Baked · Breakfast · Cake · Chocolate · Dessert · Donut · Snacks · Valentine's Day · Winter Treats

I never met a donut I didn’t like, until today!

The Donut.

It’s a staple in American culture, it’s an excuse to eat cake for breakfast and it’s flavor and topping options are endless. One thing for me should be a firm constant when it comes to the donut.Donuts should always be fried. Whether it’s a cake donut or my personal favorite, a yeasted donut, they should always be fried: NOT BAKED!

Donut pans are something I only recently started using. About a year ago I was teaching a donut class and had my first baked donut encounter. If I can remember correctly we were making a Nutella filled yeasted donut, an apple cider donut and for some god awful reason the third donut, a lemon poppyseed with a delightful lemon glaze, as a baked donut. In a pan. A donut pan to be specific.

The donut pans themselves are cute. I have seen three basic sizes for the pans- regular size (the size of a donut from the supermarket or dunkin, not a fancy giant donut) a medium one and a small one. The small donut is a little bigger than a silver dollar.

I have several issues with baking donuts in pans, but the main two I will talk about are as follows:

1. The texture
2. The look

Texture:
Donuts are typically made from a dough. It’s rolled out and shapes are cut out with a cookie cutter. It’s dense, almost heavy and when fried gets a soft but firm interior texture and a firm, sometimes crunchy, outer texture. They are easy to pick up and handle, especially when dipping in ganache or glaze.

Baked donuts are made from a batter that is thin and handled easiest when piped into the donut molds. The texture is soft, almost crumbly and the exterior is thin and delicate. Baked donuts are literally cake, shaped into the image of a donut.

The Look:
Donut pans CAN produce very round, symmetrical pretty looking donuts. The issue I constantly have when I make these is figuring out the perfect amount of batter to add to each mold.
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You can see from both images the different amounts of batter I added to each row of donuts. Lookig at the second picture, the first row is what we are looking for shape wise. I filled the molds about 1/3 of the way full.

The middle row is a little overfilled and the donuts looks bloated. They basically look the way i feel after eating a burrito. These were filled about 1/2 the way full.

The last row are overfilled and the middle hole has been engulfed with batter. These molds were filled almost to the top of the pan.

Personally I think donut pans should be used to make anything except what I would call a donut. Since my first time using them in class, I have dabbled here and there in trying out different recipes. Each recipe I have made has come out fine, if I was aiming to make round shaped disks of cake. They just aren’t donuts and not what I want when I want a donut.

The latest recipe I made comes from King Arthur and was pretty good! I omitted the chocolate chips in the batter and used vegetable oil instead of melted butter. I also made a traditional ganache for the top:

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Chocolate ganache
8oz dark bittersweet chocolate
5.5oz heavy cream

Heat the heavy cream and chocolate over a double boiler until the chocolate is melted. Let cool down for 2-3 minutes before using.

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Cake · Chocolate · Dessert · Valentine's Day

Day 3- The best flour-less chocolate cake you will ever make

If you say Flour-less or Gluten-Free to me, I am probably going to roll my eyes at you give a hard PASS.

This rich, dense, creamy, decadent flourless chocolate cake will change your mind forever when it comes to Gluten-Free baking. It is also my most coveted recipe I make.

Although I feel the term “cake” is perhaps not the best description, the cake is more like a baked ganache containing sugar and eggs. The key to this recipe is to use a high quality dark chocolate such as Valrhona.

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Flourless Chocolate Cake

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients


1 lb 8oz Chocolate
1 lb Butter
1 lb Granulated Sugar
2 Cups Pineapple Juice
8 Egg Yolks
1 Vanilla Bean or 1 TB Vanilla Extract

1. Grease a 9 or 10inch round cake pan with pan spray and cover the bottom of the pan with a layer of parchment paper.
2. In a small saucepan, bring he pineapple juice to a boil and reduce to down to 3/4 Cup.
3. In a large bowl, combine half the sugar and egg yolks and whisk together until thick and pale.
4. Over a double boiler, melt together the remaining sugar, butter and chocolate. Once melted, add the reduced pineapple juice and mix until combined.
5. Using a ladle and whisking the egg mixture continuously, ladle the hot melted chocolate into the egg mixture one ladle at a time. Once half the chocolate has been ladled in, pour the rest in and continue to stir until completely incorporated.
6. Add the batter to the prepared cake pan and place the cake pan in a larger pan with high walls. Add water to the base pan, just enough so it comes up about half way on the sides of round cake pan.
7. Bake at 325 for about 45 minutes to an hour. The cake will have a slight jiggle still in the center of it. Remove the cake from the oven and let cool, in the waterbath.
8. Carefully turn the cake over onto a cake stand or plate and garnish before serving.
Garnish Ideas:
Fresh Fruit: Raspberries, Blackberries, Pomegranate Seeds, Cheeries
Chocolate Ganache
Whipped Cream

 

-K

Cake · Cupcakes

The Interwebs will brighten up your day with its cat meme’s and crush your soul with its truths

The internet I remember what life was like without you. Seriously, I remember life before cell phones, the internet and before EVERYTHING became automated. Now, before I go any further I understand the irony of my thoughts here. I am sitting here writing and complaining about the internet while I am using the internet as an expression of my voice. I get it, but hear me out.

The internet has ruined my life a few times. Perhaps not ruined, but we will say has impacted it substantially. The first time was when I was 16. Yes, the internet was still pretty new and it had its limits. It took me 10 minutes to boot up my dial-up AOL and I lived my life at night on Instant Messenger talking to my boyfriend. He was my first boyfriend, actually the boyfriend I still compare all boyfriends too. We were in love and he broke my heart by suddenly breaking up with me two weeks before my Grandfather passed away. In his defense he didn’t know my Grandfather was going to die, no one did. Still, huge moment in my life here people.

That summer is a blur of sadness and tears and the first time I ever experienced anxiety and depression in my life. Although with everything that was going on, I remember my mom sitting me down one day and said ” I want to ask you a few things and I want you to be honest with me.” We will keep this PG-13 and won’t mention specifically what mom asked me, however her inquiries stemmed from an online post she found where an individual had outlined all the sordid details of my first relationship with a boy. This is also when I learned my mother was a PI and could find ANYTHING. I think we now all call if by its proper name: Stalking. She is pretty much the Yoda of stalking. Anyways, blogging wasn’t even a thing back then but I consider this to be the first instance of blogging in my life.

The second time the internet reared its ugly head in my life negatively was last year when I very easily deduced from photos and flirty posts that my then POS boyfriend was cheating on me. Oh silly internet, you did it again…

My issue with the internet is you can’t hide anything from it. It’s a place that keeps track of everything. Your always just a click away from someone or something you are trying to avoid and it never keeps secrets. You can always find the truth, especially when you are not looking for it.

That leads us to two days ago. After a long morning teaching and then an afternoon at Target buying about 80 things I didn’t know I needed, I was laying on my couch snuggling with my cat and waiting for a movie to start. I ran out of lives on candy crush ( Hi, I am a candy crush addict) and I popped onto good old Facebook to see what super important world topics I had missed for the day. Well, I suppose I missed one.

Somehow I missed when a good friend of mine seems to have gone and got himself married. We are not talking he up and eloped with some chick he met last week at a bar. No. We are talking full on church wedding with 300+ people and a hell of a lot of planning that went into it.

Now you must be thinking “What is her problem? Why is she not happy for him?” In truth, I am very happy for him because I love him and consider him to be one of my oldest friends. He lives in a different country and we don’t speak often but when we do, it’s like no time has lapsed and we pick right up where we left off. I should however mention that about 3 years ago he decided that we should “hook up.” Yes, he is an adult and said this to me. Romantic right? Now, he is an attractive guy, but I think of him as a brother.  We have been a confidant for one another over the years and unfortunately, I know far too much about him and several women and their sexual escapades then I ever thought I would know.

So, obviously when he declares his love for me I can’t take him seriously. I am not his type and he is a player. He is very wealthy and he dates wealthy beautiful girls that all look the same; they are all tall, stupidly skinny, effortaly beautiful and everything I am not. Which I am ok with. I however, am probably the only female in his life that has said no to him, hence I feel this has sparked his continued obsession with him thinking we are soul mates.

As I said, this has been going on for at least 3 years and during that whole time not once did he mention when I asked him if he was seeing anyone seriously. When I asked him about the many vacations and all the pretty ladies he went on them with, he was very casual about their presence in his life.

So, with all of that said someone please for the love of god explain to me how I did not know he not only got engaged but that two months ago HE GOT MARRIED.

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I felt like now was a good time to share one of my favorite cat memes.

Yup, internet you strike for the third time today. I am obviously incredibly hurt and was under the impression that our friendship was much more than what it truly is. I am also furious that he has lied to me for the last, oh at least 2 if not more, years. Never mind that a year ago he flew for the night from NYC to Boston just to take me to dinner and tried to get me to sleep over and when I said no, went in for a kiss as I got in my cab to go home. My cat-like reflexes were able to dodge his face in enough time though 🙂

So, now I am faced with a dilemma- What do I do the next time he calls me?

To be honest with you, I am so heartbroken in finding this out this way I don’t know if we can continue calling one another friend. Well, I don’t know what he thinks of me on his end, but on my end, can I really call him a friend? It breaks my heart because I am not a person that has a lot of friends in life. The ones I do have though, I cherish and value.

Are you depressed yet? I sure as hell am.

Feeling sad and frustrated I have decided the situation calls for cupcakes. Lemon cupcakes to be specific, because lemon is bright and tart, it makes you think of warm summer days and the smell of the zest just makes me happy.

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There is not much that does not pair well with lemon, which makes it an easy canvas to work with. Blackberries however are one of my favorite flavor combinations and Blackberry Buttercream is really easy to make.

Simply for color and aesthetic I cut some ground cherries in half and garnished the cupcakes with them. Ground cherries have a really unique flavor and are small, so they work great as an add-on or garnish to desserts and also savory dishes.

The one place in the world I feel the most comfortable in is the kitchen. Baking soothes me and gives me something to focus on when I am feeling chaotic. Today has really made me really stop and think about the relationships in my life. I think everyone needs to find something that they can channel their energy into positively and allow themselves to pause and think constructively. Perhaps that’s baking, it certainly is for me.

-K