangy whipped labneh.

 

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Basbousa is usually baked in a pan and sliced, but I opted to bake it in a muffin tin, in order to keep the crisp edges (the middle loses crispness from the syrup). If you never had one, the texture is grainy from the semolina and coconut, and very moist. The lemon in the syrup acts to balance the sweetness (though I make mine less sweet than most).
Took only 15 minutes of work, 2 bowls and 30 minutes in the oven.

 

Wow! That is calling my name. I love coconut! I'm having flashbacks that I might have tried this before. Did you use freshly grated coconut? I just Googled a recipe and will have to try my hand at making it.

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I made buchi buchi, or fried Guam pumpkin turnovers for our upcoming Thanksgiving celebration (the red background). The uncooked pastry is in my freezer. I also made the baked version, or pastit, in Guam's native language (black background). Freezable desserts make life a little easier :D.

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5 hours ago, pquinene said:

Wow! That is calling my name. I love coconut! I'm having flashbacks that I might have tried this before. Did you use freshly grated coconut? I just Googled a recipe and will have to try my hand at making it.

 

I wish I could get fresh grated coconut, I can sometimes get whole coconuts, but they are usually expensive and not very flavorful, and then I'll have to grate them myself... Anyway, basbousas are usually made with dry coconut flakes, which works fine in this pastry. If you do have fresh coconut, I'm sure it will only be better (just make sure to compensate for the added moisture). And my suggestion is that you hold some of the syrup and taste the basbousa before adding the it all - many recipes are overly sweet (IMO).


Edited by shain (log)
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~ Shai N.

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I got a hankering to make Andie's "Grandma's Apple Cake," which appears over in the Loaf Cakes thread. The loaves below are in 7x3" pans, and the recipe made four of them. Each finished cake weighs in at a bit over 20 ounces, so they're substantial. They're also very good. It's a soft-textured cake (although that might change a little when it cools some more), moist, not too sweet, and the crunch of the walnuts is wonderful. I already started one, but I'll freeze the other three to take with me on Thanksgiving. Thanks, Andie, it's a good one!

Apple Walnut Cake 2.jpg

Apple Walnut Cake 1.jpg

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A friend asked me to make a Black Forest Cake for her birthday....this is the result. Of course, cherries are not in season, so frozen will have to do....

 

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IMG_2941.JPGI made a cake, an upside down pineapple, lime and coconut cake.

This is quite an achievement, I reckon I've made a cake before, perhaps 40 years ago. 

That half of perfectly ripe pineapple in the fridge was calling out, "cake me".

 

 

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Rosemary Hazelnut Biscotti (with black pepper and orange) and Koulourakia (my Greek step-dad's favorite). Baked these off for our road trip to Vegas for Thanksgiving. 

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saccottini_patatadolce_melagrana.jpg

 

Saccottini Hinaqu

 

Don't know how this shape is called in English, in Italian it's called "saccottino" which means "little pocket". It's a sort of turnover made with leavened dough and jam inside. Flavors here are sweet potato (here in Italy we have this kind, grey flesh) in the dough and pomegranate in the filling.

I tried a new technique for the dough: when eating a sweet potato I thought "this has the texture of soft butter... I can use it instead of soft butter somewhere". So I tried it for a viennoiserie piece. I picked up a recipe for croissant dough and used the cooked sweet potato pulp for the lamination instead of the usual butter. Since I was substituting a dairy product with a vegetable I decided to make it a vegan recipe. Laminating the cooked sweet potato pulp inside the dough has the advantage that the potato is not aborbing flour as if you were adding it to the main dough. In this way you get a lighter result, not as heavy as the usual sweet potato doughs. After cooking you loose the lamination effect, you don't see the different layers and don't get the crispy flaky crust of croissants. This because croissaint lamination works thanks to the butter fat (the fat of all the mini butter layers works as a shield for vapor, keeping divided the layers), sweet potatoes are mainly starch and not fat, so that effect is null. No problem, I'm happy the same since I got a light, soft and tender dough.

Filling is a sort of pomegranate custard: pomegranate juice, sugar and cornstarch, cooked together. I used the cornstarch method to avoid the risk of the filling spilling outside the dough.

I'm really pleased with the result. Texture and taste are quite different from all the usual viennoiserie, but it's really a pleasure to eat. Plus it's vegan, good thing because making vegan viennoiserie is always a challenge.

 

 

 

Teo

 

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Teo

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Sounds like it was a very cool experiment. I wonder if a bit of oil blended into the sweet potato would help preserve a bit of the lamination effect. 


“What is called sound economics is very often what mirrors the needs of the respectably affluent.” - John Kenneth Galbraith

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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On 24/11/2016 at 2:33 PM, chromedome said:

Sounds like it was a very cool experiment. I wonder if a bit of oil blended into the sweet potato would help preserve a bit of the lamination effect. 

 

I wondered the same question, I suppose the oil quantity should be too high. As far as I understand the yeast cells attack and process both the wheat flour and the sweet potato starches, this way they develop gas bubbles in all the layers. The standard lamination technique used in viennoiserie is to include pure butter, not mixed with flour (as most professionals do with their puff pastry recipes), this must be for a good reason. Another problem is that oil is liquid, so adding it to the sweet potato pulp would make it softer and more fluid, this would cause a good amount of troubles during lamination.

I see this technique more as a way to include (a high amount of sweet potato pulp in the dough without it absorbing flour) than laminate. Since the result is a really tender and light dough (more similar to bread than buttery viennoiserie), then I'm fine with the current state.

 

 

 

Teo

 

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Teo

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raperosse_yogurt_semipapavero.jpg

 

Torta Biema

 

Layers from bottom to top:

- poppy seeds biscuit

- beets and yogurt jelly

- beets mousse

- poppy seeds biscuit

- yogurt mousse

- beets glaze

Decorations are pure yogurt on top, a white chocolate strip sprinkled with poppy seeds (a bit too much seeds) on the side.

 

Beets are totally unusual in pastry here in Italy, I was curious to try making an entremet with them. The result is very light and "catchy". I gave a slice to a few people for a blind taste (without telling them what was in the entremet), all of them liked it and cleaned the plate. After telling them there were beets all them made a puzzled facial expression (or worse) but they couldn't argue about their appreciation for it. It's always fun seeing such reactions.

 

 

 

Teo

 

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Teo

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crostata_nespole_rafanonero_miglio.jpg

 

Crostata Nisba

 

An earthy pie made with fall ingredients.

Layers from bottom to top:

- millet shortcrust (half millet flour, half wheat flour)

- medlar jam (this layer is not visible)

- horseradish "cake" (flour + sugar + grated horseradish + water + oil)

Decorated with confectioner's sugar and medlar jam.

The recipe is vegan (not how I realized it, since I used standard confectioner's sugar).

I'm happy with the result, it's a weird combination so this is a pie for adventurous palates. The main tone is the earthiness by all 3 ingredients. Medlars give a good acidity, horseradish (used few) gives spiciness and a long aftertaste. Millet flour is coarse and make a raw effect, which is ok for the pie: this is a blue collar pie, not a white collar one. I'm always happy when I use poor ingredients (medlar and millet are used as animal feed here in Italy) and get good results.

 

 

 

Teo

 

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Teo

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My oh my you are talented people.  I don't bake much and only make candy once a year, so you folks provide me with plenty of ideas and learning opportunities. This is the reworking of my Almond Butter Crunch recipe--a candy I've been making at the Holidays for years. I think the tinkering with the recipe this year has paid off. Batch #1, meh, #2, er better.  Used sliced almonds in the brittle this year and spread it really thin. Spread the chocolate on top rather than a drizzle, and garnished with chopped, toasted almonds and a sprinkle of sea salt this year.  This batch is being readied for delivery to friends in New York and Las Vegas.......

 

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Twenty dozen decorated cookies for the tree lighting in Capitola Village. Plus 200 truffles, I have to do these every year. At least while I'm at this job ¬¬

 

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Edited by RWood (log)
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RWood, how far in advance to you start an order of that size? Do you mix and freeze the dough in advance? Do you cut them out and freeze? I'm curious about methods people use for such large orders. They look beautiful.

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7 minutes ago, cakewalk said:

RWood, how far in advance to you start an order of that size? Do you mix and freeze the dough in advance? Do you cut them out and freeze? I'm curious about methods people use for such large orders. They look beautiful.

Thanks!

I made the dough, cut them out and froze them a couple of weeks ahead. Then baked them 3 days before. It took that much time to ice that many (letting bases dry then adding details). I've found once a base icing is on them, they hold well.  I've used the No Fail Sugar Cookie recipe for years, and they always hold their shape and can be flavored many ways.  

Now, according to my aunt (who hid this type cookie in her car trunk to keep my uncle from eating them), said she forgot and then found them two months later and, "oh they were still fine." I don't know if I believe that or not O.o

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2 hours ago, RWood said:

Twenty dozen decorated cookies for the tree lighting in Capitola Village. Plus 200 truffles, I have to do these every year. At least while I'm at this job ¬¬

 

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I really love the marbled effect on the mittens, it captures the texture of knitted mittens beautifully. I will have to remember that. (I mean, they are all gorgeous, but the mittens in particularly made me go 'what a good idea!')

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 When I had a full house this  was a favourite dessert. 

 

Now there is only me but I still would like this dessert ocassionally.  With that in mind I froze some blackberries last summer.  While I was  surfing the web, I came across this recipe.  So this morning I more or less combined the two ideas. 

 

 

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 This strikes me as much better than reheating a fruit crumble. 

 

 But surfing the web is a dangerous occupation.  I found this!   It combines two of my favourite things.


Edited by Anna N (log)
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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

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I grew up knowing this as. "Waldorf Astoria red cake"

some call it a Red Velvet Cake.

Perhaps the difference here is that this does not have a Cream  Cheese frosting 

 

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Edited by RobertM (log)
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