Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Looking Back

I joined the Tuesdays with Dorie group in October just under the deadline. I had been following along for a few weeks before I got my blog started and I never got a chance to post those recipes. I thought with the year coming to a close that this would be a good time to share them.

Carmel Topped Brownie Cake

Lenox Almond Biscotti

Pumpkin Muffins

Happy New Year to All !!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Tall and Creamy Cheesecake

The final recipe for December’s Tuesday with Dorie is Tall and Creamy Cheesecake. It was chosen by Anne Strawberry and can be found on pages 235-237 of Baking From my home to yours. I can describe this cheesecake in one word, Delicious. I wasn’t all that excited about making this recipe but I’m really glad I did. It wasn’t that I don’t like cheesecake, because I do. I think that I just wasn’t in the mood for one more rich dessert and besides I have a perfectly good recipe for cheesecake that I have been using for years and I really didn’t need a new one. Let me say I was wrong on both counts.

I followed the basic recipe with a graham cracker crust. I used half cream and half sour cream. The taste was pure and very creamy. The texture was not as dense as the cheesecake I usually make but I think that I prefer it. The recipe takes a while to prepare with the mixing, baking, cooling and chilling but it was worth the effort. As for the calories, I don’t even want to think about it but I will be making this again.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Real Butterscotch Pudding

This weeks recipe for Tuesdays with Dorie was Real Butterscotch Pudding. This recipe has several steps and most of them involve the food processor. The pudding has a very creamy texture, and a slightly sweet taste from brown sugar. But most of the flavor comes from single malt scotch. It was a little strong for my taste. I topped the pudding with whipped cream and pecans which made the flavor a little milder. I served this on Christmas Eve and it got good reviews.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Buttery Jam Cookies

It's Christmas and we're baking cookies. This weeks Tuesdays with Dorie recipe is buttery jam cookies. This is a very simple cookie to bake. You probably have all the ingredient's on hand. They don't have to be chilled before you bake them so they are ready in a jiffy. As for taste they are just OK. I used apricot jam and ginger in mine but the flavor was pretty mild. They were moister and had more of a apricot flavor the next day. They also are good for the cookie jar as Dorie suggests.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

GrandMa's All Occasion Sugar Cookies

This weeks TWD recipe is Grandma’s All-Occasion Sugar Cookies. I have a dark secret to confess. I don’t like sugar cookies at Christmas. I realize that this is un-American but I can’t help it. I like my grandmother’s simple drop “tea cakes” with a glass of lemonade on a hot summer day and I like to make pink frosted sugar cookie hearts for Valentines Day but just not at Christmas. But I admit that I ate a couple of these cookies and enjoyed them.

This recipe is easy and straight forward. I had the batter mixed and ready to chill in about 10 minutes. It needed to chill for about two hours. I decided to do the slice and bake method which also made the cookies super easy. I simply sprinkled them with some colored sugar and baked. Thanks Dorie for a tasty and quick cookie recipe.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

TWD Linzer Sables

This weeks recipe was Linzer Sable cookies. These cookies are nutty, slightly spicy, stacked and filled with raspberry jam. They are easy to make and taste delicious. On the first batch I rolled the dough out to about 1/4 of an inch thickness and used a 2 1/2 inch cookie cutter. The second ones I rolled out a little thinner and used a 2 inch cookie cutter. I preferred the smaller cookies but both tasted great.

These cookies are a great start to the Christmas baking season. They will make great gifts and also look great on a cookie tray. I plan on making these again soon.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

TWD Arborio Rice Pudding

Our Challenge for this week's TWD is Arboria Rice Pudding, White, Black (or both). My challenge could have been called, if at first you don't succeed, try, try again! I am not a big fan of rice pudding so I was not too excited about trying this recipe. It seemed simple and not as time consuming as last week's recipe so I decided to give it a try. A mixture of milk, rice, sugar and vanilla are cooked slowly until it thickens. Somewhere along the way, this went wrong and I ended up with rice soup instead of pudding. I made two mistakes that lead to this debacle. First I used the wrong rice. I didn't have Arborio rice in my pantry, so I used regular long grain rice. Second, I learned that the cooking time needed to be longer.

I could have stopped there but I hated to let something so simple end in failure. I decided to give it a second try. Luckily I found the correct rice (I live 30 minutes from a medium size store and an hour from a large one) and set out to correct my mistakes.

The second try turned out great! I'm so glad that I decided to give it another chance. On the second try, the pudding thickened after about 45 minutes. It had a perfect creamy consistency and wasn't too sweet. It tasted great warm or chilled. I didn't add the chocolate this time but might in the future.
Thanks to OSI: Isabelle from Les gourmandises d’Isa for choosing this recipe. I will definitely be making this again!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


This weeks recipe for Tuesdays with Dorie is Kugelhopf. What is Kugelhopf? It is a cake/bread that is baked in a specially shaped pan. The bread comes from Alsace, in the northeast France. This recipe is not that difficult but you need to allow yourself time for the rising part.

A stand mixer with a dough hook are nice to have when preparing this recipe. It takes about 10 minutes to come together after all the ingredients are added. Then you have to let it rise until it doubles. Then it must be refrigerated and punched down until it stops rising. I let it stay in the refrigerator overnight.

Then you put it over in your special kegelhopf/turban pan. I was lucky to have a silicone version that I had never used. The dough is suppose to rise to the top of the mold. Mine never seemed to rise to that height.
It turned out very good but slightly misshapen. The bottom part did not look much like a turban. This was the first time making Kugelhopf. I'm not a very experienced bread maker so I was happy with the results. The bread had a good taste and a nice texture.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

TWD: Rugelach

This weeks recipe is Rugelach. These cookies are made with a cream cheese dough and have a sweet filling. You can use a varity of jam, nuts, chocotate, and currents for these cookies. I chose raspberry jam, pecan and mini chocolate chips. I left out the currents and I don't think it hurt the flavor of the cookies.

The dough is easy to make using the food processor. It must then chill for at least 2 hours. I rolled my dough a little too thin and had trouble keeping it together after the cookies where filled. I was a little disappointed with the appearance of my cookies but they tasted great.

These cookies were a hit with my family and I'm sure that I will make them again.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

First TWD

This is my first post for the Tuesdays with Dorie group. This weeks assignment was chocolate-chocolate cupcakes with a chocolate glaze icing. I love chocolate so I was really exicited to start with this recipe.

The recipe called for cocoa and melted bittersweet chocolate. This gave them a wonderful, almost crispy, texture that was different from the chocolate cupcakes that I have made. Adding buttermilk to the mixture kept it from becoming too dry.

The glaze is also made with bitterswet chocotate. If you like dark chocoate, and I do, this ganache-like topping is for you. My family would have liked something a little sweeter. The next time I might use a chocolate buttercream.