Thursday, September 13, 2012

Someone Ate My Cake

I tried a new cake recipe the other day, looking for a sturdy sponge so I can build a layer cake.

I baked it and started working on the icing. I measured the butter, placed it in the mixing bowl, measured the icing sugar... and then I realized that I didn't have enough icing sugar.

So I let the cake cool, planning to get icing sugar in the morning (Have I mentioned I'm a nocturnal baker?)

And when I got up, one of my cakes had been sliced up.... I guess that's the problem of living in a home with lots of people.

So I did what I could. I made the icing, sliced the cake into rectangles, and stacked it...

 You might not be able to see how uneven they are, but the layers are way differently shaped.

I tried to make the icing peak all over. I thought the effect would cover up some of the un-even-ness... But it makes it look a little sloppy.

Here's a picture of what I was going for:

I still like my cake. Even with uneven layers and bumpy-looking icing.

It's not the most beautiful, but it tasted great!


Friday, August 31, 2012

Sweets for School

The countdown is on...

Apples are changing colour on the trees...

School supplies are on sale everywhere, and tv shows are advertising their fall lineups.

Teachers are preparing lesson plans and bulletin boards.

Summer is almost over and it's almost school time.

I hope your summer was sweet, and I hope the fall season is too!

Treats at Staples Tools-4-Schools Event:

-Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing
-Lemon Cupcakes with homemade Lemon Curd
-Chocolate cupcakes and Mini Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Fresh from the Garden

I love living in the country!

Having a garden is such an amazing blessing.

I love being able to go and harvest the ripest and juciest berries, instead of using the almost flavourless store-bought raspberries. (Sorry for the stained fingers!)

And best of all, I love to create tasty desserts using the freshest produce I can get!

 Plum and Raspberry Pie:

Juicy, sweet and a little tart. This deserves an encore...


Monday, July 9, 2012

Sugar makes all things right

What I do in the kitchen is a clear indication of how I'm feeling.

I told my husband that when I make fancy meals or experiment with new dishes, all must be right with the world, but if I'm baking, I'm trying to make all things right with the world.

All things must be right in the world, because I made Sweet Grilled Shrimp with Cilantro Dipping Sauce (thanks !)

But I also made 6 dozen doughnuts...

Because the world doesn't have to be messed up in order for us to have sugar, but it sure does make everything better!

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts

2 tsp yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1 1/2 cup lukewarm milk
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup shortening
5 cups all-purpose flour, divided
vegetable oil (for frying)

*Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add milk, salt, sugar, eggs, shortening and 2 cups of the flour. Mix together until moist, then beat until smooth scraping bowl occasionally, 2 minutes. Stir in remaining flour in 1/2 to 1 cup increments, continuing to mix until smooth before adding more flour.

*Cover and let dough rise until double, 50-60 minutes. The dough is ready when you press against it and it doesn't spring back)

*Turn dough onto a floured surface and roll it lightly to coat with flour. Gently roll or press dough to 1/2-inch thickness with floured rolling pin or your hands. Cut dough with floured dough cutter. Keep flouring cutter to prevent it from sticking to the dough. Cover and let rise until double, 30-40 minutes.
     *To make ring doughnuts, cut a large circle first, then use a smaller circle cutter inside.
The dough can be re-rolled, but try not to re-roll it to cut it many times, because the dough will get chewy if the dough is worked too much.

*Heat oil in a deep fryer or heavy sauce pot. Slide doughnuts gently into hot oil with wide spatula to prevent splashing hot oil on yourself. Turn doughnuts as they brown on the bottom. Cook time is approximately 1 minute per side.

*Remove carefully from oil with slotted heat proof spatula. Drain on paper towel. Dip in Creamy Glaze (see below). Set on rack to cool. When cooled, spread with Chocolate Glaze (see below) on top.

*Doughnuts may be topped with sprinkles or other toppings (coconut, crushed nuts). If you want to use icing sugar, don't glaze them at all and wait until they cool before tossing them in a zip-lock bag (sealed) with icing sugar.

Creamy Glaze
1/3 cup unsalted butter
2 cups icing sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
4-6 Tbsp hot water

*Heat butter until melted. Remove from heat. Stir in icing sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add water 1Tbsp at a time until you have a smooth glaze.

Chocolate Glaze
1/3 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips or semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 cups icing sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
4-6 Tbsp hot water

*Heat butter and chocolate together gently until melted. Remove from heat. Stir in icing sugar and vanilla until smooth. Stir in water 1 Tbsp at a time until desired consistency.


(Recipe found here)