Banana Feather Loaf

I’m really having a hard time figuring out what to say about this one. I make Rose’s white sandwich bread so often that I’ve pretty much got the quantities memorized, and this one is basically the same technique. A little less butter here, add some banana, and probably change some of the other ratios (like you might not need as much honey with banana for the yeast to feed on)… but it’s basically the same bread. This is another of those cases where I probably wouldn’t have tried it if not for the bake through, but I don’t know that I’ll go out of my way to bake it again, unless I want something interesting to use as the basis for french toast for a really special breakfast. I just can’t figure out what else to use this for. Other than snacks. And it’s definitely good for snacks. But it’s got a sweetness to it that (I think) makes it less appropriate for things like grilled cheese, tuna melts, or garlic bread, which is really what bread’s used for, around here.

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Banana Split Chiffon Cake

I wasn’t sure I was going to make it through this weekend’s Rose’s Alpha Bakers project, nor The Bread Bible bake-through assignment for the month. For one thing, I just got back late Friday night from visiting my parents back home in New Brunswick. For another, we had no “very ripe” bananas in the house, and the assigned recipes for the week each needed some “very ripe” banananana, and it’s pretty much impossible to buy bananananas ripe, let alone “very” ripe. Finally, I started getting a sore throat on Friday morning, and it had developed into a full blown cold by Saturday morning, along with full body aches, chills, and general misery. No fever, though, so, yay? I basically spent Saturday on the couch, got some reasonably good sleep on Saturday night, and felt marginally better by Sunday morning. Well better enough to bake, anyway, given that neither recipe was more than a couple of pages long, and neither involved a crazy number of components or anything super complicated. Continue reading “Banana Split Chiffon Cake”

Mud Turtle Pie

What’s a mud turtle pie, aside from this week’s recipe from Rose’s Alpha Bakers? It’s a pecan pie, with chocolate on top. Think a turtle candy, but the caramel’s a little less chewy. I went with the milk chocolate ganache, rather than the dark option. And I made the ganache long before making any of the rest of the pie. I also made 2 pies, since, as someone pointed out recently, it’s really not that much more work than one pie. I had some pie dough in the freezer, so I just doubled the other parts of the recipe, so that I could leave one at home for Jay while I’m away visiting family this week, and take one into work, sort of in part as a thank you for my co-worker bringing in a rhubarb custard pie on Friday.

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Honey Cake

Happy Rosh Hashanah! Apologies that I’m a little late on that wish. 🙂 I thought that this week’s scheduled recipe from the “Rose’s Alpha Bakers” project would be a good one to give to Gilad for this month’s baked treat from last year’s Movember charity auction. I sent him a quick note, and asked how he would feel about honey cake. The answer was “Sounds good. Just in time for Rosh Hashanah (Jewish new year) ;)” Perfect, I figure. After a little help from Evil Cake Lady, I figured out that the only thing I didn’t have on hand was oranges for juicing, so I picked those up on the way home after the gym on Thursday night, then baked this on Friday morning. This is a super quick and easy recipe, and it smelled amazing.

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Pepparkakors

This week, the Baking Bible bake-through project is working on something that sounds (to me) Dutch, but tastes like a gingersnap. It’s definitely not pepernoten. It’s definitely not speculaas. It’s definitely not gingerbread.  Quite gingery, with the other spices fading a bit into the background as supporting actors.

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Luscious Apple Pie & Basic Hearth Bread

What was it I was supposed to be blogging about again? Was it one of the two pecan pies I made yesterday (one of which is for a friend’s son’s birthday, and the other because Jay wanted it)?

Pecan Pie & Pecan Tart
Pecan Pie & Pecan Tart

The grape pie I made on Sunday?

Concord Grape Pie
Concord Grape Pie
Interior shot, just for Hanaâ.
Interior shot, just for Hanaâ.

No, wait, it was the apple pie that I made on Saturday, and the “basic hearth bread” that I started on Friday and finished on Saturday.

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Flaky Cream Cheese Scones

I loaded up this page to write up the post, then went to my google photos account to download my pictures, because my computer is refusing to recognize that I’ve plugged in my phone tonight. Then Google photos asked me if I wanted it to show me memories from this week in past years, and I clicked on it, and that was a mistake, because now I’m looking at pictures of Grandpa, who passed away two years ago last Thursday.

img_4229
I need an ice cream cone.

 

Um. Scones. I made them. They were, in fact, quick and easy. I skipped the dried fruit (cranberries or blueberries) because I was feeling lazy and didn’t have any on hand. There were 8 of them. Sometime between Friday’s lunch and Monday morning’s breakfast, they all disappeared. I can’t fathom where they might have gone. Jay managed to get one of them before they all disappeared. He said they were biscuit-like. I guess that’s good?

Cutting in the cream cheese
Cutting in the cream cheese
Rest of the ingredients
Rest of the ingredients
Smooshed butter
Smooshed butter “flakes”?
Ready for the oven
Ready for the oven
Mmm.. wait. You said there were 8?
Mmm.. wait. You said there were 8?

Buttered scones for tea. Or maybe just buttered scones for breakfast, lunch, and snacks. I guess mid-afternoon snack could otherwise be known as “tea”. Yup, I’m a lumberjack, and I’m ok.

Woody’s Black and White Brownies

Busy weekend! I actually made these brownies twice – once on Friday morning, minus the toppings (and without the cream cheese — oops!) and once on Sunday afternoon (today). As I write, the second batch is on its last round of cooling in the fridge. Hopefully I’ll write this up quickly enough that I can go grab a piece before it’s time for bed. On Thursday, I made a vague plan to make these brownies on Friday, for my monthly baking delivery to my friend Gilad. Trouble was, I was meeting my husband for lunch, near where Gilad now works, and I didn’t have all the ingredients I needed. I was primarily missing chocolate. You know, the important part of a brownie. Anyway, long story short, after I got home from a grocery run, and looked more closely at the recipe, I knew there was no way I’d get all the components made in one morning. I was lucky to have just the brownies cool enough to put in a container by lunch! I figured it wouldn’t make any difference to my friend, though, and he’d be happy with the brownies on their own. So, this post is a combination of pictures from the first batch, which I made on Friday, and the second batch, which was made today.

What did I do in between? Super mini 16 year high school reunion, after attending a concert at the Jackson-Triggs winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

High school reunion
I don’t often feel short 😀

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Perfect Peach Galette

No, I’m not boasting. That’s the name of the recipe. Your second question is probably, “What’s a galette?” The answer, according to our friends on Saturday night, is, “I don’t care. Is it dessert? Did Kristina make it? I’ll have some.” We decided it had been too long since we’d had people over for a fire, so planned one for this past Saturday. Our friends Megan & Doug brought their family, so we thought we’d start with a BBQ with them, since we figured the kids wouldn’t last all that late for the campfire.  BBQ: ribs, corn, potato salad (from my garden!)… what could be better than peach pie for dessert? Nice timing on the schedule, Marie! Peaches are perfectly in season here, too.

To skin the peaches, place them in a pot of just-boiled water for 1 minute. Then run them under cold water. The skins rub/peel off pretty easily. Then you’ve got a pile of slippery peaches to deal with.

Skinned peaches are slippery!
Skinned peaches are slippery!

I tried cutting in half, then removing the pits, but they just ended up a mess, so instead I sliced around the pit, then pulled off a few slices at a time.

All sliced
All sliced

That seemed to work out well.

Mix the sliced peaches with sugar & lemon juice, then let that sit for 1/2 hour or up to 1.5 hours. That’s called “macerating” and it causes the fruit to release some of its juices. In the meantime, I kneaded my bread (lurking in the corner in the next picture) and got the pie crust rolled out.

Macerating
Macerating

Take the juice recovered from the peaches, and boil it for a while, reducing it by about 1/3. I actually had more than a cup of liquid, because I (sort of) doubled the recipe. Well, I doubled the filling, but apparently didn’t roll the dough out thin enough, or didn’t have quite enough dough, since I’d put together a bunch of scraps & half of a double-crust pie recipe, out of the freezer.

Peach syrup reduced
Peach syrup reduced

The reduced peach syrup was nice & thick and slightly caramelized, just like the recipe said it should be.  Once I mixed it with the peaches, and added the almond extract and cornstarch, I realized I had way to much filling to do a single layer of any sort on my pie crust. So, I put the leftover in a bowl and had a snack. 😉

"Perfect"?
“Perfect”?

The galette kind of exploded a bit in the oven, but fortunately, I had laid parchment down over the pizza pan, and it didn’t make a mess. I was even able to gently slide a pizza peel under the galette and lift it up off the parchment for serving. I forgot to get a picture of that, so you’ll just have to believe me. I sliced it with a pizza wheel, too. It seemed appropriate, given the serving vessel!

Jay really liked this one, because it’s more crust than fruit. 🙂 I think I prefer pie in a pie plate, because it just looks better, but I can’t say I minded this, either. I might get better at rolling the pie crust and folding it prettily, if I did it more than once. But, next week’s a new scheduled recipe, so onward we go!

Next weekend, we’re heading to Niagara (home of the peaches I used here) to introduce our friends to one of my favourite singer/songwriters, David Myles, who also happens to have sat across a concert band from me for 6 years in school – he played trumpet, and I played flute. We were in a lot of classes together and ran in the same band geek circles, too. I’m hoping to get a chance to say “hi,” again, despite this being a fairly large venue. The last couple of times we’ve seen him have been much smaller concerts, and I got an enthusiastic hug as soon as he recognized me when he was selling CDs and signing autographs. 🙂

One of my favourite songs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NY-E_aQQWFU

Er.. All that to say, I might be late with my baking/posting next weekend. Or maybe I’ll do it on Friday and be early. We’ll see.