Monday, September 21, 2015

Apple Kuchen

This week the Tuesdays With Dorie online baking group made Apple Kuchen:  a Tall Apple-Custard Tourte.  This recipe is in the Simple Cakes sections of Dorie Greenspan's Baking Chez Moi but I wouldn't categorize it as a simple recipe.

First you mix up a crust in the food processor, roll it out, chill it, and fit it into the pan.  Mine was kind of messy and perhaps not as thin as it should have been, but surprisingly I was able to press it into my ten inch springform pan without too much difficulty.

The filling is a mixture of graham cracker crumbs and melted butter, topped with 3 pounds of chopped apples.  That was more apples than I realized when I first read the recipe.  It took me awhile to cut them up.

The crust and filling bake in the oven for 15 minutes and then the custardy topping of eggs, sugar and cream is added.  The recipe says to bake for 60 to 70 minutes.  Mine was in the oven for an hour and 20 minutes.  Because of the time it took to chop the apples and the extended baking time I had to leave before the final step of adding sugar and melted butter to the top and broiling.  I don't know how long my cake was under the broiler, but it came out tasting delicious.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Jam-Filled Sandwich Cookies

The online baking group Tuesdays With Dorie made Jam-Filled Sandwich Cookies from Baking Chez Moi this week.

The cookie dough is a mixture of confectioners' sugar, butter, white sugar, flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt.  In the recipe Dorie says the dough will be crumbly while you are mixing, and then will come together and "just about clean the sides of the bowl."  I mixed and mixed for 15 minutes or more and this never happened.  I added a little milk and then pressed the dough together with my hands, and then rolled it as directed.

I was concerned about the delicate nature of the dough, but as suggested in the recipe refrigerating it makes it easy to roll out and cut.

My cookies were probably a bit thicker than the 1/8 inch in the recipe.  I used apricot jam and a round cutter just over 2 inches.  The jam leaked out a bit when I added the second cookie on top.  I used my finger to clean it off the cookie sheet to avoid burning.

I sprinkled the tops with sugar mixed with chai spices.

My oven runs a little hot, so I baked at 345 degrees for 15 minutes.  Some of the cookies came out a little too brown on the bottom.

My yield was 12 round cookies plus one canoe shaped cookie that I shaped out of the dough scraps.  I ate that extra cookie right out of the oven and it tasted really good.  My taster says these are the best cookies he has ever eaten.