Archive for July, 2009

Soufflé au Fromage

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This month I had the honour of hosting KBB’s challenge #12, with Arfi and Regina helping along.

Cheese souffle is the challenge this time,  I made it with Gruyère  instead of cheddar and add some chives for some extra bites…making it was quite easy as it was not my first encounter with baking souffles (I  love a quick fix of chocolate souffle), but this is my first time of actually taking a picture of a souffle… and that was the real challenge.

I had to make 2 times of half batch because taking picture of the first batch was a disaster ( I’m afraid it’s kind of my pattern now on doing the challenges:( ), second time was better but still  far from how I wanted… so I guess you will be seeing a few other souffle posts in the future, as I need to practise photographing it 🙂 .

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Cheese Souffles

Resource : The Perfect Cookbook by David Herbert. Penguin Books Australia Ltd 2003.

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Ingredients:

  • 100g unsalted butter
  • ½ cup plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 300ml milk
  • 1 cup grated cheddar
  • 2 Tbs  freshly grated Parmesan
  • ½ tsp Dijon mustard
  • pinch  cayenne pepper
  • 4 eggs , separated

 

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 190C (375F, Gas Mark 5). Grease and lightly flour six ½-cup-capacity souffle dishes.

Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Gradually add the milk and whisk continuously over medium heat until the mixture is smooth, thickens and comes to the boil. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.

Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the cheddar, Parmesan, mustard and cayenne pepper. Mix well.

Lightly beat the egg yolks and add these to the cheese mixture. Mix well.

With an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites in a clean bowl until firm peaks form. Fold a quarter of the whites through the cheese mixture to slacken it slightly, then gently fold through the remaining whites.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared dishes and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until risen and golden. Don’t be tempted to open the oven until the souffles have risen. Serve immediately.

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KBB-12 Lulus

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Orange Blossom infused Milans and Mallows

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I was going to do the option of picking just one recipe for this month DB challenge, as I almost didn’t  have enough patience to bake in the extreme heat of this summer.

I did first the Mallows, but then the thin chocolate coating didn’t quite survive the sun, it made my photographs so awful that I had to make the second challenge just to have  little bit decent pictures.

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The July Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Nicole at Sweet Tooth. She choose Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies and Milan Cookies from pastry chef Gale Gand of the Food Network.

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Milan Cookies
Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website

Prep Time: 20 min
Inactive Prep Time: 0 min
Cook Time: 1 hr 0 min
Serves: about 3 dozen cookies

• 12 tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) unsalted butter, softened
• 2 1/2 cups (312.5 grams/ 11.02 oz) powdered sugar
• 7/8 cup egg whites (from about 6 eggs)
• 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
• 2 tablespoons lemon extract
• 1 1/2 cups (187.5grams/ 6.61 oz) all purpose flour
• Cookie filling, recipe follows

Cookie filling:
• 1/2 cup heavy cream
• 8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
• 1 orange, zested

1. In a mixer with paddle attachment cream the butter and the sugar.
2. Add the egg whites gradually and then mix in the vanilla and lemon extracts.
3. Add the flour and mix until just well mixed.
4. With a small (1/4-inch) plain tip, pipe 1-inch sections of batter onto a parchment-lined sheet pan, spacing them 2 inches apart as they spread.
5. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10 minutes or until light golden brown around the edges. Let cool on the pan.
6. While waiting for the cookies to cool, in a small saucepan over medium flame, scald cream.
7. Pour hot cream over chocolate in a bowl, whisk to melt chocolate, add zest and blend well.
8. Set aside to cool (the mixture will thicken as it cools).
9. Spread a thin amount of the filling onto the flat side of a cookie while the filling is still soft and press the flat side of a second cookie on top.
10. Repeat with the remainder of the cookies.

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Mallows(Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies)
Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website

Prep Time: 10 min
Inactive Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Serves: about 2 dozen cookies

• 3 cups (375grams/13.23oz) all purpose flour
• 1/2 cup (112.5grams/3.97oz) white sugar
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
• 3/8 teaspoon baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 12 tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) unsalted butter
• 3 eggs, whisked together
• Homemade marshmallows, recipe follows
• Chocolate glaze, recipe follows

1. In a mixer with the paddle attachment, blend the dry ingredients.
2. On low speed, add the butter and mix until sandy.
3. Add the eggs and mix until combine.
4. Form the dough into a disk, wrap with clingfilm or parchment and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
5. When ready to bake, grease a cookie sheet or line it with parchment paper or a silicon mat.
6. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
7. Roll out the dough to 1/8-inch thickness, on a lightly floured surface. Use a 1 to 1 1/2 inches cookie cutter to cut out small rounds of dough.
8. Transfer to the prepared pan and bake for 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Let cool to room temperature.
9. Pipe a “kiss” of marshmallow onto each cookie. Let set at room temperature for 2 hours.
10. Line a cookie sheet with parchment or silicon mat.
11. One at a time, gently drop the marshmallow-topped cookies into the hot chocolate glaze.
12. Lift out with a fork and let excess chocolate drip back into the bowl.
13. Place on the prepared pan and let set at room temperature until the coating is firm, about 1 to 2 hours.

Note: if you don’t want to make your own marshmallows, you can cut a large marshmallow in half and place on the cookie base. Heat in a preheated 350-degree oven to slump the marshmallow slightly, it will expand and brown a little. Let cool, then proceed with the chocolate dipping.

Homemade marshmallows:
• 1/4 cup water
• 1/4 cup light corn syrup
• 3/4 cup (168.76 grams/5.95oz) sugar
• 1 tablespoon powdered gelatin
• 2 tablespoons cold water
• 2 egg whites , room temperature
• 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. In a saucepan, combine the water, corn syrup, and sugar, bring to a boil until “soft-ball” stage, or 235 degrees on a candy thermometer.
2. Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water and let dissolve.
3. Remove the syrup from the heat, add the gelatin, and mix.
4. Whip the whites until soft peaks form and pour the syrup into the whites.
5. Add the vanilla and continue whipping until stiff.
6. Transfer to a pastry bag.

Chocolate glaze:
• 12 ounces semisweet chocolate
• 2 ounces cocoa butter or vegetable oil

Melt the 2 ingredients together in the top of a double boiler or a bowl set over barely simmering water.

Coconut Pineapple Mousse for Cherri

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On the series I tried to feature some of old  blogger friends and new ones,  I consider Cherri from Snippets is a glossy new blogger, she has this great blog full of superb pictures taken by her better half ( I love it when couples collaborate for fun/passionate blogs).

For her, I made sort of  virgin pina colada mousse garnished with mixed dried coconuts and cinnamon powder.

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What are your favorite kitchen gadgets?
I actually don’t have very many kitchen gadgets as I have a very small kitchen, but I do have a kitchenaid and I would have to say that, that is definitely my ultimate favorite… it just makes life so much easier.
What are your favorite drinks?
water… I know so boring, but it is so thirst-quenching. 🙂 My favorite drink around the holidays would definitely be eggnog. And, my favorite junk food drink would be pepsi.
What are your favorite desserts?
I love ice cream, especially with nuts, fruits and sauces… go big or go home. 🙂 I also really love any type of mousse and any kind of fruit pie.
What are your favorite  herb/spices?
I have newly discovered using fresh basil in my cooking and I love it! I am also a big fan of mexican food and craved it all through my pregnancy, my favorite mexican spice? Cumin. For baking one of my favorites would have to be cinnamon.
What are your favorite fruits?
Fresh strawberries, apples, and pineapple. Enough said! 🙂

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Mochiko Butter Cake and Melon Sherbet for Y

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It was a bit intimidating when I thought about sending these questionnaire to Y of Lemonpi, I was afraid that her favorite dessert would be something ultra sophisticated and need a super  high arty patisserie skill, but I guess Y is one of those down under to earth lady who knows that most of the time, simple is delicious 🙂

So for Y, I made  mochiko butter cake to go with melon sherbet, garnished with ice longans and watermelon, hope she’ll like it 🙂

Y has also a delicious watermelon sherbet recipe that you can drool over.

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These are Y’s favorites…

Favorite kitchen gadget : Heat proof rubber spatula, microplane grater, my little yellow toaster (for breakfast every morning)

Favorite drinks : Jasmine tea, green tea

Favorite desserts : I love them all. Lately have been eating a lot of mochi cake and ice-cream at home. Great combination.

Herbs/Spices : Shisso, curry leaf, coriander / cinnamon, vanilla, cardamom, ginger

Fruits : non-astringent persimmons, cherries, watermelon, blueberries, pomegranates,
Imperial mandarins, custard apples, longans, pomelos.

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Jasmine Pistachio Cheesecake for Rosa

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This time is Rosa from Rosas-yummy-yums turn, She’s a cat lover, who’s also still in love with her mountain bike (I guess living in Switzerland has something to do with it 😉 ) and on her darker side she’s her PC abuser 🙂

For her, I made a mid-east inspired cheesecake, with a good dose of pistachios and exotic floral aroma.  If you want a cheesecake recipe, you can find Rosa’s Strawberry cheesecake recipe here.

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What are your favorite kitchen gadget?

My measuring cups (it would be a KitchenAid if I had one)…

What are your favorite drinks?
Coffee, tea, water, cold milk with Ovomaltine, almond-flavored rice milk…

* I adore sweet cold almond-flavored rice milk

What are your favorite dessert?
 Cheesecake, chocolate mousse, lemon meringue pie, fruit tarts/pies, pecan pie, lemon mousse, konafe, baklava…

What are your favorite  herb/spices?
Curry, paprika, tonka, chili, ras-el-hanout, cumin, basil (all varieties), coriander, dill, tarragon, rosemary, garlic, oregano, cinnamon, allspice, 5 spice powder …

What are your favorite fruits?

Berries, mangoes, passion fruits, star fruits, grapefruits, limes, lemons, cherimoya…

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