Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Last Bite Is the Greatest

I JUST finished the last remnants of that giant lasagne. No worries, readers - I made a 'mini-lasagne' from the leftover fillings & pasta and froze it to bake later.

Later happened late last week, and I just finished the last bite.

Dare I say it was more delicious than the very first bite?

However - although I am not in a rush to replicate it - I am sure another 22-layer monstrosity is in my future!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Burn baby burn!

This Spoon should be tucked away in the night-time drawer already, but because dinner was served super late - I've got a sudden burst of energy! Not enough to bake something new, but to upload some stuff from the weekend. THE WEEKEND OF EPIC BAKING FAIL. Hey, it happens. And I was due for a real dud of a day anyway, I had been having too much good luck, what with the macarons actually turning out the first time they were made!

Anyway, as I mentioned in my last post - I had to salvage together a dessert for dinner at T&J's - I smushed the graham cracker crusts into glass ramekins, topped them with some lemon curd and meringue and torched away! I saved the meringue making for T&J's as they have a gorgeous onyx stand mixer themselves and I was dying to fondle another sexy kitchen gadget (don't worry Daisy, I still love you...but I wanted something with...MORE POWER!). The T&J are also my torch buddies - they were there when I opened my new blowtorch and T was the one who bravely filled it with butane. The torch actually needed a butane top-up actually and she was more than willing to put on a repeat performance!

Have I mentioned that I love torching things?

(as you can see - the glass ramekins show off the three layers extremely well!)

(closer shot of the top - meringue piped with a fat star tip)

 I'll post the recipes for the three components shortly!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Epic Fail Weekend Baking

Today is a beautiful day - the sun is shining, I can see the trees swaying gently outside my window. Ideally, I should be outside for a run, but instead I decided to stay in and bake.

Bad idea.

Hot day = horrible day for pastry.

I had the best intentions, heck, I even charted out what I wanted to accomplish!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Dulce de Leche - Slippin 'n slidin'!

One of my latest loves - dulce de leche. This South American (in origin) treat is basically caramelized condensed milk - either cow or goat milk. I find goat DdL has an earthier taste that has an interesting tang, cow DdL is pretty sweet, easy on the palate.  Do I have a preference? Not really! I love them both!

I was recently gifted a bottle of goat dulce de leche (with white wine!) and after gorging myself on the sweet treat, I decided to make proper use of it and incorporate it into my baking. The trick is to balance the sweetness of the dulce de leche with a cookie doesn't have too much sugar and generally has a neutral base. I revisited the madeleine pan cookies and made dulce de leche cookie sandwiches with hazelnut shortbread. The shortbread is not only subtle but the hazelnut added an almost-savoury feel to the cookie. In other words, it was a perfect pairing! I think another combination that could work would be a dark chocolate wafer or espresso cookie - using cocoa powder or espresso could add that dense bitterness that would offset the sweetness of the filling quite well.

Photographic evidence for your pleasure: