Friday, December 31, 2010

Hungry For More?

On a few occasions I've ventured away from the backbones of this sight: sugar and butter. That's right, sometimes I don't eat cake for dinner. Sometimes I cook real food. So if you're hungry for more than tarts, pies, muffins, cookies and galettes, what are you doing here?

Just kidding - if you are intrigued by things like potato leek soup, quinoa with toasted pine nuts and raisins (pictured), and stuffed acorn squash...then you should check out my new recipe column over at the Jewish Week: Nosh Pit.

Check back in once a week, I may have a few more things up my stuffed shells with homemade tomato sauce, apricot and shallot chicken and boozy sweet potatoes. 

Happy snacking!  

P.S. If you follow me on twitter, I'll let you know when I have a new recipe up!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Melting Snowman Cookies

There was a time in my life, where I looked forward with glee to snow days. Snow days meant sleeping late, missing school, sitting inside in my pajamas, watching bad movies and seeing the snow plows drive by. Unfortunately today I am an adult older, and huge snowfalls means canceled plans, missing work, commuting woes and other unpleasant things. In fact, I think it's safe to say, that I don't really like snow at all anymore. Except, perhaps, when it comes in uber-adorable cookie form. 

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Chocolate-Covered Honeycomb Candy

[Updated with new photos]
Newsflash: I'm a foreigner. Don't deport me just yet - I'm bringing you candy! Here in part 2 of candy week at Baking and Mistaking, and I'm recreating one of my favorite childhood candy bars. Technically this is called honeycomb candy. It is sold in England as a "Crunchie" bar, and in Australia as "Violet Crumble" (don't ask me why). But when I moved to the US I realized that no such chocolate bar existed here. Since then I've had to rely on visitors and traveling family members to get my crunchie fix - but no more!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Peppermint Patties

I would like to officially announce this week as candy week here on Baking and Mistaking! For some reason, this season is a prime time for candy making. I'm not quite sure why, since I eat candy year round. No really, I do, promise. But nevertheless - today I present you with homemade peppermint patties. And come back later this week for even more candy!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

After I cracked open, disemboweled, cooked and pureed my 5-pound pumpkin, I made pumpkin muffins, pumpkin soup...and still had pumpkin puree to go.  So I searched high and low, for the perfect recipe to highlight the remainder of my fresh pumpkin puree. And I found it, in these pumpkin cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting. 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Disaster Zone!

You see that big banner up there? It says Baking and Mistaking. But I haven't exactly been living up to that lately. I've been holding back on all the mistaking. I've been mistaking, of course, I just haven't been  blogging about it, mostly because it makes me sad. But I'm over it now, so get ready, for an all out, play-by-play, no-holds barred, tale of disasters.

1. Peanut Butter Pie

The recipe for this peanut butter pie came from a Good Housekeeping cookbook. It wasn't...awful, it was just kind of strange. It is basically a pie shell with a peanut butter custard filling. To start with, there was just way too much filling. Simply cutting the amount in half would have vastly improved this dessert, but it still wouldn't have been great. Obviously some chocolate would be nice, but I'm not sure how I would incorporate it. I think I'd like to try a more mousse-type peanut butter tart in the future. 

2. Lemon Coconut Bars

I like lemon. I like coconut. I should have liked these bars. I think their biggest problem was the vast gap between my expectations and reality. The recipe for these bars came from a blog, which had these beautiful photos of a crisp, coconut layer, then the lemon, and a cookie crust at the bottom. But my coconut and lemon layers completely melded into one, with none of the crispness I was looking for. The flavors were pretty good, so I'll just have to find other coconut lemon things. Although these cookies are kind of the best thing ever.

3. Fruit Pie

This pie is probably the most disastrous thing on this list. The recipe was ripped out of a magazine - which one I can't remember - and it was truly awful. I'm not sure why I even attempted this, since I have such amazing pies in my repertoire, but it looks quick and easy, so I gave it a shot. It is basically a store bought pie crust, filled with peaches and raspberries, with a custard-y mixture poured on top. Well, despite cooking it much longer than the recipe indicated, it was still runny and soggy and truly gross. Refrigerating it to try to get it to firm up just made it cold and soggy, which was not much of an improvement. Blech.

4. Chocolate Filled Scones

I've never made scones before. I've always thought of scones as dry and tasteless - and it turns out I was right! At least for this recipe. Part of the fault lies with me - I definitely didn't use enough chocolate in the middle of the scones, but I still felt like they weren't great. The drop off was also significant on day two, which I guess is par for the course with scones, but not everything in my house is really eaten day 1. I'm not quite giving up on scones in general - I'll have to re-imagine these, and make sure they're all eaten quick!

Anyway, that's what's been going on in my kitchen after hours. None of these really eclipses my top disasters though: for sheer inedibility - babke attempt 1; for biggest mess - exploding ice cream and for sheer frustration: complete meltdown.
Have you had any major disasters lately? Let me know so we can all feel bad together!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Honey Almond Financiers

If you've been around here a few days, you'll know that I don't like nuts. But the truth is - I don't like whole or chopped nuts - it's a texture thing - but I'm perfectly happy to use ground nuts. And I did just that in these financiers. That's a French word that I can't really pronounce correctly. All you need to know is that in this instance, it means small cake. 
These mini tea cakes - which I made in my mini muffin pan - apparently get their name from the fact that they are traditionally baked in small rectangular pans, resembling bars of gold.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Be My Friend?

It's been a long time since I've asked anyone this...but will you be my friend?

That's right...Baking and Mistaking now has it's own fan page on Facebook! Haven't you always wanted to recommend me to all your friends. Of course! Now's your chance!

Click here or check out the widget in the sidebar to "like" the fan page. Thanks!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Hearts, Hearts, Hearts

Tis the season...for engagements apparently. To celebrate the impending nuptials of Deena and David, I returned once more to the cookie decorating table. One hundred cookies, six hours and three batches of royal icing later..I emerged ready to party. 
 So if you are absolutely insane enough to want to know how to do this yourself, keep on reading. Or if you just want more reasons to thank yourself for not doing this, you can also keep reading. 

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Doughnuts - Baked and Fried

Happy Chanukah everyone! For those of you not celebrating - today is the first day of Chanukah...but there are seven more to come. Which is seven more days for you to make your own doughnuts at home. Yes, doughnuts!