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Showing posts with label Food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Food. Show all posts


Lots of Christmas weekend bakes in this one! Plus two more recipes I've had on my "to bake" list for a bit. Almost everything came out exactly as I'd hoped! Love when that happens.


Mille Feuille

I wanted to make something other than Christian's pie (below) for Christmas Eve and remembered we had frozen puff pastry I've been meaning to use. I googled and found this recipe for mille feuille (or napoleons, except this isn't almond flavored.) Objectively a simple recipe, but still messy and time consuming, ha ha! The diplomat cream was a little loose so they slid around a bit by the time I took the final photo, but they were a hit! Everyone that ate one said they were delicious. I don't like pastry cream so I didn't have one. We have some leftover cream and egg whites I need to use up too...

Not as pretty later in the evening, haha!


Lemon Raspberry Pie + King Arthur Flaky Pastry Dough

This was Christian's Christmas Eve bake, but I helped a bit so including it anyway ;) The pie dough didn't come out right but I'm not sure what he did wrong since his pie crusts are usually good. Perhaps the instructions for the recipe were weird or he didn't cut in the butter enough. But the filling of the pie was very tasty even though that recipe was a little all over the place too, ha ha! 

Cinnamon Babka

I made chocolate babka earlier this year (and again this weekend) and wanted to try my hand at cinnamon for our Christmas morning breakfast. The recipe was from America's Test Kitchen, the same place I got the chocolate one from but the method was very different. Mine didn't come out looking how I hoped - the filling melted into the bread more than it was supposed to and there was a lot of it at the bottom of the loaf. If I make this again I may double the filling or see if I can find a recipe that uses a different rolling/twisting method. It still tasted great!


Chocolate Babka

As mentioned above I already made this once, but it deserves another mention because its so tasty! And pretty easy to make, even if its a bit messy! It was a hit on Christmas morning and kept us all stuffed until early afternoon at Grandma's.

Chocolate Mousse Cake

I had some leftover heavy cream from all my Christmas baking so I decided to make a recipe I had saved back in October to use it up. This was my first time making a mousse and a layered dessert of this type. It was easier than I thought it would be but also a little nerve wracking. My ganache was a little bit oon the thin side but other than that it came out great! (I'm annoyed because I KNEW it was thin and I was doing a time lapse video and didn't want to stop it to add more chocolate...grr!)


Lemon Blueberry Loaf

I knew I was most likely going to have an extra lemon after baking Saucy Chicken Picatta meatballs for dinner one night so I decided to try and make this loaf! Before using the lemon for dinner I zested it for this recipe and had just enough juice left over as well. I like small, wild blueberries so I used some frozen ones to make this and I think next time I'll use a few less because it was a bit more blueberry dense than it would have been if I used normal size berries. It affected he cooking time a bit because of the extra bulk. But, even with the extra cooking time it was delicious! A perfect breakfast for cold winter mornings.

We've got a very brown roundup this week. I guess that's normal for Fall/Winter though. Most of these came out well, but one was a bit of a mess (at least in my opinion.) My next round of bakes will probably be more Christmas-related. We're two weeks away so gotta get it all in now!

Herb & Olive Oil Focaccia

I've been waiting for enough of our currant tomatoes to ripen before making focaccia and finally admitted defeat and made one without them. I like adding them because they're a fun pop of color and one of the few ways I enjoy tomatoes (because they're so small!) I decided to try a different focaccia recipe since I bought King Arthur's "Italian Style Flour" when we went to the Vermont store and the bag said it was great for focaccia. I decided to go to the source and found a recipe where they used the same flour.




Maple Pecan Sticky Buns

Normally I follow my Aunt's recipe for sticky buns but decided to give Jenna's a try. Hers has a LOT more butter, ha ha. The process to make them was a little longer but super simple. Even before they fully rose in the pan I could tell they were going to be TASTY! (That could also be because there's over 2 sticks of butter in them. Maybe I didn't bake them long enough or there was too much topping, but a few of the rolls had some raw dough at the bottom. I was going to reheat them at my friend's so I left them as is instead of baking them longer at home.

S'mores Bars

I made these when I went to visit my friend Kristen to meet her new baby. She LOVES s'mores so the second I saw this recipe on Instagram I knew I had to bring them for her.  I made my own fluff because we didn't have any and I think that was my fatal error. They definitely didn't come out looking as nice, but they were edible. But I'm glad I brought the Cinnamon Buns with me too so she doesn't think I'm just a horrible baker ;) (don't worry, she knows I can bake, ha ha!) Here's a "before baking" photo because the baked ones were too ugly!


Apple Cider Cake

I made this last Thanksgiving for Christian's family and decided to make it again this year for mine. Originally I wanted to make all of it with the NordicWare Autumn Delights Cakelet Pan I bought last year but unfortunately they decided to stick to it this time and I didn't have time to clean it out properly so I baked the rest of the batter in a normal bundt. store. It was a hit again this year, even with my brother who isn't super int eating desserts.


Brown Butter Pecan Pie Bars

One weekend I was hanging out at my parent's house and my Mom and I decided to get some Christmas baking done. We made a batch of pecan pie bars because they freeze nicely and we can pull them out right before our annual Christmas Eve gathering. They were very simple to make. Our only issue was the edges browned pretty easily even when tenting with foil. I also thought ours came out too short but after we cut them into squares they looked more like her photos! We won't know the full verdict on taste until Christmas, but I enjoyed my sample piece!


Paw Print Peanut Butter Blossoms

I've made this recipe before, but this time I switched up the presentation! My brother in law saw a picture of paw print cookies and asked me to make them for him (my sister doesn't bake.) I thought it would be fun so I told him what ingredients I needed and then got to work. I made the cookies slightly larger than the original recipe says so I would be able to fit a Kiss and 3 chocolate chips. I actually tested 3 different sizes, varying from 60 to 40 grams, and deemed the 40 gram version best. Not too big, bit still enough room around the chocolate. And yes, I weighed every single cookie, precision is fun!

Time for more baking! These are almost all "new" recipes, although some are definitely simple enough to be classified as repeats with a twist, ha ha. (See: cookies, zucchini bread, ice cream.) Made a couple ice creams and a few breads, but all different. I think either the ice cream or zucchini bread were my favorites, but everything was delicious!

Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

We've been getting a lot of zucchini in the garden this year and they are HUGE. I've been using some (of one zucchini) for dinner and the rest to try different baked goods. This time it was Jenna's chocolate chip zucchini bread. This recipe has some spices in it so it felt nice for the approach of Autumn. (I made this in the middle of September)

Recreating Trattoria Sostanza's Meringue Cake

When Christian and I were in Florence on our honeymoon we went to Trattoria Sostanza, which I had been to on my first trip to Italy in 2017. I told Christian his life would be changed after eating their pollo al burro (butter chicken.) We also got their "dolce con fragoline" (meringue with strawberries) to share for dessert. It actually came with raspberries but it was DELICIOUS! We didn't know what to expect with that name, but they said it was like a cake. Out came 3 layers of meringue with layers of vanilla semifredo (gelato/ice cream) speckled with chocolate. I was inspired to try and make my own after they kept sharing photos of other diners eating it on their Instagram stories. I already make my version of their butter chicken at least a few times a year, why not this?!


I started by googling Meringata as that is what some of the Italians were calling it in their captions. I found this recipe that seemed pretty good, but it just used whipped cream in the layers.  Then I found a simple semifreddo recipe and pulled out my Native Vanilla Madagascar vanilla beans for that perfect vanilla flavor! I also added in a few chocolate chips since I didn't have a chocolate bar on hand. Instead of freezing it in a loaf pan I used a round spring-form pan since I wanted it to be a circular cake. I also made three meringue discs hoping I would be able to slice the semifreddo in half to make two layers (I didn't know how much the recipe would make.) Unfortunately, it was too thin to split so I only used two of my meringue discs. I used the third for something else.  


Next time I'll double the semifreddo recipe and buy a chocolate bar to shave into pieces for prettier flecks of chocolate. Perhaps I'll make it for this year's Christmas celebration so we don't have to worry too much about it melting, ha ha! Dye the meringue red or green perhaps??

No Churn Ice Cream 

Not exactly baking, but I still include ice creams since they involve using baking tools, haha! We had leftover heavy cream from the above meringue cake so I wanted to try and recreate my favorite Talenti gelato flavor that they have sadly stopped making - Coconut Almond Chocolate. I found a recipe for a simple chocolate chip ice cream and also added some sweetened coconut flakes and chopped up almonds. Super easy, the hardest part is whipping up the heavy cream.



I'm on the King Arthur Baking email list and this month they're focusing on Mexican Pan Dulce ("sweet bread") recipes. Fany Gerson, a Mexico City-born pastry chef created this recipe for the series. They look so fun and pretty so I had to make them! The recipe for the dough was pretty simple, a starter and then a brioche-type method for completion. They're topped with a simple cookie dough, much like craquelin for cream puffs, which I have been wanting to try making for quite a while (I'm not a cream puff fan so the motivation for that particular version was low, ha ha.) I made the topping a little big but they turned out alright after I peeled off the excess. Next time I may make some more slashes in the topping but these came out pretty good for my first try!


Double Chocolate Halloween Cookies 

I couldn't go through October without making a Halloween-themed recipe.These were part of Handle the Heat's October Baking Challenge so it was fun to know I was baking these cookies along with the rest of her community. They were super easy and came out great! Christian especially enjoyed them because they tasted like Oreo cookies thanks to the black cocoa. Totally worth the splurge for Halloween colored M&Ms, ha ha. I did have a coupon so they weren't full price, but still expensive.


2 Hour Fastest No Knead Bread

It's been a while since I've made this no knead bread so I decided it was time to skip making sandwich bread this week and turn to this crusty deliciousness! I always double this recipe because I like it to be nice and tall and we have a larger dutch oven. This recipe is great because all you need is a bowl, a couple bowl scrapers (to help shape the dough) and a dutch oven.


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Lots of new and interesting bakes in this roundup! I made some classics as well as a movie-inspired cake and some fun jam cookies. I was most excited about the latest bake - a vanilla bean pound cake - because I was using actual vanilla beans! WOO! Can't wait to they them in another recipe, just have to find the perfect one.


Vanilla Bean Pound Cake

Native Vanilla sent me some of their Organic Madacascar Vanilla Beans and I thought this pound cake by Zoë François would be the perfect way to highlight the vanilla-ey goodness! I've been a fan of Zoë since first watching her show on Magnolia Network, so talented! I was a little late to the game as she's been blogging for quite a while. The recipe was pretty easy, with a fun added step of whipping up eggs, I could definitely tell they helped the cake to rise with all that added air! The vanilla flavor was really highlighted with this simple cake, the perfect showcase! This was my first time using full vanilla beans and it was fun to finally be able to cut them open and scrape out the seeds like all the fancy bakers.


Matilda-Inspired Chocolate Cake

Christian wanted a chocolate cake for his birthday so I took the opportunity to make Jenna of Butternut Bakery's Matilda-inspired chocolate cake. 90s kids will know what I'm talking about, but for the uninitiated, there's a famous scene in Matilda where a student gets accused of stealing the principal's cake and she makes him eat an entire (kind of disgusting) chocolate cake in front of the whole school. Obviously this cake has no "sweat and blood" in it. Soooo airy and delicious!


Strawberry Jam Sugar Cookies

When I made my strawberry galette in July I had to buy a little bit of strawberry jam to glaze it. I knew I wouldn't need much of the jam but decided to get some fancy Bonne Maman preserves so I could make these strawberry jam cookies with the leftover! I only did a half batch because I wanted to make sure we liked them before "wasting" another stick of butter and more jam. I knew I didn't need to worry, but you never know, haha! However, I did go against my better judgement and baked too many at once so they all spread and touched each other, bye bye pretty photo!

Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread

If you can believe it, this was my first time baking with zucchini. I've eaten stuff but never made it myself. For this first time I used a huge zucchini we grew in the garden and made double chocolate zucchini bread. I almost made chocolate chip zucchini bread but we didn't have sour cream. We also were low on honey, which this recipe calls for, so I just used 1 cup of brown sugar instead, it worked perfectly and was a hit at our weekend gathering.


King Arthur Baking - Favorite Sandwich Bread (part Whole Wheat)

This is our usual sandwich bread but this time I used half whole wheat instead of fully all purpose. It did affect the rise a little bit with the loaf flattening out instead of puffing up at the top, but it still tasted great and toasted up wonderfully. It's such an easy recipe and takes no time at all to make (unless you could the two hours of rising.)


Peanut Butter Cookies

Another Handle the Heat Monthly Challenge recipe! I always forget how much I enjoy peanut butter cookies until I make them.  They're just so soft and tasty! Tessa's recipe doesn't disappoint, as with all her other's I've tried.


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