Ummmm cheesecake – everyone’s favorite. But getting it to come out is another matter. Do you use a water bath or not? How do you prevent it from cracking? Or do you just give up and buy one? What if you could make a great cheesecake and not have to worry about the baking part? We’re not talking about just any cheesecake, but rocky road with chocolate, salted peanuts and marshmallows finished with a gravel top of peanuts and chocolate and caramel sauce? Now there’s no reason not to make one. Oh, and you can tell everyone you baked this perfect cheesecake and soak in all the compliments. No one will know this was a no bake cheesecake except you and me!! And I’m not tellin’!! Continue reading
These Pecan Bars are one of the most used recipes from the Culinary Institute of America. I have seen various versions of these Pecan Bars but this one is the one we used in the bakery. The key is to boil the filling to 240 degrees or the filling will sag when it is cut. Otherwise this is the easiest of recipes to make.
While the CIA cuts these Pecan Bars into diamonds, we cut them into bars or into squares to avoid any loss of product. We used the squares for petit fours and they never failed to please. The baked bars or squares may be frozen.
For these Pean Bars, I don’t toast the nuts before using them as they bake in the oven. Make these once and I’m sure you will be adding them to your favorites list. Continue reading
The title, “60 Second Brioche” (pronounced BREE-ohsh) comes from the article title as it appeared in Bon Appetit Magazine. While it takes a few minutes to prepare the ingredients, it does indeed come together in about sixty seconds in the food processor, making it the fastest brioche around.
In my first book, “The New Pastry Cook”, the theme was to take a basic dough and make 10 to 12 items using that dough. When I first started learning to make the classic doughs I thought it a shame to spend the time to learn them and then use them for just one or two things. In the Bon Appetit article, they used the 11 recipes I developed for my book and an additional one I developed for them as they wanted an even dozen.
I learned to make many of the traditional French pastries from Andre Gotti, a marvelous French pastry chef. After I learned the traditional method, I became a consultant to Cuisinart specializing in pastry using the food processor. I modernized many of the traditional French techniques without sacrificing quality. Brioche was among them. Continue reading
A blind baked pie or tart crust is another basic technique of pastry. Essentially it is a baked crust with no filling in it. While not difficult, a few pointers will give you a perfect crust every time. While these pointers will apply to any crust, the one I have used is mine. I have no idea why it is referred to as blind baked. So if anyone knows, please tell me.
While we no longer have Big Boy restaurants in my area, I, like Rose Levy Beranbaum, remember their strawberry pie. I would rather have eaten that than anything else I can remember at the time. It was a simple pie consisting of a baked pie shell into which fresh strawberries were placed standing up and the whole was covered with a sweet, shiny glaze. I swear I can still taste it. Continue reading
These delightful, thin, chocolate coated Tropical Shortbread cookies are of the European variety and couldn’t be easier to make. The method of putting them together is a bit unconvential and the ingredients, or lack of them, is interesting. The cookie uses no egg, depending instead on butter to hold them together – a true shortbread cookie. Powdered sugar is used as opposed to granulated and not much of that. European cookies are generally, much less sweet than their American cousins which lets the flavors really come through. These particular cookies are actually best eaten the day or days after baking and coating. Continue reading