Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Pecan Sticky Buns - Tuesdays With Dorie

My sticky buns rose too much for my pan [2 new 2" pans are on my batterie de cuisine list], but the color is great and the layers are flaky and tender. This «Tuesday With Dorie» we were making Nancy Silverton's brioche and pecan sticky buns from Baking With Julia.
Once the buns were flipped over and the caramel ran down over them, it proved not to be enough. Although the flavor was okay and the color was just right, the effort required to make this recipe of brioche did not produce a good enough result to warrant repeating it.

I was impressed with how painting the dough with egg wash helped to hold the nuts into the layers, but there was not enough cinnamon or sugar for flavor--and believe it or not, it could have used butter combined with the sugar/cinnamon. All that butter in the dough did not impart flavor [maybe salted butter would have worked better] and the dough itself seemed flat in taste. I have half a recipe of the brioche left in the freezer and I plan to make a savory product at week's end--maybe the savory filling will make up for the flat taste of the dough itself.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Provençal Olive Fougasse

Finally, a bread with lots and lots of crust! Recipe is from Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table, p. 48, and is my first attempt at fougasse and French Fridays With Dorie. I did not use olives nor fresh rosemary, but the taste is still very good. Broken chunks would be wonderful spread with rillettes or paté and eaten with cornichons.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Stuffed Dates

Two very different tastes, two scrumptious flavors. On the left, orange flower water flavored almond paste stuffed date. On the right, grilled turkey bacon wrapped parmesan cheese stuffed date. Sweet and sweet-salty morsels of goodness for a treat or an addition to an appetizer tray. Serve with a glass of port or Vin de Noix.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Brie en Croute

Just a square of puff pastry surrounding a wheel of brie, brushed with egg wash and baked on white paper. Sublime with homemade chutney from the peaches in last summer's garden and spread on thin-rolled buttermilk biscuits/crackers …

Friday, December 21, 2007

Steamed Fig Pudding - SHF#38

Zorra hosts this month's Sugar High Friday, "The Proof Is In the Pudding."

When I was a child, the Jewel Tea man, a peddlar, used to come to my home. One of the items my mother purchased from him in winter was fig bars. This is a recipe from the back of those boxes--which were yellow with red letters, called


Fig Pudding Enchanted
1 pound fig bars
1 1/4 cups hot milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten,
3/4 cup flour
2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped nuts [I didn't use any today]

Put fig bars through food chopper, add hot milk, and mix well. Add sugar and beaten egg. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together. Add to fig mixture, followed by nuts. Mix ingredients well together. Fill greased molds 2/3 full, cover tightly, and steam for 2 1/2 hours. Serve hot with pudding sauce or cold with whipped cream. Serves 8.

You don't have a food chopper? Fear not--just chop the fig bars with a knife. Adding them to the hot milk will dissolve them very well.

I butter and sugar the mold--this keeps it from sticking--it also makes for a darker crust on the outside of the pudding.

Mom always served it with a tangy lemon sauce made from lemon juice, zest, corn starch and sugar.

See also my posts on baked mincemeat pudding and boiled pudding on my other blog, 18thC Cuisine

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Pudding for Sugar High Friday

Pudding in all its forms highlights this month's Sugar High Friday. Stay tuned for a steamed pudding made of figs, a treasured memory from my childhood.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Chocolate Chili Squash Cake- Grow Your Own 2007

"Grow Your Own 2007” is Andrea’s invitation to develop a recipe from produce of my own garden. My garden consisted of 6 plants: 3 different tomatoes, one pumpkin and one squash. Why just six plants? I didn’t have ground to grow in until late in June—everyone told me nothing would “make,” but all of my seeds came up, even with a late start. My yield for the year was one pumpkin and one squash—but I had many blossoms which I stuffed and fried, but my tomatoes were very prolific—the Black Krim were amazingly tasty.

I have chosen to make a Chocolate, Chili and Squash Pound Cake, an adaptation of a recipe found here: http://www.aeb.org/Recipes/Desserts/ChocolateZucchiniCake.htm



(Makes 12 servings)

• 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
• 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
• 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
• 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 pinch red chili powder
• 1 cup sugar
• 1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
• 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
• 4 eggs
• 1 tablespoon vanilla
• 2 cups shredded squash
• Confectioners' sugar

In medium bowl, stir together flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, chili and salt, if desired. Set aside. In large mixing bowl at medium speed, beat together sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Beat in pumpkin puree, eggs and vanilla until thoroughly blended. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually beat in reserved flour mixture. Gently stir in squash. Pour into lightly greased 9-cup fluted tube pan.

Bake in preheated 350°F oven until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean, about 60 to 70 minutes [start checking at 45 minutes]. Cool on wire rack 10 minutes. With narrow spatula or knife, loosen cake from pan and gently shake onto serving plate. Cool completely. Dust with confectioners' sugar.

The cake is moist and packs a punch—chocolate and chili are a very old fashioned taste, at least from the 16th Century. Next year my garden will expand dramatically. Check back next year!
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