Archive for June 18th, 2008

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TWD – Not so Peppermint Cream Puff Ring

June 18, 2008

This week’s recipe comes from Caroline of A Consuming Passion.  I’ve been wanting to try to make pate a choux since I saw it on Good Eats ages ago, now I have the chance.  I do not, however, enjoy peppermint.  No.  That’s an understatement… I loathe peppermint.  The smell, the taste, the feel.  All terrible.  I get nauseated when I eat it.  Maybe I’m allergic…

At any rate, I knew a Peppermint Ring was out, but, luckily, the mint was only in the filling and Dorie gave some alternatives.  Being a citrus lover I knew I would go with a Lemon Cream filling.  Now this filling could only come after three (in my opinion) failures at the dough.

Now, it came together fine.  I boiled it until it was a ball.  I mixed my eggs in one by one.  I squeezed it into a ring and (on the first attempt) into eclairs and rolls.  I baked them for a total of 45 minutes.  Each time they came out browned and firm and puffed up.

Eclairs

And everytime… after leaving them in the kitchen to cool… I came back to a deflated ring.  It looked a bit like a large donut that someone sat on.  So, I tried a second time.  Same result.  I looked up Alton Brown’s recipe on footnetwork.com.  He had a suggestion of puncturing the choux after it came out of the oven to let the steam escape and stop the dough from going soggy.

Eureka! I thought.  This the problem!  If I puncture the dough when I take it out, all will be well and my ring will be lovely.  So, into round three I went.  I did everything I was supposed to.  I turned the oven down after 15 minutes.  I even baked it an extra 5 minutes to be sure it was done.  As soon as it came out, I took a paring knife and punctured the ring in several places.  The crust was so nice and firm!  But, alas, when I returned from letting it cool…

Pate A Choux pancake

Voila! A Pate A Choux Pancake! That’s right, flat again.

I don’t know what the issue is but I’m thoroughly frustrated.  I never got to the lemon cream.  What’s the point of making it, if your pastry won’t be able to hold the weight?

I’ll give it a day or two, and maybe I’ll have another go.

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TWD – La Palette’s Strawberry Tart

June 18, 2008

Strawberry Tart

La Palette’s Strawberry Tart on page 374 was this week’s challenge.  And it was, simply, divine.  I think by it’s pure simplicity, it became extraordinary.  It starts with a sweet tart dough, then a layer of jam (I used raspberry) and then some cut up strawberries.  That’s it!  Simple, fast, delicious.  I served mine with a little Ready Whip and everyone was in heaven!

Strawberry Tart close up

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TWD – French Chocolate Brownies

June 18, 2008

French Chocolate Brownies

I have to say, I was not thrilled with these brownies.  For starters, I don’t like raisins.  I know, I know, I could have left them out, but, originally, I was planning to send these into work with the hubby.  I even left out the cinnamon (that I love) because his boss is allergic.  But I didn’t get them made until Friday, and after I tried one, I didn’t want to send them in.  The actual brownie wasn’t *terrible* but the raisins were disgusting and the overall texture was a little mealy.  I think I may not have cooked them long enough.

Try them for yourself and see what you think! You can find the recipe at Di’s Kitchen Notebook, who had the honor of picking this recipe!