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[Food] Baking

Discussion in 'Artist's Corner' started by Gared, Dec 9, 2017.

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  1. Gared

    Gared One Of Us

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    Since the winter holidays are upon us (those of us in the northern hemisphere, at least), and baking season is hitting full swing, I thought it was time for me to finally get a baking thread up and running. I'll post pics and recipes (occasionally). Anyone else can post whatever they want. No being judgemental toward your or others' results - any effort is a worthwhile effort. Oh, and this will be an entirely SFW thread, on my behalf at least. If I feel the need to alter any of my recipes, I'll throw a baked baking thread over in the Late Night sub.

    Here's the beginning of my Christmas baking:
    Show Spoiler
    Xmas Cookies Batch 1.png
    Snowflake spritz cookies in blue, dotted with cinnamon candies.
    Xmas Cookies Batch 1 Part 2.png
    The same cookies as above, sans cinnamon candies, in case they sucked. They didn't, but variety is the spice of life. The entire batch of cookies had around 2 tbsp of sugar, so the fact that they disappeared overnight is actually not a terrible thing. The snowflake was the only cutter on my cookie press that would work well, and it only worked for two of three pressings. Next time I have patience to mess with it I'll see if the tree cutter works and make some green ones that are peppermint flavored.

    Miscellaneous baking:
    Couronne (open)
    Tahini Couronne.png
    This was a Couronne I made, hoping to get a chai flavor out of it. I based my ingredients off of Paul Hollywood's recipe, but instead of frangipane/marzipan as a layer I used a mixture of sweetened coconut flakes and tahini. It completely killed the chai flavor from the rest of the loaf, but wound up being awesome anyway.
    Tanini Swirl.png
    Inside view, tight spiral on display.

    I have a very, very big day of shopping to do tomorrow, mostly for baking supplies. Then I'm hoping to come back home and test a batch of macarons and a batch of profiteroles.
     
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  2. Gared

    Gared One Of Us

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    Well, we only got half of the shopping done, but I did make sure that I picked up baking sugar (aka baker's sugar, aka ultra-fine sugar, aka caster sugar) so I could at least bake macarons. And I did. And they're pretty awesome little cookies. A lot of sugar in them though - whew. We're talking 20g per cookie when they're all assembled. I made this first batch with a slightly-peppermint buttercream frosting; I think next time I'll do a sharper flavor to offset some of the sweet.
    Pics (open)

    Macarons.png
    Next time I need to remember to smooth out the tops, and be a little steadier with the piping so they're more even.
    Finished Macarons.png
    They're fun to make, and not nearly as fiddly as I expected them to be. I'll want to pick up some of the gel food colorings so I can make them crazy colors too.
     
  3. PatrThom

    PatrThom Genuinely Curious

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    Kati is making some for this year's bunch, but she's doing them in chocolate/coffee with a dulce de leche center.

    --Patrick
     
  4. Gared

    Gared One Of Us

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    Sounds tasty!
     
  5. drawn_inward

    drawn_inward One Of Us

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    We made this thing for Thanksgiving this year:
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/prinsesstrta_17336

    It wasn't too bad. First time making and eating marzipan. The sweetness was quite low, and just not a ton of flavor. I am glad we tried it, but I won't make it again. Looked really nice though!

    For Christmas, I want to try choux pastry. It looks straight-forward. I heard Splendid Table this weekend and there was a Georgian bread that sounded good. I wouldn't mind trying something like that.
    https://www.splendidtable.org/episode/644
     
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  6. Gared

    Gared One Of Us

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    I've worked with choux pastry a couple of times, and it wasn't bad. The worst part was squeezing it through a pastry bag & tip, really works the forearm muscles. The Prinsesstarta looks amazing, but yeah, there's a lot of cream making up a lot of the volume of that thing. At first I wondered what they were on about on GBBO when they were talking about how much sweeter American desserts are than British desserts (there's an entire episode in series 2 about them remaking American desserts so they're palatable), but now that I've made a few of their recipes (and read through many more), I see what they were talking about. I'd be really interested in studying the divergence between the two cultures' baking and see when American made desserts became so much more sugary. Was it after the fall diminishing of the British empire, when they no longer controlled as many territories in the Caribbean, while the US was expanding into that region; or did it come even later, when we tariffed the hell out of sugar and started putting corn syrup in everything?
     
  7. drawn_inward

    drawn_inward One Of Us

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    We have a really cheap pastry bag setup. Hopefully, it won't jack it up. We might try something else. We haven't tried to make tiramisu. It would be quicker, but less satisfying to make, but great to eat.

    We're still trying to decide on the menu. We did braised lamb for Thanksgiving. I'd like to try duck, but I am not clear about what sort of prep to do.
     
  8. Gared

    Gared One Of Us

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    If your bag is strong but you're worried about the attachment of the nozzle, you could just leave the nozzle out and use clean scissors to cut the batter off. I've seen people use strong Ziplock bags with the corners snipped off without issue; but the one time I did have a problem with choux paste, the problem was with a cheap pastry bag where the lock ring for the pastry tips wasn't up to the task and batter wound up spurting out around the tip instead of through it.

    I've never made duck, but would love to try it sometime myself. I've only really had it done well once, but it was enough to outweigh all of the bad duck I've had (which is plenty). I'm not sure what I'm doing for Christmas dinner this year either. My wife has requested roasted butternut squash ravioli for our anniversary dinner (the 23rd), which I'm going to serve with Pork Milanese - I'm going to use the same brown butter and sage sauce that goes over the ravioli for the pork cutlet, but brighten it up some with some lemon juice and caper - and probably a spinach salad with some toasted nuts, goat cheese, and dried cranberries, and maybe a little shaved brussels sprout for that peppery/mustardy kick.
     
  9. drawn_inward

    drawn_inward One Of Us

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    Our pastry bag isn't much better than a ziplock bag. We'll give it a go. ;)

    I am the same with duck. When it's good, it's amazing, but it's rarely good. That's why I'm a little reluctant to make it the star. I should find to breasts and do a test run.
    We might do braised lamb again b/c it's so good, and the left overs are even better. I want to try to make rosemary fried brussel sprouts. Crispy brussel sprouts are so nice.

    That sage brown butter sauce for the pork and ravioli sounds really great. I've never tried to make ravioli. The capers in a butter sauce is so nice. Yum!
     
  10. WasabiPoptart

    WasabiPoptart Village Crazy Lady

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    I made peanut butter balls for the first time. Someone had made them for a party I attended about 12 years ago. I loved them, but never got around to make them. I don't have pictures, but they turned out pretty good. The only problem I had was that I didn't want to get candy melts , so I used chocolate chips. I read online that if you mix a bit of shortening in with the chips while heating them it's good for dipping. It worked okay except that the chocolate didn't harden. I had to put them in the fridge to get the chocolate to set up, but that made the rice crisps less crispy.
     
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  11. Gared

    Gared One Of Us

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    Those sound roughly like what my family always considered to be "rice krispie treats." None of this marshmallow nonsense for us! Hell no, we had rice krispies stirred into a mixture of peanut butter and karo syrup, pressed into a pan, and topped with melted chocolate and butterscotch chips in a 2:1 ratio. I was very, very upset when I first met the industry standard "rice krispie treat."
     
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  12. WasabiPoptart

    WasabiPoptart Village Crazy Lady

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    That sounds pretty good! These are peanut butter, butter, confectioner's sugar, and crushed Rice Krispies mixed together. Form it into balls and dip in chocolate. It's kind of like buckeyes.
     
  13. drawn_inward

    drawn_inward One Of Us

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    Share the recipe? Por favor?


    I just finished the latest Bon Appetit podcast episode and now I want braised brisket and latkes for Christmas. Desserts are still up in the air.
     
  14. Celt Z

    Celt Z Ginger

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    Finished the Christmas baking just in time for a night out with my girlfriend tomorrow (a.k.a. how I can easy my cookie guilt by giving a ton away). And normally I'm much more fussy about my cookie presentation, but Li'l Z insisted on being part of the process so my perfectionist tendencies had to take a back seat. But everything tastes great, so success!

    The German spritz (press) cookies, a family Christmas tradition:
    20171211_164351sm.jpg 20171211_183813sm.jpg

    The espresso shortbreads, which are supposed to look like espresso beans, but eh, close enough
    20171211_164302sm.jpg
    The peppermint candy canes:
    20171215_201724sm.jpg

    The new favorite, reindeer cookies, made with a chocolate chip cookie base:
    20171213_215320sm.jpg

    And last but not least, the egg nog pound cake with spiced rum icing. I made it with Pennsylvania Dutch egg nog, and whoof! I think I went a little heavy on the rum! You could set this thing on fire. Don't know why it collapsed a bit in the middle while cooling, though.

    20171215_201108sm.jpg
     
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  15. PatrThom

    PatrThom Genuinely Curious

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    Boyle’s Law, I’m guessing.

    —Patrick
     
  16. Celt Z

    Celt Z Ginger

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    Yes, but I'm confused why I ended up with a fairly substantial air pocket in between the top and the middle. I don't think this happened last time.
     
  17. PatrThom

    PatrThom Genuinely Curious

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    Batter was too thin, allowing the bubbles to join together into one superbubble, which collapsed?

    --Patrick
     
  18. Gared

    Gared One Of Us

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    Very good looking cookies.
     
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  19. figmentPez

    figmentPez Cosplay Czar Staff Member

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    The large amount of alcohol prevented gluten formation?
     
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  20. PatrThom

    PatrThom Genuinely Curious

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    po-TAY-to, po-TAH-to.

    VOD-ka.

    --Patrick
     
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  21. WasabiPoptart

    WasabiPoptart Village Crazy Lady

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    I keep telling myself that I'm going to buy a press again so I can make spritz cookies. I miss their buttery goodness.
     
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  22. Gared

    Gared One Of Us

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    Made a spur of the moment, shot from the hip eggnog rum cake. It could use a few tweaks, but it's pretty damn good for a first attempt.

    Cake:
    1 C dried apricots, chopped
    1 C sweetened dried cranberries
    2 Tbsp rum, heated
    1 C butter, softened
    3 laree eggs
    1 C sugar
    2 1/4 C AP flour
    1/4 tsp salt
    1 tsp baking powder
    2 tsp baking soda
    1 C eggnog

    Glaze:
    1/2 C butter
    1/4 C water
    1 C sugar
    1/2 C rum

    For the cake:
    Preheat oven to 350F. Grease/spray a bundt pan.

    Warm the rum and pour over the dried fruit. Allow to sit for 20 mins. Combine remaining ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat, slowly, until just combined. Add fruit and any remaining rum and mix well. Pour into well greased bundt cake pan and bake for 40 minutes on 350F, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan for 5 - 10 minutes (until pan can be touched without burning yourself), then turn out onto wire rack to continue cooling.

    For the glaze:
    Combine butter, water, and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until all sugar and butterfat is dissolved/the glaze is an even texture. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 C rum. Glaze will thicken as it cools. Pour over cake when it has reached your desired thickness.

    I think it would benefit from the addition of some chopped nuts, probably walnuts or pecans. My wife thinks maybe almonds (and maybe toasted they'd stand up well enough). Next time I'll reduce the fruit a little and add some chopped nuts of some sort.

    Rum Cake.png
     
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  23. WasabiPoptart

    WasabiPoptart Village Crazy Lady

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    The Poptart Family Christmas Food Extravaganza (open)


    Shredded Chicken for tamale filling. Rather than the tomato and tomato sauce in the recipe I use a can of Rotel.

    IMG_20171217_155209_289.jpg

    The kids helping me with Mexican hot chocolate cookies (they have cinnamon and a bit of chipotle powder).
    IMG_20171220_194130.jpg


    Minion#2 helping Aussie make chicken tamales.
    IMG_20171221_142603_814.jpg

    Aussie & Minion#1 making sweet tamales, pineapple and mango.
    IMG_20171223_102558_015.jpg


    Flan made with cream cheese (aka flan de queso crema). Just out of the oven about 10 minutes before I made this post.
    IMG_20171224_154024.jpg

    Oatmeal Scotchies (recipe is on the package of Toll House Butterscotch chips)
    IMG_20171224_154034.jpg

    The beginnings of horchata (this is the basic recipe I use, but I soak a few cinnamon sticks in with the rice)
    IMG_20171224_154056.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2017
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