Saturday, 24 September 2011

Recipe 60 - Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Feeling uninspired, I visited David Lebovitz' website and within 60 seconds I found a treat that appealed to me. I'm excited to try out this recipe for Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies. Here's what we'll need:

4 ounces (115g) salted butter, at room temperature

2/3 cup packed (110g) dark or light brown sugar

1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar

1 large egg, at room temperature

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/3 cup (180g) flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon flaky sea salt or kosher salt

1 1/3 cups (200g) coarsely chopped bittersweet or semisweet chocolate

1 cup toasted nuts, coarsely chopped

Her Results - Fluffy Date and Ginger Cake

Over the course of our relationship, I've developed a lot of new habits and tried a lot of new things that I probably would have never even considered doing. One of the new things that I've become keen on thanks to Him is eating dates. Since I've gotten on the kick, I've steadily convinced many of my colleagues, friends and family to try eating a date. But so far, no one has actually liked them. That's sad and it's not right! Too bad I didn't force my cake upon them, too. Perhaps they would have liked it.

Making this cake went quite well with one major exception. After I let my dates rest in hot water, I put them securely into the food processor as prescribed by the recipe, then I pressed the button to turn it on, and BAM!!! sticky brown date water rained down all over my entire kitchen. I still have no idea what happened. If you make this, watch out for that... Cleaning it up was a nightmare. Otherwise, making the cake was a snap. I decided to bake it in my bundt pan, which turned out to be a good idea.

It took precisely 40 minutes for my cake to bake, and it turned out just right. Fluffy and moist and delicious! Personally I thought it was a little light on ginger flavor. I passed this judgement only because if an ingredient is mentioned in the title of a recipeI really expect that flavor to stand out, but I'll admit that I'm probably one of the few who want her cake to have a real zing to it. The cake was really flavorful and delicious as is.

Too bad I didn't get a picture with yogurt and blackberries alongside my cake. That's how I devoured it every morning while it lasted. A delicious breakfast! This cake would be really nice with team or coffee as a morning snack.

One small note: after only a day or so, the powdered sugar atop the cake turned pale brown, ostensibly from soaking up the juices of the cake. That was unattractive, so if you're serving this to guests either serve it soon after baking or wait until you're getting ready to serve it before dusting it with powdered sugar.

Friday, 23 September 2011

His Results - Fluffy Date and Ginger Cake

Cakes with dates in always have such an awesome texture. It's kind of suprising there aren't way more recipes using fruit or veg to provide moisture. Courgette, beetroot, carrot. It's all great at making moist, delicious cakes!

It was a doddle to put this together and super tasty too.

Weird picture. I like the super low res looking shadows. This was yummy. Incredibly moist and tender and with a lovely ginger flavour. It goes onto my recommended pile. Not a knock out stellar cake but a good one for sure!

Saturday, 10 September 2011

Recipe 59 - Fluffy Ginger and Date Cake

Things I love which are in the title of this recipe:
1) ginger
2) dates
3) cake

surely it'll be a winner!

Recipe is here at the ever reliable technicolor kitchen. As per usual it's helpfully already in metric.

His Results - Cherry Chocolate Brownies

I left it to the last minute to go shopping for ingredients and sadly couldn't find any cherries. Undaunted I soldiered on substituting a mixture of strawberry flavoured gummy sweets and necco wafers.

And that actually worked really well! It wasn't what it was supposed to be but it certainly was good. A crunchy, medicine tasting bite every now and then fromt he necco wafers. Chewy bite every now and then fromt he gummy sweetss. And all in a really rich, fudgy exterior.

I undercooked them a bit and I think it was probably a good thing. They were chewy and rich and delicious. No airiness or crumbliness. Pure chocolately chew. Yum!

Her results - Cherry Chocolate Brownies

These Cherry Chocolate Brownies are the way to go if you're in need a decadent dessert that only the richest of brownies can fulfill. I'm not big on chocolate so if I'm going to eat it, it's got to be the real deal. I think that this is the most chocolatey and overly-rich treat we've made, and I loved it. :)

I was at home in Kentucky when we made these, and my mom and I went to the local Amish store to buy dried cherries. I picked up the chocolate bars and the rest of the supplies from Walmart. I used Ghirardelli's Evening Dream 60% Cacao chocolate bars. These were cheap in comparison to most chocolate bars suggested for baking, but still cost me about $10. These are not cheap brownies to make, but one batch made quite a few.

The recipe began with of melting tons of chocolate and butter over direct heat...

And then setting it aside to cool while combining lots of sugar and eggs and vanilla...

Then mixing all that together and adding the dry ingredients...

And then folding in the moistened cherries and pouring the mixture into a prepared pan for baking...

They took a full 30 minutes to bake, and turned out beautiful and moist and fudgy.

I had one by itself, and another with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The ice cream took these to a whole new level and I really suggest it. The whole family enjoyed them. If you are looking for a delicious brownie recipe, try this one out!

Special thanks to my Mom for sharing her kitchen and equipment and iPhone photography skills with me!

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Recipe 58 - Cherry Chocolate Brownies

I just got awful news. A man I loved, my dad's good friend Tommy, passed away unexpectedly this evening. He is going to be missed deeply. My baking blog is probably not the right place to mourn, but I was seconds away from posting this when I got the news. I wish I knew Tommy's favorite dessert, I'd choose it in honor of him. Instead I'll just roll with the recipe I'd picked and go back to thinking of the good times we shared.

Cherry Chocolate Brownies
Recipe found on Serious Eats, adapted from How to Be a Domestic Goddess: Baking and the Art of Comfort Cooking by Nigella Lawson

1 2/3 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus extra for buttering pan
1 1/3 cup dried cherries
1 quart boiling water
13 ounces good dark chocolate
6 large eggs
1 2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt

Check out the full recipe at the link above.
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