Thursday, January 29, 2009

Daring Bakers January Challenge - Tuiles

After missing a few DB challenges, I was glad to be participating this month because we were making tuiles. I have only made bowl-shaped ones once before and was looking forward to trying a new shape.

The tuile batter is pretty straightforward and made with easy to access ingredients. The only things I didn't sift were the flour and icing sugar. I don't think it made a big difference but I found that I still had small bits of butter after everything was incorporated. The batter, even after refrigeration, was still thinnish which sometimes led to wacky-shaped tuiles rather than circular. I made a small portion of chocolate batter so some tuiles had chocolate striping and some were plain.

After they were baked, I waited a few seconds before lifting off and rolling around a wooden spoon handle. They were a little sticky and some tore. After they cooled, I filled them with PC Dark Chocolate Spread and my kids ate them all. I paired some with strawberry frozen yogurt and they ate those too. My tuiles were a bit soft and definitely not crunchy - most likely caused by human error. The whole process was not difficult and fun to try. Thanks for a great challenge!

This month's challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from The Chocolate Book by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Pizza Dough

I used to avoid yeasted breads because I thought they were difficult and temperamental to work with. Would the yeast rise? What's the right water temperature? After many attempts, some successful, some not, I feel much more comfortable working with those little magical granules.

Pizza is something I make almost every week. Having a good pizza dough recipe makes all the difference. A bad recipe can frustrate you to no end but a good one means limitless pizza possibilities. The one I use is easy to work with and does not shrink when I roll it out. I substitute some whole wheat flour in for the all-purpose to make it healthier.

You can use it as a pizza base, for cheesy soft breadsticks or Middle Eastern flatbread (Manakeesh Bil Za'atar) as I did.

Recipe: Pizza Dough

Friday, January 09, 2009

Sour Cream Pound Cake & A Winner!

Well I hope all of you had a great week. I did but I'm so glad its Friday! So in anticipation of the weekend to come, I will tell you all about this fabulous pound cake and hope it inspires you to bake something yummy.

Pound cake is really really versatile. You can eat it as is, toast it, use it in trifle, to dip in chocolate fondue...and probably a whole load of other things I haven't heard of. Everyone should have one great pound cake recipe and this one is mine and should be yours if you don't have one already.

The cake is perfectly moist and dense. It came out lovely, golden and delicious and is the perfect treat to have wit tea, coffee, lattes, espresso...well, you get the idea.

I would also like to congratulate Allison who was the winner of the book giveaway! Allison if you could send me an e-mail (located at the bottom of the right column) with your address, your book will be in the mail as soon as possible. Thank you to all of you who entered and have a great weekend!

Recipe: Sour Cream Pound Cake

Friday, January 02, 2009

Dark and Dangerous Triple Chocolate Cookies

As my winter vacation comes to a close I want to wish you all a very Happy New Year! Having a couple weeks off really helped me to get back on track and hopefully back to baking on a regular basis.

This January marks the three year anniversary of The Canadian Baker. Way back in 2006 I had nary an idea of what the world of blogging was let alone how many bloggers enjoyed baking as much as I do. Along the way I hope I encouraged some of you out there to give homemade a try - it isn't all that daunting! So, as we ring in 2009, I will continue to do my thing and perhaps someone will say "Hey, that doesn't look so hard!" or "I can do that!" Trust - you can do it. :)

As a Thank You to all of you, I'm giving away one copy of Little Cakes from the Whimsical Bakehouse published by Random House. All you need to do is leave a comment and I'll announce the winner on January 9, 2009.

So if you're thinking of dusting of your beaters, cookies are always an easy way to start baking. If you like chocolate, these Dark & Dangerous cookies will fit the bill. They're chocolatey, chewy and sweet. Not my most favourite cookie, but one that will satisfy a craving tout de suite.

Recipe: Dark and Dangerous Triple Chocolate Cookies