Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

rjwong

"Baking: From My Home to Yours" (Part 1)

Recommended Posts

I too had problems with the index. In search of the coconut tea cake recipe I couldn't find it under coconut. I actually gave up and wondered if I had seen it in another book. But I eventually went back and found it by flipping through the pages one by one.

BTW, the coconut cake is incredible. Delicious coconut taste and texture. I ate most of it myself 9great for breakfast with coffee).

I have the apple sauce bars cooling on my counter right now and the whole house smells like apple and spices.

The only downside to this book is the five pounds I've gained since I starting baking from it. :smile:

But they were worth it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It's always risky when you've got a time-treasured recipe and then you try something new (if it weren't risky, it wouldn't have taken me way too long to get that terrible stringbean casserole off my Thanksgiving menu!), but I'm delighted (and relieved) that you and yours were happy.

I've been thinking about this comment a lot. The fact that you're 'relieved' that a recipe worked for somebody and that they enjoyed it is very telling. It shows how much you care about what you do and (I'd guess) enjoy doing it. I really think it's because of this that people love your books so much. And it makes me very excited to get the book and start trying the recipes!

(By the way, I did not do the index.  In fact, the only cookbook author I've ever known who did her own index was Julia Child.  She and her husband did the indexes for both volumes of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, but at some point even Julia gave up on indexing and left it to the pros.)

I did my own index - does this mean I can tell people that I have something in common with Julia Child that few others do? :laugh:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
For Sunday dessert, to follow a French inspired meal centered around a roast chicken, I made the Far Breton cake. It sounded so inticing and fallish AND it had prunes in it. We were not dissapointed here, this cake/custard hybrid is a sure winner I even had some for breakfast today. I really cannot praise this elegant cake enough, it tastes and feels like a cross between a cake and a custard and the soft almost jammy tea-soaked dried fruit in it add an extra layer of texture and flavor. The toasted almonds are my addition on top, just to add still more texture, but the cake is awsome as is.

gallery_5404_3609_365522.jpg

gallery_5404_3609_440008.jpg

That looks and sounds awesome, Elie -- I'm have to try that soon.


"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did the Banana Bundt Cake this weekend, to rave reviews. I used 5 really overripe slimy bananas, as I usually do, and I had let it "age" overnight, per suggestion, which was so hard as the cake smelled and looked incredible. Even the batter was tasty. When I cut into it, I found the texture to be good but the flavor and sweetening was subtle, and I wanted a more pronounced banana flavor. I drizzled it with the maple-flavored icing from one of the other bundt cakes, and it was perfect! Next time, I may add another banana, and sprinkle turbinado sugar on the bottom of the cake for a little texture and sweetness. Will be trying biscuits, and cookies next.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

sorry to butt in....................what is "self rising flour" and can I sub regular or pastry flour in lieu of?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

cjs -- self-rising flour has salt and baking powder in it. I saw a reference online that said you could add 2 teaspoons of salt and 2 teaspoons of baking powder to 1 pound of flour, but I've never done this. What is it that you want to make that calls for self-rising flour?

Pam -- I'm touched by your comments -- thank you very, very much.

And skyflyer 3 -- I''m not sure what adding another banana would do to the texture of the cake -- it might through it off. However, I like the idea of sprinking the cake with turbinado sugar.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Haven't been here in a while. I had no idea Dorie's new book was out. I just read through this thread in one sitting and ordered the book.

Congratulations Dorie! Looks like another great work. I can't wait to receive my copy.

Any chance your promotional tour will swing through NYC?


"I don't mean to brag, I don't mean to boast;

but we like hot butter on our breakfast toast!"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Seth! Long time, no see.

Here are a couple of things I've made from the book recently -- the caramel pumpkin pie and the tart tatin. I wasn't going to post pictures, because I used a store-bought crust for the pie, and because I didnt bother to get a good picture of the tart tatin. But I decided to anyway. I enjoyed both, but the tart tatin (which I did make with Dorie's good-for-almost-anything pie dough) has long been one of my favorites. I made it in a cast-iron skillet this time, and I got these wonderful crisp caramelly edges on the crust. So good.

gallery_23736_355_18197.jpg

gallery_23736_355_46113.jpg

Flickr:

#1

#2


Edited by Patrick S (log)

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Made the caramel peanut-topped brownie cake tonight. The center caved a little just as warned but I think that just holds the peanuts better. I won't get a slice until tomorrow afternoon at work, but I tasted the caramel peanut topping and it is rich with just a hint of salty. Delicious. I'm not sure I understand the instructions about putting the cooled cake bake in the springform before topping. I'm guessing it just to get the peanuts all the way out to a clean edge. It seemed like too much trouble so I just spooned the topping on the cake. Worked like a charm.

Dorie -- I hope in addition to the suggestion about the index, you've also forwarded to your publisher all of our delights with these recipes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Laniloa, your comment just made me feel like a little kid. When I was very young, I'd come home and report all the problems I'd had at school and then, when my mother would ask if anything good happened, I'd pull out a paper with a gold star! I seem to have grown up just a little, because I have passed along to my publisher everyone's extraordinarily generous comments -- and she's thrilled!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Dorie

I picked up the cookbook last week. I thought I start with the cookie section.

I have a couple of cookie recipe questions...

1.Chocolate malted milk ball cookies...What is the correct baking temperature? I couldn't seem to find it in the recipe itself.

2. sables- The ingrediants lists 2 egg yolks... The recipe says to add them to the dough, but later on it says to use a yolk for the decorative sugar. Do I use both yolks for the cookie dough or do I hold one back and use it for adhering the decorative sugar to the outside of the dough?

I can't wait to try the other desserts in the book!

Thanks for your help. :smile:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I made the applesauce bars for the second time last night. My co-workers were very grateful! I can't believe that it seems that no one but me made the chocolate cake on the cover (can't remember the name and I'm at work). It was the first thing I made. I encourage everyone to give it a try. It's really wonderful!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I made the Double Apple Bundt Cake again. This time with homemade apple butter. Even better. More apple-y.

I can't decide between tart tatin and applesauce bars. I might have to make both.

After I make applesauce.

I am just in heaven. I love apples.


If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe. - Carl Sagan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Blueberry Crumb Cake turned out to be one of those foolproof recipes that woefully underestimates the fool. Every last one of my blueberries sunk to the bottom.

It may have been because I was betrayed by my oven. I usually monitor the temperature with an oven thermometer & adjust accordingly, but last night I got distracted. When the timer went off, the temp had dropped to 320 & the cake needed another 6 or 7 minutes.

I was depressed about this until we tried a piece. It may not have been photogenic, but it certainly was tasty. The fine tuning of flavoring in Dorie's recipes continues to amaze me. 1/4 tsp of this & 1/8 tsp of that doesn't sound like it will do much, but the end result is lovely. I'm so glad I behaved & didn't gleefully toss in a little extra as I am wont to do.

I want Dorrie to know how much I appreciate her sharing such wonderful recipes, so esthetically pleasing to make. Except at Christmas, I'd gotten away from baking. We are often so beat when we get home, that dinner has been about all that I could manage (or so I thought). Thanks to this enthusiastic thread, I bought the cookbook and thanks to Dorrie, I've rediscovered how much pleasure I get out of baking.

Now about those shrinking jeans.....

pat w.


I would live all my life in nonchalance and insouciance

Were it not for making a living, which is rather a nouciance.

-- Ogden Nash

http://bluestembooks.com/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

blackcat, sorry about the typos and omissions. Here's the info:

For the sables -- 2 yolks go into the dough and one yolk is used to "glue" the decorating sugar.

For the Chocolate Malted Whopper Drops -- the oven temperature is 350 degrees F.

Seth -- nice to hear from you again.

Pat W -- I can't tell you how happy I was to read your comments about rediscovering the pleasure of baking. I talk about the pleasures of baking all the time -- I'm always talking about how everything about baking, from the way the raw ingredients look when they're lined up on the counter to the joy of pulling something wonderful out of the oven, is pleasurable and about how satisfying it is to bake and to share what you've baked. It's wonderful to hear someone else say it -- thank you.

Patrick -- please never not post because you think your pictures aren't perfect -- they're always soooooooo appealing. The tatin looks scrumptious! Glad you liked both tarts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dorie

Thanks for the info. I really appreciate it. It's really great that you are so available to answer questions.

Thanks again

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't have pix, but inaugurated my spanking new copy by baking the Chunky Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chippers (but with smooth peanut butter, as that's what I had on hand). Big, huge enthusiastic thumbs up from my tasters, ages 8 & 10. This cookie has a wonderful toothfulness from the oatmeal, a hint of sophistication from the cinnamon and nutmeg, and the old-fashioned comfort-appeal of peanut butter and chocolate chips. Perfect late at night with a glass of cold milk. Also good for breakfast. :wink:


Edited by RuthWells (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My copy just came in the mail! It was hard to tear myself away from it to come post. It is a beautiful book, with lots of pictures :biggrin: . One thing I love is when the book cover is as beautiful as the dust cover. I really can't stand the dust covers and always remove them.

The first thing I am making is the lemon cream tart. I have been forced to hear about Pierre's lemon cream in Patricks post forever. I have been dying to try it as lemon is my favorite flavor.

I can't wait to give my report!


-Becca

www.porterhouse.typepad.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dorie, I just noticed something funny. The serving note on your Swedish Visiting Cake mentions that this is meant to be cut in small wedges and eaten sans fork. It says it is a finger cake.

Then the picture of the cake opposite the recipe has three forks in it. I wondered if you had noticed. It is one of those cute items in the book. I am loving it so far.


-Becca

www.porterhouse.typepad.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I did the Banana Bundt Cake this weekend, to rave reviews.  I used 5 really overripe slimy bananas, as I usually do, and I had let it "age" overnight, per suggestion, which was so hard as the cake smelled and looked incredible. Even the batter was tasty.  When I cut into it, I found the texture to be good but the flavor and sweetening was subtle, and I wanted a more pronounced banana flavor.  I drizzled it with the maple-flavored icing from one of the other bundt cakes, and it was perfect!  Next time, I may add another banana, and sprinkle turbinado sugar on the bottom of the cake for a little texture and sweetness.  Will be trying biscuits, and cookies next.

That settles it! I don't wait til Xmas to get the book. Yesterday my gdaughter and I made what had to be the worst banana bread I've ever made - from the hand of a very well regarded writer. (I'm pretty sure it was not me. It rose very well and had a nice crust, though the inside was too moist and dense for my taste.) I confess I was intrigued by a cake without any eggs, coconut instead of nuts, and nutmeg, rum, and vinegar for flavoring. And coincidentally I had 8 very ripe bananas on my counter.

But this brings up a couple questions that nag me. When a recipe author says to preheat to 350F, I assume the recipe takes into account the temperature drop when you put the cake in. When I bake I always keep a thermometer in the (gas) oven, so I know that it's really 350 when I open the door, seldom 350 when I close it. I keep a big pizza stone on the bottom of the oven to help modulate the fluctuations.

As a matter of course, when I bake (pies) without a recipe, I sometimes bake it starting at a significantly higher temp on the stone, later turning it down and perhaps moving the pie to a higher place in the oven off the stone once the bottom crust's gotten a good shot of heat. Easy as pie, as they say. But with cakes, should I give the oven a preheating bump to accommodate the fall in temp?

Cakes? I feel as though I should be wearing lab whites. I get irritated now when it says 1 cup of flour. Damn, how much should that flour weigh? 4 - 4 1/2 - 5 oz/ per cup. And do you know how many books don't even tell you how to measure the flour into the cup. When I find a tempting recipe in a magazine, well, not a chance. Flour makes me trepidacious and fractious. Even when I scoop and sweep, I know that you don't always get the same weight. I checked. Yes, nerdish.

I know that in the Herme books, Dorie calls for 150g/cup. Simple, flawless. :cool: But in the Julia book, scoop and sweep. Well my first cup of scoop and sweep weighs in at 145g, which is almost dead on (my scale measures in 5 g increments), but my second cup comes out of a different flour jar. It's been ruffled, and when I measure the second cup --oops 130g. The third, the fourth? stopped checking. Since I've read the Herme books, I assume it's safe to read 150g for any cup of flour Dorie calls for. But what does one do with recipes where the writer doesn't give any clue?

I understand most American home bakers don't have a scale, the weight measures drives up production costs, but given the cost of a pound of good chocolate, butter, etc., that's a penny/pound foolish calculation.

Thanks for letting me vent if you've come this far with me. :rolleyes::rolleyes::unsure::unsure::unsure:


"Half of cooking is thinking about cooking." ---Michael Roberts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dorie,

I had a bit of a problem with the bittersweet brownies. They didn't seem like the best of the brownie choices, but I didn't have other ingredents, so I gave them a shot.

Anyway, I followed the recipe as best I could. I used the same size pan and the same 325 on the oven. I think the cooking time was listed as 20-22 minutes. I took them out after 40 and they were still undercooked.

I have a few thoughts and I was hoping maybe you could shed some light on the situation. I having a baking stone on the rack that I leave there all the time. I just bake everything on it. The brownies were no exception. However, I suppose the stone could have been cold (not enough preheating), hence not enough cooking on the bottom. I also suppose my oven could be way off. But, that would have to be significantly off to produce that sort of difference. The last thing I can think is the recipe. It calls for baking them in the pan lined with tinfoil. I've never done this, so I'm not sure, but I thought maybe instead of the metal conducting the heat, it blocked it. But, that doesn't make sense, so....

Any thoughts on my looooonnnnng baking time? Ever had problems with these?

Thanks much.

Ian


“There is no sincerer love than the love of food.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
...

Cakes? I feel as though I should be wearing lab whites. I get irritated now when it says 1 cup of flour. Damn, how much should that flour weigh? 4 - 4 1/2 - 5 oz/ per cup. And do you know how many books don't even tell you how to measure the flour into the cup.  When I find a tempting recipe in a magazine, well, not a chance. Flour makes me trepidacious and fractious. Even when I scoop and sweep, I know that you don't always get the same weight. I checked. Yes, nerdish.

I know that in the Herme books, Dorie calls for 150g/cup. Simple, flawless.  :cool: But in the Julia book, scoop and sweep. Well my first cup of scoop and sweep weighs in at 145g, which is almost dead on (my scale measures in 5 g increments), but my second cup comes out of a different flour jar. It's been ruffled, and when I measure the second cup --oops 130g. The third, the fourth? stopped checking. Since I've read the Herme books, I assume it's safe to read 150g for any cup of flour Dorie calls for. But what does one do with recipes where the writer doesn't give any clue?

I understand most American home bakers don't have a scale, the weight measures drives up production costs, but given the cost of a pound of good chocolate, butter, etc., that's a penny/pound foolish calculation.

Thanks for letting me vent if you've come this far with me.  :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:  :unsure:  :unsure:  :unsure:

In this case, the easiest thing to do was ask the author how much a cup of flour weighs:

Melissa -- I'm a dip-and-sweep-er -- that's the method I used for the recipes in the book.  I always aerate the flour before I dip and -- I just measured -- the weight is 4.8 ounces or, as Patrick said, about 5 ounces.  Hope this helps -- Dorie

4.8 oz is about 135 g.


MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am distracted by the photo of the blueberry pie every time I see it. (Which is frequently, since it's also on the spine.) Can it be made with frozen blueberries, or would the quality of the pie be significantly degraded?

Break my heart, if you must.

pat w.


I would live all my life in nonchalance and insouciance

Were it not for making a living, which is rather a nouciance.

-- Ogden Nash

http://bluestembooks.com/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Dorie,

I have a few thoughts and I was hoping maybe you could shed some light on the situation. I having a baking stone on the rack that I leave there all the time. I just bake everything on it. The brownies were no exception. However, I suppose the stone could have been cold (not enough preheating), hence not enough cooking on the bottom.

Ian

Ian, I am not Dorie, but I have found that if I leave my stone in all the time that it does block things from baking properly. Mostly, because you do not generally preheat your oven for an hour when baking cookies and brownies, but also because recipes were not developed for use on a stone. A properly preheated stone would do for brownies some of what it does for pizza. That intense bottom heat is not good for everything.

Anyway, just my opinion and what I gathered from my own experience.


-Becca

www.porterhouse.typepad.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The last thing I can think is the recipe. It calls for baking them in the pan lined with tinfoil. I've never done this, so I'm not sure, but I thought maybe instead of the metal conducting the heat, it blocked it. But, that doesn't make sense, so....

The foil won't block any heat. I believe the reason to use foil is for ease of cutting the finished product. You lift the brownies out of the pan via the foil and onto a cutting board for easy cutting with a knife.

And I agree with the poster who said the stone was the culprit for the brownies not being cooked completely. It's a heat sink and because it wasn't preheated properly, it was throwing the oven temperature off.


 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...