April 28, 2008

Blackberry Roulade

This is my second entry for Martha Mondays.  

This time we had a choice to make either a mocha roulade or a blackberry roulade.  I chose the Blackberry. I have never made a roulade or used Blackberries before.

The cake was actually pretty easy to make, even though mine cracked.  I think it was due to me rushing and not letting it cool enough.  The blackberry filling was actually quite good. 

I would make this type of cake again, and i will definitely be trying more recipes with blackberry.

Check out Mimi On The Move to see the other roulades!

April 27, 2008

Mango Bread Pudding

This post will serve as double duty this month.  This is my entry to this months Royal Foodie Joust and also as an entry to Cinco De Mango.

The ingredients for this months Royal Foodie Joust are Mangoes, Cardamon and Brown Sugar. I love Mangoes so i was definitely interested.  I hadnt used cardamon before but had been meaning to try it.  So i googled the three ingredients and the first recipe which came up was a Mango Bread Pudding.   

After searching high and low for caradmon (finally found it at $12 for 1.75 oz!!!!), i made the recipe.  I have never made bread pudding before nor do i recall tasting it before so i wasnt sure what to expect.

The overall flavor was really good but i didn't care for the texture.  It was very mushy.

Cheesecake Pops

This months Daring Baker challenge was Cheesecake Pops chosen by Elle of Feeding My Enthusiasms and Deborah of Taste and Tell.

I have to admit that when I first found out this months challenge, I was intrigued.  Then i saw the pictures and i was super excited.  Immediately i started thinking of all the decorating possibilities, which seemed to be endless.  Plus i love cheesecake!  I couldn't wait!

I halved the recipe, I felt that this was very necessary since i live alone, am trying to start a diet and love cheesecake :).  I baked my cheesecake an 8x3 cakepan for about 50 minutes and had no problems with it setting up.  I formed the ball the next day, inserted the sticks and put the tray in the freezer.  I just have to say that 2oz seemed like alot.  The pops seemed quite huge compared to the sticks.  I had a few spoonfuls of cheesecake left over so i had to eat.  Wow, this is one of the richest, creamiest cheesecakes i have ever eaten.
The next day i started dipping.  I used colored candy melts along with regular chocolate to coat the pops.  Then i dipped them.  The pic you see show the following
  • coconut
  • graham cracker
  • yellow sprinkles
  • halloween sprinkles
  • valentine sprinkles
  • green sanding sugar
  • cinnamon
  • crushed peppermint
  • candied ginger
I had some problems with the sticks coming loose but it mostly went ok.  Since the cheesecake was coming straight from the freezer, when i used the candy melts they would become solid before i could finish dipping them, so i had to work really quick with those.  I wish i could have gotten them more round/smoother but I still think they look great.

My only regret is that I wish i would have made the entire recipe, this way i could have tried more flavor and decoration combinations.

April 22, 2008

Bill's Big Carrot Cake

Had some technical difficulties posting this week, hence there are not pictures or html links :(

This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is Bill’s Big Carrot Cake chosen by Amanda of Slow Like Honey.

Initially I was going to skip the week’s entry. I already have a tried & true carrot cake recipe, which I don’t think I will ever change. It’s actually the first flavor I consistently received orders for, so I was skeptical to try another recipe.

But then I thought about when I joined TWD, my mission was to complete every challenge, every week – so I decided to participate.

To me the recipe is a very basic carrot cake recipe – so I had no problems putting it together. I decided to halve the recipe since I have a few other blogging events which I have to prep for this week. I also decided to make cupcakes i/o a cake.
The batter made 3 cups which would usually yield me 12 cupcakes using my ice cream scoop – but I only got 11? Mine didn’t sink as others did but the batter rose so much that they overflowed and made a chain link of muffin tops!

Other than that the cake was tasty, but a little fragile. I think I will stick with my current recipe.

For a printable version of the recipe click here.

Click here to check out the other Tuesdays with Dorie bakers.

Last Week: Marshmallows
Next Week: Fluted Polenta and Ricotta Cake

April 15, 2008


This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is Marshmallows chosen by Judy of Judy’s Gross Eats.

I've tried to make marshmallows once (for my chocolate hi-hat cupcakes) but that was before i got my KA - it turned out ok but they were ridiculously sweet. Now that i have my KA i was happy to see this recipe chosen so i can make some again.

So of course i have some mishaps.
  • in trying to get my syrup to 265 it started to turn a pale amber color, so my marshmallows are beigey
  • when pouring the sugar syrup into the whites the syrup started to harden on the whisk, so there were big clumps of thickened syrup stuck to my whisk
  • i guess the syrup was too hot because i had little flecks of eggs all thru it, so i had to strain it
  • the whisk to my KA broke (i just got this KA in august)!!!!
After beating the meringue it really didnt look like alot so i used an 8" square cake pan intead. I sprayed it with baking spray and then dusted the pan with a cornstrach/sugar mixture. Once the mixture was into the pan i spread it out and tossed on more cornstarch/sugar. I then put a sheet of wax paper on top and smoothed out the surface. I let them sit for about 3 hours before i cut them (i used my pizza cutter). They were still a little moist so i just tossed them in more cornstrach/sugar and let them sit.

From my other experience making marshmallows i was scared to bite into it for fear of going into a sugar coma, but once i did i was really happy. Not too sweet, the perfect hint of vanilla, a nice spongy/gummy center. My only issue was the cornstarch on the outside of the marshmallow, to me it gave it a kind of dry, chalky texture when you first put it in your mouth. Otherwise I loved it. I have to say that there is a big difference between these and the ones in the supermarket. These make me want to make them over and over again so that i have them perfected by the time winter comes...... homemade mini marshmallows to top homemade hot cocoa :)

For a printable verion of the recipe click here

Click here to check out other Tuesdays with Dorie bakers.

Last Week: The Most Extraordinary French Lemon Cream Tart
Next week: Big Bills Carrot Cake

April 14, 2008

Martha Mondays ......Its a Good Thing

This is my first entry to a new event called Martha Mondays which was created & hosted by Mimi of Mimi on the Move.

The premise of this group is to make Martha Stewart recipes twice a month. At this time there is no joining or participation requirements, if you choose to participate just email Mimi with the details and she will include you in the roundup on her blog. Initially all recipes were going to taken from the
Martha Stewart Baking Handbook, but that is not the case. The recipes chosen for this event are open to all food categories, not just baking and desserts, and this is a welcome change is it seems everything i make lately needs sugar, butter, eggs and flour.

The first challenge is Coconut-Pecan-Caramel sandwhich cookies.
Now i have to tell you, that while i love to bake cookies are not my thing. Not even the slice and bake cookies. Something always goes wrong. BUT this recipe went really smoothly (at least for me). It was a very simple recipe, which i cut in 1/2 to avoid 1 dz cookies by myself. The dough had a crumbly texture which made a crumbly/sandy cookie, which i love. I may have cooked it too long but the caramel was not sweet enough for me.

All in all i would have to say that this recipe was success, especially since the final product is edible.

I cant wait until we find out what the next recipe is.

For printable recipe click here.

April 10, 2008

Black Forest Cupcakes

I have owned the Cake Mix Doctor cookbook for quite some time, but have yet to make any of the recipes. I usually bake from scratch but I am always on the look out for new simple and easy recipes to send to school for the kids birthdays. I have heard so many good things about this book and since i have some free time right now I have decided to try some of the recipes. I have been wanting to make a Black Forest Cake for some time so when i saw the recipe for Chocolate Covered Cherry Cake, i decided to try it. The recipe couldn't be any

Chocolate Covered Cherry Cake
1 - box Devils Food Cake
1 - 21oz can of Cherry Pie Filling
2 - eggs
1 - tbsp almond extract

Mix the cake mix, cherry pie filling, eggs and almond extract together in a large mixing bowl
Blend with an electric mixer on low for 1 minute
Stop the machine and and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.
Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat for about 2 minutes more, scraping the sides again if needed.
Pour batter into prepared pan, smoothing the top with a rubber spatula.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

I just mixed everything together in a large pyrex with a whisk. The batter yielded about 4-1/2 cups which gave me 18 generous sized cupcakes, which were done in about 25 minutes. The result was a super moist cherry studded chocolate cake. I topped each of with a swirl of vanilla buttercream and added a marachino cherry for garnish. I have already started thinking of other ways to make this cake again - im thinking to add kirsch for an adult version:)

I have to say that based on the sheer simplicity of this recipe and the delicious outcome - i will definitely be trying more recipes from this cookbook.

Next time .... Peaches N Cream Cake.

April 9, 2008

Red Velvet Cupcakes

As many of you will come to know i love to bake. But i would rather make cucpcakes over a cake any day. Or i will make a small 6" cake and 12 cupcakes. I love making cupcakes - so you will notice that most of my posts to come will be in cupcake form.

These are my Red Velvet Cupcakes. Red Velvet seems to be all the rage these days, and is easily giving chocolate a run for its money as the most requested flavor at events and wedding. I have never tasted or made a red velvet cake before so i was not sure what to expect, everyone has such different and strong opinions on this cake. Is it a chocolate cake? Is it a buttermilk cake? Is it a buttermilk cake with a hint of chocolate? So many versions of this recipe out there each with its own "passed down" story to go with it.

I chose a recipe which was recommended to me by a friend. It comes from Sylvia's Soul Food Cookbook. The only change i made from the original recipe was that i increased the cocoa powder to 2 tbsp. The cake was a little dense and could have been moister but it was very tasty - it has a light chocolate taste in the background. I am tempted to make this cake without the food coloring and see if there is any difference in flavor and texture.

I topped it with a marshmallow cream cheese frosting which i made up as i went along. It was really good but a little too soft. I want to work on it but i dont even remember what i did so i guess i will have to start from scratch.

Since this is such a popular flavor I need to perfect it so that i can add it to my rotation. I will stick with this recipe as a base and tweak a few things to work on the denseness and dryness.

For printable recipe click here.

April 8, 2008

The Most Extraordinary French Lemon Cream Tart

This weeks Tuesdays With Dorie recipe is The Most Extraordinary French Lemon Cream Tart chosen by Mary of Starting From Scratch.

Reading so many food blogs I constantly see the words MYER LEMONS, so i thought this was my chance to use them. I really wanted to get some, but my local supermarkets do not carry them and I did not have the means to travel to get them. But they are on my list of things to try.

So I just used regular supermarket lemons. After scrubbing green ink off the my supermarket lemons (why do they need to stamp Sunkist on the lemon and put a Sunkist sticker?) i started my cream. I had some trouble with my lemon cream. I used a metal bowl and didn't have a problem with the temperature but to me my consistency no good. I'm not sure if i really had trouble or if i was expecting something else (i was thinking the consistency of a lemon meringue pie filling). After 24 hours in the fridge, it seemed like my cream would never get thick enough. Eventually i just spread it into the tart shell and put it in the fridge again. Then it started to thicken even more. The final cream was was soft (a little grainy), but firm enough to hold swirls made a with spatula and to make a semi-clean slice.

The crust was really simple, but i had to use two yolks. I dont know why but lately all my eggs yolks have been different sizes. I only buy large eggs but if you saw the yolks that come out of this egg - it was so small. I also added about 2 tsp of ice cold water to bring it together since it was like sand. I had no problems lining my tart pan, freezing the crust or baking the crust. I have a little lemon cream left over but it may be because I used a different sized tart pan - a rectangular one.

I made some candied lemon slices to garnish it. Wow those things are good, and i didn't even dip them in sugar afterward. I will use the leftover syrup to go over a lemon cake i will make later this month.

I ate one slice, it was good but a bit much for me. I like lemon but i'm not really a lemon lover so I cant really give a consensus on how it tasted since it was only ready yesterday and I haven't had a chance to share it with anyone. This is one of the challenges where is have to share since I am not a lemon lover, there is no way i can finish this off by myself.

I am thinking to make the orange and/or lime tart in the near future, especially since its spring. I would think that you could just sub the zest/juice with a different citrus and have the same results but depending on which citrus you use the cream recipe is different. I wonder why?
I am eager to see all the lemon and orange creams made this week and what the outcome out was.

**After looking at various entries today I have decided that i too want smooth and silkly pale yellow lemon cream, sooo i will be trying this cream again. I do not have a food processor/blender, only a KA stand mixer, KA hand held mixer and a immersion blender. Any suggestions on which i should use when incorporating the butter**

For a printable verion of the recipe click here

Click here to check out other Tuesdays with Dorie bakers.

Last Week: Gooey Chocolate Cakes
Next week: Marshmallows

April 1, 2008

Gooey Chocolate Cakes

This week’s TWD recipe is Gooey Chocolate Cakes and was chosen by Leigh of Lemon Tartlet

I have always wondered how to make those chocolate cakes with the oozing center, so I couldn’t wait to try this recipe. I was really happy that this was not such a large scale recipe - 6 mini cakes was the perfect amount.

I imagined my spoon breaking into the cake and warm chocolate oozing onto the plate. Well I am not sure if this was supposed to be that type of cake, but I had no such luck. They did not turn out ooey or gooey in the center. They were just a really moist, almost fudgy like. The only culprit I can think of is my tempermental oven which changes temperatures throughout baking.

For me they could have been a touch sweeter. I wish I had some vanilla ice cream to go with it but no luck, I only had green tea and sticky toffee pudding. I chose the green tea which turned out to be a really good flavor combo.

I had three left over so I ate one for breakfast yesterday (and today) still fudgy in the middle and still good.

For a printable version of the recipe click here.

Click here to check out other Tuesdays with Dorie bakers.

Last week: Caramel Topped Flan

Next week: The Most Extraordinary French Lemon Cream Tart

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