Hi there, I know I’ve been quiet this year, but you didn’t think I’d stay quiet over the Christmas period, right? Christmas is the best time for baking; when everyone’s having get-togethers, bringing in biscuit boxes to work or just generally hiding from the cold dark evenings. I’ve still been baking, and I’ve even managed to photograph some of the things I’ve baked. This mean I’ve managed to get a bit of a backlog of recipes to post, and what better time than Christmas to post them? I’ve been trying to push myself with my baking recently, teaching myself new things, or baking things that are outside of my usual comfort zone. One of the things that’s been on my list for years, that I’ve never plucked up the courage to try and make, has been choux pastry. It’s always been intimidating, from bake off to recipe books to many places talk about how hard it is to get right. After a few mistakes with my baking in recent months I was even more worried, but decided that now was the time to try and make some simple Profiteroles, and that it was also time to try my hand at making Crème Patissiere for the first time too. Read more
This is going to be my last post of 2017 and I feel like it’s a good one to sign out on. It’s actually been in the works from as far back as last August, when I went to New York. Whenever I’ve baked this recipe in that time the photos I’ve taken just haven’t been good enough, and for a recipe as good as this one, the photos need to do it justice. So lets rewind to August of 2016; after a day walking around Manhattan in the baking heat we sought out Milk Bar, part of the famed Momofuku group, to stock up on some bakes. Crack Pie had come recommended, and with such a ludicrous name, it sounded like something I needed to try. I didn’t realise that I was about to have one of the single most decadent desserts of my life. Crack Pie is essentially a butter tart, so think a dense layer of gooey, buttery filling sitting on top of a biscuit base.
I’ve got an absolutely massive soft spot for cookies. You can probably tell from the number of cookie recipes I’ve done over the last few years since I started this blog. From your basic choc chip cookies through to caramel stuffed cookies or brownie crackle cookies. This does mean that I’m starting to reach a point where my core recipes are actually all fairly similar, but I just mix up the flavours and fillings. This one is slightly different though, and indulgent; Brown Butter Cookies. One of my favourite flavours of ice cream is London’s Chin Chin Lab’s ‘Burnt Butter Caramel’, which has its grounding in the same technique. Browning the butter gives it a more caramel-y edge, giving it hints of toffee. This makes it perfect to go with fillings like pecans, chocolate and salt.
As I already alluded to, I changed jobs recently. In my old job we had a meeting on every Monday morning to talk about the week ahead. Over the two or so years at that job, my colleagues at Talented Talkers badgered me constantly to bring in some cinnamon rolls. My main excuse for not doing it is that cinnamon buns are much, much, better fresh and on the day they are made. I’ve done cinnamon rolls overnight plenty of times, but doing it in the week was something I haven’t done. However, with it being my last week, and the last time I’d be in that early Monday meeting, I wanted to bring in a treat for the team. This meant that after sticking the dough in the fridge the night before, I was actually up super early on that last Monday (about 5.30) to take the dough out of the fridge to allow it to return to room temperature before I stuck it in the oven. Read more
Christmas, it’s nearly upon us. I’ve had a quiet few weeks because life happened. I moved house (still in Walthamstow, still smug as f*ck, just a different bit) then a couple of weeks later I started a new job. The new new job required me to spend a whole week in Edinburgh. None of this was conducive to baking, photographing and writing. But as I said, Christmas is nearly here. So it’s time to start with the festive recipes. Jumping straight in with something insanely chocolatey, which’d be perfect as the dessert for a friendly get together, or maybe just to keep in the fridge to slowly work your way through yourself as part of proper festive decadence.