Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Vienna in the HOuse!!

So last week I had to do my mid-term report for baking and pastry class. The whole thing was that we were supposed to do an international report on a given country that we picked out of a hat. WOW, I got Austria! Austria? Yeah, Austria and so my research began!!
It was pretty easy to find some history on Austria the hard part was to find food information on Austria because it's such a small place and most of the dessert information was about Apple Streudels!!! Which are so "pasee".
And then there it was a cool historic dessert that belonged only to Austria the SacherTorte.

And here is the recipe!!

200g Excellent Quality Dark Chocolate
1 1/2 Teaspoons Ground Coffee (freshly ground if possible)
6 Eggs (5 separated)
150g Ground Almonds
310g Granulated Sugar
6 Tablespoons Apricot Jam
100g Excellent Quality Dark Chocolate
40g Unsalted Butter

1.Preheat oven to 180c.
Butter and line a 9" Springform Tin.
2.Gently melt the 200g chocolate in a double boiler.
In a large bowl, whisk the 5 egg yolks and remaining whole egg with the sugar until pale and fluffy
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiffly peaking.
3. Add molten chocolate to the egg yolk mix and combine well.
4. Gently but firmly fold in the whipped egg whites until throughly combined.
5. Pour into the cake tin and bake for about an hour (it may be done sooner). Halfway through cooking or when the top has set, cover with some foil. This cake burns easily because of the egg whites.
5. When cooked, remove from the oven (the top may crack or sink, again due to the high egg content). Don't worry because you can always do as I did - turn it upside down!
Leave to cool on a rack.
6. Once cool you can begin the icing. Melt the Apricot Jam in a small saucepan over a gentle heat.
7. Unmould the cake, and decide which side up you are going to ice it. Brush over the now liquid Apricot Jam thickly over the top and sides. This is not merely going to help the icing stick but will be an important and surprising layer of the cake.
In a double boiler, melt the 100g chocolate. Once liquified, add the butter and stir until melted. It might look as if it's going to seize up but keep stirring over the gently heat and it will become runny, like double cream.
Pour over the cake, spreading fairly quickly over the top and sides until it is coated all over. With the back of a spoon, make a circular pattern. You can pipe the familiar Sacher moniker on the cake with a little melted chocolate if required.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


I feel like I have abandoned my precios blog... I haven't. I just have piled up pictures of cakes and food's I've made and take a picture to post them, yet the hours of the day fly away like butterflies if you come near.
And so comes the end of a day, the end of the week, the end of the month. The good news is, it's not yet the end of the month, and second good new is I have like 50 minutes before I leave for work which means I have some catching up to do.
So, last week I had a half day off, and though I had some homework piling up with my cake pictures I decided to grab my apron and do a cake. Me and my mom had already bought all the ingrdients for a lemon curd cake from...yes... the Martha book. I think I have decided I am going to try and do all the cakes in the cake chapter. Just the cakes!!
Well ,the cake was a bit labor intensive, though nothing compared to the Austrain Sacher Torte I made for school, which I will write on later!
Here are the instructions for the lovely Lemon Curd Cake

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1.5 cups all-pourpose flour
1.5 cups cake flour
1tbs baking powder
.5tsp salt
1 cups sour cream
Grated zest of two lemons
2tbs lemon juice
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
2 batches lemon curd
1 batch Lemons Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Preheat oven to 350, Butter 2 9x2 round cake pans, line with parchment paper, butter parchment paper.
In a bowl sift together, flours, baking powder, sant, set aside.
In a separate bowl combine sour cream and lemon juice/zest
In an electeic mixer combine butter adn sugar for about 5 minutes, scrape, add eggs one at time and beat for 1 minute after each.
Then on low speed ad four mixture alternating with cream. Start and end with flour.
Divide batter into pans, bake for about 30 -35 minutes until tester comes out clean. Let cool on pans, then transfer to cooling racks top sides up.
Using serrated knife, trip tops to even cakes, slice each layer in half, making two layers. Place one on bottom of cake plate, and spread 1/2 cup Lemon Curd over top. Repeat process with remaining layers, do not put curd on top layer.
Crumb coat with meringue and let chill for about 30 minutes.
Using offset spatula spreat entire cake with buttercream. Refrigerate 30 minutes before decorating with lemon curd. Using paper cornet filled with curd, pipe dots to decorate cake. Then pipe vertical lines of differet sizes on sides of cake. It can last refrigerated for up to 3 days.

8 yolks
zest of 2 lemons
1/2 cup fresh lemons juice
1 cups sugar
6 oz unsalted butter,, cut into pieces.

Combine yolks, lemon zest, juice, and sugar in heavy bottomed pan, whisk. Cook over medium heat, stirring constabtly with spoon until thick enought to coate a spoon.
Remove from heat. Add salt and butter, one piece at a time, stirring until smoooth. Strain, cover with plastic wrap, refrigerate at least one hour.

4 egg whites
1.25 cups sugar
1.5 cups butter room temperature
3/4 cup lemon curd

In the heatproof bowl of an electric an electric mixer set over saucepan of simmering water, combine egg whites and sugar. Cook whisking constantly, until sugar dissolves.
Attach bowl to mixer, fitter with whisk. Beat eggs on high unti stiff peaks form, Continue beating until fluffly and cool.

Change to paddle, add butter pieces at time, beat well after each addition. With spatula mix in 3/4 cups lemon curd.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The Homemade Cake

Straightforward and simple, that’s what life should be. And since food is part of that flowing existence we tend to call life, I will present a beautiful recipe. No big story on how I got it, or who made it famous, just good food and a glass of wine!!

Ricotta Cheesecake

4 cups homemade ricotta cheese (or store bought)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp orange juice
4 large eggs
Cooking spray
2 cups chopped walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts

Preheat oven to 350F
To prepare cake, place first 5 ingredients in a bowl and beat for 2 minutes on medium.
Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Pour batter in to 10 inch spring form pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350F for 1 hour or until cheesecake center barely moves when pan is touched. Remove cake from oven, run blade around edge of cake, remove ring and cover with chopped nuts.
Button crust is optional.
Mine was just ½ cup Ritz, ½ cup Marias , 1 egg, ½ cup butter, mix with hands. Pat on bottom of pan, blind bake for about 5 minutes.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Pineapple- mango Joy

Okay, so I fell for it. I bought a Martha Stewart Cookbook what will the chef gods say? I was walking around Michaels the other day (something dangerous for me) with a 40% off coupon and suddenly I saw the book isle. Yes, it was tiny and there were only maybe a dozen cookbooks. All seemed too related to the food network somehow and so I strayed away!! However, nestled neatly to the right was Mrs. Stewart with the Baking Cookbook and it kind of called to me?
You can guess what happed next, I bought it yes I bought it and it only cost me $22 dollars I still had left over to buy some chocolate truffles. When I got home I stuffed it in my growing book collection and forgot about it for almost a week.
Then only of those miracle nights when I have some time I took it out. To be honest I was kind of wary to follow the exact instruction, but decided to go for it, after all I had bought it for a reason, right?
I made the very simple Pineapple – Mango Turnover.

1 ¼ sticks of butter, room temperature
1 medium ripe pineapple, peeled and cut into slices
1 medium ripe mango, peeled
½ cup packed light brown sugar
1 ½ cup all purpose flour
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp baking powder
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
¼ sour cream


1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Butter an 8 x 2 inch cake pan, line it with parchment paper, and butter parchment. Using a 3 inch cookie cutter, cut out rounds from center of four of the pineapple slices. Chop enough of the remaining pieces to yield 1 cup. Place chopped fruit in a fine sieve set over a bowl to drain.
2. Cut the mango lengthwise into ¼ inch thick slices. Using the 1 ½ inch cookie cutter, cut out four rounds from the mango slices, set aside. Finely chop enough of the remaining mango to yield ½ cup, add the pineapple sieve.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat 2 tbsp butter with the brown sugar until light and fluffy, 2 – 3 minutes. Using a small offset spatula evenly spread butter mixture in the bottom of the prepared pan. Place a reserved mango round in the center of each ring.
4. Sift together flour, salt, bp and bs, set aside. Place a reserved pineapple ring in each corner or the pan. Place a mango center. In the bowl beat remaining butter with sugar on medium until light and fluffy 2 – 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition; scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in vanilla, add flour mixture in two parts alternating with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour.
5. Transfer chopped pineapple- mango mixture to cake pan; discard juice. Using a small spatula spread fruit in an even layer on top of cut out fruit. Then spread batter evenly over fruit.
6. Bake, rotating halfway until cake is golden brown and cake tester comes out clean about 40 – 50 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool, invert into plate, peel off the paper. Serve cake warm.

The cake was rich and moist, and I think one of the best I have made in a couple of times. All my family loved it!!

Blogging Survey!!

so i was visiting another blog and I love to fill out surveys... Thank YOu MySpace!!
So I thouhgt that while i wait for my laundry to be done I would fill out this lovely survey!!

What are the last three things you purchased:
1. A chocolate cake shake
2. A litttle coin bag from Target
3. Two black pants for work

What are the last three songs you downloaded:
Don't know the exact songs - but I know I recently downloaded songs from:
1. Disturbia
2. Sway by Michael BUbble
3. American BOy

What are the last three places you visited?
1. The Gym
2. the movie theater
3. my job on an off day

What are your three favorite movies?
i wish there was a list of 20
1. An Affair to Remember
2. On the edge
3. being julia

What are your three favorite possessions?
1. My rebelt xt digital camera
2. my car
3. me car

What are three things you can't live without?
1. my memories
2. my cell phone
3. myself in a happy mood

What would be your three wishes?
1. To be truly happy if even for an instant
2. To finish school and get going on my career
3. To live in Oregon

What are three things that you have not done yet?
1. gone to live in mexico for an extended perio of time
2. lived by myself
3. visited europe

What are your 3 favorite dishes?
1. pasta with any sauce
2. quesadillas
3. any type of sweet

What 3 celebrities would you want to hang out with most?
1. drew barrymore
2. meryl strip
3. ben affleck

If you could describe yourself in 3 words what would it be?
1. stubborn
2. sentimental / temperamental
3. Impatient

What are 3 things you are currently coveting?
1. A large kitchen
2. A mercedes benz/ bmw
3. A new ipod cellphone

Name 3 things you are unusually good at.
1. cooking
2. writting songs / short stories
3. my job