Monday, January 26, 2015

Brown-Butter-and-Vanilla-Bean Weekend Cake

The Tuesdays with Dorie online baking group made a vanilla loaf cake from Baking Chez Moi by Dorie Greenspan.

I baked this cake in early January during a snow storm.  I didn't have the heavy cream called for in the recipe and didn't want to venture out to buy it.  I substituted canned full fat coconut milk with very good results.

For me it was the first time making brown butter.  I followed the recipe directions and it worked out fine.

This is a lovely, plain cake, very good toasted.  I wonder if  the cake would have been more flavorful if my vanilla bean had been bigger?

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Granola Energy Bars

This week the Tuesdays with Dorie baking group made Granola Energy Bars from Baking Chez Moi.

The recipe worked very well.  I used peanuts, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds for the nut/seed portion and raisins and dried cranberries for the dried fruit portion.

As promised the brown rice syrup really sticks everything together.

My bars came out quite firm and were a bit of a challenge to cut.  They taste delicious.  I will make this recipe again soon.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Gingerbread Buche de Noel

I was away for Christmas so I made the Buche de Noel from Dorie Greenspan's Baking Chez Moi yesterday for New Year's Eve.

The buche has four components:  praline, cake, filling, and frosting.

I was a bit concerned about pulling the sugar syrup off the stove at the right time.  I followed the directions as written and the praline worked out fine.  I used walnuts instead of pecans.

This was the first time I have used my stand mixer.  I knew I needed to use it for the cake because the egg mixture is beaten for awhile.

I wasn't worried about the cake because I have made a rolled cake before with no problem, but it did not turn out very well this time.  As the photo shows the cake broke when I rolled it.  I baked it the minimum time listed in the recipe.  I don't know why it was so dry and fragile.

The filling is a simple mixture of cream cheese, butter, cinnamon, and chopped praline.

The frosting was the most fun to make.  I have never made a cooked frosting before.  The sugar and water was cooking and cooking and then suddenly it was the right temperature.  Again I just followed the recipe's directions and the frosting turned out beautifully.

The break in the cake made it look more like a real log.

Here is the buche, icing slightly damaged in transit, ready for our celebration.