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On A Whim Baking

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#51 mdt

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 02:04 PM

Chocolate chip cookies.

#52 lperry

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 02:14 PM

PIstachio biscotti using the hazelnut biscotti recipe from Baking with Julia. I'll send Mr. lperry out in the snow to deliver them to neighbors.

#53 Anna Blume

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 02:58 PM

^

Oh, shut up!

All they had at the Safeway were three 1-lb. bags of self-rising flour. Bought one anyway, figuring it will do for cornbread (buttermilk & defrosted corn kernels).

Also picked up a 12-pack of 0-trans fat chocolate-chip dough already shaped into cookies. ;)

#54 lperry

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 03:06 PM

Also picked up a 12-pack of 0-trans fat chocolate-chip dough already shaped into cookies. ;)

And to think, I've lived my life this long not even knowing such a thing exists.

#55 porcupine

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 03:47 PM

Also picked up a 12-pack of 0-trans fat chocolate-chip dough already shaped into cookies. ;)

It must be fimbulvetr, because ragnarok is nigh if you're buying foods like this. :P

I really need to find something to do

Elizabeth Miller
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#56 goodeats

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 10:21 PM

Cinnamon rolls. Should be for breakfast, but couldn't wait.
Taste. Feel. Be comforted.

Am not a fan of finding out that I started a new topic...

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#57 monavano

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 08:15 AM

Chocolate chocolate pecan biscotti. I added dried Craisins. Clicky.

#58 mame11

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 08:24 AM

Cinnamon rolls. Should be for breakfast, but couldn't wait.

GE: what recipe? Also, you might like the pretzelsI made yesterday for an activity with GElittleboy. Mine didn't turn out pretty but I could see with practice it could get easier...

#59 Anna Blume

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 10:40 AM

It must be fimbulvetr, because ragnarok is nigh if you're buying foods like this. ;)

I really need to find something to do

Guess what. They weren't very good.

Now, if I'm making cornbread w self-rising flour, do I skip salt and leavening agents completely? N.B. I plan on using buttermilk.

#60 lperry

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 11:49 AM

Now, if I'm making cornbread w self-rising flour, do I skip salt and leavening agents completely? N.B. I plan on using buttermilk.

Yes. My grandmother always used self-rising flour for cornbread and biscuits. No salt, baking powder, or baking soda.

#61 goodeats

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 07:20 PM

GE: what recipe? Also, you might like the pretzels I made yesterday for an activity with GElittleboy. Mine didn't turn out pretty but I could see with practice it could get easier...

Made up recipe - meaning, I combined two recipes and played around. Gelittleman refuses to bake with me. He only did it once, making a mixed-berry crisp with me, but only because he got to eat the berries during the mixing....

Will try the pretzel making though sometime when I don't have the little man. Yesterday, I wanted to make banana pudding or bake something to pass the time and our conversation went something like this:

Me: [gelittleman], want to make banana pudding together?
GLM: No.
Me: Cookies? You can eat the chocolate chips?
GLM: No. How about playing hot wheels cars with me?
Me: [Seeing how this got nowhere, decides to bake cinnamon rolls after the little man went to bed] Um, okay. Vrroooom.

(Banana pudding for later tonight...Making lemonade, making lemonade....) <- Messed this up in haste. Back to the drawing board.

Edited by goodeats, 16 February 2010 - 05:04 AM.

Taste. Feel. Be comforted.

Am not a fan of finding out that I started a new topic...

Oh ply me with barley,
Or ply me with rye,
Just don't expect to hear
A coherent goodbye.

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#62 goodeats

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Posted 16 February 2010 - 05:03 AM

Insomnia brought a craving for Apple-Oat muffins for breakfast.
Taste. Feel. Be comforted.

Am not a fan of finding out that I started a new topic...

Oh ply me with barley,
Or ply me with rye,
Just don't expect to hear
A coherent goodbye.

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#63 monavano

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 10:34 AM

Thank you to those who suggested proofing dough in the oven with the light on. Wow! Yesterday, I made my usual pizza dough (ala Tyler Florence) and proofing it in the oven with the light on made for voluminous dough that was outstanding. I think using new packets of Active Dry Yeast helped too.
Thanks!

#64 mdt

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:06 AM

Thank you to those who suggested proofing dough in the oven with the light on. Wow! Yesterday, I made my usual pizza dough (ala Tyler Florence) and proofing it in the oven with the light on made for voluminous dough that was outstanding. I think using new packets of Active Dry Yeast helped too.
Thanks!

The only problem is that you now have proofed dough and an unheated oven, unless of course you have 2 ovens or other means to bake the pie.

#65 monavano

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:11 AM

The only problem is that you now have proofed dough and an unheated oven, unless of course you have 2 ovens or other means to bake the pie.

I was proofing pizza dough and I am fortunate to have 2 ovens. Although, after the oven proof, the dough was cut into 3 portions and proofed again (recipe calls for another 15 min). I wasn't ready to make 'za's just yet, so I wrapped the dough(s) in plastic wrap.

#66 Tweaked

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 02:30 PM

Not baking right now...but during the blizzard we did make some tasty Blueberry Scones (using blueberries bought then frozen during the summer)
blizzardscones.jpeg
Meat is Murder...Tasty Tasty Murder

#67 Anna Blume

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 07:59 PM

Korova cookies.

#68 V.H.

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:41 PM

Yesterday, cinnamon raisin bread from The Bread Baker's Apprentice. The family says it's yummy, in part due to the generous quantity of raisins. I have a raisin aversion so have not tried it.

Tonight, chocolate chip cookies.

#69 bettyjoan

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Posted 19 February 2010 - 09:00 AM

Made some killer baguettes at the beginning of the week. I used the breadmaker to mix/knead everything, and then I took the dough out to punch it, let it rest, shape it, and let it rise one more time. The loaves came out nice and crusty on the outside, and pretty darn close to perfectly tender on the inside.

Getting better at bread-baking is surely going to be disastrous for my diet...

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#70 LowellR

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Posted 19 February 2010 - 10:18 AM

I think using new packets of Active Dry Yeast helped too.

I keep my yeast in the fridge and find that, even with that precauation, I get noticeably better results if I open a new packet every couple of weeks even if the old one isn't finished.

#71 mktye

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Posted 22 February 2010 - 09:44 AM

Almond Puff Loaf

IMG_1017.JPG
M. K. Tye

#72 monavano

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Posted 22 February 2010 - 09:56 AM

I keep my yeast in the fridge and find that, even with that precauation, I get noticeably better results if I open a new packet every couple of weeks even if the old one isn't finished.

I've switched to packets because I noted the same thing, even though I kept the jar in the fridge.
Yesterday, I made another loaf of Almost No Knead Bread. I did the 2nd proof in the oven with the light on, and I found that I got a better crumb-more consistent with smaller holes. I had a couple slice warm, slathered with Alouette Sundried Tomato.
I'm getting hooked on this bread baking thing, and yes, Betty Joan, nicht gut for the gut ;)

#73 monavano

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Posted 22 February 2010 - 09:58 AM

Almond Puff Loaf

IMG_1017.JPG

Beautiful, mktye. Reminds me of danish I used to get fresh from a local German bakery.

#74 Pat

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Posted 22 February 2010 - 10:38 AM

I've switched to packets because I noted the same thing, even though I kept the jar in the fridge.

Last year my MIL gave me a tall jar of instant yeast (from KA, I think) that she had kept around for more than half a dozen years, always in the freezer. I brought it back, put it in my freezer, and it has worked fine in every recipe I've used it for. I typically keep yeast packets in the freezer and they don't always seem to keep their strength over time. Not sure what accounts for the difference.

#75 Pat

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Posted 22 February 2010 - 10:39 AM

Almond Puff Loaf


This looks like one to try. Legant just posted about making it the other day too (dinner thread).

#76 mktye

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 09:03 AM

Last year my MIL gave me a tall jar of instant yeast (from KA, I think) that she had kept around for more than half a dozen years, always in the freezer. I brought it back, put it in my freezer, and it has worked fine in every recipe I've used it for. I typically keep yeast packets in the freezer and they don't always seem to keep their strength over time. Not sure what accounts for the difference.

The two factors that affect yeast are heat and moisture. For storage, I prefer the freezer instead of the refrigerator because I feel the moisture levels are better controlled since nearly all the water molecules in there are in a solid state (ice). I also avoid purchasing yeast at the supermarket because of concerns regarding the temperature it has been kept during the distribution and storage. (I suspect this is what accounts for the difference you are seeing, Pat.)

I buy SAF yeast in 1-pound bags from King Arthur Flour, keep it in tight-sealing tupperware containers in the freezer and have found that it will be fine even a year (or more) later.

This looks like one to try. Legant just posted about making it the other day too (dinner thread).

Great minds think alike, Miss L? :P ;)
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#77 mdt

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Posted 24 February 2010 - 09:34 AM

I buy SAF yeast in 1-pound bags from King Arthur Flour, keep it in tight-sealing tupperware containers in the freezer and have found that it will be fine even a year (or more) later.

I have a bag that has been in my freezer for at least 3 years and the yeasties still function perfectly. Pretty amazing if you ask me.

#78 Pat

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Posted 25 February 2010 - 08:14 AM

I have a bag that has been in my freezer for at least 3 years and the yeasties still function perfectly. Pretty amazing if you ask me.

I'm pretty sure this is the same yeast that I got from my MIL that is still fine after years in the freezer.

#79 mdt

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Posted 28 March 2010 - 11:45 AM

English Muffins from Reinhart's Artisan Breads Every Day. The batter is rather easy to make (no kneading involved), although you do need muffin rings to cook them. They are much better than store bought and freeze very well.

#80 Pat

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Posted 28 March 2010 - 11:54 AM

I'm making biscotti this afternoon. I got an early start getting ingredients out but still haven't started making the dough ;).

#81 lperry

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Posted 28 March 2010 - 12:03 PM

I'm making a concerted effort to clean out the pantry, so I'm modifying a peanut butter cookie recipe into a Nutella cookie recipe. Extra cocoa, more salt, scrapings from a vanilla bean.... Here's hoping they taste as good as they smell in the oven because I've got two giant jars of Nutella thanks to a trip I made to Costco whilst hungry.

#82 cheezepowder

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Posted 28 March 2010 - 02:03 PM

...Here's hoping they taste as good as they smell in the oven because I've got two giant jars of Nutella thanks to a trip I made to Costco whilst hungry.

If you're looking for more Nutella recipes, there's a recipe for Nutella cupcakes here that I tried a few years ago. I recall people liking them.

#83 mdt

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Posted 24 April 2010 - 05:15 PM

Pain au Levain made with my starter and no added yeast. Gotta love that oven spring! The house smelled great this morning.

IMG_0163.JPG IMG_0166.JPG

#84 Pat

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Posted 24 April 2010 - 06:05 PM

Pain au Levain made with my starter and no added yeast. Gotta love that oven spring! The house smelled great this morning.

That is some gorgeous bread. My starter has been unattended for a very long time and I'm not sure it's viable any more.

#85 mdt

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 07:01 AM

That is some gorgeous bread. My starter has been unattended for a very long time and I'm not sure it's viable any more.

What is very long? Has it been in the fridge?

#86 Pat

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 07:38 AM

What is very long? Has it been in the fridge?

It's been in the fridge but untouched for probably 9-10 months.

#87 monavano

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 12:23 PM

Pain au Levain made with my starter and no added yeast. Gotta love that oven spring! The house smelled great this morning.

IMG_0163.JPG IMG_0166.JPG

Whew, that's some good looking bread!

#88 mdt

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 02:48 PM

It's been in the fridge but untouched for probably 9-10 months.

Should not be a problem to restart.

#89 Pat

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 02:56 PM

Should not be a problem to restart.

Thanks. I guess I should try instead of assuming it's no good. At the very least, if it turns out there's something irredeemable about it, I can get the extra container out of my refrigerator.

#90 mdt

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 03:21 PM

Thanks. I guess I should try instead of assuming it's no good. At the very least, if it turns out there's something irredeemable about it, I can get the extra container out of my refrigerator.

It might take a few refresh cycles to get enough of a yeast population so give it some time.

#91 lperry

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 06:03 PM

After a couple of months of oatmeal, I'm back to craving baked goods for breakfast. I modified Ina Garten's sour cream coffee cake by halving the recipe, putting in half white whole wheat flour, using yogurt instead of sour cream, and adding about a half cup of mango preserves to the streusel that goes in the middle of the cake. Despite the reduction in fat, the crumb is still amazingly tender, and the jam works really well. I may not have any left for breakfast...

#92 mdt

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 09:34 AM

1/2 whole wheat English muffins. Made yesterday to enjoy this morning with sunny-side up eggs.

#93 laniloa

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 10:02 AM

1/2 whole wheat English muffins. Made yesterday to enjoy this morning with sunny-side up eggs.

What recipe did you use?

#94 mdt

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 11:21 AM

What recipe did you use?

The one from my new favorite and much used book, Artisan Breads Everyday by Peter Reinhart. It requires that you have crumpet rings to bake them. There is also a recipe for them in his The Bread Baker's Apprentice that does not require the rings, but I have not tried that one yet. And with that recipe you can make a loaf of English Muffin bread which sounds interesting.

#95 Pat

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 01:54 PM

Yesterday I baked and this morning I glazed a chocolate chiffon cake with 5 spice powder. The spice was both in the cake and in the glaze on top. Despite problems with execution (foremost among them a power failure during baking that wreaked havoc with my oven temperature and timing), this cake was fantastic. it is so soft and moist as to be amazing. I have a very hard time getting cakes to be moist, and this was perfect.

#96 squidsdc

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 08:29 PM

whole wheat oatmeal raisin cookies. They didn't spread out and look kind of funny, but that that puffiness may be in their favor. They're kind of addictive.

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#97 LowellR

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Posted 03 May 2010 - 04:28 PM

Chocolate chip cookies using a recipe from America's Test Kitchen. One might criticize their academic approach to recipe creation, but it's hard to be critical of the results - browned butter, a higher ratio of brown to white sugar, and letting the sugar and liquid rest to aid its dissolution (and subsequent browning during baking) makes for a pretty amazing cookie.

#98 monavano

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Posted 04 May 2010 - 10:19 AM

Chocolate chip cookies using a recipe from America's Test Kitchen. One might criticize their academic approach to recipe creation, but it's hard to be critical of the results - browned butter, a higher ratio of brown to white sugar, and letting the sugar and liquid rest to aid its dissolution (and subsequent browning during baking) makes for a pretty amazing cookie.

It's true that Mr. Kimball is persnickety, but there's something to be said for having someone else go through the trials and errors for you. I once read that Kimball's pet peeve is people who substitute ingredients in their recipes, and I get that. Just read reviews at Epicurious and you'll see that some people substitute many ingredients, surely producing a dish that could not possibly resemble the original. Not that substituting is necessarily bad-I do it a lot. However, you can't give a recipe a poor review if it has morphed into something else.
That being said, I plan to make lemon-pistachio biscotti later today. I'm going to usethis Giada recipe, substitute pistachios for almonds, and add lemon extract :lol:.
And, I'm not sure about the white chocolate-still thinking on that.

#99 monavano

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Posted 05 May 2010 - 03:44 PM

Here are the above mentioned lemon-pistachio biscotti. I went for the white chocolate dip, but it seized.
Cheap crap-ola.

Posted Image

#100 sacrilicious

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Posted 07 May 2010 - 09:23 AM

Baking projects over the last few days -

Carrot Cake Cupcakes (from Joy of Baking) - Not overly moist, so not what I think of as a very traditional carrot cake. But I like this recipe for cupcakes in particular, because it's moist enough and holds its shape well; my other go-to carrot cake recipe from Smitten Kitchen is great as a layer cake but a bit too oily to be eaten by hand.

White Russian Cupcakes - A friend had posted online the recipe for this Cake Mix doctor-like concoction involving yellow cake mix, vanilla pudding, Kahlua, vodka, cream, etc. This was not my idea, but another friend who really likes sweet liqueurs was dying to try it. She loved them so I gave her half the batch. Personally I'm not a fan of Kahlua or yellow cake mix (and especially not the two together, as I now know)... so I think my half is going down the disposal eventually.

Banana Bread "Cockaigne" (from Joy of Cooking) with added chocolate chips and walnuts - This recipe involves creaming butter and sugar and beating the ingredients together; I've always used melted butter and just folded everything together for quick breads - getting out the mixer defeats the purpose of "quick." It had good flavor, and came out very attractively shaped with a nice domed top, which I had sprinkled with more chocolate chips and toasted walnuts. So, very pretty. But not surprisingly the texture was like a creamed-butter cake. I think I prefer the denser crumb that comes from the melted butter, even though my quick breads then invariably look like neatly stackable bricks.

(Upon further reflection-and allowing the banana bread to rest for a couple more days-I have revised my opinion and think it's actually pretty quite tasty, even if it is, technically, banana cake.)





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