September 12, 2010

Egg White Usage 4 - Amaretti

I have been making quite a far bit of ice creams recently and not surprisingly, I am left with a lot of egg whites each time I make a tub of cream. Donna Hay's book helped a lot as it seemed to have a lot of usage for egg whites! Here's number uno for you - Amaretti.
What is amaretti? Here's an excerpt from Joy of Baking :
Amaretti (pronounced "am-ah-REHT-tee") is the Italian name for macaroons, which means little bitter things. These small, domed-shaped cookies that are crisp and crunchy on the outside and soft inside, originated in Venice Italy during the Renaissance period. Amaretti cookies are made from either ground almonds or almond paste, along with sugar and egg whites and can be flavored with chocolate or liqueurs. Oftentimes, two baked cookies are sandwiched together with ganache, buttercream or jam. Traditionally these cookies were served with a sweet dessert wine or liqueur, but they are also a wonderful accompaniment to a bowl of ice cream, sherbets, or mousses. Another favorite way to use these cookies is to finely grind them and then add them to desserts (such as trifles) for added texture and flavor. 

Frankly, I find this so so only. The almond is nice but somehow I think I am still more into intense rich and buttery cookies.




Amaretti

Adapted from Donna Hay's Modern Classic2
Ingredients
200g almond meal (I just used ground almond)
1 cup sugar1/4 cup plain flour
2 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
Method
  1. Preheat oven 180°C
  2. Process almond, sugar, flour, egg whites & vanilla extract in a food process till combined
  3. Roll tablespoonful of mixture into balls, place on baking sheet and press to flatten them slightly
  4. Bake for 13mins or till light golden. Cool & serve best with coffee.
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September 8, 2010

Apple Tarte Tartin

Nearly every blog I read had tried a apple pie recipe of some sort. I am still shying away from doing a pastry dough. It seemed... tedious. And you need to get your hands dirty with butter and flour in your nails. Fine, I am diva even when it comes to the kitchen. But that doesn't stop me from making an Apple Tarte Tartin from Donna Hay's Modern Classics Book.

It seemed simple enough. Peel, core and cut apples. Cook apples with syrup & butter. Place a ready-prepared puff pastry over the apples and wait for it to bake. No sticky hands. No flour in fingernails. My kind of recipe!

In the end, I found it a tad too sweet for us. Especially when the apple is sweet enough. And... I wasn't patient enough and underbaked it slightly.

Hmmm... will have to try again. Maybe you'll like it.



Apple Tarte Tartin
Adapted from Donna Hay's Modern Classic2 

Ingredients
60g butter3/4 cup superfine sugar
2 tbsp water
4 Granny Smith apples or any green apples (around 600g), peeled, cored & quartered


375g ready-prepared puff pastry
Method

  1. Preheat oven 200°C
  2. Place 18cm frying pan over medium heat.
  3. Add butter to melt. Add sugar & water. Cook & stir for 2 minutes or until sugar is dissolved.
  4. Continue to cook for 5 mins or till golden & syrupy.
  5. Add apples to the pan to cook for 5 mins. Allow bubbles to subside then arrange apple pieces in a circular pattern, core side up over the base of the pan. (I am really bad at this step)
  6. Roll out pastry on lightly floured surface till 3mm thick.
  7. Cut 24cm diameter circle and place the pastry over the apples. Tuck the edges in.
  8. Bake 18-20mins till pastry is puffed and golden. 
  9. Cool slightly (for the syrupy to crystallize. Cool too long and it will hard to invert onto plate). To serve, invert tart onto a plate & serve with ice cream.

September 5, 2010

Egg White Usage 3 - Coconut Macaroons

Macaroons are different from macarons. The latter is the "in" thing now but the former has all been forgotten. Macarons are difficult to make but macaroons are so much easier. Macarons are French and macaroons are....it seemed that they are all French. Funny how French rule the world with their bakes.





Yet again, I don't like this. I think I don't like all things non-fatty and no yolk in sight. Ha!


Coconut Macaroons
Adapted from Donna Hay's Modern Classic2
(Makes 28)

Ingredients
2 cups dessicated coconut
1/2 cup sugar
2 egg whites



Method

  1. Preheat oven 180°C
  2. Mix all ingredients till combined
  3. Roll 2 teaspoonful of mixture into balls. Place on baking sheet & press to flatten slightly.
  4. Bake 10mins or till golden brown
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Egg White Usage 2 - Friands

I searched quite a bit to find out what is a friand. It took a while since Google comes out with "friend" more than "friand". Trusted wikipedia provided the explanation:
The friand pastry, which has become popular in Australia and New Zealand appears to have been based on the French financier; however, Australian and New Zealand friands typically have additional flavorings such as coconut, chocolate, fruit, and nuts. Australian / New Zealand friands are also baked in oval shapes.


Hmmmm...   so it's basically a financier just that they come with additional toppings and are rounder in shape.





Personally I do not like this cake at all. Not sinful enough perhaps. Hubby lapped them up though.



Here's my green seedless grape, prunes and dates version. ☺



Friands
Adapted from Donna Hay's Modern Classic2
(Makes 10)

Ingredients
125g butter, melted
110g almond meal
200g icing sugar, sifted
100g plain flour, sifted
1/2 tsp baking powder
5 egg whites

Optional: 1 cup fresh blueberries, strawberries or any fruit to your liking

Method
  1. Preheat oven 180°C
  2. Combine almond meal, icing sugar, flour & baking powder
  3. Add egg whites and combine
  4. Add butter and combine
  5. Grease 10 x 1/2cup muffin tins
  6. Spoon mixture into tins and sprinkle with fruits or berries on top
  7. Bake 15-20mins or till golden in color and springy to touch but moist in the center.
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Rum & Raisin Ice Cream

I falling in love again.
With David.
With David Lebovitz.
With David Lebovitz & his ice cream recipes.
With David Lebovitz & his super yummy absolutely delicious adult alcoholic ice cream recipes.

And this is an example of my love for him - Rum & raisin ice cream.
And the result is so good that I forgot to copy down the recipe!!!

Argh! I'll find it again and definitely going to buy that book - The Perfect Scoop!



September 4, 2010

Egg White Usage 1 - Tuilles

What is a Tuille? Here's what I found from WiseGeek:
A tuile is a type of very lightweight, dry, crisp cookie. These cookies come in a dizzying array of shapes, sizes, and flavors, but every style tends to be delectable. Tuiles are also incredibly versatile, and they can be used for everything from ice cream garnishes to crusts for tiny, delicate tarts. 

I think I whisked my egg whites too much. Hence, it was a bit "fluffy" for a biscuit center when it's supposed to be flat and crispy. The recipe should be changed from "whisk" to "lightly beat" or "mix" for the egg whites! Well... I changed it in this post.

Also I didn't like the fact that only the edges are browned so I waited a little longer and errm... it was a bit too brown. Hmmm.. this is easy I can do this again.


Tuilles
Adapted from Donna Hay's Modern Classic2
(Makes 16 8-10cm tuilles)


Ingredients
2 egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup plain flour
1 tsp finely grated lemon rind/zest (can substitute with orange)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
50g butter (melted)


Method
  1. Preheat oven 190°C
  2. Mix all ingredients together till well combined
  3. Place 1 tsp of mixture onto baking tray lined with baking paper
  4. Spread out the mixture to a 8-10cm diameter circle
  5. Bake 5-6 minutes till golden around the edges
  6. Remove from tray while hot and use a rolling pin to curl over the edges
  7. Serve with dessert

Ooh I did it again

Yeah... I simply love this ice cream. This version has much more Guiness, 1/3 of the sugar and Hubby adores me now.☺

September 1, 2010

Con Chicken

Hubby came out with a wonderful fried chicken wing dish. I was so impressed as they tasted very good. Then it turned out that his "secret recipe" was a prepared instant pack sauce. Chey!