Sunday, November 29, 2015

The Baking Bibile: Butter Spritz Cookies

This is preview of what your holiday cookie baking could look like. If, that is, you have a holiday cookie baking tradition.

Here are Rose's Spritz Butter Cookies, clumsily piped out by me and sprinkled very heavily by me and the toddler. (Mostly me.)

They whizz up in the food processor super quickly. The trick of this particular recipe is the substitution of cornstarch for some of the flour which Rose says makes them a bit more light and delicate. I didn't have any cornstarch left and I thought about subbing tapioca starch but then chickened out and just replaced the flour the cornstarch replaced.

I got annoyed with how long it took for me to clumsily pipe out the cookies, and you can bet the toddler got annoyed too. Having a toddler has highlighted just how impatient I can get. These cookies bore the brunt of our annoyance. Sorry, cookies.

They are good. The slight almondy taste (from the ground almonds and almond extract) are nice. Perhaps the heavily sprinkled sprinkles are marring the delicate taste because I am putting these into the "good but not great category."


Monday, November 09, 2015

The Baking Bible: Sugar Rose Brioche

This is a beautiful looking loaf of bread, and as it is a brioche, it is really delicious too. It also looks really complicated, but really it is not. My kind of project.

I am really loving how brioche can fit into a busy life. The starter and flour blanket can be made in one day and put in the refrigerator overnight. Next day the cold dough can go straight into the mixer to knead and incorporate the eggs and butter. Then a rise, a rest, a degas, another rest, then a couple business letter turns, and then the dough can go hang out in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Two days later, the brioche gets rolled out to a big circle. The brioche was amazingly easy to roll out. My dough wasn't sticky at all, which brioche is supposed to be. Maybe all that time in the refrigerator helped with that?

Cinnamon and sugar are spread out over the rolled out dough and then everything is rolled up, jelly roll style. Then comes the big design ta-da. The roll is cut down the middle lengthwise, the two sides are twisted together, cut sides up. This twist then gets coiled into a spiral which, when baked, looks super complicated and very appealing.

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 This is a very easy bread to snack on. Sweet soft bread, enriched with eggs and butter, and a hit of cinnamon. A winner!

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

The Baking Bible: Marble in Reverse Cake

I've been looking forward to this cake since I made my first reverse marble during the test bake. I love, love, LOVE, Rose's sour cream bundt cakes. Dense, rich, melt-in-your-mouth cakey goodness.

Here's my test bake:

Now do you understand why I've been eagerly waiting to bake it again?

Sadly, I discovered that this isn't a toddler-friendly cake making experience. The batter must be layered in the pan in a specific way with specific amounts, as quick as possible. What this means is that the toddler decided he needed me to pick him up right as I started layering batter into the pan. So I layered the batter into the pan with a crying child standing next to me. Oh well, not all baking experiences will be fun!

Surprisingly, the marbling came out pretty good.

And it tastes fantastic.

The chocolate glaze is actually more white chocolate than dark chocolate, and somehow tastes like a mellow milk chocolate. I tried to wait until it was cool enough but I couldn't. So the glaze doesn't lok that wonderful. But it is yummy.

How many more ways can I say I love this cake? Here's a quote from my test bake:
"Oh how I love a sour cream bundt. Dense, moist, tight tender crumb, with a little tang. This cake is everything I love about cake. I was worried the ganache glaze would be too much or overpower everything but it didn't. All that white chocolate in the glaze keeps it from being too rich or heavy. Who knew?"