Sunday, March 27, 2011

Cinnamon Rolls from America's Test Kitchen

This is a long recipe, but it's totally worth it.

Basic Sweet Dough

3/4 cup buttermilk, warm (can use buttermilk powder and water)
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled until warm
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
4 1/4 c all purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 envelope (or 2 1/4 tsp) instant or rapid rise yeast
1 1/4 tsp salt

1. Whisk buttermilk, butter and eggs together in a large liquid measuring cup. Mix 4 cups of the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook. With the mixer on low speed, add the buttermilk mixture and mix until the dough comes together, about 1 min.

2. Increase speed of machine to med-low and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic about 5 minutes. (if after 5 min. more flour is needed add the remaining 1/4 cup flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough clears the side of the bowl, but sticks to the bottom)

3. Turn the dough out onto a clean counter and knead by hand to form a smooth round ball, about 1 min. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm lace until doubled in size, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

OR you can use the hand-mixing method (which I prefer)

Whisk the buttermilk, butter, and eggs together in a large liquid measuring cup. In a separate large bowl, whisk 4 cups of flour, sugar, yeast, and salt together. Pour the buttermilk mix into the flour mix. Stir with a rubber spatula until the dough comes together and looks shaggy. Turn the dough out onto a clean counter and knead by hand to form a smooth round ball, 10-15 min, adding the remaining 1/4 c flour as needed to prevent the dough from sticking to the counter. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and let rise in a warm place til doubled in size, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves
pinch salt
flour for the counter
1 recipe of basic sweet dough
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for the pan
3 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
3 tablespoons buttermilk or milk
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1. Mix the brown sugar, cinnamon, cloves and salt together in a small bowl. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and press it into a 12x16 inch rectangle. Brush the dough with the butter. Sprinkle the brown sugar mix over the dough, leaving a 3/4 in border along the top edge. Press on the filling to adhere it to the dough.

2. Roll the dough into a tight cylinder and pinch the seam closed. Roll the cylinder over so that it is seam side down. Gently stretch the cylinder until it is 18 inches long. Pat the ends of the cylinder to even them.

3. Slice the cylinder into 12 evenly sized rolls using a serrated knife. Arrange the rolls, cut-side down in a greased 9x13 metal baking dish and wrap tightly in greased plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until the rolls have nearly doubled in size and are pressed against one another 1 to 1/2 hours.

4. Bake for 25-30 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Rolls should be golden and puffed.

5. Flip the rolls out onto a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Whisk cream cheese and buttermilk together in large bowl until thick and smooth. Sift powdered sugar over the mix and whisk til smooth. Flip the rolls upright and using a large spoon drizzle the glaze over warm rolls.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Breakfast in a Cookie

This recipe comes from Zonya Foco. I don't eat if for breakfast, but it's a nice snack to have around. This recipe makes 5 dozen cookies.

Preheat oven to 375 and spray cookie sheets with cooking spray.

Mix the following together in a small bowl and set aside to soak for 10 min.
1 cup oat bran
3/4 cup orange juice

Meanwhile combine the following in a large bowl and mix til smooth:
1 cup + 1 T applesauce, unsweetened
2 T canola oil
1 cup honey
1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 1/2 T vanilla extract
1 T grated orange rind or 2 tsp orange extract

Measure the following into a sifter and sift over applesauce mixture:
3 cups whole wheat pastry flour (ground soft white wheat) or 1 1/2 cups white flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 T baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
(I skip the sifting part)

Add the soaked oat bran and remaining ingredients to the large bowl and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon. Drop by slightly heaping tablespoons 1 inch apart. Bake until light browned or 12 to 14 min.

1 cup nonfat dry milk
2 1/2 cups oats (quick or regular)
1 cup nuts
1 cup raisins
1 cup ground flax seed (optional)

Nutritional info for 2 cookies:
210 calories
4 g fiber
6 g protein
6 g of fat
22 mg cholesterol
17 g sugar
.6 g saturated fat
170 mg sodium

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Strawberry Cream Cake

(from America's Test Kitchen)


* 1 1/4 cups cake flour
* 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
* 1/4 teaspoon table salt
* 1 cup sugar
* 5 large eggs, room temperature (2 whole and 3 separated)
* 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
* 2 tablespoons water
* 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Strawberry Filling:
* 2 lbs fresh strawberries, washed, dried, and stemmed (medium or large, about 2 quarts)
* 4 -6 tablespoons sugar
* 1 pinch table salt

Whipped Cream:
* 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
* 1/2 cup sugar
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1/8 teaspoon table salt
* 2 cups heavy cream


Prep Time: 2 hrs

Total Time: 2 3/4 hrs

1. 1 FOR THE CAKE: Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour round 9 by 2-inch cake pan or 9-inch springform pan and line with parchment paper. Whisk flour, baking powder, salt, and all but 3 tablespoons sugar in mixing bowl. Whisk in 2 whole eggs and 3 yolks (reserving whites), butter, water, and vanilla; whisk until smooth.
2. 2 In clean bowl of standing mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat remaining 3 egg whites at medium-low speed until frothy, 1 to 2 minutes. With machine running, gradually add remaining 3 tablespoons sugar, increase speed to medium-high, and beat until soft peaks form, 60 to 90 seconds. Stir one-third of whites into batter to lighten; add remaining whites and gently fold into batter until no white streaks remain. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake until toothpick or wooden skewer inserted into center of cake comes out clean, 30 to 40 minutes. Cool in pan 10 minutes, then invert cake onto greased wire rack; peel off and discard parchment. Invert cake again; cool completely, about 2 hours.
3. 3 FOR THE STRAWBERRY FILLING: Halve 24 of best-looking berries and reserve. Quarter remaining berries; toss with 4 to 6 tablespoons sugar (depending on sweetness of berries) in medium bowl and let sit 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Strain juices from berries and reserve (you should have about 1/2 cup). In work bowl of food processor fitted with metal blade, give macerated berries five 1-second pulses (you should have about 1 1/2 cups). In small saucepan over medium-high heat, simmer reserved juices until syrupy and reduced to about 3 tablespoons, 3 to 5 minutes. Pour reduced syrup over macerated berries, add pinch of salt, and toss to combine. Set aside until cake is cooled.
4. 4 FOR THE WHIPPED CREAM: When cake has cooled, place cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and salt in bowl of standing mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Whisk at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping down bowl with rubber spatula as needed. Reduce speed to low and add heavy cream in slow, steady stream; when almost fully combined, increase speed to medium-high and beat until mixture holds stiff peaks, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes more, scraping bowl as needed (you should have about 4 1/2 cups).
5. 5 TO ASSEMBLE THE CAKE: Using large serrated knife, slice cake into three even layers. Place bottom layer on cardboard round or cake plate and arrange ring of 20 strawberry halves, cut sides down and stem ends facing out, around perimeter of cake layer. Pour one half of pureed berry mixture (about 3/4 cup) in center, then spread to cover any exposed cake. Gently spread about one-third of whipped cream (about 1 1/2 cups) over berry layer, leaving 1/2-inch border from edge. Place middle cake layer on top and press down gently (whipped cream layer should become flush with cake edge). Repeat with 20 additional strawberry halves, remaining berry mixture, and half of remaining whipped cream; gently press last cake layer on top. Spread remaining whipped cream over top; decorate with remaining cut strawberries. Serve, or chill for up to 4 hours.