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#37 Madeleines

7 Aug

This dessert is special to me in a sense, but only because of its name. Madeleines are delicious when you’re having a nice cup of coffee, sitting outside enjoying the day. Part of me was challenged from within to make these again because my last attempt, about 5 years ago, did not turn out well. First off, it was a different recipe and I must say I do like this new one much better. After I made them the first time, I instantly tried one after it came out of the oven, like any normal person would do. They tasted odd…just plain not very good. I ended up throwing out one of the pans of the Madeleines and continued baking the rest of the batter hoping it would be different. I put them in a container and then had one the next day…delicious! I dont know what it was but fresh out of the oven they really were not very good.

This time was very different. I had one right out of the oven and it was just as delicious as it was the next morning dipped in my coffee. Madeleines are little French tea cakes that have a sponge cake feel to them. They really do taste best when you are drinking tea or coffee, but of course these could be enjoyed on their own.

The recipe says to butter and then flour the Madeleine pans

I also did two pans buttered with sugar

The pans buttered with sugar turned out with a little bit of a crystalized shell which was nice to compliment the soft spongey inside. I think for future Madeleine baking I will do sugar instead of flour. The sugar also ads another level of flavor, where as the ones coated with flour had a bit of a dull taste when you first bit into it.

My unevenly heated oven taking its toll on my mini me cookies

My oven has been having some issues with unevenly heating so I tried using the Convection setting, but I really dont think that did anything for me. If anything it just made them cook faster but they still came out unevenly golden. Anyone have any suggestions?

Serve with coffee 🙂

I tried dipping some in chocolate, but I must admit I was not a huge fan. Guess I am a minimalist with my Madeleines.

The two Madelines

This is definitely something I would make a batch of and then put into little bags and give to my friends and co workers. Even if you’re not a big dessert person, its just something to munch on with your coffee in the morning. If you don’t have a Madeleine pan, which most people probably don’t, you can pick one up from any cooking store or Bed Bath and Beyond (bring a 20% off coupon and its only about $10).

On a completely different note, I love listening to music while I bake. If you walk in on me in the kitchen, 9 times out of 10 I will be dancing around while whisking and singing to myself. I thought I would share what I was listening to while I baked these Madeleines. On this bake day, I was listening to Little Dragon’s new album Ritual Union. Check it out here and let me know what you think!

Madeleines

From Bon Appetit Magazine

Printer Friendly Version

Ingredients:

2 large eggs

2/3 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel

Pinch of salt

1 cup all purpose flour

10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted, cooled slightly

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375°F. Generously butter and flour pan for large madeleines (about 3 x 1 1/4 inches).* Using electric mixer, beat eggs and 2/3 cup sugar in large bowl just to blend. Beat in vanilla, lemon peel and salt. Add flour; beat just until blended. Gradually add cooled melted butter in steady stream, beating just until blended.

Spoon 1 tablespoon batter into each indentation in pan. Bake until puffed and brown, about 16 minutes. Cool 5 minutes. Gently remove from pan. Repeat process, buttering and flouring pan before each batch.

Dust cookies with powdered sugar.

Enjoy!

Madeline

#26 Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Milk Chocolate Filling

27 May

Guess who is in town visiting! My little niece Vivienne and my brother and sister in law! Right now I’m currently listening to her bawl her face out in the other room, so sad. Poor kid doesn’t know how to just chill out and fall asleep. This week’s recipe comes from the book “The Craft of Baking” by Karen DeMasco and Mindy Fox. I’ve made a few things out of it before, like the front cover picture recipe – Lamington Cupcakes. Man they are amazing. They are cupcakes dipped in chocolate and rolled in toasted coconut. I’ll have to put those up here sometime…

Peanut Butter and Chocolate are one of my absolute favorite combinations so of course I had to try this one.

Peanut Butter!

Spilled milk on the floor...shhh

For the "Ice Bath" just use a big bowl and fill it with water and some ice cubes, and then put your other bowl in it. Cools it down super fast!

Before you start assembling these guys, make sure they’re actually cooled. I know you’re probably like, oh whatever it’s good enough. It’s not! Trust me, I tried. Totally fell apart. Go learn about this awesome documentary I watched the other night, No Impact Man. Great environmental documentary, highly recommend.

Step 1: Find two cookies that look similar shape and size

Step 2: Put a spoon ful of filling on one cookie

Step 3: Smoosh

Ta-da! Mini hamburger cookie!

Tried to eat one...made a mess of myself

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Milk Chocolate Filling

From “The Craft of Baking” by Karen DeMasco and Mindy Fox

Ingredients for Cookie: 

1 3/4 cups unbleached flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp kosher salt

6 tablespoons butter, room temp

1/2 cup + 1 tbs dark brown sugar

3/4 cup + 1 tbs confectioners’ sugar

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 large egg

Directions for Cookie

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with Silpats (or parchment paper if you dont have them)

2. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

3. In a bowl of an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and confectioners sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy (2 mins- ish)

3. Add peanut butter. Scrape down sides when needed.

4. Slowly add in oil, vanilla, and egg and beat until just combined.

5. Add flour mixture, beat until just combined.

6. Lightly flour your hands and roll the dough into balls about 1/2 inch in diameter. Place them about an inch apart on the cookie sheet. Bake for 12 minutes, or until cookies are brown on the edges. (Mine were done at 10 mintues, so make sure you check them early). Transfer to wire racks and let cool COMPLETELY.

Ingredients for Filling

6 oz milk chocolate, roughly chopped

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

1/4 cup confectioners sugar

3/4 cup heavy cream

Directions for Filling

1. Combine chocolate, peanut butter, confectioners’ sugar, and salt in am edium bowl.

2. In a small saucepan, bring cream to a boil. Then pour over the chocolate mixture and stir with a spatula until chocolate is completely melted.

3. Make an ice bath (see pictures above), to cool off the filling so it is at room temperature – aka spread able.

Thank you guys for being so supportive of me. I started this blog to keep track of my baking adventures and I’m glad that its brought some smiles into your lives too. 🙂

Love

Me!

#20 Black and White Cookies

18 Apr

Black and White cookies have never been something I ever craved, just cause they seemed so boring. I had one a few months ago at a little Italian restaurant and thought it was alright, but nothing spectacular.

Torey came over Friday night and we decided to bake something together and for some reason we decided to give Black and White cookies a try. We went to the store at about 10PM to get the basics: sugar, butter, cream. Of course, it wouldn’t be an outing with Torey without breaking something.

Sugar leaking onto my foot

Sugar leaking everywhere.

It would happen to us.

Anyways, once we got back and actually started baking it was pretty simple. It was 11PM by the time we really started baking so things started getting a little weird.

Ta-da!

Hi Torey!

Ignore the hideous plate and the slightly weird shape of the cookies

Like I said, things got weird.

And by the end of the evening, we both had chocolate frosting on our foreheads.

Here’s the recipe I used. It’s from Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook. For some reason her recipe online is different then the one in her book, no idea why. So I’ll post the one I used below. Slight alteration, I didnt have lemons so I just used lime. Tastes a little different, but still really yummy.

I shall now quote Torey, “i HATE black and white cookies…except those were amazing”

BLACK AND WHITE COOKIES
from Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 sticks (10 Tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 large whole eggs plus 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Black and White Icings (recipe follows)

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, shortening, and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes,scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add whole eggs and egg yolk, one at a time; beat until combined after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Add the flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the cream. Beat until just combined.

Use a 1/4 cup measure (I used an ice cream scoop) to scoop dough 3 inches apart onto prepared sheets. Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until the edges just begin to turn golden and the centers are cakey and tender, 10 to 12 minutes (mine took 15- 17 minutes). Transfer parchment and cookies to a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Remove cookies from parchment and let cool completely.

On the flat side (bottom) of each cookie, use a small offset spatula to spread cholocalte icing over oe half of the cookie, creating a line straight down the center. Spread white frosting on the other half. Set cookies aside until icing is set, about 30 minutes.

Black and White Icing

  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (I only had limes but it still tastes good)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa powder

Whisk sugar, corn syrup, lemon juice, vanilla, and 1 tablespoon water in a bowl until smooth. Add more water, if needed, until mixture is slightly thicker than honey. Set aside half of sugar mixture (for white icing). Stir cocoa into remaining sugar mixture to combine (for black icing); thin with water if needed. Use immediately.

Enjoy,

Me

Sugar Cookies Revisited

7 Mar

If you did not get the opportunity to try the sugar cookies I made on Valentine’s Day, you probably wont understand the need for me to make them again. Those sugar cookies were amazing. I generally like the things that I make, but I’m very critical of it all as well. The exception to the rule are these sugar cookies. They are pure amazingness. There really is no way to describe them other than amazing sugar crack-like cookies. It’s impossible to eat just one.

Random baby niece picture just to make you smile 🙂

With that said, those cookies were gone within about 3 days of me making them. I wanted to make them again as soon as I ran out but I started my training for my new internship at the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium! I interviewed a week or so ago and got the internship in the Educational Department doing field trips for kids ranging from 3 year olds to high school students! I’m super excited and am looking forward to sharing that experience with you guys.

This is a Salema Fish! They swim in schools! He's got big eyes, I like him 🙂

Since I have been super busy with all my online class homework that I may have possibly procrastinated on [but its okay because somehow I have a 102.5% in my Environmental Biology class and a 105% in my History class. Not sure how thats happening!] I havent had a ton of time to focus on baking, sadly. But, I told myself as soon as I finished all my work I would make the cookies. It was 10pm when I finished on Sunday and we didn’t have any butter. I went to the store and made my cookies. Thats how badly I wanted them.

I finaly had a chance to make more cookies! The day before I went to Sur La Table with my lovely fellow baker friend Torey and got 2 new cookie cutters that I tested out. I got a princess tiara and a cupcake cutter.  They’re super cute and extremely girly. I’m generally not a pink/frilly/girly type of girl but I went all out with these…

Princess tiara 🙂

The Cupcake cookie cutter is super cute too 🙂

I have these really adorable edible pearls that Torey got me for my birthday. I think you can get them from Williams-Sonoma and Sur La Table. They're precious

The ultimate princess cookie for Princess Terrence.

I had so much fun making those cookies. I think I spent 3 hours just enjoying decorating them and I didnt even mind. Guess that means I really love baking huh? They’re incredibly cute but they’re still amazingly good too. It’s the ultimate win. I really hope you guys try making these sometime!

Love

Madeline

#16 Chocolate Macaroons with Espresso Ganache

3 Mar

Dipped in ganache

The story for this recipe is a little different than the other ones. Back in December, we had a little holiday office party where we did a Secret Santa gift exchange. I promised my co-worker, Debby, that I would make her one batch of whatever she wanted, just to tell me when!

In passing earlier in the week, she mentions that she wants macaroons and I instantly say okay I’ll make it this Thursday. It gets to Thursday afternoon and I realize I really need to look up a good recipe to make these. Being half jewish and the only macaroon I ever really knew about was the JEWISH ones that my grandfather use to eat that everyone else hated. I couldn’t figure out why on earth anyone would request these to be made.

While I’m looking up recipes, I keep seeing these little sandwich things that they’re calling French Macaroons. Finally, it all clicks. I had to text her to make sure of which one she wanted, but of course she wanted the French ones. Honestly, Id like to know of one person besides my Grandfather who enjoys a Jewish Macaroon.

Little did I know, apparently these macaroons are not so simple to make. Even my sister in law said that she refuses to make them because they are so fussy. Of course, she says this as I’m half way through making them and thinking to myself, oh great.

Out of the oven!

In the end, they tasted great. Well, I though they tasted great. But they didn’t turn out the way a perfect little macaroon sandwich should be. The cookies were super fragile, because I think something did not work out right with my batter. And then my ganache never fully set up so I ended up dipping the cookies in the ganache. I definitely want to try making these again, they were really tasty. I guess I just need to start earlier and pay a little closer attention to it all.

Silpat = my new love.

[Apologies for the lateness. I just started training for my internship at the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium. I’ll post about that in the next few days when I get around to posting what I make tonight.]

Love you all

Madeline

#15 – Valentine’s Day Special

20 Feb

Sadly, Valentine’s Day has long passed so I can not wish you all a Happy Valentine’s Day properly. I hope you all had a nice day with your loved ones or just with some friends. I’ve decided that I’m a fan of the holiday for baking purposes only. Hearts and Lovey-Dovey things in baking are just absolutely adorable, but the holiday itself is a mess.

With my crazy schedule the past few weeks, I didn’t have the brain to think of something uber creative for Valentine’s Day. Especially since after a week of working in Vegas I flew straight to Santa Cruz for my niece’s first birthday and my brother’s birthday. My poor brother will never know what it is like to have a real birthday anymore because his daughter’s birthday is the following day.

Her first cupcake 🙂

Hilarious picture. Thats my Brother and my Sister-in-Law and the munchkin, minus the head.

We drove home the day before Valentine’s Day and after taking way too much Dramamine to be sure that I stayed passed out in the backseat on the drive home, I had no energy to make anything that evening. (I’m not complaining. I slept amazingly). Although I got up early the morning of Love Day, primarily because my body was accustomed to waking up at 7:30 all week, and made some classic Red Velvet Cupcakes for the boyfriend before heading to my first day back at school. You heard me. I’m finally back in school. Very weird feeling, but lets not ruin this loving baby filled post with school.

This is what they looked like moments after being finished.

Red Velvet with Cream Cheese Frosting. Classic

Candy Hearts have some really weird sayings on them these days...I dont know how I feel about "High Five" being on a heart. It sure sounds insulting to me.

And this is what they looked like after my drive to UCLA forgetting to put the carrier on the floor.

Awful.

I went through a wave of emotions, which shows how weird my brain is. I turned around and saw them all turned upside down and smooshed and laughed, hysterically. The light turned green and I continued driving with a dead straight face, no emotions, no feelings. Then I turned onto his street and I cried. It was pathetic really. I blame the exhaustion from the prior week…and a little bit of my weird dessert focused brain.

In attempts to make myself feel better after this tragic incident, I made sugar cookies the following day. This was the best decision ever. Not only are these sugar cookies the best I’ve ever made or had for that matter, they were adorable too and were gone within 2 days I believe. Super addicting. I have Annie from Annie Eats to thank for that recipe. Truly amazing. I’ll never go to any other sugar recipe.

First, I outlined them and let them set.

Then, I took the frosting and watered it down so it was liquidy and poured it into the middle. I used a toothpick to move it into all of the corners, and then let it set.

They turn out beautiful.

I tried using Meringue Powder for my Royal Icing, after reading so many different recipes that used it. I personally like it a lot better than using egg whites, and it saves you the worrying in the back of your mind about using raw eggs. Here is the recipe for the Royal Icing I used.

Lots of pictures this post, I hope you enjoy them.

I promise my post about the Exec Pastry Chef at the Red Rock is coming soon!

#13 Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

28 Jan

After posting a picture of what I wanted to make this week, it was pointed out that I have a thing for oreos. I dont know if its just that they are just amazing, or maybe the fact that I ate a pack of Double Stuf’d Oreo’s every 3 days when I was back at UCR, whatever the reason is…..I need to cool it down a bit. No more Oreo recipes for a while.

On that note, this recipe was definitely a good one to bow out with. It showed up on my friend’s Facebook and I knew it was meant to be. I knew it was a bit outrageous, but hey..I’m trying to gain a few lbs anyways!

I made them this morning in about 45 minutes before heading into work & picking up my brother/sister in law/the munchkin up from the airport. Great way to start the day…if you’d like it to end with a mini sugar heart attack. 🙂

Double Stuf - No other way.

I got to use the Silpat that my brother/sister in law got my for Christmas. Its amazing! I can't believe I didn't have one before!

 

Fresh out of the oven.

They're really intense-obviously- so I cut them in half before I brought them into work for my guinea pigs

I read through the comments that some people left on the blog that I got this recipe from, BeckyBakes, and some people were complaining that it was too “floury” but I don’t agree. It’s a great, enourmous, cookie. Really, the ultimate cookie.

I have about 10 left, so if you’re in the area and want to test it out let me know 🙂

Here is the recipe!

 

Happy Weekend!

Love,

Madeline