Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tuesdays With Dorie 20: Thanksgiving Twofer Pie

What the?

That was my initial reaction when I found out this weeks recipe! Of course I know what Thanksgiving is, but what is a twofer pie? To be honest I'm still not 100% sure... Just a pumpkin pie with pecans? I know that pecan pie and pumpkin pie are quite popular for Thanksgiving, so maybe someone created this super pie by combing the two? Anyway, thanks to Vibi of La casserole carree for choosing this recipe; both for its relevance to the current season and also for expanding my knowledge!

Pretty much this pie turned out to be a disaster for me. I am currently on a 3 week holiday, so before I left, I was rushing around baking like a mad woman. Unfortunately I didn't get to time to complete Daring Bakers which is a shame. I managed to do all the upcoming Tuesdays with Dorie (plus a birthday treat for S- more to come on that later), so overall I was pretty impressed with myself as I had also just finished exams and was also packing for the trip! I decided to post this weeks recipe anyway, even though it is quite an eyesore... I can't stand to miss a week. I'm not even sure what a twofer pie is supposed to look like, but I assume it's nothing like mine turned out! I was even so pressed for time that I half baked the pie and finished off baking it later that night (don't think that was a very good idea...). S also had to take the photos at about midnight, so there wasn't any light. Luckily for him, I've bought him a flash for his birthday!

I am in a bit of a rush this morning, so you'll just have to trust me that it was a nightmare to make! Don't forget to check out the rest of the Tuesdays with Dorie gang.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tuesdays With Dorie 19: Arborio Rice Pudding (Black and White)

This week's recipe was chosen by Isabelle of Les gourmandises d'Isa, and what a great week it was! I have always thought I didn't like rice pudding, but it turns out I do! The rice puddings I have eaten before have usually been hot ones, but I really loved eating this cold. It reminded me of those Le Rice puddings I used to eat when I was little.

I found I had to cook the pudding for quite a bit longer than Dorie suggested in order to thicken it. Then, since I had decided to do half chocolate and half vanilla, I divided the pudding between two bowls. Unfortunately I wasn't paying much attention and the first bowl had most of the liquid in it, while the second just had rice with no liquid. Hence one of my puddings (the vanilla) turned out quite liquidy, while the chocolate was quite stodgy! Lesson learnt and I look forward to trying this recipe again. Next time I think I will use vanilla beans instead of vanilla extract though. I found the chocolate one quite rich too so I might even reduced the amount of chocolate next time.

Don't forget to have a look at the rest of the Tuesdays with Dorie gang!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Tuesdays With Dorie 18: Kugelhopf

This week's recipe was chosen by Yolanda of The All-purpose Girl, so don't forget to check out her blog for the recipe.

I'll start by saying that this recipe was a real pain! From what I have read on the Tuesdays with Dorie blog, a lot of people had trouble with it- including myself. I actually ended up making this twice because I really wasn't satisfied with the first one; it didn't rise at all, didn't really pick up the shape of the mould and was almost black on the outside! Poor S was freaking out a bit because I left the baking part all up to him. I had to go to work and left him detailed instructions on what to do, including the time he had to do them. Of course you would all know that time is really just a reference in baking since there are so many factors that can affect it. Anyway it really wasn't S's fault- I blame the overnight rest in the fridge. The next morning when I took the dough out, it was extremely firm (but had been almost runny the day before), making it difficult to fill the mould with it. The dough also didn't rise enough, due to being so cold straight out of the fridge. I told S to let it rise for 2-3 hours but of course, you really need to see it to know when it was ready, which I couldn't do being at work and all. So consequently, my first Kugelhopf was quite stubby.

After the first disaster I was determined to try it again with some modifications. Instead of resting the dough in the fridge for 2 hours (deflating it every half hour), I probably only left it in the fridge for about 30-45 minutes, deflating it once. Then I put it into the mould and let it rise near the warm oven for about 2 hours. By this time it was extremely puffy and had risen almost to the top of the mould. S told me that when he did it, it did not rise that high, so I felt I had started on a high note. Well, everything went so smoothly and the Kugelhopf turned out perfect! Needless to say I was extremely relieved because I really didn't feel like making it again (and I only made it this morning so I was pressed for time). The Kugelhopf is only slightly sweet, but it is delicious. It is unbelievably soft. I used raisins as Dorie suggested, which add a touch more sweetness.

Unfortunately the cake doesn't last long as it dries out quickly- but I am looking forward to eating this toasted with jam for breakfast tomorrow. Don't forget to check out the other Tuesdays with Dorie crew. Oh, forgot to mention that I bought a Kugelhopf tin especially for today's post!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Tuesdays With Dorie 17: Rugelach

Well, here's my Tuesdays with Dorie post... finally! I feel really guilty about not posting on time, but life has been hectic, and don't get me started on the weather! Thanks to Piggy of Piggy's Cooking Journal for choosing this weeks recipe.

I had seen the picture of these in Baking: from my home to yours, but I could never quite figure out what they were- except that they looked like little croissants! That's what I love about this book; I keep learning about all these bakery goods I never knew existed. I had so much fun making these too. Dorie recommends quite a bit of chocolate in the recipe, but I probably almost halved it as I could just picture these melted pools of chocolate sitting on my baking tray. I'm glad I did too because it was just the right amount of chocolate for me. I was also sparing with the jam for the same reasons. I know it seems like I reduced everything, but I would actually increase the amount of pecans next time. These are the types of cookies you always want to have in your freezer for unexpected guests.

I am also eager to try these with different fillings, including savoury ones! I've already thought up a bunch of ideas. They would be great as finger food for a party; make them ahead of time and freeze them, then all you need to do is bake them as you need. I'm thinking of making these for Christmas this year as to me, they were quite reminiscent of fruit mince pies... (kind of).

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Tuesdays With Dorie...

I just wanted to say that I did do this weeks Tuesdays with Dorie challenge. Unfortunately it has been so rainy and dreary here, it would be impossible to take any photos... damn rainy season. Anyway, I plan to have my post up in the next couple of days hopefully, but definitely before next Tuesday. I'm not too sure the Rugelach will last long enough for the photos though... S will be happy if I have to make more.