Sunday, October 22, 2017

Exceedingly Chocolate Crinkles

The recipe for this week on Baked Sunday Mornings was Apple Pie. I love apple pie, but having just finished the season of the fall Jewish holidays, where EVERYTHING is apples, I decided to go rogue this time. I made cookies from the book we recently finished- Baked Occasions.
There were quite a few "assignments" I missed during the baking of the book, and this was a perfect opportunity to catch up.

These cookies have a million different versions in books and online, but the basic concept is the same for all- that crinkly look. This recipe is easy, straightforward and if directions are followed, should come out, well, crinkley!

Baking is all about chemistry and the interaction between and among various ingredients, how they work together - or against each other- to produce the desired results. I wanted to know what it is that makes these balls rolled in powdered sugar, spread slightly and crinkle during the baking process. I did some simple research and there are a few explanations.n Some recipes say that the combination of baking soda and  baking powder, give the cookie the right amount of lift to spread just enough so that the rolled cookies produces "fissures " or cracks as they bake. All fine, but this recipe has no baking soda in it and they turned out just beautifully "cracked"!
One recipe also says the key is to roll the balls in granulated sugar before rolling them in powdered sugar. Also not required here and the results-again- were perfect.
What is important here is to use quality ingredients(as always), do not over mix the dough, and chill before forming the circles, and rolling them so they are thoroughly coated in powdered sugar.
The result is a soft, cakey center with a slightly crisp edge that just melts in your mouth! Delicious right out of the oven or cooled. ( But who can resist "right out of the oven?!)

You can find the recipe for Exceedingly Chocolate Crinkles here at Baked Sunday Mornings.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Banana Cupcakes with Vanilla Pastry Cream

We are now back to the beginning-the first "Baked" book,  "New Frontiers in Baking" which, in my opinion is the best. I have bake extensively from this book and look forward to redoing some of my favorites.

This particular recipe is one of the few I haven't made before. I think I was leery of the pastry cream topping and the 6 egg yolks involved. As it turns out, rightly so!

The cupcakes are light and fluffy- quite different from a typical banana bread or cake, which tend to be heavier.  The batter was easy to make but made more than the designated amount- but that's fine! More is better!

Now for the pastry cream-
I always debate as to when the thickness is the right thickness. Taste doesn't seem to be the issue- it's delicious, but being able to pipe the cream is a different story. Mine did not come out thick enough to pipe so I just lightly spread it on top. Sort of runny......
I think next time I would possibly fill the cupcakes with the pastry cream and top it with a light butter cream frosting. Lots of cream leftover- guess I'll just have to make cream puffs!!

You can find the recipe here: Baked Sunday Mornings