Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Daring Bakers: Macaroons FAIL

This one did not work out for me. The first weekend that I was planning on making them I ended up at work on Saturday and sick as a dog on Sunday. I ended up making it the next weekend, barely making it in time. The breaking point was when I stupidly decided to do it straight on the pan rather than putting parchment paper down. I was using a nonstick pan so I thought I was OK. Once I took it out of the oven I knew otherwise.

Since I had already used 5 egg whites and had 5 yolks waiting for me to figure out what to do with them, there was no way going to do it again. I used a plastic spatula and scraped them up the best I could, used the yolks to make a lemon curd and made a lemon mixed berry parfait.

Oh well. Not exactly my first failure. At least it was still edible.

The 2009 October Daring Bakers’ challenge was brought to us by Ami S. She chose macarons from Claudia Fleming’s The Last Course: The Desserts of Gramercy Tavern as the challenge recipe.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Barefoot Bloggers: Blue Cheese Souffle

This month's recipe for Blue Cheese Souffle was chosen by Summer.

So here's the dilemma. What was I gonna do with a full 8" souffle? it's not like it would keep well in the fridge once it was baked. And I don't have an 8" souffle dish. So I decided to make single serving size souffles.

Then I got tied up with work stuff. 14 hour days were so much more tolerable when I had a 6 minute commute.

And then I got this nasty cough from my flu shot.

Anyway, I still managed to make it on time. Barely. But it's here.

The blue cheese flavor is pretty strong. I would probably cut it back and add some other cheese for future reference. That or actually use the amount called for in the recipe, not just dump some in and figure that should be good. I made it in my toaster oven because the front is clean and I could watch it without opening the door. Otherwise I'd have no idea how long to bake it for. That worked out pretty well.

Is it sad that I've never had a savory souffle before? I've had plenty of chocolate souffles but never savory. Anyway, here it is. It is a hold on and tweak it recipe.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Pleasure is All Mine

I went to the library today. As usual, I spent a few minutes browsing the cook books. I knew I needed this one when I started reading the introduction.

"I'm not sure why eating alone has gotten such a bad rap. With the number of singles, loners, and suicide bombers out there, you'd think it would be fairly acceptable."
The Pleasure is All Mine
by Suzanne Pirret

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Barefoot Bloggers: Cheddar Corn Chowder

This recipe Cheddar Corn Chowder was chosen by Jill. When I first saw what this months recipes were, my first thought was ugh. See, I had just made a large pot of soup. By large pot, I mean 12 quarts. And I had just eaten 2 bowls and was starting to get sick of it.

So I decided to quarter the recipe. I figured that'd give me probably 2 servings. Well, it gave me significantly more than 2 servings. But that's OK because this soup is really good. I used whole milk instead of half and half (although I used more than called for, I just took the bottle and poured) but it still is so creamy and has a really nice mouthfeel.

I ate a small bowl (about a cup worth) and it was so rich tasting that I was actually pretty much full at that point. Even though I had made a grilled cheese sandwich and some roasted veggies to go with it, I had most of it left because the soup is so rich. Although if you look at the ingredients, it's not all cream. I guess the bacon fat gives it all that richness. I only used 2 strips of bacon that I had in the freezer. Which is no where near the 2 oz the recipe called for. I even left out (aka forgot) the butter. I can't imagine how rich this would be if I had all the fat that was supposed to be in it.

Thanks Jill, this was an awesome choice! This one is definitely getting saved.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Homemade Candy Bars

I was lying in bed one morning watching food network. Wasn't ready to get up so I just kept watching. When I saw this I knew I needed to make it.

These were good enough for me to keep for myself. They didn't get brought into work like just about everything I make does. I have them stashed in the freezer so I can grab one anytime I need a sugar fix. Or I don't feel like making/eating a real dinner. Which is fairly often.

Homemade Candy Bars
based on this recipe by Sunny Anderson

For the cookie bar
2 cup AP flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 stick butter, room temperature
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
5 oz bittersweet chocolate, melted
1/4 cup finely chopped cashews
a pinch of salt

Cream the butter and sugar together. Add the egg and mix in. Stir in the chocolate. Mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix dry ingredients and pecans into the wet mixture. Press into the bottom of a greased 9x9 baking pan. Bake at 325 for about 25 minutes or until cooked through. Cool completely.

Caramel topping
1 1/2 sticks butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp corn syrup
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup cashews, chopped

Combine everything except the cashews in a pan and cook over medium heat until it browns slightly. Pour over the cookie base and spread evenly. Sprinkle the pecans on top of the caramel while it is still hot. Chill and cut into bars.