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Entries in recipes (598)

Monday
Feb032014

Sta-Puft in Style: How to Make Funfetti Marshmallows

Marshmallows

Recently, I was making homemade marshmallows for an upcoming Craftsy post, and during the process, I found myself slightly hypnotized by the bubbling of the boiling sugar mixture.

Can't you see why? Just look:

mallowboil

So. It was during this time that I thought these magical words: "I'm going to make these marshmallows funner." How exactly? Well, the typical way one would usually make something funner:  ADD FUNFETTI. 

The process of funfetti-ing something up, I have determined, is pretty simple: all you have to do is stir in rainbow sprinkles. Yup. Science.

Marshmallows

So when I finished the marshmallow batter, I stirred in some rainbow sprinkles into the mix, then let them set. Miraculously, the sprinkles didn't bleed too much--I was a little worried it would look like rainbow soup. But nope. They were pretty as could be.

Marshmallows

So after they set, I further funfetti-ized them by dusting them in a sprinkle and confectioners' sugar mix. I had tried just sprinkles, which was pretty, but the coverage was spotty and they crunched too much in the mouth. 

Marshmallows

Listen, if you decide you'd like to make funfetti marshmallows, here is how I suggest you do it.

Funfetti Marshmallows

Makes about 64 marshmallows

Step 1: Follow the instructions for making homemade marshmallows from this post, for the brilliant marshmallows from  Butter Baked Goods: Nostalgic Recipes From a Little Neighborhood Bakery. I will have a step by step tutorial coming up on Craftsy--I will post a link when it's up, OK?

Step 2: When you've finished mixing the batter but before you pour it into your pan, quickly stir in a hefty handful of rainbow sprinkles. I used the translucent kind--you know, the kind you'd find on a pop-tart. 

Marshmallows

Step 3: Let the marshmallows set as specified in the recipe. When finished, dust them with a mixture of confectioners' sugar and about 1 tablespoon of sprinkles, mixed together to evenly distribute everything.

Marshmallows

And there you go. Fun! Both inside and out. 

 Marshmallows

Look at that! Couldn't be easier, and now you have magical marshmallows. Watch out--you just might make your s'mores and hot chocolate jealous.

Monday
Jan132014

Sweet Tarte: The Story of Tarte Tatin

Image via CraftsyI know, sweet readers, that you probably love a sweet story as much as me, so I thought I would tell you the tale of Tarte Tatin.

To the uninitiated, Tarte Tatin is an upside-down apple tart which is famous in France. It's upside down because it's baked with a slurry of apples, butter, sugar and some spices in a pan, with the pastry bottom on top. After it's baked, you flip the pan, and the yummy gooey stuff drips down on top of the apples to form a caramelly, buttery awesome apple topping on a pastry crust. It's easy and good eating, for sure. 

Among its many fine points, it's also largely viewed as a precursor to America's beloved pineapple upside-down cake. 

So how did the tart get its start? Well, one thing is for certain: the ones who made it famous in the 1880s were the Tatin sisters, Stephanie and Caroline, proprietresses of the Hotel Tatin, located about 100 miles south of Paris. 

How, exactly, the tart was developed depends on who you ask. There are several stories; I'll share a few with you.

Some say that it was a flub where sister Stephanie was cooking some apples on the stovetop and misjudged how quickly they were cooking. To try to chill out the fast-cooking pommes, she tossed a pastry crust on top and tossed the whole thing in the oven to slow the cooking. When she extracted it, the inverted tarte was well-received, and a new classic was born. In another similar variation, she simply forgets to put the crust below the apples so decides to put it on top and bake.

Other versions of the story make out Stephanie as a kitchen novice, accidentally assembling the tart in the wrong order before baking but deciding to go with it. Yet others include an unfortunate incident in which a tart is assembled and soon before baking, is accidentally flipped upside down, but she decides to go with it anyway.

If you've heard another variation of the story, or a slightly different version of any of the above, I'm not surprised. As I found out while writing my second book, The Secret Lives of Baked Goods: Sweet Stories & Recipes for America's Favorite Dessertsmany of the stories behind popular baked goods are like playing a game of telephone: they're slightly different depending on who tells the story. 

It's also probable that it wasn't an accident at all, but a matter of the baker following baking trends, since it's probable that the concept of upside-down desserts actually preceded the sisters Tatin. In his Le Pâtissier royal parisien, published in 1841, the famed pastry chef Marie-Antoine Carême had already referenced "gâteaux renversées" , or "reversed cakes", made with various fruits.

But to me, this is the most interesting part of the story: it wasn't even the sisters Tatin who made the tarte famous. In fact, it was a matter of word of mouth. 

Maurice Curonsky, a French author and gourmand, adorably nicknamed "the Prince of Gastronomy"was the first to famously revere the tart, referring to it in his writing as "tarte des desmoiselles Tatin". To the best of my high school French knowledge, "desmoiselles" is a more kind term than "old maids", but it does refer to their unmarried status. Word of the "tarte Tatin" spread, and this became its nickname--it had not previously been referred to by name like this.

Sealing the tarte's fame was the love of Louis Vaudable, an influential foodie and owner of Parisian restaurant Maxim's. According to the official Tarte Tatin website, Vaudable is said to have written "I used to hunt around Lamotte-Beuvron in my youth, and had discovered in a very small hotel run by elderly ladies a marvelous dessert listed on the menu under tarte solognote. I questioned the kitchen staff about its recipe, but was sternly rebuffed. Undaunted, I got myself hired as a gardener. Three days later, I was fired when it became clear that I could hardly plant a cabbage. But this was long enough to pierce the secrets of the kitchen. I brought the recipe back, and put it on my own menu under "Tarte des Demoiselles Tatin".

As the website continues, however, "Unfortunately, Mr. Vaudable was born in 1902, and the sisters retired in 1906. They died in 1911 and 1917, while Maxim's was purchased by the Vaudable family in 1932." So while it's a cute story, it doesn't quite line up. 

Nonetheless, the tarte did appear on the Maxim's menu, and became a popular favorite.

Today, you might not see tarte tatin on restaurant menus with great regularity, but it's a delicious and worthwhile experience to make your own. It's fairly simple--if you've ever made an apple pie, and if you've ever flipped a Pineapple upside-down cake, you're well equipped with all the skills you need. 

Happy Apples

Regarding apples: The French Calville apple is the specimen of choice for this recipe; however, if you can't find those, try Pippin, Cortland, or Gala apples. Interestingly, some older recipes call for unpeeled apples, though the recipe I suggest calls for Granny smith apples, cored and peeled. I have used Gala when I have made this recipe, but you choose your own bliss. You're not going to be wrong if you use Granny smith.

Regarding pans: You know, there actually exists a tarte tatin pan. But if you don't want to make the investment...go ahead and use an oven-safe skillet.

Regarding serving: Although old versions call for serving the tarte warm, by itself, go ahead and serve it with ice cream if you wanna (you probably do, right?). You won't regret it. 

Want a recipe? I will tell you, I have used the New York Times recipe pretty exactly, so I won't even try to adapt it here--rather, I will give you a link.

Find a recipe for Tarte Tatin here.

Have you ever tried Tarte tatin?

Thursday
Jan092014

It's Not My Birthday: Marvelous Marble Swirl Cake Recipe

Taste of home cake

I understand that sometimes you want a pinkies-out, delicate and beautiful dessert.

And other times...you just wanna stuff your face with cake.

A week or so ago, I was having one of those days. And almost as if it was a sign from the heavens, I opened up Taste of Home Magazine--you know, to gaze at the feature which included my mini pies. Here I am with the spread:

Listen. The cake in the magazine looked like this.

I am not a photographer...but here is mine.

Taste of home cake

The photos in this post prove that. But I hope that my words can convince you that in spite of the "not ultra pinnable" images, this cake is worth giving a try. Because gosh-darn was it good. It is such a rich cake that I am honest, a slice will do it for you. It's almost like the cake part of a crumb cake, swirled with chocolate. So buttery, so creamy.

And then, the frosting. I sort of improvised with it, and decided to try a sort of sour cream frosting. It was a good decision--the slight tang of the frosting worked so beautifully with the rich cake. The overall result was richer than a king's ransom, and far tastier. 

The decorating was fun, too. Swirling chocolate in the frosting was surprisingly easy, and looked pretty. It also gave a wonderful flavor contrast, adding a solid, dark undertone to go with the sweet and buttery stuff.

Please, please tell me you'll try this cake. It's like having your birthday again, no matter what day of the year. 

Taste of home cake

Marvelous Marble Swirl Cake

Adapted from Taste of Home

For the cake

  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 tablespoons, plus 1 1/4 cups butter, softened, divided
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Frosting

  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 6 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • some milk on hand, to thin if needed
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate chips

Procedure

  1. In a metal bowl over barely simmering water, melt the chocolate and 3 tablespoons of butter; stir until smooth. Cool to room temperature.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 F. Line the bottoms of two 8-inch round baking pans with parchment paper; grease the paper, too.
  3. In a bowl, cream the remaining butter with the sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla. In another bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with the sour cream, beating well after each addition.
  4. Remove 2 cups batter to a small bowl; stir in cooled chocolate mixture. Drop plain and chocolate batters by tablespoonfuls into the prepared pans, dividing the batter between the pans. 
  5. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pans 10 minutes before removing to wire racks. Peel off the parchment, and let cool completely.
  6. When you have a feeling the the cake will be cool soon, begin on the frosting. In a large bowl, cream the sour cream with the confectioners' sugar until nice and smooth but thick. If it gets too thick and stiff, add the milk as needed to thin. 
  7. If the cakes have rounded tops, level them with a serrated knife. 
  8. Place one cake layer on a serving plate; spread with 3/4 cup frosting.
  9. Top with remaining cake layer. Apply a thin crumb coat and let chill for 20 minutes to lightly set. 
  10. Now, put a nice dollop on the top of the cake. Drop the remaining chocolate on top, and spread the frosting in a circle so that it is woven with chocolate, too. Yum.
  11. Ice the sides with the remaining (plain) frosting. 

Enjoy.

Thursday
Jan022014

Simple and Sweet: Homemade Vanilla Pudding

Pudding

What in the world do you do after you've just made Pavlova and find yourself with four unused egg yolks?

Here's an idea: you make pudding. Delicious, rich, not low-fat pudding. And you top it with sprinkles, as above. And you think to yourself, "why isn't topping pudding with sprinkles a thing?". Seriously, why not?

Why don't people put sprinkles on pudding?

Pudding

But anyway, back to the pudding. I did find myself with a few extra yolks, so I decided to pudding it up. I adapted a recipe by Baking Bites, but made it eggier with one extra yolk and didn't fuss with a vanilla bean this time (I wanted this to be quick, after all). 

The pudding came out unbelievably rich, and was especially pleasant served warm. Custardy and comforting and cozy. 

About pudding...

It makes me wonder: what are your thoughts on pudding? I used to be bored by it, but I guess you could say I have a somewhat newfound appreciation. It's so simple, but is capable of being so comforting, hitting the spot in a way that isn't as assertively sweet and cold and creamy as ice cream, but is more satisfying, sweet-wise, than yogurt.

As I made the pudding, there were little flecks that remained when I tempered the eggs. I had a few spoonfuls and thought "meh, it tastes fine".

But then, just as I am thinking, these little bumps are not a big deal, a thought crystallizes in my mind about what they actually are: eggy bits. Instantly, I can't get past it. Eggy bits, outta my pudding!  Luckily, there is a solution. Press the pudding through a mesh strainer. Push with the back of a spoon or a spatula. Strainer

The pudding will strain through with minimal eggy bits, which will all form a deposit on the inside of the strainer. That's right: stay outta my pudding! Down the disposal with you lumps.

Vanilla Pudding

Makes 2 or 3 servings

  • 2 teaspoons good quality vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Ingredients

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the vanilla, milk, and sugar. Bring to a low boil. Remove from heat.
  2. Boil
  3. Now, whisk together the yolks, cornstarch, and salt in a medium bowl.
  4. Whisking constantly, pour this into the hot milk mixture in the saucepan.
  5. Incorporate
  6. Put the saucepan back on heat, and cook on medium heat until it comes to a simmer, stirring frequently with a rubber spatula. Cook for 2-3 minutes at a simmer, or until the pudding thickens. Remove from heat. Pudding 
  7. If there are eggy bits, strain the mixture through a mesh strainer to remove them. Eggy bits
  8. Place in serving dishes. It tastes best served warm, in my opinion. 

 

Have you ever made pudding at home?

Sunday
Dec152013

Tubular: Easy Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies Using Refrigerated Sugar Cookie Dough

Cookie tree

Somehow, it's happened: you find yourself in need of a batch of homemade cookies, STAT. It might be for the cookie swap you thought was tomorrow, not today, or the school party you totally forgot, or maybe you just want to whip up something sweet in record time.

Green cookies

As these cookies prove, a time crunch need not mean that you sacrifice all the fun of baking--they are actually made from "doctored" refrigerated sugar cookie dough. They're assembled in less than five minutes and baked in about 10 minutes--even with cooling time, the process of going from mere ingredients to "let's party" all happens in about 30 minutes. 

ALL YOU NEED:

Green cookies

All you have to do? Mix that dough with mint and chocolate chips (they're easily found in the baking aisle this time of year), a teaspoon of peppermint extract and maybe a few drops of green food coloring. Roll into balls and bake as specified on the package. They bake up like a minty, buttery, sweet Christmas miracle!

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies Using Refrigerated Sugar Cookie Dough

Makes about 24

  • 1 tube refrigerated sugar cookie dough
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 cup mint and chocolate chips, mixed together
  • 4-5 drops green food coloring

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, break up the refrigerated cookie dough by hand. Add the food coloring and peppermint extract. Combine well.

Make them green

Add the morsels, mixing by hand to knead them evenly but gently throughout the dough.

Green cookies

Divide the dough into 24 equal parts. (First divide in two, then those two pieces into two to make four, then break each of those parts into three pieces, then divide those in two. You'll have 24. Don't get confused.)

Roll each piece into a ball and place on the baking sheet, well spaced. Green cookies

Bake for 8-11 minutes, or until soft in the center but lightly browned on the edges. I don't know how to say it other than this, but the middles might not look 100 percent set. They will bake a touch more when you remove the cookies, though, so it's ok.

Green cookies

Note: At this point, instead of baking, you can freeze the dough balls on the sheets if you prefer not to bake right now (if you want to do it in the morning, say). Just don't forget to turn off the oven and remember to preheat it again before you bake. 

Let the cookies cool on the sheets for 6 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Use a spatula for the transfer; if the cookies seem too soft, wait another minute or two before transferring.

Tuesday
Dec102013

Mon petit Cherry: The Most Amazingly Delicious Cherry Buttercream

Cherry buttercream

I have a deep-seeded belief that among cake lovers, there are two types.

There's the type of cake lover who deeply loves and appreciates the cake. These people have a high appreciation for a tender crumb, and know that a fine cake doesn't need frosting.

Personally, I have no idea what is wrong with that sort of cake lover. I'm part of the other type: Team Frosting! Members of team frosting think that cake is great, but its primary function is delivery vehicle for all that delicious, creamy frosting. 

That having been said, I would like to introduce you to the new buttercream that has me wondering if I can invent a sort of IV drip so as to just keep a constant stream of this coming into my body.

It's cherry buttercream, but don't worry, it's not made with health food. It's made with cherry morsels. 

 

Chocolate covered cherry stuffed cupcakes

I know! Cherry morsels! They carry them at the Albertson's near where I'm living right now. I think they're the bee's knees. And they tint the buttercream pink with no additional food coloring needed!

I got a bee in my bonnet to create a cherry buttercream for a very exciting recipe I'll be sharing soon on Craftsy, and I'm proud to give you a sneak peek (just the buttercream, you'll have to wait for the entire package!). It's a good piping buttercream, too.

Cherry buttercream

 

Here is my recipe for cherry buttercream. I could eat it by the spoonful, and think that if you don't happen to have a fine cake on hand, you might find that you can do the same.

Cherry Buttercream

Makes a big bowl (enough for a batch of cupcakes or to frost a two layer cake)

  • 12 ounces (1 bag) cherry morsels
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 brick (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened to cool room temperature- not low fat
  • pinch of salt (optional)
  • 4 cups (give or take) confectioners' sugar, sifted

Procedure

 

  1. In a double boiler (or carefully over low heat) melt the morsels with the stick of butter. It goes quicker if you cut the butter in pieces, FYI. This mixture will look ugly and weird, but it will all come together in the next step.
  2. Remove from heat once melted, and let it mellow out on a cool surface while you cream the heck out of your cream cheese in a stand mixer, beating until nice and fluffy and smooth--5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Add the morsel and butter mixture. Heck, add a pinch of salt if you want. Stir until combined.
  4. Now, with the mixer on low, add in the confectioners' sugar, one cup at a time, until your desired spreading or piping consistency has been achieved.

 

 

Are you team cake or team frosting?

Monday
Dec092013

Best Gift Ever: Chocolate Spoons With a Dollop of Cookie Dough

Happy Holidaze, sweeties! Here's a wonderful guest post from Heather Saffer, also known as the author of The Dollop Book of Frosting: Sweet and Savory Icings, Spreads, Meringues, and Ganaches for Dessert and Beyond.

Cookie dough on choco spoons

Hello CakeSpies! Can I call you that? I hope so because it sounds really super cool! I’m Heather, author of the newly released cookbook, The Dollop Book of Frosting, and winner of Food Network’s Cupcake Wars! And I’mhonored to be guesting on CakeSpy today!

I’ve been following Jessie for quite some time now and I’m honestly enamored with her creative genius. Add the fact that she’s a fellow published author with a newly released gorgeous dessert book? Well, I literally danced a (very poor) samba when she agreed to participate in my 2013 Holiday Blog Tour!

The theme of this blog tour is “Frosting Gift Guide” so all month long up until Christmas I’m showing you entertaining ways to gift the creamiest, most delightful frostings for that frosting lover in your life.

From frosting filled candies, to frosting covered popcorn, my goal is to help you break away from the grocery store frosting jar you once relied so heavily upon!

With that said, today I’m sharing with you one of my all-time favorite frosting recipes from The Dollop Book of Frosting: Cookie Dough Frosting.

Not just a frosting, this recipe is spreadable and bakeable! Whip it, pipe it, scoop it, roll it, bake it—there are SO many things you can do with this Cookie Dough Frosting.

For this holiday gift I’m showing you today how to make chocolate spoons as the FDV’s (Frosting Delivery Vehicles) for your Cookie Dough Frosting. Packaged in pretty tins and paired with a jar of your favorite hot cocoa mix, I guarantee your friends will squeal with sweet delight at this perfect present!

Hey Jessie—I’m curious, what’s the history of Cookie Dough Frosting??!

Cookie dough on choco spoons

Cookie Dough Frosting Served on Chocolate Spoons 

Yield: 24 Cookie Dough Frosting dolloped spoons

For the frosting:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (I get the best result from J.R. Watkins’ pure vanilla extract)
  • 1 1/8 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup semisweet chocolate chips 

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter until soft by mixing on low speed, about 2 minutes until smooth. Add both sugars, salt, vanilla, flour, baking soda, and chocolate chips and mix until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.

To make the Chocolate Spoons:

  • 2 bags of chocolate candy melts
  • Chocolate spoon silicone mold

In a microwave safe bowl melt the chocolate at 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until smooth. Scoop chocolate to fill spoon molds. Place in freezer for 5-10 minutes to set. Dollop a teaspoon of Cookie Dough Frosting on each spoon and place in festive tins.

Recipe adapted from The Dollop Book of Frosting by Heather “Cupcakes” Saffer.

To follow along on the remainder of the Holiday Blog Tour, head over here! And for more ideas check out my Gift Guide for Frosting Lovers!

Happy Frosting, everyone!

Saturday
Nov302013

Pucker Up: Lemon Walnut Bars Recipe

Lemon walnut bar

After Thanksgiving, people crave light treats that will make them feel refreshed, in contrast to the fullness they may have felt over the holiday.

These Lemon Walnut Bars are perfect, because owing to the lemon they taste refreshing, and the addition of oats gives them the slightest tone of healthfulness.

But don't worry--they're not actually healthy. With creamy sweetened condensed milk and plenty of butter, rest assured, these are definitely dessert.

Lemon walnut bar

I had a brief love affair with the lemon crumb bars sold at Tully's Coffee Shops in Seattle a few years ago--they certainly weren't fancy, they were made by a commercial bakery in the area and wouldn't be what I would consider "artisan". But there was something about the tart-sweet lemon filling paired with a streusel-like topping that had me hooked.

So when I saw a recipe for Lemon Walnut Bars in the new cookbook Butter Baked Goods: Nostalgic Recipes From a Little Neighborhood Bakery (also the source of this fab marshmallow recipe), I knew I had to try it.

Lemon walnut bar

Seriously, this recipe is a classic. It's like the bars I so loved at Tully's, but tastier since they were baked fresh. The filling is tart with lemon but so smooth and creamy with the sweetened condensed milk, which makes it almost like a key lime pie filling, but with lemon. The sweet-salty streusel has all of these notest that work well with the lemon: brown sugar, coconut, walnuts, and oats--which make it also slightly crunchy, and a perfect texture complement to the creaminess. I promise, if you love lemon bars and you love crumb cake, you will adore these squares. You won't be able to stop eating them. 

Lemon walnut bar

Lemon Walnut Bars

adapted from Butter Baked Goods: Nostalgic Recipes From a Little Neighborhood Bakery

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup large flake rolled oats
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar (dark)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup ground walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice (2 lemons)

Procedure

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter.
  3. In a large bowl, combine oats, flour, sugar, coconut, walnuts, and baking powder. Pour in the melted butter and mix until the butter is evenly distributed. Press half of the oat mixture into the prepared pan, and press it in firmly. If you wanna, line the bottom with a strip of parchment to make for easy removal later.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the consensed milk and lemon uice until thick and combined. Pour the mixture over the base. Use the back of a spoon or spatula to make sure it's an even layer. Sprinkle the remaining crumb mixture over the filling.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 22 to 25 minutes or until golden on top.
  6. Remove from oven and cool completely into the pan. Run a knife along the edges of the pan. Cut into bars.

 

Sunday
Nov242013

DIY Croissant Doughnuts Made from Crescent Rolls

Listen, once I heard that you could make DIY croissant doughnuts (I'm not mentioning them by name, but we all know what I'm talking about here), I simply had to try it at home. 

And I am beyond delighted to report that it is easy, and the results are so highly delicious that you just might gain a hundred pounds before Christmas if you make them as frequently as you'll want to after giving it a try.

The only tough part is monitoring the temperature of the oil for frying. I am lucky because in a stroke of fate, a company that makes something called Chef Alarm had contacted me just a week before I decided to get frying at home and asked if I wanted to try out their product. Um, yes. So while they sent me the device for free, they didn't pay me to say good stuff about it. But happily, I liked it. This helpful gadget includes timers, a temperature probe, and temperature monitoring so it will notify you if things are going outside of the comfort zone. But the absolute best part is that it comes in pink. YES! I think it's a nifty tool and would probs make a good present for the baker in your life this holiday season. 

The reason why you have to monitor the temperature for frying? A few reasons, but from my point of view, a huge reason is that you can't tell how hot the oil is at any given time. It looks the same whether it's 280 or 390 degrees. If it's too hot, your doughnuts can fry too fast on the outside and be doughy on the inside. If the oil is too cool, it will take too long to fry them and they'll be leaden. Nobody wants either!

But anyways, I know you're frying--er, dying--to read more about the doughnuts, so let's get down to business. 

How to make Croissant Doughnuts using Crescent Rolls

You need: 

  • One roll of crescent rolls
  • oil, for frying
  • about a cup and a half of buttercream, pudding, ice cream, custard, or whatever filling you want.
  • confectioners' sugar glaze (1 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar mixed with 2 tablespoons or so of cream) if desired 

Step 1: The first thing you do is open up the can of crescent rolls. Enjoy that "pop" as they release themselves in their carbohydratey glory into the world. 

Step 2: Now, roll them into one big rectangle. Then, fold it on top of itself so you have a big square. Press gently to remove the "seams". The better you work the seams, the prettier your doughnuts will look later.

Step 3: Now, grab a doughnut cutter (just go buy one if you don't have them - they're like $2!). Cut out as many doughnut shapes as you can. Re-roll the scraps and cut more, but be aware that the re-rolled ones, to be frank, will be the ugly ones. 

Step 4: Fill a frying pan with some vegetable oil. You want at least a few inches of oil in the pan. Heat it until it reaches about 350 degrees. You will want a thermometer of some sort for this, trust me. 

Step 5: Place the doughnut cutouts a few at a time into the hot oil. Fry on each side until golden and puffy. It won't take long. Remove gently, using a slotted spoon, and transfer to paper towels to blot excess oil. 

Step 6: Cut the doughnuts in half like you would a bagel, and fill with buttercream, pudding, custard, or whatever your heart desires. Glaze if you wanna, or just stuff your face immediately. 

Do you enjoy frying at home?

Monday
Nov182013

Cranberry Sauce Jelly Doughnuts For Serious Eats

It's Thanksgiving! It's Hanukkah! All at once! With this momentous overlap of food holidays, why decide on one type of cuisine? These jelly doughnuts, inspired by the Hanukkah specialty sufganiyot, have a Thanksgiving flair thanks to a cranberry sauce "jelly" inside.

Are you sad that they don't include turkey, like some infamous versions in bakeries and around the internet? Don't be. These doughnuts might not have the shock value, but they taste good enough that you'll actually enjoy every bite, with a sweet-tart cranberry filling which is perfectly complemented by a snowy dusting of confectioners' sugar on top.

For the recipe, visit Serious Eats!

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