This Tuesday with Dorie/Baking with Julia recipe was made easy by the little ball of brioche dough hiding in my freezer. I defrosted the dough and made one mini savory brioche pocket on Sunday afternoon. I guess that’s why I save tiny odds and ends of dough in the freezer.
I went off recipe and filled the dough with caramelized onions, sun dried tomatoes, and ricotta. The filling was great but overall this was just okay. I’m sure it was a result of using frozen brioche dough from who knows when. Fresh dough and I would have been a big fan. I just know it.
If you’re up for making brioche, check out Loaves & Stitches for the recipe.
I made this recipe ahead of schedule for the Tuesdays with Dorie(/Baking with Julie) group recipe. I took pictures during daylight and even typed up some thoughts. Then we had to disconnect my computer for some home renovations and I missed posting. When I was ready to post a few days ago, I couldn’t find my card reader for the photos. I searched over the weekend and finally gave up and had amazon bring a new one. It just arrived and come to find out: the pictures of the cake didn’t turn out. UGH! A picture of Toby fully enjoying a car ride will have to do. And now the rhubarb cake….
For the first time ever, the teen working the check out at the supermarket didn’t look at me funny when I bought rhubarb. Usually I have to explain what it is. She knew but had to look up the code for the rhubarb; “no one buys this” she tells me.
Well, I’ll be back to the store for more rhubarb while it lasts because this recipe reminded me of how great it is. This cake is super simple to put together on a Monday night and tastes good hot (very hot! We/I couldn’t wait) out of the oven. I halved the recipe and baked it in an 8inch cake pan. The cake is rich but not too sweet. Just wish I had dark brown sugar instead of regular to give the rhubarb/caramel topping a bit more color.
You can find the recipe on Erin’s blog (and she just had the cutest baby!)
I’ve had a few months of baking less and making a bunch of repeat recipes that I’ve already posted. But I’ve been baking up new recipes like it’s my job and I have a bunch ready for posting. Included the next TWD recipe coming up tomorrow.
It’s been kind of a crazy week in the Boston area and it took me awhile to get to making these madeleines. I finally got to them last night and had the benefit of reading a few baker’s posts before getting started.
No one seemed to love the recipe so I prepared myself for that and tried to add some additional flavor with orange zest and some fancy orangy flavoring I picked up at King Arthur. I only made a half batch and used my mini muffin tin. I looked at madeleine tins when Ed and I were registering the other weekend and passed them over. I’m kind of glad I did because mads just aren’t my favorite treat. These were okay, and they looked pretty cute even without the fancy pan. But. But there are so many other things I’d rather be baking and eating. Baking so much these last few years has kind of turned me into a snob.
Katie and Amy of Counter Dog have the recipe and their madeleines look super cute.
I bought a loaf of white bread from the supermarket last week and it was so awful, I threw out my toast one morning. Half of the loaf is still sitting on the counter, fully ignored after this wonderful potato bread recipe came into my life.
This recipe is very forgiving, I left the first rise going way too long as we ran to the vet with the doggy (he’s doing much better now, but there’s nothing like a 170 lb dog that can’t use his back legs). The dough still made the second rise and had the nicest texture. Ed made us some chicken, bacon, avocado sandwiches on the bread for dinner and they were gone in about 2 minutes flat.
Russet potatoes were buy one get one at the store, so I’ll be making this recipe again and again over the next few weeks. This is a recipe to bookmark. Find it on Dawn’s blog Simply Sweet.
It was too dark for decent cookie pictures, so you get a picture of a wedding cake I made for friends last week instead.
This week’s TWD recipe is a take on the chocolate chip cookie. This variation includes espresso and chopped apricots. Sounds like a strange combo, eh? It works.
I reduced the mocha flavor by just adding a tsp of espresso powder- just enough to give the chocolate a little extra flavor. The chopped apricots were really nice and sweet. I subbed regular brown sugar for dark brown so my cookies were a little lighter in color. These really are best the day they are baked. A few days later and the leftovers are a little dry.
They won’t replace my go to chocolate chip cookie recipe but I did enjoy the easy recipe and a great use for dried apricots. Find the recipe with Peggy of Galettista
So this was the week we were to make croissants. For real and from scratch. I was so excited that I bought expensive butter. The process has many steps of rolling and folding dough but nothing is too difficult. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t follow directions to a t (I wasn’t breaking out a ruler to make sure my dough was the perfect size).
In the end, buttery and flaky croissants were enjoyed. Some with a bittersweet chocolate filling too. And I’m comforted to know I still have the second half of the dough in the freezer to bake up soon.
Take on the challenge of croissants. Find the recipe on Amanda’s blog.
This boca negra was the first recipe I made from Baking with Julia way back at Christmas time 2011 (luckily I thought ahead and took a picture and wrote down a few thoughts then). I used amaretto in the cake, which had a nice flavor without tasting like a cocktail. The cake stayed fresh for days, and the flavor just got better with time. The scariest part? Flipping out a hot-from-the-oven cake onto a plate. I reread the instructions 5 times (How do I know it is really done? You really don’t need to wait a few minutes before flipping?) Then I just did it and was rewarded with a perfect unmolding.
I made the focaccia about a week ago and just never got a chance to post about it or photograph it. It was pretty tasty, although a recipe that requires some planning ahead to get all of the steps timed correctly.
Find the Boca Negra recipe on A Frederick Food Garden
And the Focaccia recipe Wandering Through
I don’t usually repeat recipes from one holiday to the next, except maybe Christmas cookies. This cake, however, I really really loved. I’m hoping that by posting it (over a month later…), I will remember to make it again next year.
This is the combination of a few recipes: a chocolate cake and adapted frosting from Barefoot Contessa, the filling frosting adapted from Cook’s Illustrated, and a few twists all my own. The cake is super chocolate, with a white buttercream peppermint filling and peppermint bark topping. So so good. If I do say do myself.
Chocolate Peppermint Christmas Cake
For the cake:
- Butter, for greasing the pans
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
- 2 cups sugar
- 3/4 cups cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cupvegetable oil
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup freshly brewed hot coffee
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two 8-inch x 2-inch round cake pans. Line with parchment paper, then butter and flour the pans.
Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.
For the filling:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temp
1/2 to 3/4 cup of powdered sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 crushed candy cane and 1/4 cup of chopped peppermint bark (can be found at trader Joe’s)
Cream the butter in a mixer for 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of powdered sugar and mix (If it is still too buttery, you can add a little additional sugar). Add salt and vanilla and mix until the frosting comes together. Mix in the crushed candy canes and bark pieces.
Lay one cooled cake layer on your serving platter, faced up. Spread the frosting over the top evenly. Cover with the second layer, bottom or flat side down.
For the frosting:
- 6 ounces good semisweet chocolate (recommended: Callebaut)
- 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
Chop the chocolate and place it in a heat-proof bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Stir until just melted and set aside until cooled to room temperature.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until light yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla and continue beating for 3 minutes. Turn the mixer to low, gradually add the confectioners’ sugar, then beat at medium speed, scraping down the bowl as necessary, until smooth and creamy. On low speed, add the chocolate to the butter mixture and mix until blended.
Spread frosting over the outside of the cake. Top with bark pieces.
This was a rather sophisticated dessert to eat while watching the Pats lose, but we’re fancy like that. Unfortunately, I wasn’t overwhelmed by this recipe (or the football game). Tastes a lot like apple pie which is not my dessert of choice. I will give it credit in that it looks super fancy but is actually quite easy to make. That’s always nice.
Here’s hoping we get a good chocolate recipe to make with TWD in February!
ps- recipe can be found with Gaye of Laws of the Kitchen
pps- just saw there is a chocolate recipe in four weeks. I’ve already made it and it’s a good one
This was the Tuesday recipe for TWD this week, pizza with onion confit. We had so much food in the house that I just couldn’t bring myself to create more leftovers so I waited until the fridge thinned out a bit. OMG am I so happy I finally made it though!
The onions are slow cooked in red wine and not only are they sweet and rich and wonderful, but they are also a beautiful purple. I layered them on to the pizza dough pretty thick, then topped with some crunchy bits of bacon, scattering of goat cheese, and just a touch of shredded fontina on top.
I loved the onion confit so much and I’ve copied my version of that recipe below. You can find the full recipe, including the pizza dough over with Paul of The Boy Can Bake.
Adapted from Baking with Julia by Dorie Greenspan
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 medium onions (about 2 1/2 pounds total), peeled, halved, and sliced 1/8to 1/4 inch thick
Sea Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon sugar
Herbes de provence to taste or fresh hers like thyme or rosemary
1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups red wine
Scant 1/4 cup red wine vinegar and a splash of balsamic vinegar
Melt the butter in a large heavy skillet and stir in the onions. Season with salt and pepper, stir, cover the pan, and cook the onions over low heat until they are soft, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle the sugar over the onions, stir, cover, and cook for another 5 minutes.
Add the herbes de provence, 1 1/4 cups red wine and the vinegar. Stir well and cook the mixture over the lowest possible heat, stirring from time to time, for about 1 hour/ hour and a half, until just about all the liquid has evaporated. If the liquid has cooked off in half an hour or less, add a bit more wine. Turn the onions out onto a flat plate and let them cool to room temperature.
The onions can be made up to 2 days ahead and kept covered in the refrigerator. They should be brought to room temperature before they’re spread on the pizza.