Saturday, November 29, 2008

daring bakers and lots of caramel


    I was quite excited to unravel the November challenge... a lovely caramel cake and wonderful it was! I must say mine is a little less then perfect but tasted great none the less.  This month's challenge was to make Shuna Fish Lydon's of Eggbeater, Caramel cake recipe.   I added the caramel whip centre.  This cake wasn't the easiest but a good challenge... considering I burnt the syrup more then once - its funny, you walk away for a minute and then next thing you know its black.  The caramelized butter frosting was a bit sweet, but the flavor was amazing! 
Now I also made the caramels and wow, wow these were delicious!  I did burn these a little also, hehe, but lets just say I renamed them my 'burnt marshmallow' caramels.

Caramel Whip Centre

1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2tsp icing sugar
4tbs caramel syrup
1tsp vanilla

Combine all in a standard mixture and beat till you get a fluffy whipped cream. 

Golden Vanilla Caramels

1 cup golden syrup
2 cups sugar
3/8 tsp fine sea salt
2 cups heavy cream
1tbs + 1tsp pure vanilla extract
3 tbs unsalted butter, softened

Using a large heavy bottom sauce pan ( bigger then you think you need, the caramel will double in size as it boils) combine syrup, sugar and salt, cook over medium heat for about 3 min covered. Uncover attach a candy thermometer to the pan. Let the mixture reach 305 degrees without stirring. (Heat cream in a small sauce pan till small bubbles form around edges.)  Once the mixture reaches 305 degrees turn of heat add butter and gradually stir in the hot cream. It will bubble rapidly so be careful.  Turn back on the heat and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, to about 245F, the stir consistently till it reaches 260F. Add vanilla at the end, stir and pour on a prepared baking sheet.  Let the mixture for 4 to 5 hours or overnight.
Cut caramels with an oiled knife and wrap in grease proof paper.  Makes about 80.
Recipe adapted from Daring bakers site.


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

sour cherry pie & hope

      A couple of days ago I got the sad news that ABC will be canceling Pushing Daisies and a few others!!!  Lets just say - NOT Pushing Daisies!!!!  I love this show.  Finally something different has hit TV and they (who ever they really are) decided to cancel it!  If its not the show's intense colourful sets and costumes, the great looking pies, awesome cast... and perhaps one handsome pie maker... its the story line that I love.  I can't get enough of this show!  I can tell you that its fan's are not giving up on this show.  I think ABC is in the mist of getting a ton of nasty e-mails.  It's amazing the amount of people that are trying to save this show and the few others.  If anything... at least let the writers finish the story!  I want to know what happens!!!
So for the show and my taste buds... I have made a wonderful little sour cherry pie.  Lets just say every time I would watch the show... I would want pie!  They always looked sooo good ... and good indeed this pie was!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

drinking at noon

 
'I just got electrocuted!'  ...well that was what one server said as he handed me my ...um third glass of wine before 1pm in the afternoon.  Thanks to keeping my winter wool jacket on and the carpet beneath my feet I was frequently giving people shocks as I handed them my ticket in exchange for a tasting.  It was well worth it as the wine was great and the food fantastic!  I have never seen so many different bottles of wine in one place. I must admit it was a little overwhelming, I couldn't decide what I wanted to try first, weather it be the food or the many many wines. But I did leave happy with perhaps some wines to add to my list of favorites.

Sadly I wish I brought my camera to the event, but in the mist of deciding to go last minute and catching the next train I forgot all about it!  It was too bad cause the  atmosphere there was great too!  
I figure these pic's I took a while back would do the job.  These were from a class where we were playing with light and pours.

   

Monday, November 17, 2008

christmas glee

Cookies... where to start?  I know I really wanted to get some christmas cookies rolling. That Christmas feeling is starting to win over in me and truthfully I'm kind of loving it! I still thought it was a wee bit to early for the tree to go up, so cookies are the next best thing! 
 In recent findings I found a ton of xmas cookie cutters that I just had to have... and well of course I just had to try them out right away!  So here's my first batch of the season, with more for sure to come! For this one I used a Basic Gingerbread cookie recipe and a butter cookie recipe for the snowflakes. happy holidays and happy baking! 



Monday, November 3, 2008

lamingtons


I can't believe I forgot the daring bakers challenge.  I was so looking forward to some deliciously creative pizza!  I've been so busy baking up a storm and working hard that it passed my mind.  Sorry guys.  I'm on the next one!  
I went backpacking in Australia a few  years back and was delighted in they're assortment of baked goods. Some familiar and some not... this is where the lamington comes in.  I saw this little square piece of a cake and had to have one!  Coming in tons of great colours and flavors and since I love coconut and well cake of  course they seemed like the perfect little treat!  Missing Oz  and dawning Canada's cold snowy months ahead I decided to bake up something to remind me of its hot days and salty seas.