Having said that, Thank you for continuing to check out the blog and I love reading your comments
I was fortunate to visit Munich & Area in Germany. Barcelona, Ibiza, Cartagena, Malaga, & Cadiz in Spain. Bridgetown in Barbados and Toronto on the way home to Vancouver.
One of my guilty pleasures is to shop in bookstores and supermarkets when I am out of the country.
|Sour Cherry Danish Braid|
For this recipe I used:
With reading a blog like Joe Pastry it was inevitable that I would need to make pastry. So Danish pastry it was. It had to be at least 10 years since the last time I made it so it was time.
I decided I would use the same recipe that I had used before from Baking with Julia.
|Danish Pastry Dough|
For this recipe I used:
1/4 Cup Warm Water – 110˚ – 115˚ F
2 1/2 Teaspoons of Dry Yeast
1/2 Cup of Milk – room temperature
1 Large Egg – room temperature
1/4 Cup of Sugar
1 Teaspoon of Salt
2 1/2 Cups of All Purpose Flour
1 Cup of Unsalted Butter (2 Sticks) – Cold, cut into pieces
|Danish Pastry Dough – The Ingredients|
In a large measuring cup I added the yeast to the warm water and let the mixture soften for a minute.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Softening the Yeast|
I then added the milk, egg, sugar, and salt and whisked everything together. Then I set the mixture aside.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Yeast Mixture with the Milk and Egg|
In a mixing bowl I added the flour and chilled butter.
|Danish Pastry Dough -Adding the Chilled Butter to the Flour|
I worked in the butter with a pastry blender until the pieces of butter were about 1 cm in size (1/2 inch).
|Danish Pastry Dough – After the Pastry Blender|
I added the yeast mixture to the flour mixture and worked it together into a nice dough with a rubber spatula.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Adding the Yeast Mixture|
|Danish Pastry Dough – After a good Stir|
Once mixed, I covered the bowl and put it in the fridge overnight (at least 4 hours).
|Danish Pastry Dough – Ready for the Fridge|
The next morning I removed the risen dough from the fridge.
|Danish Pastry Dough – After Overnight in the Fridge|
I put the dough onto a floured counted and brought it together into a square.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Forming a Square|
I next rolled the dough out into a 16″ square.
|Danish Pastry Dough – First Roll|
|Danish Pastry Dough – First Fold|
Now it was time for a fold into 1/3’s.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Finished First Fold|
Then I rolled out the dough again into a 10″ x 24″ rectangle.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Second Roll|
And then I folded the rectangle into 1/3’s.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Second Fold|
Then I rolled out a second 16″ square and folded it into 1/3’s again.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Third Roll|
Then for the last time I rolled out the dough into a 16″ x 10″ rectangle.
|Danish Pastry Dough -Third Fold|
I folded the dough into 1/3’s again. I cut the final fold into 1/2.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Splitting to Use now And Later|
I was going to use 1/2 of the recipe right away and I froze the second 1/2 for later.
|Danish Pastry Dough – Ready for the Freezer|
I refrigerated the dough for use later in the day.
- although there were a few folds that was really the only “technical” part of making the dough
- if at some point the dough gets too warm, wrap it and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes
- be sure to measure the temperature of the warm water 110˚ – 115˚ F. Too cold and it wont proof correctly and too warm the yeast will be killed off
- the dough will freeze easily for up to 1 month
I found one in Baking With Julia. I was inspired by this recipe. A pretty awesome book.
|Almond Filling – The Ingredients|
In my food processor I added the almonds, butter, and icing sugar.
|Almond Filling – Almonds, Icing Sugar, and Butter|
I processed the almonds as much as I could without turning it into almond butter.
|Almond Filling – Processed as Finely as you can|
I added the egg and almond extract
|Almond Filling – Adding the Extract and Egg|
And processed again until well blended.
|Almond Filling – It’s Ready!|
With the egg… you need to use this right away.
- this is a small batch recipe if you have a small insert bowl for your food processor, or a mini food processor, use it
- this pretty close to marzipan, but in my opinion tastes better
- use immediately
I had some sour cherries in the deep freeze that I needed to use so I decided to try my hand at a sour cherry filling.
After reading some old recipes I came up with what I though would be a great filling.
|Sour Cherry Filling|
For this recipe I used:
I added everything to a big heavy bottomed pot and mixed well.
|Sour Cherry Filling – Ready to Boil|
On medium high heat I let the mixture boil for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to avoid scorching.
|Sour Cherry Filling – Boiling Away|
Once it was boiled I poured the mixture into a medium bowl and let it cool to room temperature. Then it was off to the fridge to let it fully cool to use later.
|Sour Cherry Filling – Chilling|
Buttermilk is one of those things I just don’t have in my kitchen. We don’t drink it, we rarely make pancakes or anything else that uses buttermilk. Here in Vancouver, buttermilk is sold locally in 1 liter container. Usually a recipe will call for less than a cup leaving a lot of potential waste if there is nothing else on the list to bake.
I have a recipe for an awesome Chocolate Cake that uses buttermilk and every now and again I come across a recipe that needs it as well. If I have to buy a whole liter of buttermilk I always think twice.
The solution, at least for me, is buttermilk powder. What a relief. I can store it in the fridge and use it as needed.
Recently I decided I wanted to make some buttermilk biscuits. I rarely, if ever since I was a kid, make biscuits so this lead me to the inevitable internet search for a recipe using buttermilk powder. I came across a posting from Jean at Delightfulrepast. They looked pretty good!
|Buttermilk Powder Biscuits|
For this recipe I used:
|Buttermilk Powder Biscuits -The Ingredients|
In a mixing bowl I combined the dry ingredients and mixed them well.
|Buttermilk Powder Biscuits – Mixing the Dry Ingredients|
I added the cold butter to the flour mixture and used a pastry blender to blend it together until only small bits of butter could be seen. A coarse meal texture.
|Buttermilk Powder Biscuits – Cutting in the Butter|
I added the milk and mixed it until just combined. I turned the mixture out onto my floured counter and patted the dough out into a rectangle.
|Buttermilk Powder Biscuits – Forming a Rectangle|
I then cut the biscuits into 12 pieces and placed the on the lined baking sheet and brushed the tops with milk.
|Buttermilk Powder Biscuits – Brushed with Milk and Ready for the Oven|
Then it was off to the oven for 10 minutes.
|Buttermilk Powder Biscuits – Warn and Ready to eat|
They looked great, but did not rise. I was hesitant of man-handling the dough to work each piece into a flat round biscuit.. turns out I should have done it!
I would not hesitate making these again! Thanks Jean!
- don’t be scared of biscuit dough. It is more resilient than you think
- remember to brush the tops with milk just before putting them in the oven, they will brown perfectly
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies|
For this recipe I used:
Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 1/4 Cups of All Purpose Flour
1/2 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
8 Oz Unsalted Butter – softened (hint here)
1/2 Cup of Sugar
1 Cup of Light Brown Sugar – packed
1 Teaspoon of Salt
2 Teaspoons of Vanilla
2 Large Eggs – room temperature
12 Oz Chocolate Chips
Peanut Butter Filling
1 Swiss Buttercream Recipe
1/2 Cup of Smooth Peanut Butter
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies -The Ingredients|
I started by sifting the flour, salt, and baking soda into a medium bowl and setting it aside.
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies – Sifted Flour mixture|
In a large glass bowl I used my hand mixer to beat the softened butter until light and fluffy. This took about 5 minutes on high.
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies – Creaming the Butter|
Once the butter was mixed, I added both sugars and beat again for another 5 minutes until the mixture was nice and creamy. I stopped a couple of times to scrape down the bowl to ensure everything mixed well.
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies – Adding the Sugars|
I then added the eggs and vanilla and beat everything together.
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies – Adding the Eggs & Vanilla|
I added the flour and slowly mixed it in.
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies – Adding the Flour|
Then it was time to add the chocolate chips. Since the mixture was quite stiff I mixed the chocolate chips in by hand.
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies – Hand Mixing in the Chocolate Chips|
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies – Ready for the Oven|
As the cookies were cooling, I took the butter cream and peanut butter and beat them together well. I added a generous amount of filling to one cookie and topped it with another. Enjoy!
|Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies – Ready to Eat!|
- I chose a cookie recipe that was a finished soft cookie
- This cookie will cure most sweet tooths!
Building on my progress in part 4 I decided to try the Italian meringue again. This time I would use a mixing bowl and my hand blender rather than my mixer. The bowl on my mixer was too big for one batch of macarons and left at least 1/4 of the syrup on the side of the bowl.
I am using the book “i ♥ macarons” by Hisako Ogita.
|Macarons Part 5|
|Macarons Part 5 – The Ingredients|
Following the recipe I use my food processor to grind the almond meal and icing sugar together and then double sifted the mixture.
|Macarons Part 5 – Double Sifted Almond Mixture|
|Macarons Part 5 – Slightly Whipped Egg Whites|
Over on the stove, in a small pot, I combined the water and sugar and heated the mixture.
|Macarons Part 5 – Water & Sugar|
I boiled the syrup until it reached 235˚ F.
|Macarons Part 5 – Bringing the Syrup to Temp|
Once the sugar was at temperature I slowly drizzled the syrup into the egg whites while beating them on high.
|Macarons Part 5 – Finishing the Egg Whites|
After about 10 minutes of beating the meringue was cool enough to add the vanilla.
|Macarons Part 5 – Adding the Vanilla|
When the vanilla was mixed in I switched to a large spatula and folded in 1/2 of the almond mixture.
|Macarons Part 5 – The first 1/2 of the Almond Mixture|
Then I added the second half of the almonds and gently folded them in.
|Macarons Part 5 – The second 1/2 of the Almond Mixture|
Then it was time for macaronage – the final 10 folds.
|Macarons Part 5 – Macaronage|
And it was off to the pastry bag.
|Macarons Part 5 – Filled Pastry Bag|
|Macarons Part 5 – Ready to Pipe|
I piped a round of macaron batter in each of the marked circles, then gave the pan a hard rap on the counter to disperse any air bubbles.
While the oven heated to 400˚F, I let the macarons rest on the counter to form a slight skin. Then it was off to the oven for 11 minutes.
This time everything came together. No excessive spreading and perfect feet!
|Macarons Part 5 – Perfect Pied|
|Macarons Part 5 – Eureka!!|