Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Macarons

Today I received a package from my Mom. Guess what I found in envelope? 
Please, take a look...


Translation: Bon Appetit. Mom
Don't you like these books? I LOVE it!

Lemon Curd

Lemon curd – I could eat it by the spoonful. This lemon curd is thick as soft butter and has a, tangy lemon taste.
Making curd is not too difficult, but you have to watch it closely.  Heat the eggs too much or too quickly and you will have lemony scrambled eggs. So, don't rush and take your time. Recipe adapted from:  sugary & buttery.

1/2 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon of lemon zest
1 cup powdered sugar
8 egg yolks
8 tablespoons of butter 

Add 2 inches of water to the bottom of a double broiler. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium.
In the top pot of the double broiler add egg yolks and sugar and whisk for 1 minute. Combine 1/3 cup of lemon juice and zest to egg yolk mixture and whisk till smooth.
Continue whisking mixture over the simmering water for 8-15 minutes. The longer you ‘cook’ the egg mixture, the thicker it will be. I cooked mine for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter 1 piece at a time. Pour into a clean jar and cover with plastic wrap directly on the surface.Will keep refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Try your best not to eat it all in once!


A thick, tangy lemon curd spread perfect for scones, cakes, cup - cakes, tarts, macarons and other desserts.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

No - Yeast Bread Sticks

Soft bread-sticks are easy to make. They make a nice addition to a soup, stew, or salad. Recipe adapted from internet.

1 1/4 cups flour
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2/3cup milk
3 Tbsp butter or margarine, melted
 Mozzarella cheese (optional)


Combine dry ingredients and gradually add milk to form a soft dough. Knead gently 3 or 4 times on a floured surface. Roll out into a rectangle and cut into 12 sticks.
 Put the melted butter into a large baking dish, and turn the bread-sticks to coat them with the butter. Sprinkle with cheese, if you like. Bake at 450°F for 14 to 18 minutes.


Monday, January 16, 2012

Button Ball

Besides cooking, sometimes I do crafts. This is my first Button Ball.





Monday, January 9, 2012

Snow Sugared Cranberries

I've had a bag of fresh cranberries sitting in my fridge for a while, and I couldn't decide what to do with them. I went across the recipe on internet. This is how I decided to make Snow Sugared Cranberries.

2 cups of cranberries, rinsed patted dry and picked over
2 cups water
2 cups sugar
1 cup medium - grain sugar


Place the cranberries in a medium bowl and set aside.
Make a simple syrup by bringing the water and sugar just to a simmer in a medium saucepan. Let the syrup cool for a couple minutes and then pour it over the cranberries. If the syrup is too hot the cranberries will burst, so be careful. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
The next day, drain the cranberries and toss them with larger grained sugar until they are well coated. I only use a scoop of sugar at a time, and small batches of cranberries, so the sugar doesn't get too damp. Place the coated cranberries on a baking sheet to dry for a few hours.
Makes 2 cups of sparkling cranberries.
 Use the cranberries as an elegant garnish for pies, cakes, or puddings. I prefer just pop them in my mouth.


Turėjau maišelį spanguolių, kurios šaldytuve gulėjo dar nuo praėjusių metų...


2 puodeliai spanguolių
2 puodeliai vandens
2 puodeliai cukraus
1 puodelis smulkaus cukraus

Spanguoles nuplaukite. Cukrų sumaišykite su vandeniu ir pavirinkite, kad cukrus ištirptų. Neužvirkite. Na, o jei taip nutiks, nieko baisaus, leiskite sirupui atvėsti. Jei sirupas  bus per karštas spanguolės sutrūkinės. Atvėsusiu sirupu apipilkite spanguoles ir palikite pastovėti per naktį šaldytuve.
Kitą dieną nupilkite sirupą nuo spanguolių ir apvoliokite jas smulkiame cukruj. Apvoliotas spanguoles sudėkite and kepimo skardos ir leiskit cukrui sudžiūti.
Naudokite spanguoles pyragų, tortų ar pudingų puišimui. Man labiau patinka jas valgyti vienas.




Sunday, January 1, 2012

Macaroons anyone?...

Do you set goals? I live with goals. I’ve always had personal goals. Sometimes goals are achieved. So, I set a goal.
Earlier last year, I tried baking some French  Macaroons which turned out pretty BAD. I made them twice and every single time wasn’t successful.  
I have been researching French Macaroons for months on the internet trying to find a recipe. I have been watching a lot of videos on you tube, reading Macaroon’s making tips, trying to find a secret how to make a perfect Macaroons. 
I know that a lot of people think that French Macaroons are very difficult cookies to make, but what I found, having the right recipe it really makes a huge difference.  It took me about halve a year to learn how to make them. This particular recipe come from Martha Stewart. So glad, recipe turned out.

 
1 1/4 cups plus 1 teaspoon confectioners sugar
1 cup finely ground sliced, blanched almonds
6 tablespoons fresh egg whites
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
Ganache:
8 ounces Chocolate chips
8 ounces Heavy Cream (1 Cup)



1. To make the Macaroons: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together confectioners' sugar and ground almonds. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip egg whites with salt on medium speed until foamy. Increase speed to high and gradually add granulated sugar. Continue to whip until stiff glossy peaks form. With a rubber spatula, gently fold in the confectioners' sugar mixture until completely incorporated.
2. Line baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside. Fit a pastry bag with a 3/8-inch #4 round tip, and fill with batter. Pipe 1-inch disks onto prepared baking sheets, leaving 2 inches between cookies. The batter will spread a little. Let stand at room temperature until dry, and a soft skin forms on the tops of the macarons and the shiny surface turns dull, about 15 minutes.
3.Bake, with the door of the oven slightly ajar, until the surface of the macarons is completely dry, about 15 minutes. Remove baking sheet to a wire rack and let the macarons cool completely on the baking sheet. Gently peel off the parchment. Their tops are easily crushed, so take care when removing the macarons from the parchment. Use immediately or store in an airtight container, refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen for up to 1 month.
4.To fill the Macaroons: Fill a pastry bag with the filling. Turn Macaroons so their flat bottoms face up. On half of them, pipe about 1 teaspoon filling. Sandwich these with the remaining Macaroons, flat-side down, pressing slightly to spread the filling to the edges. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

Ganache
1. Place the chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl. Set aside.
2. Bring the cream to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat.
3. Pour the boiling cream over the chocolate. Stir once to ensure there aren’t any air pockets in the chocolate. Let mixture sit for 1 to 2 minutes.
4. Using a rubber spatula, slowly stir in a circular motion until all the chocolate is melted, and the entire mixture is emulsified, about 2 minutes. If desired, add a tablespoon of liqueur, butter or other flavorings.Let the ganache rest at room temperature until it cools and is ready for use

Main ingredient in this recipe is patience… a lot of patience. Believe me, if I can do it, you can do it too!
Macaroons are one of the most desirable cookies in the world, they are colorful, and have many flavors. Bon Apetite!

I would like to say thank you Ms. Humble for wonderful Macaroon Troubleshooting Post: http://notsohumblepie.blogspot.com/2010/08/macaron-troubleshooting-new-recipe.html

If you need me, I’ll be in the kitchen baking up a batch of these!





 
My Little Kitchen Helper!






Ko reikes:

182gr + 1 arbatinis saukstelis cukraus pudros
125 gr migdolu miltu
6 valg. saukstai baltymu
ziupsnelis druskos
57gr cukraus
valgomi dazai (nebutina)
Kremui:
1 puodelis sokolado
1 puodelis grietineles

Eiga:
1. Ikaitinkit orkaite iki 180C. Migdolu miltus sumaisykite su cukraus pudra. Kiausiniu baltymus isplakite su mikseriu iki kol jie prades putoti pamazu dedant cukru. Plakite baltymus iki standumo (taip lyg darytumet morengus). Pries plakant kiausiniu baltymus, isimkite juos is saldytuvo ir palaikykite kambario temperaturoje apie 24h.
2. Kepimo skarda isklotine sviestiniu popierium. Migdolu ir cukraus pudros mase atsargiai sumaisykite su baltymais. Mase sudekite i dekoravimo/kepimo maiseli ir isspauskite vienodo dydzio rutuliukus. Tarp rutuliuku pasistenkite palikti vietos, kepant jie pleciasi.
3. Isspaudus rutuliukus, padauzykite kepimo skarda i stala, kad kepant nesusidarytu oro pusles, palikite pastoveti apie 15min, kad ant jie apdziutu.
4. Kepkite macarons apie 15min su pravertomis orkaites durelemis. Iskepus leiskite atvesti ir tik tada nuimkite nuo sviestinio popieriaus. Nenuiminekite karstu, nes jie trapus, labai lengvai suskils.

Kremas:
1. Sokolada sudekite i inda.
2. Grietinele uzvirkite ant mazos ugnies ir uzpilkite ant sokolado. Gerai ismaisykite ir palikite atvesti.
3. Sutepkite macarons puseles su kremu.