Lots of chocolate and coffee in these muffins: cocoa, chocolate chips, ground coffee and coffee extract combine to make tasty treats. Heads up: the eggs and milk must come to room temp before you get started, so plan ahead.
The flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt get sifted together, then the ground coffee and sugar join the mix.
Cooled, melted butter is whisked with milk, eggs and coffee extract (the recipe for the extract is in the cookbook.) The liquid ingredients are then mixed into the dry with a rubber spatula until almost all the flour is blended in.
Then in go the mini chocolate chips (I chopped regular chips a little finer since I had them on hand.)
The muffin tins are quite full after the batter is added and the muffins puff up nicely while they bake.
We had an afternoon treat the day I made these and the rest went in the freezer for another day.
I made this quiche for Easter so I had a jump on this month’s baking. Unfortunately, that means I don’t have any photos of the steps involved in the making of the quiche.
The quiche was delicious, but next time I will remove the pith from the slivered lemon slice. Every time we bit into a piece of pith, it overpowered the delicate flavor of the other ingredients. The combination of cream and sour cream for the filling was unusual and very tasty.
This delicious cake was fun to make and a great excuse to use the beautiful pan my husband gave me for Christmas last December. Plan ahead note: the butter, eggs and sour cream need to be set out on the counter in advance and come to room temperature.
I started off by mixing together the ingredients that make up the lovely swirl: sugar, mini chocolate chips (I chopped up regular-sized chips I had on hand), chopped nuts (I chose pecan – my favorite!), cocoa powder, cinnamon and allspice.
Then the dry ingredients are whisked together: all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, allspice (I was 1/4 teaspoon short so I substituted 1/4 teaspoon cloves), baking powder and baking soda.
Butter, sugar, brown sugar and salt get mixed until well blended. Eggs are added one at a time. Then vanilla joins the mix, followed by sour cream. The dry mixture is added in two additions.
I smoothed in enough batter to just cover the bottom of my Bundt pan, which I had sprayed with baker’s spray. The recipe instructs to add just over half the swirl mixture, smooth half the remaining batter over it, followed by the remaining swirl mixture. When it was time to spoon on the final amount of swirl mixture, I judged there was too much, and left out about a half a cup (I’m sure I’ll find a use for it!) Finally, the remaining batter gets smoothed on top.
I ended up baking the cake for the full amount of time: 72 minutes. After resting in the pan for 10 minutes, the cake popped out cleanly, nothing left behind, thanks to my quality pan! A drizzling of icing after coming to room temperature and it is ready for eating.
The whole family, my husband, my mom, my son (who was visiting) and I loved this cake. The flavors, which my son said reminded him of pumpkin bread, improved over the next couple of days. I will definitely bake this again!
The Bakewell Tart, a British classic that I had never heard of until watching an episode of The Great British Baking Show. How exciting that Dorie has a version in Baking with Dorie. Unlike the contestants on the show, who had to make the tart with minimal instructions, we have Dorie’s detailed instructions to help us through.
The tart dough that forms the base for this tart is the All-Purpose Tart Dough or pâte brisée. It is an all butter dough that is surprisingly easy to work with. I started the day by weighing my butter, cutting it into small pieces and popping the bits in the freezer for about an hour. I stumbled on this idea a few months ago when my butter softened up a bit too much while I was cutting it up for pie dough. I put it in the freezer and it came out nice and cold. The resulting pie dough was one of the best I’ve ever made. I’ve been cutting and freezing my butter for doughs ever since!
To make the dough, all purpose flour, sugar and salt get pulsed briefly in your food processor. In goes the now very cold butter, which is pulsed until pieces ranging from oatmeal flakes to pea-sized form. Ice water and a beaten egg are added in three additions and pulsed until the dough holds together and moist curds and clumps form.
Bring the dough together in a disk…
…then roll the disk between two sheets of parchment into an 11 inch circle.
My dough was a little sticky so I put it in the freezer for a bit before I transferred the dough to the tart tin. It still tried to stick to the parchment, but it surrendered without too much fuss and eased into the tin. Some pricks with a fork and off to the fridge for an hour.
I blind baked the crust for 15 minutes at 375 degrees, then removed the pie weights. One section had shrunk a little so I built it up with some leftover dough and baked for another 2 or 3 minutes until the crust lost its shine. This is less time than called for in the recipe, because I thought 20 minutes plus 4 more would result in an overly brown crust.
I let the crust cool for an hour then started on the tart filling. I had taken two eggs and some unsalted butter out of the fridge in the morning to allow them to come to room temperature. Almond flour, all purpose flour, salt and baking power get whisked together in a bowl. The softened butter is beaten with sugar for three minutes, then in go the eggs and then the almond extract. Oh the almond aroma! Finally, the flours are mixed in.
Now it’s time the assemble the tart. First the raspberry jam:
I used my fingers to spread the batter, which worked well. Then sliced almonds on top.
I baked the tart for a total of 45 minutes, covering it with foil the last five minutes to prevent over browning.
I let the tart cool to room temperature then made the icing. I didn’t use all the icing, just enough to make it pretty.
We enjoyed slices for dessert on the day I made the tart. Lovely almond flavor, rich, but not overly sweet. It was equally delicious with with tea the next afternoon, which (of course!) I drank from the Star Baker cup I received from my son for Christmas.
I got excited when I read Dorie’s description of Cheese Puffers: “a cross between a muffin and a popover”. So much so that I planned Christmas dinner around them. Popovers are often paired with prime rib, so this year we would have prime rib with Cheese Puffers. The rest of the menu, braised leeks and carrots; celery root, potato and apple purée; and garlic green beans (courtesy of my sister-in-law), flowed from there. Ah yes, that is until our numbers dwindled from ten to six (thank you pandemic!) and I decided I really didn’t want a recipe I had to prepare at the last minute.
So instead, I made the Puffers the day after Christmas, when I was rested and had nothing else to cook. My brother lended a hand by grating the Gruyère. I whisked the dry ingredients together, sliced the scallions and portioned out the butter in the muffin tin ahead of time.
When we were ready for our dinner of leftovers, all I had to do was whisk together the milk and eggs, mix them into the dry ingredients, then add the cheese and sliced scallions. After placing the muffin tin in the oven to melt the butter and brushing the butter around the inside of the muffin cups, I added the batter to the tins. The Puffers baked for about twenty-nine minutes. We ate a dinner of cold leftovers with hot-from-the-oven Cheese Puffers. A little crispy on the outside and cheesy in the middle, they were delicious. They reheated nicely in the toaster oven at lunchtime the next day.
Who doesn’t love a chocolate chip cookie? I love that Dorie is always on the lookout for a new twist on that old favorite. Here’s one from a small restaurant in Paris, Mokonuts, that has some inspired additions.
Although the dough for this cookie comes together quickly, you do need to plan ahead: the butter and egg must be at room temperature and the dough needs to rest in the fridge overnight. (Wish I’d read the recipe once more before the day I had planned to bake them!)
Butter, sugar and brown sugar cream together in a stand mixer before the egg joins them. The flours (rye and all purpose), baking powder and baking soda get added all at once. Finally, chopped bittersweet chocolate, dried cranberries (I used fruit juice-sweetened) and poppy seeds are mixed in.
I wanted my cookies to be consistent in size so I weighed the dough and divided by 15. I weighed out fifteen 53 gram pieces of dough and rolled them into balls. I put seven balls on a cookie sheet and set them in the fridge. I froze the remaining eight balls of dough for another time.
The following evening, I baked the cookies. Before baking, a little flaky salt for that salty-sweet goodness (I used Maldon.) After 10 minutes of baking (it took 12 minutes in my oven) the cookies are tapped down to flatten them, then allowed to rest on the baking sheet.
Salty, gooey, crunchy, chewy, sour, sweet delight. I think I’ve found a new favorite.
I had been anxiously awaiting the chance to bake these English Muffins since I watched Dorie bake them in a Food52 video. She made them look so fun to bake. And they were, but challenges ensued.
The dough came together very easily with the stand mixer doing the heavy lifting. One thing to note before you start: this recipe calls for instant yeast. I usually only have regular active yeast on hand, not instant. I had to run to the store before I could get going on this recipe. The dough gets kneaded by the stand mixture for about 7 or 8 minutes until looks like this:
After an hour under a towel in a buttered bowl, it will look like this:
It is a lovely, soft dough. It gets turned on itself to deflate, then covered and put in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
After it has doubled in bulk, the dough it deflated again and devided into 12 pieces. Each piece is rolled under your cupped hand to form a ball and placed on a baking sheet lined with parchment that has been sprinkled with cornmeal. After rising under a towel for 40 minutes, here are the muffins-to-be:
Yep. I should have taken the time to weigh the dough and get equal sizes. And I should have left more room between the dough balls. Next time.
English muffins are cooked on a griddle, not the oven. I have a large electric griddle that I hauled out for the job. The dough balls get spanked down to flatten them after they go on the griddle. Mine deserved to be spanked because a number of them stuck to the parchment paper as I tried to lift them off. This caused them to become misshapen and partially deflate. Another note to self for next time: be liberal with the cornmeal to avoid sticking! (Darth Vader leant a hand in the muffin spanking; the spatula was a gift from my niece.)
The final “bake” takes place in the toaster. I served mine with butter and homemade raspberry jam leftover from another baking project. These muffins were crisp and the outside and chewy on the inside. Truly delicious and infinitely superior to store bought.
I was so pleased when Apple Pandowdy was chosen as one of the November bakes for Tuesdays with Dorie. I needed something delicious to bring to my mother-in-law’s birthday celebration. She loves apple pie and this one-crust apple pie was just the ticket.
I got a start the day before the celebration by making the dough. For years I have used dough recipes from a pastry course I attended. The technique uses a food processor to mix the fat (butter and shortening), then the liquid is mixed in by hand. Depending on the type of dough, the fat may be further incorporated by pushing the dough with the heel of your hand. I was always pleased with the results. I decided to take a leap of faith and use Dorie’s all butter dough recipe for my Pandowdy.
My faith in Dorie was rewarded. The dough came together easily in the food processor. No need to mix the water in by hand; it is added slowly into the fat mixture while still in the food processor. I used less water than I usually do. My only trouble was getting a nice shape on the roll out. It did not matter for the Pandowdy, because I was going to cut the dough into pieces, but I will need to work on it when I make the dough for a pie.
The day of the birthday celebration, I peeled the apples. I purchased a bag of apples from my weekly produce delivery and they were very small. I needed a couple more apples so I used some larger apples I had on hand. Because I had different sizes of apples. I decided to cut them into cubes instead of slices. This task took a lot more time than I had allotted myself. Next time I will do slices!
I chose to use a pastry cutter to cut triangles of various sizes to form the crust. Per Dorie’s advice, I left spaces for the juices to bubble through.
I checked on the Pandowdy after the minimal baking time, but the juices were not bubbling toward the middle of the pie. I ended up baking for about 10 or 15 minutes longer than the maximum baking time, but I think my oven is a little off. I pulled it out just in time to head over to the birthday celebration. We served the Pandowdy with vanilla ice cream (oat milk ice cream for the birthday girl.) Everyone loved it! The crust was melt-in-the-mouth tender. I think this dessert can best be summed up by the Dinah Shore song my father-in-law quoted: “Shoo Fly Pie and Apple Pandowdy, makes your eyes light up, your tummy say ‘Howdy’. I will definitely make this again.
A new cookbook by Dorie Greenspan is an occasion to celebrate. Her cookbooks are as much a joy to read as to cook and bake from. As I write this, the day before the release date, I have yet to open her new book, “Baking with Dorie, Sweet, Salty and Simple”. But she gave us a sneak peek by allowing The New York Times to publish one of the recipes. This new book is also a chance for me to get back to baking and participating in the wonderful online group, Tuesdays with Dorie. So here goes.
This recipe is a simple loaf cake with a twist. Dorie says she was inspired by a glaze for salmon, of all things. The miso-maple flavoring is an unusual (unique?) touch.
You need to do a slight plan-ahead for this recipe. Take your butter and eggs out of the fridge a couple of hours ahead so they can come to room temperature. When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. To get started, whisk the flour with baking soda and baking powder. (A note here: I always weigh my ingredients on a kitchen scale. It’s more precise and less messy.)
Next, put the sugar and salt in a bowl for a stand mixer and grate in the zest of an orange. (I have noticed over the years of baking Dorie’s recipes that she often adds the salt to the sugar instead of the flour. Perhaps because they are both granular? I’d love to ask her.) Then the fun part, use your fingers to work the zest into the sugar.
Using a paddle attachment, mix for about three minutes, then add the eggs, one at a time, beating for one minute after each addition. I like to put my eggs in a bowl ahead of time. They slip easily into your mixing bowl one at a time, and you can move through the mixing process more efficiently. Then add the vanilla and mix it in.
Turn off the mixer and add the flour mixture. Start the mixer in spurts to mix it in a little, otherwise your flour will fly out of the bowl. Then add the buttermilk and mix thoroughly.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and pop it in the oven. I followed Dorie’s instructions to check the cake after forty minutes and tented some foil over the top because it was already very brown, but not fully cooked in the interior. I kept checking at five minute intervals and the tester was clean after a total of fifty minutes. After resting for five minutes in the pan, the cake is ready to cool on the rack.
My family enjoyed this slightly sweet, gently flavored cake. My husband particularly like the crunchy, caramelized exterior. It was delicious the day of and the next day, lightly toasted. I did not glaze the cake because I thought I might be freezing some of it. Silly me, it was devoured.
Dorie gave the Tuesdays with Dorie group permission to share her recipe for Miso-Maple Loaf Cake in our blogs. Give it a try!
It’s good to be back baking. I took a long break after elbow surgery in December. Now I’m recovered from surgery, working from home and ready to be baking from Dorie’s cookbooks again.
Along comes Easter and even though we can’t have a large celebration, dessert must be made! This tart, one of the selections for this month’s baking from Baking Chez Moi for Tuesdays with Dorie, is a perfect choice when you have limited ingredients on hand. If you have the basic baking essentials plus apples and lemons, you’re good to go.
The crust of this tart is a sweet tart dough, one of Dorie’s basic recipes. I’ve had trouble with this one in the past: it cracked when I tried to put it in the tart pan after the one hour rest in the freezer. This time, I was patient and made sure to let the dough soften longer after it came out of the freezer. The recipe suggests the dough may be soft enough after ten minutes. Twenty minutes was better for my dough. There was still some minimal cracking, but it was easy to patch. Also, sweet dough burns easily. I baked at 375 degrees instead of 400 and took it out after 20 minutes.
The filling consists of sugar infused with lemon. You rub grated lemon zest into the sugar with your fingertips. Eggs go in, then lemon juice. Grate the apples either by hand or in a food processor (my choice.) Add those in, add melted butter, pour it in the crust and the tart’s ready for the oven. Forty minutes later and you have a light, elegant and delicious end to your meal. Leftovers go in the fridge. The tart is great the next day cold and is even more lemony.