Monday, October 10, 2011

Christening Cake

Bottom tier is Vanilla almond cake, top tier is chocolate - both layered with raspberry mousse and chocolate ganache.
Buttercream and fondant accents with gumpaste flowers.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Mmmm Bakalava!

Erica of Erica’s Edibles was our host for the Daring Baker’s June challenge. Erica challenged us to be truly DARING by making homemade phyllo dough and then to use that homemade dough to make Baklava.

I was super stoked for this challenge - I've never thought of making my own phyllo dough before. It was so much fun!

I used a recipe from Michael Roux (I didn't have regular oil, only olive oil on hand) - but used the standard filling with a couple changes:

Instead of walnuts, I used almonds and hazelnuts (with a few pistachios thrown in). Also added in chinese 5 spice powder and some orange blossom water. I was able to use some awesome local honey - raw and unpasturized - yum!

Here are my photos!

Phyllo dough in balls ready to roll:

Rolling out the dough:
You can almost see my tattoo under the dough in the last one. It was pretty transparent.

Buttering the layers:

Ready for the oven!

Baked and soaking in syrup:

a finished slice:

so good - and not as hard as I thought it would be! I think I'll add chocolate next time :)

Monday, June 13, 2011

Baking weekend - June 11/12

I ended up baking a couple of items this weekend.

I've started receiving a Freshbox again to take advantage of the local produce this summer. Even though I work here, I don't always have access to the stuff that is brought in. Sometimes, there's just not enough surplus for the employees to get some of the goodies. So, as long as I'm getting a Freshbox, i'm sure to get all the fruit and veggies available that week.  Last week, we got some fuji apples and the first round of peaches. The BC apples, were crisp, juicy and wonderful, as usual. The peaches were underripe, so stuck them in a paper bag for a couple days to ripen enough to use for the tarts.
I had some Frangipane paste made earlier in the week, so incorporated that with some sliced apples and peaches for some mini tartlets. The apple tarts are covered in cinnamon sugar, and the peach are topped with cardamom sugar.

Also, DH was looking for something sweet last night, but wasn't sure what he wanted. So, I decided to make some mini chocolate turtle cakes. - that's homemade caramel on these babies. SOOO YUMMY!! I'll definitely be making these again.

Friday, June 3, 2011

My First Daring Baker Challenge!

 The May 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Emma of CookCraftGrow and Jenny of Purple House 
Dirt. They chose to challenge everyone to make a Chocolate Marquise. The inspiration for this recipe comes from a dessert they 
prepared at a restaurant in Seattle. 

So, I've never done a marquise - come across a few recipes for it, but had never tried it.

 Instead of making a square pan and having to cut it into squares, i lined a silicon muffin pan.
 Mise for the marquise with my chocolate base in the background.
 I had some leftover sponge strips from a joconde cake i did last week, so used them to line the pan.
 MMMMarquise ready to go into the freezer!
 So this was a different meringue than I was used to doing. Instead of whipping hot syrup into the egg whites, you actually heat all of the ingredients on the stove first before whipping. No problems at all, I really liked this method - I think I'll use it more often for my meringue.
 Can't really see the joconde under that caramel. I wish I could take better photos!
But here you can see it on the edges, sort of. I think I'll try to get some better photos.

It was really yummy! I used rum instead of tequila for my flavouring. 

So, i enjoyed the first challenge, really looking forward to the next one!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

D.A. Neils, April 30 - Puff Pastry

On Saturday, I presented Puff Pastry items at da Neils for their Saturday Cooking Demo.

Mushroom, Caramelized Onions and Gruyere Cheese appetizers (See recipe below) and Caramel Apple tartlets

Mushroom, Onion & Gruyere Tartlets


1 TB Olive or Canola Oil
1 lg yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 TB unsalted butter
1 lb (454g) white mushrooms, sliced
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp dried thyme
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 c. white wine or broth of your choice
1 lb puff pastry (if store purchased-defrost according to package)
1 c. shredded Gruyere cheese (or any variety of Swiss)
1 egg + 1 TB water beaten together
Handful of parsley, chopped

Preheat oven to 400F. Heat oil in a wide heavy bottom pan over med-low heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to caramelize. This should take about 20 minutes.

Add the butter to the pan. When it melts, add the sliced mushrooms and saute. Stir occasionally and cook until all of the liquid evaporated, about 20 minutes. 

Add the garlic and thyme - saute until fragrant, about a minute - add salt and pepper to taste.

Add wine or broth, scraping the bottom of the pan. Cook until all of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat. 

Roll out the puff pastry and cut out circles or whatever shape you would like with a cutter. Top the rounds with a small spoon of the onion and mushroom mix, keeping to the centre of the round. Top with shredded Gruyere and brush the edges of the pastry with the egg wash.

Bake until the pastry is golden - about 20 -25 minutes. Garnish with parsley.

Tout de Sweet - some of the cakes I've done

Chocolate raspberry mouse cake

                                                              Princess birthday cake
                                                                 Baptism cake
                                                                        Corset cake
                                                      Child's birthday cake + cupcakes
                                           Mini lemon/almond cakes with fresh blueberries
                                              A birthday cake for my favourite knitter friend!
                                                  A mini cake for a 7th grade oboe player

wedding cake -2005 - whipped cream frosting, fresh flowers
Chocolate Raspberry Mousse Cake
Chocolate Orange Mousse Cake - 3"

Chocolate and Blood Orange Mousse Cake

Profiteroles with raspberry coulis
Old School Cake (2009)

White Chocolate mousse tartlets in phyllo shell

Pancetta, Kale and Swiss Quiche