Thursday, August 21, 2008

KBB#6: Cheese Biscuits

Saya sebenarnya bukan anggota 'resmi' Klub Berani Baking, cuma pemerhati saja terutama ikutan posting podipoto di Flickr. Tapi karena sakit Barcelona membuat saya terkunci di rumah selama 2 hari akhirnya saya coba tantangan Cheese Biscuits ini.

Karena ngga bisa kemana-mana, saya cuma memanfaatkan apa yang ada di pantry. Jadi kalau dianggap enggak sesuai dengan requirement pasrah waelah. Ada bahan yang ngga ada yakni : cayenne pepper dan sasame seeds. Sedangkan keju kebetulan ada sisa, cuma cheddar-nya ini adalah hasil asap. Untuk isi saya bongkar kacang2an. Adanya almond baik yang tipis dan chunky. Eh kok nemu kacang pistachio yang masih utuh. Trus ada kacang pecans bekas membuat cookies-nya Dorie. Ngga tau kenapa saya tambahkan gula, mungkin karena agar kesan biskuit ini kudu sedikit manis, asin dan renyah.

Resep dasar dari KBB saya utak-atik dengan penjelasan yang lebih detail. Misalnya suhu oven tidak seperti yang dianjurkan, tapi saya set 167C karena oven saya fixed setting. Cara membuat juga saya gunakan mesin dengan stand mixer yang dipakai flat beater. Walau sebenarnya bisa digunakan dengan hand mixer atau dengan tangan saja.

Hasilnya adalah biskuit yang renyah sekali. Saya sengaja memasak agak lama karena ingin hasil kecoklatan. Keju asap-nya terasa sekali dengan sedikit asin dan manis. Kacang pistachio dan pecan kalau dikunyah kriuk-kriuk. Enak banget sebagai teman ngopi.

Bisa dibilang ini adalah posting saya pertama di KBB. Met mencoba yaks..

Cheese Biscuits

untuk 50 potong
waktu memasak 30 menit

225g keju tua parut (saya memakai Smoked Cheddar Tillamock)
125g mentega Challenge (tanpa garam dalam suhu ruang sekitar 15-30 menit, potong bentuk kubus)
125g tepung terigu (diayak)

1/4 sendok teh baking powder
1/4 sendok teh garam
2 sdm gula

Isi :
100 gr pistachio tanpa garam (sedikit ditumbuk, jangan terlalu halus)
100 gr kacang pecan (sedikit ditumbuk, jangan terlalu halus)

kacang almond bentuk pipih secukupnya

  1. Siapkan oven dalam suhu 167C dengan rak tepat di tengah.
  2. Dengan mesin acak mentega dengan gula hingga tercampur sekitar 2 menit kecepatan rendah.
  3. Masukkan tepung terigu + baking powder yang telah diayak sedikit demi sedikit. Set mixer dengan kecepatan sedang selama 2-3 menit hingga tercampur merata
  4. Masukkan keju parut pelan-pelan, aduk hingga 1 menit kedepan. Matikan mesin dan aduk secara manual.
  5. Pisahkan adonan menjadi dua, satu diisi dengan kacang pistachio dan satunya dengan kacang pecan.
  6. Gulung dalam ukuran bola ibu jari, tempatkan dalam cookies sheet. Beri jarak sekitar 3-4 cm antara cookies untuk memberikan ruang mengembang. Dengan jari tekan hingga sedikit pipih. Hiasi dengan topping almond. (satu batch cookies sekitar 25 buah)
  7. Bakar dalam oven selama 20 menit untuk hasil sedikit kecoklatan. Jangan terlalu coklat karena walau udah dikeluarkan dari oven, biskuit meneruskan proses memasak. Angkat dan angin-anginkan sebelum dimasukkan wadah.

ps : ini pertama kali moto pake poket kamera. Gimana pendapatnya?

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Being old fashioned : Carrot, Goji Berries, & Fuji Apple

After few days off from baking, Mr. C asked his favourite treasure, the carrot cake. I’m never made such a delicious one. I recalled the best carrot cake we had since living in Silicon Valley was in small café in Woodside. We enjoyed it with a cup of coffee after long walk on top of the hill at Los Trancos.

I flipped many recipes, then down to Nick Malgieri. The recipe was somewhat I called traditional, using real ingredients but keeps serving below 3000 calories. We do concern about bulking our belly. Indeed, I have been baking every week or so.

It turned out that recipe was not so easy. I have been predicted that situation, specially Nick did not mention about how long to whisk and the consistency we’ve need to achieved. Also I am bit playing with raisin. I’ve got two types raisin : golden and dark mixed together with something weird called Goji Berries.

Goji berries or wolfberries grow in Himalayan, which believed to have extraordinary benefit. Well, I am not too convinced but I discovered Goji Berries sold in small package. Yes to feed my curiosity I bought it and pour into this carrot cake.

Applesauce may be the most expensive here. That’s because I mistakenly bought a bag of organic Fuji Apple in Whole Foods. A small whole bag for 16 bucks !

Even though on the recipe said to use McIntosh Apple (indeed it’s not the Apple Computer but yes the name based on real apple), I found Fuji Apple really nice, a truly American’s treat. We did not get these type apples in UK. It’s crunchy when eaten raw, surprisingly sweet and smooth when it sautéed. The result was excellent. My carrot cake has lovely textures, fragrance with spices and slightly appley taste. Grated carrot just added the colour and blend nicely with the golden raisin I put in.


Makes one 10-inch tube or Bundt cake
About 16 servings
Adapted from Perfect Light Desert by Nick Malgieri & David Joachim


Cake Batter:
2 ½ cups all purpose flour (spoon flour into dry-measure cup and level off)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
2 large egg whites
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
1 cup unsweetened applesauce *
1/2 cups vegetable oil, such as corn or canola
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon finally grated orange zest
3 cups peeled and finely grated carrots, (about 4 large carrots)
1 cup raisins + 2 teaspoons Dry Goji Berries (moisted with hot water for 2-3 minutes)

*Applesauce (for making about 2 ½ cup)
1 ½ pounds Fuji apples (about 5 medium size), peeled, halved, cored and sliced
1/3 cup water

Making the applesauce :
Place in medium saucepan with water and cook over medium heat until the mixture comes to a boil. Lower the heat and allow the apples to simmer in their own juice for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally and watching that the apples don’t scorch. If the apple become very dry before they have disintegrated, add 2-3 tablespoon water and continue cooking until the apples turn into a chunky puree. Use a whisk or potato masher to break-up any large chunks.

Making the cake :
1. Set the racks in middle of the oven and preheat to 350F degrees.

2. Stir the flour together with baking powder, baking soda, and spices and salt. Sift once onto a piece of wax paper.

3. In a large mixing bowl whisk the eggs and egg whites to break them-up about 2-3 minutes (or use hand mixer with low speed). Whisk in the granulated sugar and brown sugar (until slightly foamy in hand speed for about 3-4 minutes). Whisk in the applesauce and oil (slowly with folding the batter), then the orange zest and vanilla. You will achieve dark chocolaty batter with runny consistency.

4. Use a large rubber spatula to fold in the carrots and raisins.

5. Fold in the flour mixture, being careful not to over mix. The batter will looked like between stick in the spatula and runny. Test it with drop a little dollop. It should be looked like rich batter.

6. Scrape the batter into the prepared pa and smooth the top.

7. Bake the cake for about an hour (60 minutes), or until it is well risen and firm, and a toothpick inserted halfway between yhe side of the pan and the carrot tube emerges clean.

8. Cool the cake in the pan on a rack for 5 minutes, then un-mold it to a rack to cool completely.

Serving : to add a little richness to this, spread a slice with some reduced fat cream cheese, rather than slathering the entire cake with a very caloric cream cheese icing.
Storage: Keep under a dome at room temperature on the day it’s baked. Wrap leftovers in the plastic. For advance preparation, double wrap the cake in plastic and freeze for up to a month. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Calorie contains per serving :

290 calories
8 gr total fat (25% of calories)
1 gr saturated fat
5 gr protein
50 gr carbohydrate
2 g fiber
40 mg cholesterol
244 mg sodium

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Blueberries : when my heart bit mellow

I tempted to join Tuesday With Dorrie (TWD) – a weekly baking challenge. Then I think again. Those challenge is not difficult but just need dedication. Every week we’ve try one of the recipe at Dorie’s book Baking : From Home to Yours. Although I’ve got the book but to do rigorously and ritually experiment to bake can be quite daunting for me.

As beginner I love to try everything that consider the way of exploring many possibilities. I do adore Dorie but I am willing to try another recipes from different chef as well as part of my learning process. I am bit fickle actually; want to try many things at once. And suddenly ‘wush’, that’s could be gone. Losing interest because mount household to do. I am in middle of writing a book (oh two actually while one is photo book), so time management said I wouldn’t have spacious room to do more.

Also I am thinking to study further, might back to my root into design rather than to motorway. Again I’ve been turned down by the University because the subject I’d like not for international students; although lot more challenges than “normal” design course. Talked about it with Mr. C, we came to decision to hold for another 6 month. Yeah, this week can be so blue for me.

This muffin just to give me remedy after those overlay thought. It’s easy, not related with any gadget at all. I surprised to realise that this can be done in matter less than an hour.

Blueberries always had been work with muffin. It’s traditional in any western baking. The texture of blueberries when it cooked filled the batter into gooey and melt blue juice. Best to keep blueberries is freeze until you’ve need it. I put in cooking sheet about an hour two then transfer into plastic box. It made frozen process more individual fruit than whole batch.

I don’t have buttermilk, so as on the book said that I can replace with plain yougurt (2/3 cup) and whole milk (1/3) in one cup buttermilk. As the recipe less than that I am not bother to put 1 cup portion than ¾ cup. I run out of honey in pantry, then I changed it with organic maple syrup.

I am pleased with the result. It has sourness and light sweet that blend nicely with evening Yorkshire tea. Even though my heart bit blue, but this muffin just made my mind away.

Orange Berry Muffins

Baking: From My Home to Yours (Dorie Greenspan)

Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
About 3/4 cup buttermilk (or plain yogurt and whole milk)
2 large eggs
3 tablespoons honey (or organic maple syrup)
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/3 cup sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup blueberries - fresh, preferably, or frozen (not thawed)

Decorating sugar, for topping (optional) > I am using demerara sugar

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter or spray the 12 molds in a regular-size muffin pan or fit the molds with paper muffin cups. Alternatively, use a silicone muffin pan, which needs neither greasing nor paper cups. Place the muffin pan on a baking sheet.

Pour the orange juice into a large glass measuring cup or a bowl and pour in enough buttermilk to make 1 cup. Whisk in the eggs, honey and melted butter.

In a large bowl, rub the sugar and orange zest together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and the fragrance of orange strong. Whisk in the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and, with the whisk or a rubber spatula, gently but quickly stir to blend. Don’t worry about being thorough - the batter will be lumpy and bubbly, and that’s just the way it should be. Stir in the blueberries. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups.

Bake for 22 to 25 minutes. If you want to top the muffins with decorating sugar, sprinkle on the sugar after the muffins have baked for 10 minutes. When fully baked, the tops of the muffins will be golden and springy to the touch and a thin knife inserted into the center of the muffins will come out clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and cool for 5 minutes before carefully removing each muffin from its mold.

text taken from eatmedelicious

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Just like in the book : A Fig cake for Fall

I made this cake to celebrate abundant fresh figs in this area. I went to local market and spot two different kinds. Mission figs came the name as the Spanish mission settled in San Diego to grow these ficus. Calimyrna figs in Jaoquin Valley California have more nutty taste. I choose the mission figs as it has bloodied purple colour, blend nicely with ruby port.

I did not find any problem since I decided to follow strictly Dorie's recipe. The only difficulty I’ve got that I have to scan isles in Safeway to find ruby port. I couldn't find small bottle though, instead I had to buy Fairbank bottle probably enough for 5 years!

As mention the cake supposed to be on the fall seasion, but hey.. figs already come out in California so what's the problem? Dad Gordon in Weymouth must be envy that we found lots fresh figs in the end of July while his tree probably still on the green stage. Keep it up Dad otherwise the squirrel eat it all!

I agreed with suessschnabel that this cake lacked of spice. But to add positive feedback honey that put in actually quite good to replace sugar. It turned out that the batter looked not nice (Dorie mentioned it), I kept whisking but the batter not even getting smoother. I thought the lacked of sugar could be result bigger flakes of cake.

The sauce I produced slightly thicker than should be. I have to put some more water, heat it in microwave for one minute and served with the cake. Indeed, nice to enjoy the cake when weather little bit cool.

Final result : just like in the book page. WOW!

A Fig Cake for Fall
from "Baking - From my home to yours" by Dorie Greenspan

3/4 cup ruby port
1 cup honey, divided
2 thin slices lemon
16 - 20 fresh figs, stemmed and halved
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup sugar
grated zest of 1/2 lemon
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 large eggs, preferably at room tempereatur
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the figs and sauce:
Stir the port and 1/2 cup of honey together in a small saucepan. Toss in the lemon slices and bring to a boil over medium heat. Lower the heat, add the figs, cover the pan and cook for 4 to 6 minutes, until the figs are soft. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the figs to a bowl. Raise the heat and cook the poaching liquid until thickened. Set the sauce aside.

For the cake:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and dust the insides with flour, tapping out the excess.

Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt. Put the sugar and lemon zest in a bowl and rub them together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and aromatic. Add the butter. Beat butter and sugar together until creamy. Add the eggs one by one ( one minutes difference), beating well after each addition. Pour in the remaining 1/2 cup honey, add the vanilla extract and beat for another 2 minutes. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients, mixing only until they are incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Jiggle the pan from side to side to spread the batter evenly, then scatter the poached figs over the top.

Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean. Transfer the cake to a rack and cool for 10 minutes. Run a blunt knife around the edges and remove the sides of the pan. Cool the cake to slightly warm or to room temperature before serving it with the sauce.