Baking Chez Moi: Desert Roses

This has got to be the least amount of work for the biggest payoff in this entire book.DSC_0016We’re not supposed to publish the recipes for this book but I feel like it’s impossible to talk about this without doing that.  Melt the melty stuff, toss with the other ingredients and then scoop it into some mini paper cups.  DSC_0019DSC_0021 (1).jpgThese are delicious and actually end up looking fancy, or at least way fancier than the effort it took to make.  They’re also kind of addictive so be sure to share.



Baking Chez Moi: Rewind: Plain and Simple Almond Tart

So glad a rewind day came up because while I’ve not been terrible about baking along I’ve been really terrible about writing about what I’m baking.

DSC_0095.jpgI was excited for this recipe because I tend to find most gluten free baked goods awful but so many people seem to want them.  This had the simplest of ingredients and I usually have these on hand.DSC_0099.jpgI went full-on gluten free and used almond flour for the pan which turned out just fine.DSC_0101.jpgDSC_0104.jpgThis recipe made good use of the eggs to add texture and keep a light almond batter.DSC_0106.jpgDSC_0108.jpgThe real trick to this cake was mixing gently and keeping the batter nice and light.DSC_0111.jpgDSC_0115.jpgDSC_0119.jpgThis cake looked fabulous and simple on the cake stand with a little powdered sugar.  I got mixed reviews on this cake.  Some people thought it was way too plain and some people were absolutely over the moon.  I liked it but thought it was slightly plain.  It is definitely something I would make again as a gluten free treat and maybe add a side of fruit or some of the spiced hibiscus syrup we originally made to go with the coconut tapioca.



Baking Chez Moi: Simplest Plum Tart

Couldn’t believe my luck when I found some Italian plums at my local store.  Perfect timing for this simple tart.DSC_0242.jpgThere really wasn’t much to this tart.  After the crust was made it was a matter of slicing the plumsand crushing the cookies.DSC_0249.jpgDSC_0252.jpgI took the optional route and added a little cinnamon to my sugar.  I love cinnamon so I probably could have added a bit more.DSC_0265.jpgDSC_0262.jpgDSC_0267.jpgMy plums were ripe but they had a slightly tart flavor even after baking. It ended up being a really nice balance with the creme anglaise and cookie crumbs. I think if I make this again I will pack my plums a bit more since they shrunk a bit.  Overall the tart was really simple and made a great feature for the plums.


Baking Chez Moi: Double-Corn Tea Cake

DSC_0221.jpgCorn has been important to people living on Turtle Island past and present. We’ve been growing a garden with seeds from Native Seeds and trying to grow corn as part of a three sisters garden much to some lucky wild rodent’s delight.  Earlier this year I watched Seed: The Untold Story on PBS that featured Native Seeds/SEARCH that focused on crop diversity and the use of native seeds and had a great portion on corn.  If you get the opportunity to watch it I would highly recommend it while also caution some common sense on a few portions where some dubious scientific research is mentioned. I’ve been trying to learn about the variety of three sisters (corn, beans and squash) available to grow as well as eat.  It was great to bake a recipe that only used corn flour, an item I wasn’t even aware existed.DSC_0229.jpgDSC_0230.jpgThe recipe was a simple loaf with buttery goodness, corn and a hint of spice from coriander.  Once my corn kernels were cut and steamed in the microwave it all came together pretty quickly.  We were out of baking spray so this became completely gluten free with butter and corn flour used to grease the pan.DSC_0234.jpgI got a large dent in the middle of my cake and the corn kernels seems to have sunk to the bottom of the loaf so I was a little worried.DSC_0237.jpgDSC_0240.jpgDSC_0236.jpgIt ended up slicing up a beautiful sunny color with great flavor and texture. I’m completely intrigued with what else I could use the corn flour for and can’t wait to come up with some items.  I really enjoyed this as a summer time treat although I might skip the fresh corn next time.


Baking Chez Moi: Lavender Galettes

So I’ve been being along lately but terrible at posting.  Trying to get back on track this week with the lavender galettes.

DSC_0171.jpgI pretty much had all the ingredients this called for with the exception of the orange or tangerine.  They didn’t look so great at the store so I substituted a white grapefruit from my backyard.  I’m probably going to keep it with the grapefruit peel if I make it again.DSC_0172.jpgLavender is one of my favorite herbs and I tend to keep some around.  I’ll never forget the amazing lavender creme brûlée I had at the now defunct Bistro Soleil.  It’s such a distinct and delicate flavor that tends to common whatever it goes in to.DSC_0173.jpgThe olive oil made me a little nervous.  It seemed like a lot and isn’t the typical cookie dough binder.DSC_0176.jpgMashing the dough together was fun.  It was nice how it all came together.DSC_0182.jpgDSC_0183.jpgThe olive oil with parchment made these pretty easy to roll out and get done.IMG_5069

Pretty much the only thing I found a little vexing at the end of this was the amount of parchment paper this recipe uses. I wish I had read about cutting the papers ahead of time and placed them in a heavy book for a day or so.  I started joking about ironing them out and Scott decided to try it.Wouldn’t you know it worked out great.  No more curly cookies.DSC_0191.jpgDSC_0189.jpgI used rose sugar for my topping since my neighbor had gifted me some she had made from her roses.DSC_0195.jpgDSC_0197.jpgDSC_0193.jpgThe cookies were somewhere in between a sweet cracker and a cookie.  I like the thin and crunchy edges and the flavor was great.  I ended up really enjoying these.  I wished they lasted a bit longer than a day.


Baking Chez Moi: Laurent’s Slow-Roasted Pineapple

So I’ve actually made this slow-roasted pineapple a few times since I first bought Baking Chez Moi.  Fortunately I remembered to have Scott take pictures during the winter months I was making this as it’s already pretty hot here in Phoenix. The thought of having my oven on for a few hours is pretty unpleasant.DSC_0071.jpgPretty simple ingredients and oranges are in season here in the winter so I didn’t have to purchase anything except the preserves and pineapple.  Pineapples are always pretty cheap here in colder months.DSC_0073.jpgI ended up with pretty groovy pineapple slices since the eyes were pretty deep and I didn’t want to cut off too much of the good stuff. DSC_0079.jpgDSC_0088.jpgDSC_0116.jpgDSC_0119.jpgYou can see the pineapple start to soften and change colors as it roasts.  The house has smelled absolutely heavenly every time I’ve made this.  Love all the spicy, sweet smells wafting around.DSC_0145.jpgDSC_0143.jpgDSC_0138.jpgServed with some vanilla bean ice cream the pineapple is fantastic.  I really enjoy this recipe both for it’s simplicity of ingredients yet complexity of flavor.  I tend to have bulk spices around, especially around the holidays and it’s fun to try different ones.  The only things that is really a pain is processing the pineapple.


Baking Chez Moi: Lemon (Grapefruit) Meringue Tart A New Way

My trees are all out of lemons right now so I thought what the heck I’ll make this with white grapefruit which I still have plenty of.DSC_0790.jpgMost of my grapefruit are giant now, on the sweet side and extremely juicy.DSC_0791.jpgThe pastry cream was pretty typical except it was citrus flavored.  This was my favorite part of the tart as the cream had such a delicate floral and citrus flavor.DSC_0795.jpgDSC_0799.jpgI kept the extra egg white for the meringue.  I know the preference in our household is for a lot.DSC_0801.jpgthumbnail_FullSizeRender.jpgMy meringue was pretty browned but it tasty yummy and not burnt.  I liked the overall idea of this tart but after tasting it both myself and Scott thought  that we would have preferred a regular tart base rather than the cream.  The grapefruit flavor was great and I think I’ll be experimenting with making a traditional-style grapefruit meringue.  The grapefruit pastry cream was incredibly tasty, just didn’t care for it so much in the tart.  I think it would be pretty sensational in an éclair or maybe as a base for a tropical cream pie with hibiscus flowers.  It’s made me want to experiment with a grapefruit cheesecake, maybe with a sour cream topping?  While this tart wasn’t my favorite combo it did spark some good ideas so I’m glad to have made it.


Baking Chez Moi: Black and White Marbled Madeleines

I’m a little out of energy this week but I did manage to get the madeleines done.  I decided to brown my butter because I love the smell and find it oddly comforting. I liked how these turned out and they were a pretty great portion size.  I called these chocolate lime madeleines to everyone who wanted to taste them since I thought that was a bit more accurate.DSC_0050.jpgDSC_0051.jpgDSC_0052.jpgDSC_0057.jpgDSC_0060 8.49.25 PM.jpgDSC_0061 8.49.30 PM.jpgFor some reason Scott only shot the backs of the madeleines so it’s hard to see how pretty they came out even if they were a little full.  It was a rough weekend so I’m glad this recipe got done and it tasted good too.

Baking Chez Moi: Nun’s Beignets

Trying to catch up a little with my baking. I decided to make the nun’s beignets before work one day.DSC_0023.jpgMy pictures are a tad dark because it was early.  The only thing I had to buy was the grapeseed oil since I don’t fry all that much.  DSC_0026.jpgThe dough came together pretty easy.  A quick boil of the milk, water, sugar, butter, salt and a last minute addition of flour and then into the mixer for eggs and vanilla. DSC_0031.jpgDSC_0046.jpgI’ve never used a dutch over for frying before and it worked out pretty great.  I only used about 2 inches of oil but that was more than sufficient. They bobbed and fried for about 8-9 minutes before I took them out. DSC_0038.jpgDSC_0034.jpgI got some nice cracking and puffing on these.  I really love the beautiful golden brown they turn.DSC_0037.jpgDSC_0036.jpgI did both a vanilla sugar and a cinnamon sugar.  I liked both flavors and thought both were nice.  Scott did most of the sugaring and I can tell you he likes a pretty thick crust of it.DSC_0040.jpgDSC_0043.jpgDSC_0042.jpgI think these beignet’s got one of the best reviews yet from Baking Chez Moi.  Guess you can’t really go wrong with what is essentially fried dough. The size was perfect if you just wanted a bite.



Baking Chez Moi: Honey-Yogurt Mousse

I was excited to try the honey yogurt mousse this week since it sounded like a perfect Arizona summer recipe and the heat will be here before you know it.DSC_0014.jpgPretty simple ingredients and a pretty uncomplicated recipe.  Strained yogurt mixed with honey, gelatin and whipped cream.  Pretty easy to whip up.DSC_0021.jpgDSC_0017 (1).jpgI wasn’t thrilled with the end result of this.  It was so incredibly sweet and there was a large amount of honey in each serving.  We tried it with some berries that were on the sour side so it worked out ok.  I kept thinking that I wish I would have made Bill Grainger’s Yogurt Panacotta.  It’s a similar idea with a little more effort.  I’ve made it several times and in large quantities for parties with pretty good results.  I think I’ll be sticking to that for my yogurt goodness come summer.