Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tuesdays With Dorie: Caramel Crunch Bars

Well, once again, we--The Tuesdays with Dorie we--do a shortbread-based cookie. My favorite. I've learned some basics for this: namely, don't overmix. I wanted to be lazy and not chop the chocolate, but I look at the Dorie photo and the bits of chocolate are really tiny. I pull out the processor.

Tell me this isn't the best line EVER in a recipe: With a spatula and your fingertips, cajole (the batter) into a thin, even layer.

I do my best, Dorie, I do my best to cajole.I actually made a market run specifically to get Heath Toffee bits. And came home without them. Luckily, my inner sugar-fiend made me buy True North nut clusters yesterday--these are chunks of nuts held together with a tiny bit of toffee. Works for me. I throw a bunch of the cluster right into the food processor and get my topping.Chop the chocolate for the topping? Nah. I've actually made toffee bars from Silver Palate before where you just sprinkle the chips on top. Pop it back in the oven, let them soften and spread. I use up what I have: some milk chocolate, some bittersweet. Smooth it over my cajoled batter, press in my toffee/nut crunch. Let cool.


Well done, Dorie. Well done.
Go have a look at what the other TWD bakers are doing.

My First Video

I made this for www.FloridaTable.com, but want to share it here, too. My first video:

Judging the Almost Famous Chef Competition from Barb Freda on Vimeo.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tuesdays with Dorie: CAKE!

Got Milk?

Good. Because this cake needs an ice cold glass of milk. Classic chocolate and marshmallow-y frosting. I LOVE that you get to crumble a layer and plaster is all over the outside. It hides a multitude of assembly sins. But really? No sins here, because it all tastes great.

I love this frosting...Swiss meringue? Italian? What's the difference? Silky smooth. Even I can't mess it up.

Have some sugar.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Visualize World Peace...Cookies, That Is.

Yes, folks, the good news is that I am actually going to post a Tuesdays With Dorie on a Tuesday. The bad news? There is none! We are eating chocolate, so it's all good.

I have high hopes for these..I made chocolate cookies with some salt a few years ago...LOVED them..and cannot remember the recipe. This could be the one.

I love it when I have all the ingredients. Isn't flour sifted with cocoa pretty? And I just happened to have a sample tin of Fleur de Sel (Thanks, The Meadow...)

So is chopped chocolate...pretty, I mean.

I am rushing (what else is new) ...I want to take the cookies to a Super Bowl party...so I can't let the cookies chill. I did follow Dorie's light touch instructions, though--mixed until only just combined...I have Scharffen Berger chocolate...lucky me (and lucky people who are eating these..

I rolled them into small balls and flattened them to about the 1/2 inch Dorie wants...I baked one minute longer than she says, too...maybe they are a smidge over 1/2 inch...Mmm. Love these, and yes, I do believe this is the recipe--the salt is there, detectable, but not overwhelming. They are so delicate, too--they melt in your mouth, which, I believe after these weeks of baking, is a result of Dorie's instructions to mix lightly...

Go get yourself some World Peace...I've got mine.