Tuesday, May 21, 2013

May Days

Did someone say "French Macarons?"

I finally got to take some pics, and here are a couple I made for my father-in-law's birthday...

These almond treats are surprisingly simple to create, you just need a bit of time to wait and the right piping consistency.  I tried a few recipes, but I think I will stick with the no-aging-egg-white method.  I added the colouring as the last step so I didn't have to make so many batches.  I filled it with hazelnut chocolate spread, but could have easily used buttercream or ganache.  YUM!

Happy Birthday, Ralph!

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My son's school had their fun fair and I wanted to do something different... so I decided to donate two dozen sugar cookies in a basket.  I figured, people were more likely to bid on an item they could see in person.  I hope the highest bidder enjoyed it!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Gateau St. Honoré

A long time ago, my aunt-in-law (who loves to bake) requested that I make this cake for her birthday.  I had no clue what this was, so I Googled it.  Lots of images popped up, but I chose a recipe from Food Network Canada's website since it looked the least intimidating.

Her birthday was last week, and I fulfilled her request.

If I added up all the hours I spent on this cake, I would guess 3 to 4 hours in total, which was during a 2-day span (the recipe didn't give any indication of how long it would take... probably because it would scare people from trying it).

The elements include:
l.  puff pastry base (store-bought... I had no time to make it from scratch... apparently the "cake" part)
2. pastry cream with vanilla bean (I burned my hand with the hot cream during whisking) to cover the base and fill the profiteroles (a.k.a. cream puffs)
3. choux paste (I made a double-batch by mistake, had extra to make more profiteroles)
4. profiteroles dipped in caramel (I burned the caramel and had to redo it)
5. topped with fresh raspberries, from scratch whipped cream, half flavoured with raspberry jam (no time to make puree)

For my first attempt, I think I did well... she wished she asked for two! :)

Happy Birthday, Heather!