Sunday, December 26, 2010

Heavenly Cake - Cranberry Crown Cheesecake


This was a nice, standard cheesecake. I must admit that I left out the third cup of sour cream as I realized it was just going to be too much batter for the small pans I was using. Perhaps it would have made the cheesecake have a lighter quality to it.

I used store bought, hard, lady fingers for the sides and bottom. It really softened nicely and was a very nice and tender crust. Someone decided to poke their finger into one of them a couple times...

The cranberry mush was easy to make.

I do think I would have enjoyed this cheesecake more with another fruit topping such as strawberry or raspberry.

Nothing exceptional, just nice classic cheesecake. All in all, very pleased with this dessert. It went pretty fast!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Heavenly Cake - Free Choice - Heavenly Coconut Seduction Cake


This lovely cake gives a nice presentation. Several family members commented how fancy it looked. It tasted pretty good too. The whipped cream was not to heavy and the cake had a nice coconut flavor. Although it was a bit dense as Rose warns and perhaps a tad on the dry side. Although I did make a double recipe so perhaps I miscalculated somewhere.

Some kind of cake type potion...

Talcum powder...

Yeah, verily, the thick sludge of life we must all trudge through...

A pauper gazes at the cake in the window...

I hear Antarctica is nice this time of year...

 Perhaps I went a bit heavy on those pina-coladas...

BBA - Tuscan Bread


 This bread uses a boiled flour paste that gives it a unique sweet flavor. We used these for burger buns and were quite pleased.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Heavenly Cake - Mini Vanilla Bean Pound Cakes


These had a real nice vanilla flavor and fragrance.

Mrs. Mendy bought these KitchenAid mini silicone baking cups for me as a Chankah gift. 

The batter actually did curdle a bit. But I really liked the consistency of this batter. Very easy to spoon.

The obligatory toaster shot.

Here you can see how nicely the bottom browned. 

I am really not used to that extra crust the silicone cups give so I am not going to judge whether it was a good or bad feature. However, it was just a wee bit underdone at the 20 minute mark and could have used a couple more minutes. The taste, though, was very vanilla-y and fantastic. They were all finished within minutes.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Marionberry Sufganiyot - Jelly Doughnuts - Punchkees and BBA: Swedish Limpa Bread


This is my first foray into the realm of frying. Eating foods made with oil is traditional on Chanukah since we are celebrating the Miracle of oil. Oil represents wisdom that is beyond us, the secrets of creation. Usually one studies these things sparingly since they are so hard to grasp. The Almighty creator's presence in the oil miracle of Chanukah tells us: No! You must imbibe these ideas as if it were a food in its own right, not just a condiment!

What a good mazel to find Marionberry preserves! They really give these doughnuts an extra yummy flavor!

I used Marcie Goldman's recipe in Jewish Holiday Baking.

Fry em up! I probably did not have to use quite so much oil.

The oil was too hot at first and had to be adjusted. The ones on the left were the testers.

Fill them up and powder em'.

The Limpa Bread:

Sauté cardamom, fennel, anise and orange oil.

 Add flour...

Sourdough starter....

Rye flour paste prepared the day before...

O.K. they look a little funny...

But boy does it taste good! A slight soury taste and the the spices are not overpowering but are just nice undertones.

Sourdough Limpa does not really have anything to do with Chanukah but this bread seemed festive and its flavor definitely put a smile on my face.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Heavenly Cake - Chocolate Velvet Fudge Cake


This delicious cake has a lot of liquid, unusual for one of Rose's chocolate cakes. As usual, I added a few extra tablespoons of liquid to the cocoa at the beginning of the recipe so that the cake would not be too dry. I realized too late that the 4.2 oz of water you put in afterwards would more than account for any dryness. It ended up tasting like watered down chocolate. It still had a light crumb and nice crust but the chocolate flavor was a little weak. 

Not very pleased with the way my candle looked but the flavor does contrast nicely with the cake. I used wilton red icing to color the top.

Now that is what candles are supposed to look like. ;)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Heavenly Cake - Lemon Chinese Crown


As in, "The Great Wall" of lady fingers.
(Hat tip to Monica for the ribbon idea to hold it all in place.)

Mis en place: Lady fingers

The circle is O.K. but the lady fingers lost all semblance of shape. I did use a ziplock bag though. I guess I better brush up on making those real scratch piping things from baking sheets...

I present to you, "The Great Wall." It did make it easier to just wrap around the perimeter of the cake.

It does sort of look like a crown, or a baseball glove...

Mis en place: the filling.

The lemon curd took a good 25 minutes for me, not 15.

Fill with the custard. I wonder, is this considered a Charlotte?

I also wonder what the powdered sugar adds to the meringue? I used the blow-torch for the meringue  as my broiler was not going to be able to accomodate the "Great Wall." I did not wait for all the freezing steps and waiting steps in the middle of the recipe. I just made the whole thing and stuck it in the freezer.

Here are some of the better looking ladyfingers. You can see the seepage from when I attempted to take off the spring-form before it was frozen. 

It was really yummy. The ladyfingers and the billowy lemon really balance each other nicely.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Heavenly Cake - Chocolate Genoise with Chocolate Peanut-butter ganache


This was a really terrific chocolate cake, one of the best genoise recipes we have had yet. We were a bit wary about adding the black raspberry syrup but it really adds an oomph and takes the cake beyond the ordinary.

Mis en place:

Sorry I did not take pictures of the genoise process. You can find a description of how I do it in a previous post. Since my first chocolate genoise attempt from the Cake Bible a while ago was less than extraordinary, I feel this is a big improvement.

I made two cakes since I have noticed that all of Roses ganache and syrup recipes are for a full two layer cake. Also, I figured that this cake would go really fast (and it did!) I used a bit more peanut butter in the ganache than the recipe called for and was not sorry.

I had a slice of this in the morning before work and found myself craving it the whole day. Now that's good cake!