"The more pasisonate the cook, the better the flavors" -Charles M. Carroll

Friday, June 14, 2013

Charlottes- a work of art

It seems that in the culinary world there is an (un)spoken competition to make the latest and greatest tasty mouthful. Our Charlottes are something we're very proud of.

Take a small glimpse into the making of these impressive desserts:

First, you start with a stencil. With a silpat mat underneath, a layer of pastry decorating paste is spread over the stencil. The stencil is removed, and the pattern stays on the silpat mat.

After freezing the stencil, we made one Jaconde Sponge recipe, which is a thin cake with almond flour. The batter gets spread over the colored pattern and baked for a couple of minutes. After cooling, we turned over the pan and out comes the Jaconde Sponge with a bright pattern.

We have several different stencils and color possibilities so each dessert can be unique

We then trimed the edges of the cake, and measured out strips for our ring molds.

Here we have our cake cut to the right size for our molds.

Before putting in the cake, a very important step is to line the ring molds with acetate strips. This makes it come out of the mold much easier.

We line the molds with the patterened cake. It's an involved process that takes a lot of fine tuning.

After the rings are lined with our patterened cake, we start to fill it up. This Charlotte was a multi-layered cake: we put in our milk chocolate layer first, put it in the freezer to harden, and repeated the process with the white chocolate layer.

After the second layer hardened, we put on a shiny dark chocolate ganache, let it harden, then took the molds off, garnished the top and Voila! a beautiful Charlotte is born.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

DIY: Soft Dinner Rolls

This is one heck of a bread recipe; it's simple and can be used for many different occasions. We use the main recipe and then add toppings or roll it differently for our various sandwiches and appetizers.

Soft Rolls
Lou Crandall
makes 33 2oz rolls

3 c. water, about 100 degrees; don't go over 104 degrees
2 TBLS active dry yeast
1/2 c. sugar
1/3 c. nonfat milk powder
7 1/4 c. bread flour
1 TBLS salt
1/2 c. salted butter
eggs for an egg wash

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Add water to mixing bowl, then yeast. Put in sugar and nonfat milk powder. Add flour to fully cover mixture, then add salt. Add butter.
Mix for 10 minutes on med speed in your mixer with dough hook attachment.
Measure out 2 oz portions of dough on a scale and roll into balls.
With parchment on the sheet pan, arrange dough balls on pan. Cover with oiled plastic wrap and let rise until double in size.
Mix the eggs and brush over tops of rolls.
Bake until light brown, about 10 minutes

"Food storage" milk powder is the best kind to use. Do not use instant milk.
You can use a Bosch or Kitchen Aid mixer. Remember to use the dough hook.
The salt should never come into direct contact with the yeast (except when mixing it) or else it'll kill the yeast.
If you don't have a scale to measure the dough balls, it will roughly be no smaller than a golf ball.
Before baking you can sprinkle on sesame seeds, parmesan cheese, or other toppings.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Fine French Financiers

 I love our French Financiers. It's a winning combination of fruity flavor, sweet icing, and moist pound cake. One of the great things about it is that you can pair any fruit flavor with it: guava, raspberry, blood orange, grapefruit, etc.

These pictures feature passion fruit, blackberry and raspberry French Financiers.


What flavor would you pick?

Thanks to Bekah Loss Photography for the amazing pictures