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Entries in recipes (629)

Wednesday
Mar232011

Pie Slam Profiles: Fig, Apple, and Walnut Pie by Aharona Ament

CakeSpy Note: This is part of a series of Pie Slam Profiles, featuring the recipes and stories of each of the 9 entrants in last week's Pi(e) Day Pie Slam! This entry came from Aharona Ament, a recent Chicago transplant to Seattle, who has the sweetest smile in the world, is a very good story-teller, and makes a mean pie (making her a big winner, in this spy's book).

Here's her story:

Fig by Aharona Ament

Arthur Wendell “Fig” Newton,was born on March 14th at almost two in the morning, 1:59 to be percise.  His parents, both math teachers, were very happy to have thier son born on such a special day, Pi day! They dreamed that their son would grow up in their footsteps to torment confused adolecents with numonics about dear Aunt Sally and cosines laws that could get you arrested in some states. 

No one in Fig’s class knew that he was a desendent of Issac Newton and that an apple falling on top of a math equastion was part of his family’s coat of arms. Maybe if they knew that, they wouldn’t have given him the nickname of “Fig”, mocking both his heritage, and the fruit and cake concoction.

Fig, liked that he was born on Pi day, but favored the word of a different varerity. P-I-E! Fig spent most of his time in the kitchen. While his parents toiled away at number sequenices imported all the way from Italy, Fig was working at making the perfect pastry crusts with imported Danish butter.

Fig’s baking talents grew and grew. His ability to figure out fractions improved one whole half because of his love for making treats. He could double, triple and even quadruple recipes without the aid of a calulator or counting on his fingers. He knew that 2/3 cup = 1/2 cup plus 2-2/3 tablespoons and that 5/8 cup = 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons and he even knew that 7/8 cup=3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons. There wasn’t a numurator or demoninator that Fig couldn’t place perfectly in line and all of his cakes, pies, lemon bars, quiches, cupcakes, brownies, breads, muffins, croissants, tarts, paczkis and danishes came perfectly out of the oven, tasty, sweet and bursting with symmetrical sweetness.

When Fig decided that he wanted to be a famous pastry chef instead of a famous mathamatician, his parents, fat from miscalculations over caloric intake were upset. (yes, that extra piece of triple chocolate fudge goo cake cut in a perfect 45 degree angle of 250 calories will result in one pound or 3, 500 calories gained per week. Especially if it was so good that you ate two.)

“How can you not do real math problems all day?” his mother asked him? “You know, with a pencil and piece of paper and lots of head scratching”?  Fig’s father was a bit more upset. “ Baking pies for a living is as irrational as pi itself, because its value cannot be expressed exactly as a fraction! Fig’s father growled confusing pastry with the mathematical constant and making no logical sense whatsoever.

No, said Fig. I like to bake pies and treats, you like to do math. There is nothing wrong with either.

But they suddenly realized that Fig’s baking talents were also his gift with numbers. How else could they explain the ongoing assembly line of mathmatically perfect confections coming out of the kitchen and in to their mouths? They were so excited that they joined him in the kitchen to learn math problems with flour, sugar and butter, but couldn’t figure out how to work the flour sifter.  Fig sent them off to see if they could figure out the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter with a whole number. He knew that that would make them hungry, so he started to prepare a perfect treat.

Here's the recipe:

 For the Crust

  • 12 tablespoons cold salted butter
  • 1 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable shortening
  • a few tablespoons ice water (about 1/2 cup)
  • Egg (for brushing) 

For the filling

  • 3-4 apples
  • 1 cup of walnuts
  • 2 cups figs
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

Procedure 

  1. Make the crust: Mix dry ingredients together. Cut up butter into cubes and add along with vegetable shortening and mix in mixer.
  2. Add water slowly and pulse mixer until dough forms a ball. Wrap in wax paper and chill.  
  3. Meanwhile, prepare filling. Cup up apples and mix in walnuts, figs and sugar in a bowl.
  4. Roll out dough and fill pie pan. There will be enough to make a top layer Add mixture. Brush pastry with beaten egg.
  5. Bake for 40 minutes at 350 degrees F. Yay!
Monday
Mar212011

Devilishly Delicious: Deviled Cadbury Creme Eggs Recipe for Serious Eats

It's the most wonderful time of year, when Cadbury Creme Eggs proliferate in food and drug stores, like sweet little sugarbombs just waiting to be hatched in your mouth.

Last year, I employed these sweet treats to create a masterpiece called Cadbury Creme Eggs Benedict.This year, here's another classic (savory) egg dish reinterpreted in sweet form using these fondant-filled nuggets of joy: Cadbury Creme Deviled Eggs. Extremely easy to make and very sweet to eat, these are a sure-fire way to kick off Easter Candy season in style.

Note: To ensure that your "yolks" aren't runny, chill your Creme Eggs for about an hour before slicing them in half. This will ensure that the filling doesn't run all over.

Friday
Mar182011

Pie Slam Profiles: Apple Pie Recipe and Story by Max Snyder

CakeSpy Note: This is part of a series of Pie Slam Profiles, featuring the recipes and stories of each of the 9 entrants in last week's Pi(e) Day Pie Slam! This entry, for an extremely tasty apple pie (which was helpfully labeled "PIE" in case you were in doubt as to what it was) was submitted by cute-as-can-be Seattle University student Max Snyder. Here's his story, followed by his recipe:

 "When Baking In A College Dorm" - A parable by Max Snyder


I hear you like pie, and that's why you came;
It is quite understandable; there isn't any shame.
But before you take a slice, a morsel, a bite;
I'll tell you this pie's story of what occurred on that fateful night.

Dark, cold, and pouring down rain;
The Seattle skies threw a downpour upon the window pane.
Thunder cracked and raindrops fell;
The puddles and ponds began to swell.

Whilst inside, bustling like bank clerk;
The baker was busy at his work.
With the heat of the oven to fend off the frigid cold,
A pie dough was slowly being rolled.

Apples, cinnamon, and a pinch of the secret spice;
Only the best ingredients would suffice.
All chopped up and ready to go,
Dough and filling created an ideal tableaux.

With this pie he would enter the pastry contest;
Just to see how his apple confection compared to all the rest.

Pie into the oven - preheated just right,
Little did the baker know what would happen that night.
For the baker’s kitchen was very different from the norm;
He was baking in a college dorm.

“What’s all this mess,” his RA inquires;
When really, its his pie that his RA desires.
Next comes the weird guy from a couple of doors down;
Who hangs out on the couch in just his night gown.

A few jocks and bros soon arrive;
Throwing out “yo’s!” and lots of high fives.
And then, despite their mutual dislike;
The art kids arrive like they just finished a hunger strike.

The small college kitchen fills more and more;
When the baker has to tell them to all go to the door.
“This pie’s not for you!” he yelled over the grumbles and protests;
“But where will we get our pie?” ask the quite girl in the polka-dot dress.

At this moment the baker had a change of heart;
He was baking a pie, he didn’t want to be a tart.
“You’re right!” he exclaimed;
“Pies are meant to be shared, not to be framed”

Thus everyone had a slice because it was terribly good;
And the baker made another pie just because he could.

Max's Apple Pie

Crust

  • 2 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • a wee bit of salt
  • 1 cup of shortening
  • some butter (depending on your mood)
  • 3 tablespoons of water
  • 3 tablespoons of vodka

Filling

  • 3/4 cup sugar; brown is usually better
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 6 cups thinly sliced apples (thinner and smaller apple pieces are better)
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Procedure

  1. Cut in all of the crust ingredients into the flour except the water and vodka. Alternate adding tablespoons of vodka and water and mixing between each. Stop adding liquid when it becomes moist. Split into two balls, one slightly larger and one smaller. Try and fit it into your tiny college fridge for about 20 minutes.
  2. Mix filling together. Well that was simple.
  3. Roll out crust. Don't fear, just take is slowly.
  4. Put the bottom crust in the pie dish and fill with the filling. Cover with the upper crust. Fork the edges and cut vents in the top. Remove excess crust. Maybe put a visual pun on top.
  5. Put in oven preheated to 425°F. Surround with a ring of foil to prevent the crust from browning to quickly. Remove the foil for the last 15 minutes. Bake for 40-50 minutes.
  6. Most important step: Allow to cool by an open window. By subjecting your pie to this treatment, it gains local flavor from the outside air.

 

Wednesday
Mar162011

Green and Sweet: St. Patrick's Day Peanut Butter Truffles Recipe for Peanut Butter and Co.

As any leprechaun knows, the journey to the end of the rainbow can be pretty long and arduous. And while the treasure at the end of the line is totally sweet in the figurative sense, the fact is, gold does little to satisfy the physical appetite.

These truffles, however, comprised of a sweet filling with crispy cereal and creamy, rich peanut butter and generously coated with festive green candy coating, are worth their weight in gold when it comes to a satisfying St. Patrick’s Day snack–delicious for humans and leprechauns alike.

For the full entry, more photos and the recipe, visit Peanut Butter & Co.!

Tuesday
Mar152011

Scouting Sweetness: Girl Scout Cookie Sandwiches

It's true: more often than not, no matter what you're talking about, frosting will make it better.

But cookies in particular benefit highly from adding frosting--because then they become a cookie sandwich, which as we all know is basically society's way of granting us permission to eat two cookies, at once, with frosting, and not be judged.

And as cookies go, it is my learned and esteemed opinion that every type of Girl Scout Cookie is improved by being served in sandwich form--even the Lemon Chalet Creme cookies, which, if you want to get technical about it, are kind of already sandwich cookies.

Here's a simple recipe for Girl Scout Cookie Sandwiches--you can use whatever type of Girl Scout Cookies, and whatever type of frosting you'd like, with a pretty certain guarantee of sweet success.

Girl Scout Cookie Sandwiches

Makes 1 sandwich (easily duplicated)

  • 2 Girl Scout Cookies
  • 2 teaspoons (or more, or less, to taste) frosting

Suggested pairings: Peppermint frosting with Thin Mints; Vanilla buttercream with just about any variety; cream cheese frosting with Lemon Chalet Cremes or Samoas; Peanut butter frosting with Tagalongs or Do-Si-Dos; caramel or chocolate frosting with the classic shortbread cookies.

  1. Place a dollop of frosting on top of one cookie (if it's a type that has a defined top and bottom side, such as Thin Mints, apply to the overturned bottom side).
  2. Place the other cookie, bottom-side down, on top of the frosted half to form a sandwich.
  3. Repeat with as many cookies as you'd like to make into sandwiches. Enjoy.
Monday
Mar142011

Pi Oh My: Make a Pi-Shaped Pie, for Pi Day

There is some disagreement over when to celebrate Pie Day. Some (including the American Pie Council) cite January 23 as the day, the reason allegedly being that the digits of 1/23 are "easy as pie." Others (generally math nerds) say it must be March 14, or "Pi" Day.

Of course, this is a very silly argument, because really, it's an opportunity to enjoy pie on two separate occasions, whether baked at home or at a roadside stand, cafe, or bakery. But as a shout-out to the math nerds, here's a Pi-shaped Pie for March 14.

Use the template with your favorite pie crust and use whatever filling you'd like (I used peanut butter and chocolate chips), but know that it's best enjoyed at 1:59 PM...and 26 seconds.

For the full entry and recipe, visit Serious Eats! For more fun pie times, come to CakeSpy Shop tonight for Seattle's first PIE SLAM!

Saturday
Mar122011

Well Bread: Strawberry and Cinnamon Bread Using A Breadmaker from Ben of Breadmaker Reviews

Are you still using your breadmaker to make regular old bread, like a jerk?

Well quit it, and use your breadmaker to bake up something sweet, starting with this Strawberry and Cinnamon Bread.

This is a guest post and recipe from Cake Gumshoe Ben, a passionate foodie with a penchant for cooking outdoors (especially in the Australian summertime) who has a unique day job: he reviews and puts together buying guides for kitchen appliances. Here's what is known in the biz as a "plug" for his website: 

At Breadmaker Reviews we aim to provide you with not only great, in-depth reviews on breadmakers, but valuable information that will help you know exactly what to look for and where to get it.

but most importantly, here's the recipe. You're welcome.

Strawberry & Cinnamon Bread using a Breadmaker

  • 1 packet frozen, sweetened strawberries (About 300g), thawed
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Procedure
  1. Drain the juice from the strawberries, setting aside about 1/2 of it.
  2. In a large mixing bowl mix together the flour, sugar, eggs, oil, baking soda, baking powder and cinnamon. (You can use the kneading function on your breadmaker to do this part but ensure you do the next step by hand.)
  3. Very lightly fold in the strawberries and the juice set aside earlier. Don't overdo this part as you want the strawberry flavour to streak through, rather than be dissolved in the bread.
  4. Add the ingredients into your bread pan, place it into the breadmaker and select the quick bake cycle (medium crust texture if available).
  5. Remove pan from breadmaker immediately after baking and allow to cool before removing bread.

Wednesday
Mar092011

Berry Delicious: Cranzac Cookies Recipe a la David Lebovitz

Cookies are just so cute when they pretend to be health food. Case in point: the ANZAC biscuit (ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, and both places share ownership of the cookie). On the surface, its oaty, nubbly appearance looks rather virtuous--but one bite will tell you the butter, sugar, and golden syrup-filled truth.

David Lebovitz makes them even better in his brilliant (and beautiful) book Ready for Dessert: My Best Recipes by adding cranberries to the mix, which add a pleasing little zing of flavor; I made them better still with the addition of a dollop of buttercream on top. Don't worry, they still have oats, so they're still totally healthy. You're welcome.

CakeSpy Note: I made these for a David Lebovitz-themed meeting of my cookbook club--to check out what other people made, check out Kairu's flickr stream!

Cranzac Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup golden syrup (or honey)

To top: About 1 cup vanilla buttercream frosting or cream cheese frosting of your choosing

Procedure 

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, toss together oats, brown sugar, flour, coconut, cranberries, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the water, melted butter, and syrup or honey until the dough is cohesive and moist.
  3. Using your hands, shape the dough into 1 1/4 inch balls. Place the balls on the prepared baking sheets and lightly flatten them with your hand. They should have about 1 inch of space on all sides to allow for light spreading.
  4. Bake, rotating the tray halfway through baking, until the cookies are golden brown, about 12 minutes.
  5. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets til firm, then use a spatula to transfer them to a wire rack.
  6. Once cool, top each with a dollop of frosting, and if you'd like, a cranberry piece on top for added cuteness.
Monday
Mar072011

Just Dough It: Homemade Do-Si-Do Girl Scout Cookies for Serious Eats

Girl Scouts can teach you everything you will ever need to know about teamwork. How, exactly? Just look to the cookie. I'm talking, of course, about Do-Si-Dos (sometimes called Peanut Butter Sandwiches), where peanut butter and oatmeal cookie work together to make one beautiful baked good. And—even better—they're served in sandwich form, which means that you get to eat two at once, with frosting. Could there possibly be a more warm and fuzzy hand-holding experience of a cookie?

This homemade version, adapted from Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker, comes out a bit fatter and more moist than the original (not such a bad thing, right?), but the flavor is fairly spot-on: sweet, nutty, lightly salty, and very buttery. That is to say, dangerously addictive.

Not keen on the peanut butter and oatmeal pairing? Try your hand at homemade Thin Mints, Tagalongs, or Samoas instead!

For the full entry and recipe, visit Serious Eats!

Tuesday
Mar012011

Awesome Overload: Homemade Samoas With Peanut Butter

I know, I know. You probably went into the sweetest sort of sugar shock when I posted those Homemade Samoas Girl Scout Cookies.

But I want to know that there's a way to make them even awesomer.

It's true. And it involves peanut butter.

While appointing my Samoas with chocolate on top, out of the corner of my eye a jar of peanut butter caught my eye, and a little lightbulb went off in my head.

And I'm happy to report that yes, adding a dollop of peanut butter to the coconut-topped Samoas, and then finishing it off with a Hershey's kiss or big dollop of chocolate topping is extremely delicious.

Want to try it yourself? Simply follow the recipe I posted on Serious Eats, but after topping the cookies with your coconut mixture, add a teaspoon of peanut butter and then top with either hershey's kisses or a dollop of the chocolate topping called for in the recipe. Easy as pie! I mean, cookie?

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