Sunday, August 17, 2008

TWD Granola Grabbers

Posted by BAKE-EN at 5:39 PM 1 comments Links to this post

I'm sorry this post is so late! I actually made the grabbers before they were due for TWD, but then I got held up at work and never posted!

Michelle of Bad Girl Baking chose Granola Grabbers (page 82) as this weeks Tuesday with Dorie recipe.

I should start this out by saying that in general, I don't like granola. I find the store bought kind to be laden with extra fat and preservatives. I do like making my own granola though, so I decided to make it for this recipe. One of the bakeries I worked at while I lived in California made huge batches of the most delicious granola. I like to play off what we made there, but I use a lot less of the fattening ingredients. For today's granola, I put 3 cups of oatmeal on a sheet pan, a few handfuls of slivered almonds and walnuts, a good sprinkle of sesame seeds, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and mace, and I poured some warmed maple syrup and honey (with about a tablespoon of canola oil) onto the dry ingredients. I made sure all the dries were well covered with the sugar mixture and then off into the oven it went. I baked the granola at 350 for somewhere between 15 to 20 minutes, stirring frequently so the granola baked evenly.

From Food as of 8/17/08

From Food as of 8/17/08

Once the granola was cool, I started making the cookies. The recipe was very easy to follow. Essentially, you cream the butter and brown sugar, next you add your egg and salt, followed by the flour; and finally the nuts/fruit/wheat germ/coconut mixture. I followed the recipe except I subbed cranberries and small pieces of dried apricot for the raisins.

This recipe was okay, but I don't think I'll ever make it again. I think the flavor was good and I liked the chunkiness of the cookies. The problem was these cookies tasted healthy to me, but they are certainly not. If I'm going to bake/eat something that's unhealthy; I want to feel the decadence of the product. In this case, these cookies are loaded with fat and calories (coconut, butter, nuts, dried fruit), but they taste like they were made at a health store. Truth be told, I think these would be 100% better if I had subbed the raisins with chocolate chips; and I'm kicking myself for not going with my gut instinct and doing that in the first place J

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

TWD Blueberry Sour Cream Ice Cream

Posted by BAKE-EN at 6:20 PM 8 comments Links to this post

Dolores of Chronicles in Culinary Curiosity chose Blueberry Sour Cream Ice Cream (page 434) as this week's TWD recipe. I'm in the middle of a very busy month, so I was excited to see that such an easy recipe had been chosen. Also exciting, was that I used my ice cream maker for the first time this year. Funny though, because after making this recipe; I remembered why it's been in hiding. I really don't like the way my Cuisinart ice cream maker freezes. The blade doesn't touch the wall of the frozen container, so it leaves a ring of frozen ice cream around the container that never gets incorporated. Small gripe, but anyone out there looking to purchase an ice cream maker stay away from the Cuisinart Frozen Yogurt and Ice Cream maker, it usually retails on sale for about $70.

Now onto more important things, like ice cream. It was extremely easy to put together. Simply bring blueberries, sugar, lemon juice and zest to a boil till the blueberries explode. Whirl the blueberry mixture in a blender for about a minute. Finally, add the sour cream and heavy cream to the mixture and blend till just combined. Chill in the refridgerator (I did this overnight), and then process in the ice cream maker.

Fresh blueberries are my most favorite food to snack on, so I had a feeling I would like this ice cream. It was so good. My only complaint is that it was pretty hard and kind of crystallized, but I'm blaming that on my ice cream maker. I'm sure that if I was to spin this ice cream base in a commercial ice cream maker it would be even more delicious.

I'll have pictures up soon. The battery in my camera died this morning right before I started spinning the ice cream. As soon as I get a replacement battery, I'll post the pictures.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Birthday Cupcakes

Posted by BAKE-EN at 1:16 PM 4 comments Links to this post
My friend's birthday party was this weekend, so I made some cupcakes for the big event. First, I made coconut cupcakes with coconut cream cheese frosting and toasted coconut "sand".

I also made chocolate cupcakes with Dorie Greenspan's chocolate frosting recipe. I don't have the book in front of me right now, but it's the frosting she uses on the chocolate cupcakes. I love the way these cupcakes looked with the silver dragees.

Lastly, I filled some of the cupcakes with nutella, and then I topped them with chocolate icing and candied hazelnuts. They were my favorite of the three cupcakes.

Quick post today. No TWD post because I don't care for the banana bread recipe that was selected. My friend made it a while back, and we both thought it was just okay.

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