Friday, February 27, 2009

TC: Carmalized Apples

My partner for this months Taste & Create was Veronica of La Recette du Jour. Her blog is the kind I can only dream of, great recipes that Indra would never eat. I really wish this challenge had come in about 2 months when I wasn't in the middle of tax season. There are so many recipes I would have liked to have chosen. But time and stress made me choose something simple, and it doesn't get much simpler then Caramelized Apples.

Caramelized Apples
A quick dessert, based on a medieval recipe.
One-day old bread
Lemon juice

Allow about one apple (eating for preference) per person. Peel and core them, and chop into 1/4 inch dice. Drop the pieces into a bowl as you go along, with sugar to taste, and a little lemon juice to stop them going brown. Cut a similar quantity of stale white bread (crusts removed) into dice as well.

When you are ready to eat, melt a good quantity of butter in a heavy frying pan and throw in the apples along with the sugar. Cook briskly, stirring about, until the apples are brown round the edges and the butter and sugar are starting to caramelize. Remove the apples to a plate. Put the bread cubes into the pan and cook, tossing them so they don’t burn, until they are crisp. Then return the apples to the pan, mix everything together, and serve instantly, on their own or with cream or ice cream.

If you get this right, the apples are soft and the bread is crunchy, with a lovely caramel sauce.

Temper's Take:
Well I did it right and this was a great breakfast treat. I flambe'd it for fun (and to reassure myself that it really does take two people to photograph flames) and I didn't whip any cream (I really wish I had). I considered adding some cinnamon to the bread but really it didn't need it. This is definitely going on my make it again list. Probably when I am stuck for a quick dessert for company, or a treat for us.

DB: Chocolate Valentino Cake

The February 2009 challenge is hosted by Wendy of WMPE's blog and Dharm of Dad ~ Baker & Chef.
We have chosen a Chocolate Valentino cake by Chef Wan; a Vanilla Ice Cream recipe from Dharm and a Vanilla Ice Cream recipe from Wendy as the challenge.

Chocolate Valentino
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, roughly chopped
5 tablespoons of unsalted butter
3 med eggs separated

1. Put chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water (the bottom of the bowl should not touch the water) and melt, stirring often.
2. While your chocolate butter mixture is cooling. Butter your pan and line with a parchment circle then butter the parchment.
3. Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites and put into two medium/large bowls.
4. Whip the egg whites in a medium/large grease free bowl until stiff peaks are formed (do not over-whip or the cake will be dry).
5. With the same beater beat the egg yolks together.
6. Add the egg yolks to the cooled chocolate.
7. Fold in 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture and follow with remaining 2/3rds. Fold until no white remains without deflating the batter. {link of folding demonstration}
8. Pour batter into prepared pan, the batter should fill the pan 3/4 of the way full, and bake at 375F
9. Bake for 25 minutes until an instant read thermometer reads 140F/60C.
Note – If you do not have an instant read thermometer, the top of the cake will look similar to a brownie and a cake tester will appear wet.
10. Cool cake on a rack for 10 minutes then unmold.

Classic Vanilla Ice Cream
Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Recipe comes from the Ice Cream Book by Joanna Farrow and Sara Lewis
1/2 Vanilla Pod
1 1/4 cup coconut milk
4 large egg yolks
6 tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp corn flour {cornstarch}
1 ¼ cups Heavy Cream
A big handfull of toasted coconut

1. Using a small knife slit the vanilla pod lengthways. Pour the milk into a heavy based saucepan, add the vanilla pod and coconut and bring to the boil. Remove from heat and leave for 15 minutes to allow the flavours to infuse
Separate coconut from the milk Lift the vanilla pod up. Holding it over the pan, scrape the black seeds out of the pod with a small knife so that they fall back into the milk. SET the vanilla pod aside and bring the milk back to the boil.
2. Whisk the egg yolks, sugar and corn-flour in a bowl until the mixture is thick and foamy.
3. Gradually pour in the hot milk, whisking constantly. Return the mixture to the pan and cook over a gentle hear, stirring all the time
4. When the custard thickens and is smooth, pour it back into the bowl. Cool it then chill.
5. By Hand: Whip the cream until it has thickened but still falls from a spoon. Fold it into the custard and pour into a plastic tub or similar freeze-proof container. Freeze for 6 hours or until firm enough to scoop, beating it twice (during the freezing process – to get smoother ice cream or else the ice cream will be icy and coarse)

(I made a second one with the left over coconut milk some cinnamon and brandy with honey to sweeten)

Tempers Take:
Indra declared it a fail, She didn't like the chocolate I choose (requested a repeat with white or milk chocolate) and the texture of the ice cream didn't work for her (she is not a fan of custards).

I declared it a learning experience, I needed to whip my cream better and measure the ingredients better (my scale broke, I realized this when it told me I had 123oz of chocolate), and most importantly TRUST MY INSTINCTS.

I thought the chocolate was A. a little too bitter for Indra (ok, and me) B. to thick, it crushed my whipped cream. :( and C. the heart mold was hokey (it was valentines day, I had a good excuse). Lastly I really need an icecream maker to make good icecream.

Definitely going on my list to try again, both cake and icecream.

Corn Pancakes

I have been a fan of these for a while, unfortunately I haven't found anyone to share my enthusiasm and I hate to waste so I don't make these often. I figured Pancake day was a great excuse (and I had plans for the left overs.) This recipe is straight off the side of the Jiffy box.

Corn Pancakes
10-12 pancakes
1pkg Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
1 egg
3/4 cup milk

Mix ingredients until moist, it will be slightly lumpy.
Preheat and lightly grease pan.
Turn when bubbles appear and edges begin to dry.

Temper's Take:
These are very very heavy, which might be part of the reason I like them. Slather some peanut butter on and you won't have to eat for the next week! Other wise a little honey is great with them. you need to have the temp a little low to give them plenty of time to cook and don't add extra milk it doesn't work well.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

BBD #16 roundup 41 thru 48

Susan of Wild Yeast made Gorgonzola Fougasse With Figs and Pecans. Finally someone has explained what is up with this funny looking bread, More Crust! definitly a rational I can get behind. The figs and pecans don't hurt either.

Natasha of Living in the Kitchen with Puppies made Rye Fougasse with Two Cheese Fillings. I love the laddered look of this bread.

Tanna of MyKitchenInHalfCups made Maytag Blue Buns. These pretty rose shaped buns come with a great soup recipe.

Mary of One Perfect Bite made Muenster Cheese Bread. With the pretty crust on this bread I really don't care what it tastes like I am sure I would still love it. Fortunately for me Mary says this bread is even tastier then it looks.

Lien of Notitie van Lien made Rosemary-Asiago Bread. I love the chuncks of cheese in the finished bread, The little sprigs of rosemary on top though are what really made it thogh. I only wish I could have smelled it too.

Asha of Aroma! made Spinach and Feta cheese Bread. Spinach and Feta are one of my favorite combinatioons. I am not sure I could have made my self share this with a neighbor like she did.

Dhita of Cooking Etcetera made Crusty Loaf with Gruyere Cheese. Dhita made the cheese bread that started this whole thing. With another rave review I am going to have to make these myself soon.

Temperance of High on the Hog made Crusty Cheese Bread or Gannat. This is my entry. I love the way it toasted up for my favorite grilled cheese recipe. Crisp crust and soft interior, perfect!

BBD #16 roundup 31 thru 40

Glenda of Domesticated Engineer made Cottage Cheese Bread. The name is a little deceptive, while there is cottage cheese there is also cheddar in this bread. The cottage cheese makes hthis bread soft and moist, who can argue with results like that?

Gine of i dolci fanno felici made Pane alla ricotta. A little left over ricotta can do great things for bread.

Aparna of My Diverse Kitchen made Cheddar Cheese and Onion Pretzel Bread. This is not your ordinary little pretzel, this is an entire loaf of bread twisted into shape.

Tommi of Brown Interior made Méteils au Bleu. Apparently Blue Cheese and Rye is a good combination. It certainly looks good.

Cristie of Edible Antics - Having Fun With Food made Cheese, beer and cranberries - 3 gourmet foods baked into 1 muffin. For a quick cheese bread this is definitly the way to go. As she says no yeast to coddle or leavening times to endure.

Lorraine of Not Quite Nigella made Maple, Walnut and Cheese bread. This bread wa so good 1/3rd of the loaf was gone before she noticed, I am not sure I could have stopped there.

Judy of Judy's Gross Eats made Casatiello. Little flecks of bacon take this bread over the top i can just imagine how good it must be toasted with eggs in the morning.

Sunita of Sunita's world made Cheesy, rye and tomato bread. An assortment of seeds and chillis sprinkled on top give this hearty bread a bit of bite.

Jude of Apple Pie, Patis, and Pâté made Ensaimada - Filipino Cheese Brioche. The snail like shape of these brioche rolls hides a cheesy Edam center or as she says in her blog... queso de bola, bowling balls of cheesiness covered in a protective shell of red wax.

Priyasuresh of Priya's Easy N Tasty Recipes made Cheese Oatmeal Bread. Oatmeal, olive oil and egg replacer make this a heart healthy bread. Also very tasty and great with any spread according to Priya.

BBD #16 roundup 21 thru 30

Mary of Delizie del palato made ciabatta con olive e formaggio. I love the way the whole olives look in this bread. I can just imagine how good a sandwich made with this would be.

Sailaja of Kids Zone made Cheesy Onion Stuffed Buns. I am a sucker for carmelized onions and these pretty little rolls look to be packed full of oniony goodness (not to mention cheese and garlic).

Sweathea of TastyCurryLeaf made Pesto Snack Rolls. Homemade pesto still amazes me, add in these pretty little rolls and I am impressed.

Zaira of La cocina de Zaira made Pan de mozzarella, orégano, perejil, cebolla y ajo ( Mozzarella, oregano, parsley, onion and garlic bread). This bread is a serious mouthful. I sat entranced by the picture for 5 mintues watching the cheese ooze thru the crust wishing I could have a piece. This is some serious cheese bread!

Our Very own Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka kochtopf
made Walnut Cheese Mini-loaves. This is a great looking loaf of bread, Zorra says even though the cheese disapears the taste remains.

Gretchen of Canela & Comino made Cheese Bread. The name does not do this bread justice! Gretchen has declared that it is a winner and I believe her, it certainly looks like one.

Astrid of Paulchen's FoodBlog made Rye bread with cheese. With a little help from Harry this rye sourdough turned out pretty tasty looking. (Of course that might just be my love of rye talking).

Cristina of La cucina di Cristina made Georgian cheese bread ( Khachapuri & Adjaruli Khachapuri ) I love the Adjaruli Khachapuri its boat shape with the egg on top is a great idea for breakfast (or a late supper).

DK of Culinary Bazaar made Wholegrain Milk and Cheese Bread. Not Vegan or particularly light, but well worth it. I wish I had nieghbors like this.

Laura of The Spiced Life made Tapatio Cheddar Bread. Appaently the First time was the charm, the second shot ended up in the trash and the third one wasn't bad, but not as good as the first. I certainly give her points for persistance!

BBD #16 roundup 11 thru 20

IDania of El aroma de IDania made Cheese Espiga. I love the way this loaf looks, like it is just waiting for you to tear a chunk off.

Chaosqueen of Chaosqueen's Kitchen made Tomato and mozzarella crown loaf. This is almost pizza like, but not quite. Either way who could say no to this georgeous loaf?

Zainab of Arabic Bites made Kobzat al feta wal basal (Feta stuffed bread. Two types of cheese go into these flat breads, I love the little brown edges on these.

Siri of Siri's Corner made Cheddar Cheese Bread. This is a simple bread that is great for anytime with anything as she says in her blog. Personaly I think her suggestion of olive oil and garlic sound wonderful.

Vanesuky of Vanesuky entre Fogones made Pande queso y nueces. This is the first time she has made bread. The results look great!

Cinzia of Cindystar made Cheese and Pear Buns. She says in Italy we say: "...don't ever tell the farmer how good is cheese with pear!" I can certainly see the logic in that, I am thinking when pears come back in season i am going to have to try this.

Cinzia of i dolci di bice made bread with cheese and sour cherries. These little breakfast buns sound great! I would never have thought of combining cherries and cheese in a bread.

Dulmina of 'Dulmina tündérkonyhája' ('Dulmina's Fairy Kitchen') made Pizza with Sunchokes and Smoked Cheese. This has got to be one of the prettiest pizzas I have ever seen! I bet it tasted even better then it looks.

Madam Chow of Madam Chow's Kitchen made French Asiago Bubble Bread. A minor mishap didn't stop this bread from being delectable.

Natalia of gatti fili e farina made Pane all'aceto balsamico e parmigiano reggiano. Balsamic Vinegar makes this bread tangy and the swirl of cheese makes it even nicer.

Friday, February 6, 2009

BBD# 16 Roundup 1 thru 10

Jacqueline of Toxo Bread made Ale and cheddar bread. From her entry... Bread and cheese, two simple yet fundamental foods - they are food groups, right?... I certainly agree, add some quality ale (she asked an expert for recomendations) and I don't think it can get much better.

Isis of Yambalaya made Feta bread + Feta & sundried tomato bread. She found a local supplier for fresh ground flour and used the 'farine pain 6 cereales et 5 graines' that she recieved in her bread. I think I might be jealous.

Anna of Morsels & Musings made Khachapuri (Georgian cheese bread). In her blog she says ... Khachapuri are the cheesiest breads there are... I would have to agree, I think it would settle even the most serious cheese cravings!

Shelly of Adventures with the Woods made Fugassa Bread. This is one of those breads that I wish I had made. The Maldon Sea Salt on top is just the icing on the cake for me.

Zabeena of A Lot On My Plate made Parsnip & Parmesan Bread. Parsnip is not something I would ever have thought of for bread, I am looking forward to substituting it in some of my recipes that call for mashed potatoes.

Yasmeen of Health Nut made HachaPuri. Baking soda not yeast and a solid band of cheese thru the center, sounded good to me and when Yasmeen suggested serving it with a hearty soup I was sold.

Stefan of Der Supenkasper made Gefülltes Fladenbrot mit Kartoffeln und Käse (Paratha). His results are so much prettier then when I tried to make Paratha, everytime I look at them I end up drooling and wishing I had some.

Sara of Imafoodblog made Bavarian soft pretzels. These were so good she made them twice! When I get around to Pretzels these are the ones I am going to make! I can just imagine them with Parmesian and Garlic Salt.

Mimi of Israeli Kitchen made herb/cheese bread. She didn't mention the nuts in her title so I thought I would mention them. They make a lovely addition to this great bread.

Caitlin of Engineer Baker made Old Order Amish Cheese Bread. Three cheeses, four beautiful loaves of bread and prose that will have you running to buy more cheese. This is a person after my own heart.