Posts made in December, 2020

Bready or Not: Galette Des Rois

Posted by on Dec 30, 2020 in Blog, Bready or Not, cake, French | 0 comments

Eat like royalty without a lot of fuss with this shortcut recipe for Galette Des Rois!

Bready or Not: Galette Des Rois

Galette des Rois (King Cake) celebrates Epiphany and is available throughout January in France.

Bready or Not: Galette Des Rois

I am so not in France. Nor did I get to go there in June, as planned. Sigh. So, I have to make-do.

Bready or Not: Galette Des Rois

However, making-do can still be delicious. Frozen puff pastry is great stuff. You make a frangipane from scratch, but it’s pretty straightforward.

Bready or Not: Galette Des Rois

Honestly, the trickiest part for me was figuring out what pattern to etch into the top of the galette–and then hope that I didn’t dig the knife in too deeply.

Bready or Not: Galette Des Rois

If you do a Google search for Galette des Rois, you’ll see all sorts of different patterns you can do. I’m happy with my choice. And that I didn’t cut too deeply.

Bready or Not: Galette Des Rois

Because I am OCD and can’t bear to waste food, I include a bonus recipe on a great way to bake-up the scraps of puff pastry, too.

The galette and scraps are tastiest the day they are baked, but they are still good for the next few days, too.

Adapted from Dorie Greenspan.

Bready or Not: Galette Des Rois

Galette des Rois (King Cake) celebrates Epiphany and is available throughout January in France. Make your own using this shortcut take using puff pastry, modified from a Dorie Greenspan recipe. Traditionally, an almond or other small charm is hidden within the cake as an edible surprise (warn the eaters!).
Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: French
Keyword: almond, cake, puff pastry
Author: Beth Cato

Equipment

  • baking sheet
  • parchment paper
  • pastry brush

Ingredients

Frangipane filling

  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
  • 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 3/4 cup almond flour sifted
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 Tablespoon rum optional but awesome
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

Cake

  • 1 puff pastry dough box 14-17 ounce package, cold
  • 1 whole almond for the traditional charm

Instructions

Prepare the frangipane

  • This can be made up to a day ahead, but needs at least an hour to chill before assembling the galette.
  • Beat together the butter and sugar until they are creamy and light. Add the almond flour and salt. Add one whole egg. Divide the other egg, adding only the white–reserve the yolk for later. Mix in the rum, if using, and the vanilla extract.
  • Transfer to a small bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it against the top of the mix, then place in fridge to chill.
  • Mix the reserved yolk with 1 teaspoon of cold water, and cover it and set it in the fridge as well.

Assembling the galette

  • Set out a complete sheet of puff pastry. Cut a 9-1/2 diameter circle out of the middle; if a 9-inch tart pan insert is available, use that as a handy guide. Set aside scraps from edges. Place the cut round on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  • Repeat the process with the second sheet of puff pastry. Place all of the cut-off bits aside in the fridge for now.
  • Return to the pastry round on the baking sheet. Spread the frangipane evenly over the dough, but leave a 1-inch border bare. Place the almond somewhere on the filling. Moisten the border with some cold water. Set the second round of pastry on top and press it down around the edges to seal them together.
  • Use the back of a butter knife to scallop the edges by creating an indentation about a quarter-inch deep, spaced out about a half-inch apart. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven at 425-degrees.
  • Pull out the chilled galette. Brush a thin layer of yolk over the top, but be very careful that it doesn’t drip down over the edge, or the galette won’t rise. Use a paring knife to etch a design on the very top of the galette while taking care not to cut too deeply. Add 6 small slits spaced out to act as steam vents.
  • Drop the oven temperature to 400-degrees. Bake the galette for 30 to 40 minutes, until it is puffed and golden brown. Keep an eye on it. If filling starts to ooze out, scrape it away so that it doesn’t drip off the pan. If the galette is browning too fast, cover it with aluminum foil.
  • Transfer it to a rack to cool for at least 15 minutes. Expect it to deflate some, as that is the way of puff pastry. Best eaten when fresh, served warm or at room temperature, but can be chilled and eaten over the coming days.
  • Bonus: As soon as the galette is out of the oven, put the puff pastry scraps on the parchment. Brush the remaining yolk atop. Then add a topping like pearl sugar, turbinado sugar, or maple sugar. Bake scraps for 15 to 20 minutes, until pieces are puffed and golden. Like the galette, they are best eaten the same day, but are still quite edible after that.

OM NOM NOM!

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    Bready or Not: Cheese and Chives Yorkshire Puddings (Small Batch)

    Posted by on Dec 23, 2020 in Blog, Bready or Not, british, cheese galore, quick bread, side dish | 0 comments

    Yorkshire puddings are what many Americans also know of as popovers–light, airy, crisp sponges perfect to eat with a roast and gravy!

    Bready or Not: Cheese and Chives Yorkshire Puddings (Small Batch)

    This recipe is for a small batch of puds. Since they are so airy (if they rise right), the six puddings of this recipe are perfect for two or three people.

    Bready or Not: Cheese and Chives Yorkshire Puddings (Small Batch)

    Cheese makes everything better, of course. I used Dubliner Irish Cheddar, as it is available at my nearest Costcos for a good price.

    Bready or Not: Cheese and Chives Yorkshire Puddings (Small Batch)

    Use a good quality cheddar here to really take these puddings to the next level.

    Bready or Not: Cheese and Chives Yorkshire Puddings (Small Batch)

    Modified from Bake from Scratch Magazine.

    Bready or Not: Cheese and Chives Yorkshire Puddings (Small Batch)

    These cheesy Yorkshire puds are perfect to serve with a holiday roast and gravy! Unlike many recipes, this makes a small batch of six puddings, enough for 2 or 3 people. These are light, airy, and oh-so-cheesy. Use the best cheddar you can find–you'll be able to taste the difference.
    Course: Side Dish
    Cuisine: British
    Keyword: cheese, quick bread
    Servings: 2
    Author: Beth Cato

    Equipment

    • metal muffin pan
    • blender

    Ingredients

    • 3/4 cup milk or half & half
    • 2 large eggs room temperature
    • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter melted, divided
    • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
    • 1/4 cup quality cheddar cheese (25 grams), freshly grated
    • 1 1/2 Tablespoons fresh chives chopped, plus more for garnish

    Instructions

    • Preheat oven at 425-degrees.
    • In the container of a blender, place milk, eggs, 1 tablespoon melted butter, flour, and salt; process just until smooth. Let rest for 10 minutes.
    • In a small bowl, toss together grated cheese and chives.
    • Place a 12-cup muffin pan in oven for 5 minutes to preheat.
    • Remove muffin pan from oven, and quickly spoon the remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter into the 6 muffin cups that are being used. Return pan to oven for 2 minutes.
    • Remove pan from oven. Working fast, spoon or pour batter into buttered muffin cups, dividing as evenly as possible. Top each with a spoonful of cheese mixture.
    • Bake until puffed and golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes. Garnish with more chives, if desired. Serve immediately. Yorkshires are best fresh as they deflate after baking.

    OM NOM NOM!

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      Bready or Not: Lebkuchen

      Posted by on Dec 16, 2020 in Blog, Bready or Not, cookies | 0 comments

      It’s my understanding that there are likely thousands of Lebkuchen recipes in the world, and here is mine.

      Bready or Not: Lebkuchen

      This traditional German Christmas cookie is like a gingerbread cookie, but is a lot more complex due to the spices used and the citrus mixed in.

      Bready or Not: Lebkuchen

      Even the glaze adds to that wonderfully fresh citrus flavor, as it has a bit of lemon juice mixed in.

      Bready or Not: Lebkuchen

      The only somewhat odd ingredient is chopped-up candied orange. I actually cut up a whole-slice version that Trader Joe’s sells at the holidays, but otherwise candied orange should be found near fruitcake ingredients at many grocery stores.

      Bready or Not: Lebkuchen

      Note that this cookie dough needs to chill for a full day. That gives the flour time to develop and for the spices to really do their thing.

      Bready or Not: Lebkuchen

      And trust me, you want their thing done. These are awesome cookies, sure to delight and surprise anyone who digs in.

      Modified from a recipe printed in Cooking Light Magazine, December 2008.

      Bready or Not: Lebkuchen

      This take on the classic German holiday cookie is packed with complex spices and citrusy notes. Note that the dough needs to chill for a full day prior to baking. The final result is firm and chewy when fresh, and after about two days, they firm up more but remain delicious.
      Course: Dessert, Snack
      Cuisine: German
      Keyword: cookies, gingerbread, holiday, lemon
      Author: Beth Cato

      Ingredients

      Cookies

      • 3/4 cup brown sugar packed
      • 1/2 cup honey
      • 1/4 cup unsalted butter half stick
      • 1/4 cup dark molasses
      • 2 teaspoons espresso powder
      • 1 large egg
      • 3/4 cup ground almonds sifted
      • 1/2 cup candied orange slices chopped, or candied orange peel
      • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 15.75 ounces
      • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
      • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
      • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
      • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
      • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
      • 1/8 teaspoon salt

      Glaze

      • 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
      • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
      • 1 1/2 teaspoons water

      Instructions

      • In a medium saucepan on medium heat, constantly stir together the brown sugar, honey, butter, and molasses until the sugar is dissolved. Make sure it doesn’t come to a boil. Transfer the mixture to large bowl and let it cool to room temperature.
      • Add the espresso powder and egg to the cool sugar mixture. Follow that up with the ground almonds and candied orange bits.
      • In a separate bowl, stir together the rest of the dry ingredients. Gradually combine the two bowls until just mixed. Lift it up and knead it for a minute or so to make sure no flour remains at the bottom.
      • Wrap dough in plastic wrap and stash in the fridge for at least a day.
      • Preheat oven at 325-degrees. Cover two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
      • Divide dough into 4 portions. Keep the other portions chilled while rolling 1 out into a 8×6-inch rectangle. Cut (a pizza slicer or bench knife are great) into 3×1-inch bars. Transfer to baking sheet, setting them an inch apart.
      • Bake for about 20 minutes, or until firm. If cooking both sheets at once, switch their positions about halfway through.
      • As soon as the cookies are out, mix up the glaze. Drizzle glaze back and forth over the warm cookies. Let glaze set for an hour before packing up cookies in sealed containers.

      OM NOM NOM!

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        Giftmas 2020: Help the Edmonton Food Bank!

        Posted by on Dec 15, 2020 in Blog, giftmas | 1 comment

        giftmas 2020

        I’m taking part in Giftmas again this year, an annual effort coordinated by Rhonda Parrish for the benefit of the Edmonton Food Bank. I don’t need to state the reasons why helping food banks is more important this year than ever before. We need to help each other. We can’t connect in person, but we can connect with a few bucks that will help fill bellies and add warmth to the world through kindness. If you’re American like me, your dollars will deliver extra bang with each buck, too. $1 = 3 meals.

        Please help.

        Rhonda asked Giftmas participants to post on the subject of connections. For me, this year has featured an evolving connection with my son.

        He turned fifteen in March. We didn’t get to do his annual birthday trip to IKEA, where he loves following the handout map and the big arrows on the floor, as he has since he was a preschooler. He’s autistic. He loves maps and numbers, and IKEA is all about those things.

        Last year, he started high school. It was not a transition without hiccups. He needs routine and quiet. He struggles to understood the chaos of other people. The lead-in to his birthday was the start of virtual high school. It was… tumultuous, to say the least. The kid who needs routine, losing all semblance of it. Me, I’m diagnosed OCD and not much better at handling this stuff than he is, but I have to be the cool-headed parent because if I crack, he will really crack.

        I’m also the at-home parent as I do this writer thing. I was the one who had to talk him through the fear, the unknowns. I had to talk myself through, too.

        As April chugged along, as masks became the thing, his school days began to find more of a groove. He did, too. He actually found it easier to focus on his work in the online school format. I enjoyed having him around, too, preparing lunch for him and checking in during breaks to see how things were going. It became a situation that bonded us more, as we talked at lunch about the new COVID-19 case numbers for the day and what they meant for our family.

        We’ve continued to work through, day by day, as his sophomore year began in the fall. He started out online, then got to return to school for two days a week for three weeks before an outbreak shut his school down in early November. Soon after that, rising case numbers for Arizona forced his entire district to return to online learning to finish out 2020. He’s handled these transitions oddly well. I’m proud of him. This year has been hard, but he has grown in this time. So have I.

        That said, I selfishly would like fewer growth-through-adversity moments in 2021, for our sakes and for everyone else, too.

        Please help other people end their 2020 and start the new year on a brighter note. Donate to the Edmonton Food Bank today.

        Thank you.

        Follow the entire blog tour through RhondaParrish.com and her social media.

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        Bready or Not Original: Honey Spritz Cookies

        Posted by on Dec 9, 2020 in Blog, Bready or Not, cookies | 0 comments

        These Honey Spritz Cookies are perfectly sweet, and with some added sanding sugar, will make cookie plates bright this holiday season!

        Bready or Not Original: Honey Spritz Cookies

        I have a love and hate relationship with my cookie press. Sometimes I try to use it for recipes and it is a disaster. Not so with this recipe!

        Bready or Not Original: Honey Spritz Cookies

        This dough was soft and dreamy to work with. I can only hope that you have a similar experience.

        Bready or Not Original: Honey Spritz Cookies

        As I used a tree-shaped disc to make my cookies, I added some green sanding sugar. The fun thing about this recipe is that you can make it any time of year and customize it to the season.

        Really, the most difficult thing about this recipe was rearranging my fridge to fit in the cookie sheets for their chill time.

        Bready or Not Original: Honey Spritz Cookies

        Use a cookie press to create delicious cookies! These treats are perfectly sweet.
        Course: Dessert, Snack
        Keyword: cookie press, cookies, holiday
        Servings: 40 cookies
        Author: Beth Cato

        Equipment

        • cookie press
        • 2 large cookie sheets

        Ingredients

        • 2 cups all-purpose flour
        • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
        • 1/4 teaspoon salt
        • 1/2 cup unsalted butter 1 stick
        • 1/3 cup white sugar
        • 1 large egg room temperature
        • 1/4 cup honey
        • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
        • sanding sugar or coarse sugar or other edible decorations

        Instructions

        • Place two cookie sheets in fridge to completely chill.
        • Arrange oven racks at top and bottom of oven, then set to preheat at 350-degrees.
        • In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
        • In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg, honey, and vanilla. Gradually add in the dry mixture until just combined. Dough will be super-soft.
        • Cookie presses vary in how they work–fill the device with dough, however required, and add decorative disk or nozzle. Press out cookie dough directly onto the cold cookie sheets, spacing 1-inch apart.
        • If desired, add colorful sanding sugar or other decorations. Bake for 7 minutes. Switch placement of cookie sheets within oven. Bake for another 7 minutes, until set. Let cool on pans for about 5 minutes then transfer to racks to completely cool.
        • Store in sealed containers at room temperature.

        OM NOM NOM!

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