Thursday, January 29, 2009

daring bakers tuiles


    This month's challenge is brought to you by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umrehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from the Chocolate Book by Angelique Schmeink and Nougatine.  I decided to do a sour cherry swirl for the cookie's sidekick.  The light airy vanilla whipped cream is perfect for those tuiles to scoop up.
I was delightfully excited about this months challenge. Tuiles are yet another recipe of the sort that I wouldn't have thought to try.  I love this one, such a simple cookie and so many variations.  I decided to attempt the butterflies hence my title... I thought it would fit, plus they are kind of cute!  
I actually did this challenge early on.  I was just too excited about it!  I'm glad I did cause last week I came down with the flu that was roaming around and let me tell you...  I didn't even want to move!  Many black and white movies later I was finally back to my old self.



Recipe

Yield: 20 small butterflies/ 6 large

65 gr/1/4 cup softened butter
60gr/1/2 cup sifted confectioner's sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 large egg whites (slightly whisked with a fork)
65gr/1/2 cup sifted all purpose flour

Oven: 180c/350F
Using a mixer fitted with a paddle on low speed cream butter, sugar and vanilla to a  paste. Mix gradually add the egg whites, continue to add the flour in small batches and stir till you achieve a smooth paste. Try not to over mix.   Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 mintues.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and chill that in the fridge for around 15 min.  Using a stencil and a off sided spatula to spread batter. Leave some room in between your shapes, spread your batter in a thin even layer.
bake for 5-10min or until edges turn golden brown.  Immediately release from bakingsheet and proceed to bend/shape the cookies, then let cool to harden.
For my Filling a choose a simple vanilla whipped cream with a swirl of sour cherry jam.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

morning goodness


I'm a huge fan of pancakes, I love everything about them.  The feeling they bring of a bright sunny morning, the great smell of comfort.  Plus it doesn't hurt that there is a thousand things you can do with pancakes.  The flavors you can come up with now are amazing.  But I have to say my all time fav would have to be honey and lime.  The sweetness of the honey and the tart-sourness of a fresh squeezed lime I love.  

Thursday, January 15, 2009

the classics...




 Is it a oatmeal cookie? A chocolate chip cookie?  Or a peanut butter cookie?  Its even better... its all three!  This great looking thing of goodness is a monster cookie.  A cookie combining all three and adding some fun coloured m & m's are a cookie lovers dream come true. Believe me they really are that good!  
I got this recipe from a fabulous baking book I bought only weeks ago. Not that I needed to add another cookbook to my already numerous array, but Baked was my kind of book!  The pictures were great, the recipes interesting and new and not too hard to attempt.  I've already made a few things from the book and they well indeed lived up to some serious good eats!

here's the recipe:

1/2 cup all-purpose flour                                                
1 tbsp baking soda                                                           
Pinch of salt                                                               
5 3/4 cups rolled oats                                              
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cubed     
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar                          
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
5 large eggs
1/4 tsp light corn syrup
1/4 tsp vanilla
2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 cup choc chips
1 cup m&m's

In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together, add the oats until combined.
In an electric mixer cream butter and sugar until smooth and pale in colour.  Do not over mix.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth.  Add the corn syrup and vanilla until combined then add the peanut butter.
Fold in the chocolate chips and m&m's.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 5hrs.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Line baking sheet with parchment.  Cook for 12-15min.
yeilds: about 36

Monday, January 12, 2009

cookies on sticks are the most wonderful of tricks



   journey to the baking store lead me to some wonderful things!  I actually went in search for a beer mug cookie cutter for a customer. Let me tell you, unusual cutters are hard to find unless you order them online which are probably mainly from the states. Well I wasn't prepared to wait that long...  so a journey to McCall's baking supply store in T.O., (first time going there by the way) I was in heaven!  All the things I thought I couldn't find were there... well maybe not everything, but it sure came close enough.
So here I was staring at the wall of cookie cutters hoping a beer mug cutter would pop out of no where... well to my luck none appeared.  But somehow threw my little mind I looked at a baseball mitt and thought 'beer mug'...a little re-shaping needed, but vola!



Sunday, January 4, 2009

the assignment...



Late October I took a Food Styling class with the very wonderful and talented Delores Custer.  The week-long class was quite intense and a lot for my little brain to take in!  There was just so much information and of course trying to learn all the little, odd, surreal and maybe disturbing techniques that go into making food look as good as it does for the camera. From our perfectly cooked uncooked turkey to unassembling a frozen dinner and the fun fake icecream... most items were quite unedible. 
So here is a shot taken by photographer Michael Visser of our final group assignment - Filled crepes with raspberries, crushed pistachios and chocolate sauce.  The only thing fake about our dish was that the filled crepes were filled with not a raspberry filling but with plain ol' paper towel.