Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Spiced Chocolate Torte Wrapped in Chocolate Ribbons

*** Top 9 on December 31, 2010***
Thank you everyone!

Check out my Video Tutorial for step by step instructions on how to create this masterpiece!
I've been doing a lot of baking lately and there's even more in the queue but it's the holidays and I've just been in a baking kind of mood. I have to warn you, this cake is not for the faint of heart, both in preparation or consumption. If you have ever been on a diet, are currently on a diet or may ever be on a diet this cake could be disastrous. It also takes a significant amount of time to prepare, but if you are willing to take the time, you will end up with a masterpiece well worth the time and effort.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Apple Turnovers

Today's post is a continuation of my Puff Pastry post from earlier this week. Now that you've spent over 9 hours creating your pastry dough, it's time to make something amazing with it! These Apple Turnovers are a great dessert to make although you can make numerous different things utilizing puff pastry. They're best served warm out of the oven and have the flakiest perfect crunch to them with a lightly sweet apple center.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Puff Pastry

I realize that not everyone is like me but when I spend an exorbitant amount of time creating something, it tastes even better to me when it's all done. So if you're anything like me, this next recipe is for you. If it's not for you, feel free to read on anyway. I'm going to walk you step by step through the process of creating a wonderful, flaky Puff Pastry dough that you can use in any number of fantastic pastries like Turnovers, Palmiers and Napoleons.

This puff pastry recipe takes upwards of nine hours to complete and that's not even making anything with it yet. It is such a fun process though and results in the best tasting, light  and flaky pastry that you will ever taste.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Peppermint Patties

*** Top 9 on December 19th, 2010***

One of our favorite restaurants here in Minneapolis is called Fogo de Chao. It is an amazing Brazilian restaurant but I think my wife really likes it because they have a basket of peppermint patties at the door that she loves to fill her pockets with. Ok, maybe it's me that fills my pockets with them but they're really for her. Really.

I found this recipe and decided to add it to my cooking day while we were stuck inside all day during a blizzard last week. After I finished them, I tossed the bag of candies in the freezer and I love to take a few out at a time and snack on them while they're still cold.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Spinach Quiche

Traditional quiche is typically a simple egg and cream mixture baked in a pastry crust but there are numerous additions that can make a fantastic quiche suitable for breakfast, lunch or dinner. This version adds crumbled bacon over the bottom and then spinach, pepper jack and sharp cheddar cheese mixed into the egg and cream mixture. Be creative with your cheese selections and create your own version of this quiche.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Cornmeal Jalapeno Ebelskivers

When I was younger I used to get to spend some time each summer with my grandparents in Wyoming. One of the things I remember each year was when my Grandma would make these little puffed pancakes that were so amazing. I don't remember having or seeing them anywhere else so they were always a special treat from Grandma each year.

Ebelskiver's come from Denmark and are made in a pan that has 7-9 round indentations that you place the batter in and then flip halfway through cooking. What you get is a small round puffed pancake that can be sweet or savory and filled with any number of fillings. If you choose to fill them, you put about a tablespoon of batter in the pan, add your filling and then place about another tablespoon over that.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Pumpkin Mousse Cream Puffs

I have made over 200 cream puff shells in the last two weeks. I started by making them for an appetizer and dessert for our Thanksgiving celebration and then again this week for a Christmas party at work. By the way, I love that the place where I am currently consulting still calls it a Christmas party.

I created this recipe in an effort to branch out a little from the traditional pumpkin pie but still maintain that great flavor profile that pumpkin brings to a holiday celebration. I love making cream puffs because honestly they really aren't that hard to make but they add an elegance and sophistication to pretty much anything. You can use them for desserts as well as appetizers like I did for our housewarming party a few months ago.