Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Truffles, pastries, petit fours, AND pasta... oh my!

So, I spent a lot more of the weekend in the kitchen. I think that I need to start pushing myself more and more each weekend to just bake away ... so if I show up at your door toting some mocha fudge 3-layer concoction, please don't turn me away!

To start off the weekend I worked on some petit fours. When I was 12 or so I really wanted to make petit fours. So my mom and I busted out the Betty Crocker, the cookbook of choice in our home. We cut the cake into diamonds and circles, and as we poured the glaze over the top, it was a miserable mess. My dreams of teeny, perfectly iced cakes were dashed. In searching for a fun Halloween treat to bring into work (and one that looks like it takes a decent amount of skill to produce) I discovered a picture of petit fours decorated with bats, spiders, etc. It seems that recipes vary tremendously. So, I went straight to my Betty Crocker! (I found the glaze online....somewhere...)

I struggled to get a good orange - this is VERY peach - and the glaze was horrible. I still need to do some experimenting. I did, however, find a great pan. It makes 24 individual cakes, perfect for this task!

Always wanting to try my hand at homemade pasta, this was task number two for the weekend.

Not having any special tools, my rolling pin could only get the dough so thin. But, the end result was pretty tasty.

Planning for upcoming holiday gifts, I thought I would try my hand at making truffles. I'm not ready to tackle tempering chocolate, but the rest of the process was quite easy. delicious:days has a great recipe for Earl Grey truffles, which smelled amazing and tasted even better. And, for the record - while Steve is usually my photographer, I took this picture myself and I'm quite proud of it!

Finally, I had one last project in me. This summer I had made some excellent Danish pastries that I pulled from a pastry book I really like. The filling is a coffee/almond mixture that is just spectacular. The filling is paired with a pretty traditional puff pastry. Not up for the work of puff pastry, I pulled the recipe from Baking Bites for Nutella Scrolls. This dough is so simple to make - 5 minutes or less - and was perfect with this filling. I sent these off to work with Steve so I didn't get to enjoy any of their coffee goodness (well, except for that "test" roll...).

My appointment with Kendall College is this Saturday. I've gone back and forth on this - it would be a great opportunity, but I don't think this is the opportune time. I was recently promoted at work, I have a great workout routine that I'd like to have the time to stick to, and I think being committed to classes 3-times a week just won't make sense for me right now. I'm going to look into other opportunities, possibly class through Wilton or other schools in the area. I think this is the right plan for me, and even more of a reason to keep the baking going over the weekends.

1 comment:

Sarah said...

Your noodles look like they turned out pretty good. It is tough to get a normal thickness with a rolling pin. Though my family thoroughly enjoyed the lasagna made with my hand-rolled noodles, more so than with store bought.

I'm jealous you can bake (my attempt at chocolate chip cookies came out like flat muffins, though I do make a mean gingerbread). Your baby cake looked great!