Archive | pastries RSS feed for this section

Raspberry and Apricot Galette. Galettes?

28 Sep

SONY DSC

So summer is over…

How did that happen and didn’t it just start?

Am I the only one that feels ripped off, seeing as summer decided to show up late (and not fashionably, I might add). Phooey. Well, as much as I enjoy the sights and smells of fall, I’ll admit I am bummed to the max.

What happened to all of the wonderful things I had planned for the baskets and baskets of fruit and vegetables I bought at the market or grew myself, you may wonder. Where are all the tasty baked treats? In my belly. Simple. I ate everything.

The strawberries, raspberries, cherries, plums (oh wow how I love plums), peaches, apricots, grapes and finally apples – they didn’t even make it to the oven. They barely touched an ounce of butter or sugar. Just straight into face. Down the hatch. Gone-zo!

All we can do my friends is reminisce and trust that I enjoyed thoroughly.

We could reminisce about probably the only thing I baked this summer- a couple of galettes.

SONY DSC

Thyme in one for good measure. Raspberries in the other.

SONY DSC

Galettes are a lazy man’s pie in my opinion and that’s most likely why I love them so!

Dough. Fruit. Sugar. Bake. Reap rewards of deliciousness.

Hey, apples are still around for a while and it’s not too late to galette-ify those!

Raspberry and Apricot Galette 

This recipe is for 1 large galette, you can divide dough into two as I did for a couple smaller versions

Inspired and adapted from Martha Stewart

Crust

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon sugar

1 cup chilled and cubed unsalted butter

1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water

Put flour, salt and sugar in food processor and add butter. Process until you have pea sized butter pieces. Add water slowly until the dough comes together.

Press into a disc and refrigerate for at least an hour. (I have rushed the process by using the freezer for emergency galette baking purposes with relatively good results)

Filling and Assembly

4 cups sliced apricots (approximately)

1 cup raspberries (or just add 1 cup apricots more if not using raspberries)

1-2 sprigs of thyme (optional)

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 egg for brushing

Roll out dough into large circle about 1/8 inch thick.

Combine fruit with sugar, salt, lemon juice and cornstarch before arranging in the middle of the dough.

Fold dough up towards the centre.

Brush with egg wash and sprinkle lightly with sugar.

Bake at 375F until bubbling in centre, around 1 hour for a full size galette.

Cool slightly and serve with ice cream or whipped cream. Or enjoy on it’s own. No judgement here.

Matcha Cupcakes with Cocoa Icing

11 Mar

DSC03645

I don’t even know how these happened.

One minute I’m unwinding after a day at work, and the next, I’m standing in front of my pantry, grabbing cupcake accoutrements, preheating the oven, and getting out mixing bowls.

Midnight rolled around and there was an iced cupcake on a plate in front of me.

DSC03651

Seriously. I don’t know.

The cool part was that it was a darned good cupcake, and I now have a way to get rid of the giant bag of unwanted matcha tea I have in my cupboard.

I’m a healthy person, but holy hell I hate drinking matcha. Baked goods with matcha on the other hand…yes. Please. Baked goods with matcha and chocolate? Heck yes.

Thanks to David’s Tea I found this recipe and have had it on my mind for a while. Making them was a good idea. Even if it was a little too late.

DSC03665

The icing is a very simple cocoa frosting. The reason the frosting on mine is so dark is because I used my black onyx cocoa powder…it’s like powdered oreos and probably the greatest thing, but regular cocoa powder would be just as divine.

Cream cheese frosting works too! Double the matcha kick by adding it to a buttercream why don’t you?

Best served at midnight.

Matcha Cupcakes

adapted from David’s Tea website

1 tbsp matcha
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs
2-3/4 cups flour
1- 1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla

Beat butter on high until soft for about 30 seconds.
Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes
Add eggs one at a time, mixing in between each.
Mix the flour, baking powder, salt and matcha together.
Add in alternately with the milk and vanilla until combined.

The recipe makes just over 12 cupcakes depending on how full they are. I made 14 when I filled them 2/3 full.

Bake @350F for 20-25min….yada yada yada…

Cocoa Frosting

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2/3 cup cocoa
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency.
Add small amount additional milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla. About 2 cups frosting.

Coconut Milk Scones

4 Mar

SONY DSC

I’d like to apologize to anyone who has come in contact with me since my return from Jamaica. I know I’ve been grumpy and bitter. And bitchy. And mopey. Mainly I’ve been a big ol’ sad sack; sitting on the couch, thinking about the unrealistic option of going back to Jamaica forever.

Reality freakin’ blows, people. Jamaica was the most magical experience I’ve had in a long time and it was over too soon. It’s no wonder their slogan is: “Jamaica- Once you go, you know.”

Oh….I know alright.

Coming back to my life here in Canada, with snow, and chores, and responsibilities is such a slap in the face after the warm, laid back personality of Jamaica.

DSC03616

This recipe is me, grasping at any possible connection to the feeling I had there. Coconut milk scones.

I used my favourite cream scone recipe and substituted coconut milk for the cream, extra virgin coconut oil for some of the butter, and threw in some toasted coconut flakes for good measure. They’re pretty stellar.

DSC03622 SONY DSC

If you need me I’ll be eating coconut scones all day on the couch, staring at the wrist band from my resort that I still haven’t taken off and telling myself that it’s “no problem,” just like everyone in Jamaica assured me on a regular basis.

Ya Man’

DSC03640

Coconut Milk Scones

2 cups all purpose flour

1/4 cup sugar

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

40g unsalted butter (cold)

40g extra virgin coconut oil (cold)

1 egg

a splash of vanilla extract

1/2 cup coconut milk

1/2 cup toasted coconut flakes

Mix the dry ingredients together, and rub in the butter and coconut oil until the mixture has no more clumps in it; you want a very fine crumb. Try grating the butter in first, it’s easier to break it down.

Beat the eggs then mix with the vanilla and coconut milk, and pour into the dry mixture. The key is not to work the gluten in this dough. Break it up as if you were still just rubbing the butter into the flour, until there is no more loose flour. If you need to add a small splash of water, you can do so. Press together to form a solid dough ball. Knead it twice to bring together, then roll it out into a rectangle. You want about 1/2 inch thickness.

Pour a splash of coconut milk on the top and a sprinkle of sugar and spread it around.

Cut into strips, then squares, then triangles or you can cut into circles like I did for these.

Bake at 400F until they are light golden brown just around the edges.

Cranberry Apple Pie

6 Feb

 

SONY DSC

I would like to confess that sometimes, I lie.

If you’d like to tell me you are 100% honest I’d like to call bullshit on that, please and thank you.

However, I can’t say I’m the best liar…most of the time my face is a dead giveaway…or the guilt I feel leads to me confessing; but I still try.

I began to lie in this blog post and gush about how easy it was to put this together and hide all the shame that happened behind the scenes.

I could not follow through. I’ll just tell you the facts…SONY DSC

The apples I was planning on using froze while sitting in our sunroom.

The butter I measured out fell on the floor. (No, I did NOT call upon the 5 second rule and save it).

There was a flour explosion.

The crust was being a tool bag and refused to stay in one piece.

Fuck lattices.

DSC03551

DSC03554

DSC03563

What I can say though, is that the outcome (even appearance-wise) surprised the heck out of me! It was a lovely slice of pie. Flaky crust and delicious filling.

So there, kitchen gods, you can try to smite me but I’ll always persevere.

SONY DSC

Here’s the recipe. I hope the kitchen gods bless you with the tastiest of pies.

 

Cranberry-Apple Pie

compliments of Martha Stewart

Crust:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon coarse salt

1 teaspoon sugar

1 cup (2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut in pieces

1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water

Place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor, and process for a few seconds to combine. Add the butter, and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about 10 seconds. With the machine running, add the ice water in a slow, steady stream, through the feed tube, just until the dough holds together. Do not process for more than 30 seconds.

Turn the dough out onto a work surface. Divide in two. Place each half on a sheet of plastic wrap. Flatten, and form two discs. Wrap, and refrigerate at least 1 hour before using.

Filling:

6 apples

1-2 cups cranberries, thawed or fresh

2/3 cup sugar

a dash of vanilla and cinnamon

1/3 cup flour

Toss together.

Take the first round of dough and roll out to make the base. Pour the filling into the base, and then cover with the second round that has been rolled out and cut into strips for a lattice top, or left whole. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake at 400F for 40 minutes to an hour until filling is bubbling and pastry is a healthy golden brown.

 

Banana Doughnuts with Brown Butter Icing

22 Nov

I could lie right now and try selling you on these doughnuts by talking about how they’re baked doughnuts.

I won’t.

They’re baked…that is a cold hard fact.

The fact that they’re baked, however, should not completely cancel out any guilt or shame post consumption.

It’s the icing.

There’s some hardcore icing on these guys…

Browned butter: have you ever smelled anything better than that? It makes me want to live in it. Bathe in it.

Hey, it could be worse. They COULD also be deep fried.

There’s also a healthy dose of grated milk chocolate on top.

I ate one and my head exploded. Ok that’s a lie. The truth is I ate one and my mind was blown.

These are so good.

These are addictive.

These are dangerous.

So without further ado, here’s the recipe.

You’ll thank me. Or hate me. But you can’t lie and tell me they’re not mind bogglingly good.

If you don’t have a doughnut pan, these will easily work in muffin tins! You’re welcome.

Banana Doughnuts with Brown Butter Icing.

adapted from Shutterbean

1 1/4 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs, at room temperature

1 1/4 cups mashed ripe bananas (3ish bananas)

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup vegetable oil

In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, mashed bananas, vanilla and the oil. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry until just combined. Spoon the batter about three-quarters full into two greased doughnut pans. Bake at 350F until golden and a toothpick inserted comes out dry, 14 to 16 minutes; let cool completely on a rack.

Brown Butter Icing

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) salted butter
2 cups icing sugar
4 to 5 teaspoons boiling hot water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Heat and stir for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the butter is lightly browned (you will see little flecks of brown throughout the melted butter when it is properly browned). Remove it from the stove and pour it into a bowl. Whisk in 1 cup of the powdered sugar. Add 3 teaspoons of the water and the vanilla. Whisk in more powdered sugar a little at a time until it thick but still pourable (add a teaspoon or two of additional water, if needed). Place paper towels under the cooling rack and proceed to dip the cooled doughnuts into the glaze. Let the excess drip off and place back on the cooling rack. Be sure to grate milk chocolate on top for good measure

Pumpkin Scones

23 Oct

Here’s where I confess that I have an addiction to Starbucks. I’m not a coffee drinker….ew. Just tea. The thing about Starbucks is that going in there just makes me happy! They make your drink exactly how you want it; you get a killer speech workout ordering your drink, free wifi, yummy and healthy food options and there are free apps and music downloads for the taking.

So what does this have to do with anything aside from confessing to one of my weaknesses (along with Timbits, chocolate covered pretzels and men with pretty singing voices) ?

Starbucks always has decadent treats on display. Naturally. However, I can’t bring myself to buy them. Why? Because I’ve always had the idea that if you want to treat yourself to something, make it yourself. That’s what keeps you from taking a treat for granted and indulging too often if it’s so easily accessible. (Unless it’s a Timbit; I make exceptions…)

The pumpkin scones on display drive me crazy.

I made my own pumpkin scones: a treat that tastes much better when you made it yourself and know exactly what went into it (including love and lots of excitement).

They’re actually a little too easy to make. You may find that realizing this will lead to making them too often. Don’t worry. This is a common occurrence and there may even be some local support groups for people like you (and me).

Happy baking!

Pumpkin Scones

adapted from here

Ingredients:
2 cups flour
7 Tablespoons sugar
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tsp pumpkin spice (or as much as you like. I’m a big fan so I use lots)
1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
3 Tablespoons half & half
1 egg
6 Tablespoons cold butter, cubed

Glaze:
1 cup + 1 Tablespoon powdered sugar

Dash of cinnamon

2 Tablespoons half & half

Preheat oven to 425 degrees then line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

In the bowl of a large food processor (or in a large bowl) combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Pulse or whisk to combine. Add cold butter and pulse until well incorporated and mixture is the texture of cornmeal. Alternatively, use your fingertips or a pastry butter to blend butter in.

In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, half & half, and egg. Add to flour mixture and pulse until just combined. Alternatively, stir until the dough comes together in a ball. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead 4 or 5 times to bring the dough together, then flatten into a circle 1″ thick. Cut the dough in half, then cut each half into thirds.
Place the wedges onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for 14-16 minutes, or until just starting to turn golden brown. Remove to a cooling rack to cool completely.

When scones are cool, whisk together the glaze ingredients, then drizzle on top. Store in an air-tight container for 1 day.

Hazelnut Cinnamon Buns

17 Oct

Do you ever feel like whipping butter is just too much of an effort sometimes?

Reading a recipe that calls for softened or room temperature anything…does it put you off?

I can’t be the only one. There are times when I crave a chocolate chip cookie or a bundt cake (what, you don’t crave bundt cake?) but settle for a a simple quick bread or pudding.

Heck, the epitome of laziness is giving in to my secret addiction to Timbits or chocolate covered peanut mnm’s. No judgement; sometimes we just want to get the sugar to our mouths in the least amount of time with the least amount of effort.

There are, however, those times when you’ve got a big fat juicy chunk of time on your hands, plenty of baking “accoutrements” and that one baked good worth every step… every minute of your time.

I came across one of these opportunities. Of course, it was cinnamon bun time.

This recipe is a simple sweet dough, that interestingly enough calls for cream cheese to get folded in as well.

The end result is a soft but flakey, sweet and nutty mouthful of guilt ridden gooey heaven.

Sometimes, it’s just 100% worth it. Trust.

Hazelnut Cinnamon Buns

adapted from Joy the Baker

Dough

1 package active dry yeast

1/4 cup warm water

1/2 teaspoon, plus 1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup milk at room temperature

2 Tablespoons light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 egg

1 egg yolk

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for the pan

Combine the water with the yeast and the 1/2 tsp sugar. Stir, then wait for 10 minutes until the mixture is frothy. Add the milk, the rest of the sugar, vanilla and egg. Stir to combine, then add the flour and salt. Knead for about 4 minutes before incorporating the butter and kneading for about 6 more minutes. It will be sticky but don’t fret. Place it in a greased bowl and let rise until doubled in size (about 1 1/2 to 2 hours)

Filling

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup dark brown sugar

1/2 cup finely chopped hazelnuts

1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons maple syrup

4oz softened cream cheese

4tbsp melted butter

Combine all ingredients except for the cream cheese and butter (set that aside) Easy peasy.

Put the dough onto a well floured surface and knead well until it is no longer sticky. Let it rest for 5 minutes before rolling into a 10 by 10 inch square. Spread the cream cheese and then fold the dough into thirds. then fold into thirds the other way. Roll that out into a rectangle. Brush with butter, then spread the filling out over the whole rectangle. Roll into a log, then slice into 8 even pieces.

Place in a dish and let rise for 2 hours, or you can also refrigerate them overnight at this point.

Bake at 375F for about 30 minutes until they’re a healthy golden brown.

Brush the buns with some more melted butter when they come out of the oven, and then drizzle with icing after they’ve cooled for 5 minutes.

Icing

2 cups confectioners’ sugar

1/4 cup buttermilk