Jan 29, 2009

Tuiles-Daring Bakers

This month's challenge is brought to us by Karen of Baking Soda and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from The Chocolate Book by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux. Our challenge is to either make plain tuiles, chocolate tuiles, nougatine, or savory tuiles and pair it off with something light.

I decided to make the plain tuiles, and pair it off with a lilikoi (passion fruit) mousse. This was such a fun challenge..unlike most of our usual challenges, this one didn't take that much time at all. It only took me couple of hours to finish this..even with the refrigeration and the cleanup. That's pretty quick for me..I'm normally a very slow baker. I always need to multiply the regular cooking time by two.

The recipe for the tuiles is very straight forward and easy to make. The challenge, I think, was deciding what shape I wanted my tuiles in. In the end, I decided to make little tuile cups and a tuile spoon to serve my lilikoi mousse in. They're so cute!!

I didn't have any tuile molds and I didn't want to spend the money to buy one, so I made them using styrofoam plates (I know, I know, this is me hiding in shame!!) But in my defense, I only used one plate, and I saved the molds for future use. For the tuile cups, I just made a circle the size of about a cd, and used the cut out from the circle to make my spoon. I chose styrofoam plates because they were the perfect amount of thickness for the tuiles.

The tuiles were very yummy. Check out all the other daring bakers' creations. Here's the recipe if you want to give it a try. If you want to make the Lilikoi mousse, the recipe is here.

“The Chocolate Book”, written by female Dutch Master chef Angélique Schmeinck.
Yields: 20 small butterflies/6 large
Preparation time batter 10 minutes, waiting time 30 minutes, baking time: 5-10 minutes per batch

65 grams / ¼ cup / 2.3 ounces softened butter (not melted but soft)
60 grams / ½ cup / 2.1 ounces sifted confectioner’s sugar
1 sachet vanilla sugar (7 grams or substitute with a dash of vanilla extract)
2 large egg whites (slightly whisked with a fork)
65 grams / 1/2 cup / 2.3 ounces sifted all purpose flour
1 tablespoon cocoa powder/or food coloring of choice
Butter/spray to grease baking sheet

1. Using a hand whisk or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle (low speed) and cream butter, sugar and vanilla to a paste. Keep stirring while you gradually add the egg whites. Continue to add the flour in small batches and stir to achieve a homogeneous and smooth batter/paste. Be careful to not overmix.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to firm up. (This batter will keep in the fridge for up to a week, take it out 30 minutes before you plan to use it).

2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or grease with either butter/spray and chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes. This will help spread the batter more easily if using a stencil/cardboard template such as the butterfly. Press the stencil on the baking sheet and use an off sided spatula to spread batter. Leave some room in between your shapes. Mix a small part of the batter with the cocoa and a few drops of warm water until evenly colored. Use this colored batter in a paper piping bag and proceed to pipe decorations on the wings and body of the butterfly.

3. Bake butterflies in a preheated oven (180C/350F) for about 5-10 minutes or until the edges turn golden brown. Immediately release from baking sheet and proceed to shape/bend the cookies in the desired shape. These cookies have to be shaped when still warm, you might want to bake a small amount at a time or maybe put them in the oven to warm them up again. (Haven’t tried that). Or: place a baking sheet toward the front of the warm oven, leaving the door half open. The warmth will keep the cookies malleable.

5. If you don’t want to do stencil shapes, you might want to transfer the batter into a piping bag fitted with a small plain tip. Pipe the desired shapes and bake. Shape immediately after baking using for instance a rolling pin, a broom handle, cups, cones….

Jan 17, 2009

Lilikoi (Passion fruit) Mousse Cake

I have been looking for lilikois (Hawaiian for passion fruit) at the farmer markets and I haven't been able to find anything..finally, I found it in Chinatown!! Yipee...I was so happy that I searched high and low for recipes to use my lilikois. I decided finally that I wanted to make a lilikoi mousse cake. I couldn't find a recipe that I really liked so I combined a few.

I noticed that all the lilikoi mousse recipes uses lilikoi puree. So first, I needed to find out how to go from lilikois to lilikoi puree. I found the recipe for that at Within the corners of my kitchen. With that, I was able to use the lilikoi puree to make the lilikoi mousse and that recipe I found on Martha Stewart. The lilikoi mousse is so good, I can eat it just by itself...and I did!! As for the cake, I used my usual recipe for the chiffon cake. The result? A very yummy, very light cake for my friend's birthday! Here's the recipe.

Lilikoi puree
from Within the corners of my kitchen

4 lilikois
1/4 cup water

1. Rinse 4 medium sized passion fruits and cut in half
2. Put all the pulp in one container
3. blend the pulp with 1/4 cup water for 20 seconds
4. Strain the mixture to remove the seeds from the liguid and measure 3/4 cup for the mousse recipe.

Lilikoi mousse
from Martha Stewart

3 large eggs
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup passion-fruit puree
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2 teaspoons powdered gelatin
1 cup heavy cream

1. Fill a medium bowl with ice water; set aside. In a small nonreactive saucepan, combine eggs, sugar, and passionfruit puree. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium-low heat until mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat, immediately add butter, and stir well to combine.

2. In a medium saucepan, combine the orange juice and 2 tablespoons cold water. Sprinkle gelatin over orange-juice mixture; let stand 5 minutes. Place over low heat until the gelatin is completely dissolved, about 2 minutes.

3. Pour passion-fruit mixture through a fine sieve or chinois into a non-reactive bowl. Stir in gelatin mixture. Place bowl over ice water; whisk constantly until the mixture has cooled.

4. In a chilled bowl, whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form, about 3 minutes. Whisk one-third of the whipped cream into the passion-fruit mixture. Then, in two additions, fold the lightened passion-fruit mixture into the remaining whipped cream. Transfer mixture to a pastry bag fitted with a number 3 plain round tip; set aside.

Chiffon Cake

4 eggs
80g caster sugar
60ml vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla
3 tbsp milk
86g cake flour
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp cream of tartar

1. Sift cake flour and cornstarch together.

2. Separate egg yolks and egg whites. Using a stand mixer or electric beaters. Beat the egg yolks. While beating the egg yolks, add 40g of caster sugar. Add sugar in one tbsp increments. Beat the egg yolks until it's light and fluffy and the color is a very pale yellow.

3. Once the egg yolks reach that state, mix in the oil, milk and the vanilla. Sift in the cake flour and cornstarch mixture. Gently fold in the flour mixture until just incorporated.

4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Add cream of tartar to the egg whites and beat with an electric mixer or stand mixer. Once the egg whites are foamy, add the remaining 40g of sugar in 1 tbsp increments. Beat the egg whites until they reach soft peaks.

5. Gently fold 1/3 of the egg whites until just incorporated. Repeat with the remaining egg whites. Pour the cake mixture into a 8" cake pan. Hit pan gently against the counter to remove large bubbles. Bake for 25 minutes.

6. When the cake is finished baking, cool cake upside down in the pan. Once the cake is completely cooled, take the cake out of the pan and cut into thirds.

7. Spread the mousse between the cake layers and frost with whipped cream or the remaining lilikoi mousse.

Jan 3, 2009

Peanut butter cup brownies

Every year for Christmas, I give my brother in law peanut butter brownies. The recipe that I've been using is a recipe from Janet is Hungry called the Peanut layered brownies. Those brownies are very good, but this year I wanted to try something new. I found a recipe for a Peanut butter cup brownie, it's similar to the recipe I used for the Mint chocolate brownie. It's basically a brownie sandwich with the peanut butter cups in the middle. I have to say, maybe this recipe will replace the Peanut layered brownies. One, it's a yummy fudgy brownie, and two (shhhhh..don't tell), it's so easy to make!! =P Here's the recipe.

Peanut Butter Cup Brownies
from newsday

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut up, plus 2 tablespoon to butter pan
8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
4 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup flour
20 Reese's Peanut Butter Cups (full size)
1/2 to 1 cup roasted peanuts, chopped

1. Butter a 9-by-13-by-2-inch pan, then line with foil and butter foil. Set aside.

2. Bring saucepan of water to boil and turn off heat. Combine butter and chocolate in heatproof bowl and set over the pan of hot water, stirring occasionally until melted.

3. Whisk eggs in large bowl. Whisk in salt, sugars and vanilla. Stir in chocolate and butter mixture, then fold in flour.

4. Pour 1/2 of batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Place peanut butter cups on top of batter, spacing evenly. Pour remaining batter over peanut butter cups and spread evenly. Decorate top with chopped peanuts.

5. Bake on middle rack at 350 degrees about 45 minutes or until top has formed a shiny crust and batter is moderately firm. Cool in pan on wire rack for at least 2 hours or in refrigerator for 1 hour to allow peanut butter cups to firm up again before cutting. Wrap pan in plastic wrap and keep at room temperature or refrigerate until next day to make brownies easier to cut. Or you can wrap pan in plastic wrap and freeze for several weeks.

6. To cut brownies, unmold onto cutting board, remove foil and place another cutting board on top. Turn cake right side up and trim away edges. Cut into 2-inch squares. Wrap individually in plastic wrap and place in layers between parchment or wax paper in tin or plastic container that has a tight-fitting cover. Store at room temperature or freeze. Makes 24 (2-inch) pieces.

  • I didn't have full size peanut butter cups, so I cut up the taller mini cups into quarters, and spread it around.

Jan 2, 2009

Chubble bread

When I saw this recipe for Chubble bread on Mrs. Marv's blog, I knew that I had to make it, I just needed an occasion. So this year, instead of giving my friends sweets for the holidays, I made Chubble bread. This bread smells heavenly when it's baking and it's soooooo yummy!!! Everyone loved it!! I made four batches before I got to taste it..it was complete torture!!! When I finally tasted it, it was definitely worth the wait!! You *HAVE* to try it!!

Chubble bread
adapted from Mrs Marv's
makes 2 bread loaves
total time: 4.5 hours

1 tsp active dry yeast
1/2 c warm water (105°f to 115°f)
3/4 c unbleached all-purpose flour

1. Sprinkle yeast over the warm water in a large bowl, whisk it in, and let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. Stir in the flour. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until very bubbly and doubled, about 45 minutes.

1 tsp active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (105°f to 115°f)
3 tsp olive oil
Sponge, above
3 1/4 - 3 1/2 cup unbleached all purpose flour
2 tsp kosher salt

1. Sprinkle yeast over the warm water in a small bowl, whisk it in, and let stand until creamy, about 5 to 10 minutes. Using a heavy-duty mixer, add the dissolved yeast and the olive oil to the sponge in the mixer bowl; mix in with the paddle attachment until well blended. Add in salt. Add in flour 1/4 c at a time - when you get to 3 cups add flour slower checking it until dough stops being very sticky and is only slightly sticky.

2. Change to the dough hook and knead at medium speed until the dough is soft, velvety and slightly sticky, 3 to 4 minutes. At this point you will be able to pull the dough up into peaks with your fingers. Finish by sprinkling 1 tablespoon of flour on your work surface and kneading the dough briefly. Transfer to a bowl lightly coated with olive oil and cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled 1 1/2 hours, or so.

8 – 10 oz cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced (about 10 stalks)
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp garlic power
1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp red pepper flakes
3 tbsp olive oil

1. Prep and toss together all stuffs ingredients in a large bowl. Coat the mixture with oil. Set aside wherever your level of bacterial paranoia allows you to.

2. Put a coating of stuffs in an empty wide bowl. Empty out bread on a non-sick surface. Shape into an flat rectangle, approximately 1/2″ - 1″ thick. Using a pizza wheel, cut loaf into inch wide strips. They do not need to be uniform. Then cut off one inch ends and put them into the stuffs bowl. Toss dough cubes into the stuffs mixture and gently coat them. Add in more stuffs periodically so that they stay separate.

3. Divide mixture into your baking pans. I generally do two pie plates but you can do loaves, cake pans or even muffin tins. Once you have dough in pans cover with plastic wrap and leave for second rise in a warm area. Let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.

4. Preheat oven to 400°f. Brush top with olive oil and bake for 25-35 minutes or until golden brown.

  • The original recipe uses 1 bunch of parsley, I didn't have it so I didn't add it to my recipe.
  • The original recipe uses 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese from the can because it's more dried out. I don't like that stuff, so I used freshly grated Parmesan instead. It worked out for me.
  • The original recipe uses 2 to 2 1/2 tsp of kosher salt, I only used 1 1/2 tsp, I thought it had enough flavor.

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