Tuesday, May 27, 2008

TWD: Pecan Honey Sticky Buns

DSC00404Another Tuesday and another midnight baking spree. One of these days, I'll figure out how to plan for this (and have it actually work :). I was all set to make these for our Memorial Day BBQ. I'd prepped the dough the day before, and figured there would be a lull at some point to put the buns together. That way, I'd have a house full of people to eat them and less of a chance of throwing half of them away or even worse, eating them ourselves!

Yeah, best laid plans and all that jazz. I ended up starting them around 8pm and pulled them out of the oven around 11:30pm. Plus, I had an audience the whole time I was putting them together. Oy - my dough rolling skills aren't pretty people! I think I got all the measurements right, but I must have read them a dozen times per section because I'd forget something from one side of the kitchen to the other. (Was that Tablespoon or teaspoon. There's no way that's Tablespoon of cinnamon! Wait, one or three?)

DSC00401Let's go back a day. Take a look at the picture on the left. Notice anything weird? Yeah that little dohicky sticking out the side. I was babysitting my dancing KA while it worked the dough when I happened to look back and see this piece working it's way to freedom. (I let it work out this far for a picture, but it was probably twice that when I noticed it the first time.) I don't know what would have happened if it had kept going, but how scary is that?

DSC00410The dough went together as smooth this time as last (ignoring that pesky dohicky), and all the elements of the buns were quick and easy too. The only slight glitch (besides the audience - I don't know how Rachael Ray does it) was the baking time. All the yeasty recipes for TWD end up way too brown if I leave them in for the recipe time. So I checked these with time to spare (maybe 5 minutes, maybe 10 minutes - it was late! I can't be expected to remember times this late!!) and took them out because they looked done. (Seriously, don't those look done?)

Turns out they were not quite done in the middle and the whole thing fell about a minute after I got the pictures taken. Still taste awesome, but next time I'll know to put foil on them and cook for the full time. (I remembered to do that for the brioche loaf and it came out perfect. Argh!)

I'm still amazed that pan of messy gooeyness turned into such a beautiful sticky bun. I love that now I know how to make such an impressive dessert/breakfast dish!

Many thanks to Madam Chow of Madam Chow's Kitchen for picking this sticky, ooey, gooey treat!



Tuesday, May 20, 2008

TWD: Traditional Madeleines

Alright, ready? This is going to be a whirl wind post. Vacation week, late nights, and lotsa prep still to go.

TWD pick: Traditional Madeleines (check Tara's post for recipe)

Picked by: Tara of Smells Like Home

Background: First attempt at madeleines and first attempt at browned butter

Outcome: Butter too pale, cookies too heavy (but still pretty darn tasty). No bump.  As a matter of fact, I got a reverse bump.  Oh, and no scallop either.

Conclusion: I gotta give this another try only with normal butter for a baseline.

Madeleine Mosaic

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

TWD: Florida Pie

Florida Pie Mosaic

Dude! I made meringue!!! First time and I had no idea what to expect. I love how it came out - all bumpy and browned on top. I can see that I'll need a blowtorch if I plan on making many more of those though, those edges just don't have enough color. (I put the meringue on tonight so I could take the pictures, but I'm not sure how long it'll hold up. I'll check it tomorrow and see if it's all right to take into work.)

Love the flavors, love the pie! I ended up making two since Bill doesn't like coconut and I had a ton of key limes left over after juicing one batch. So one with the recipe as written with a store bought crust, and one plain key lime pie with a home made crust. I'll pop a meringue on it to serve it up tomorrow night.


Look at that luscious layer of coconut cream on the bottom of that fork! I knew I'd love this stuff as it was boiling down. Tasty and creamy goodness just sitting at the bottom. It pairs really well with the tart key lime.

Here's the recipe, and don't forget to check out the rest of the TWD pies.  I'm sure there will be some fantastic pictures, presentations, and takes! Oh, and thanks to Dianne of Dianne's Dishes for picking such a great dessert!

PS - Take a look at my Peanut Butter Torte below - I caught up!

Monday, May 12, 2008

TWD: Peanut Butter Torte


I'm a week late on this one, but better late than never, right? I managed to make this for my Saturday night testers last weekend. (Fixed to say, thanks to Elizabeth of Ugg Smell Food for picking the recipe this week! She's got one of my favorite blog names..)

This is just a gorgeous little torte. I mean, look at that



Given all the gorgeousness, I was expecting it to be fantastic. Unfortunately, it just... wasn't. One of the folks said the texture was too airy but the taste was good. I wanted more crust and more peanut butter flavor. The other taste tester didn't say much, but she ate a fraction of what she usually manages.

The other test was when I took the leftovers into the office. Usually folks descend and all that's left are crumbs, but there was only one small sliver gone at the end of the day.

I'm thinking there's a couple of possibilities. I used low fat whenever possible (reduced fat peanut butter and low fat cream cheese). So that could possibly have affected the taste and texture. I think I also have issues with whipping cream. I need to spend some time and try to find a demo video or pictures because I think I stop short of the right textures. I'm so afraid of breaking the cream.

This is right about the time that I really wish the internet came with taste files. What I wouldn't give to sample some of the other versions of this!

Here's the recipe, and you'll have to go back a week for the other tortes. Whooohooo!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


Darnitall!  I knew that I'd probably have to miss a week sometime, but I didn't think it would be this soon.  The recipe this week was the Peanut Butter Torte chosen by Elizabeth of Ugg Smell Food.

I was on track to get it made and then got the one-two punch of helping friends move and coming down with the plague.

It sounds fantastic, and I can't wait to see all the amazing tortes from my fellow TWDers.  I'll try and do a makeup on this one as soon as I don't feel like a plague beast.