Posts Tagged 'leftovers'

I have writer’s block, I think – Walnut Toffees

All right. Here it is. Tuesday. And another attempt at caramel.

This one is all right. Only all right, though. I had some walnuts to use up. I had some condensed milk open from something else I was whipping up.

The caramels weren’t very soft when they were cooled. I preferred them straight out of the freezer. They kind of shatter in your mouth and then get chewy. It reminds me of this one Canadian toffee (or English, maybe?) that my mum used to get when we were little.

Today is just today. There’s always tomorrow. Ok. Ok bye. I think I have writer’s block. You could gift these. That would be cute. But they’re not that good.

L

Walnut Toffee

From food.com

2 cups white sugar
2 cups light corn syrup
1/2 cup butter
2 cups evaporated milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup pecans, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
Line a 9×13 pan with parchment. (I halved the recipe and used a smaller pan.) Butter the parchment. Boil sugar, salt and corn syrup to 245 degrees, stirring occasionally. Add butter and evaporated milk gradually so that the mixture does not stop boiling, stirring constantly. Boil until the thermometer reaches 240 degrees F, being careful not to scorch the caramel. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and nuts.  Pour into greased pan. When caramel is cool and firm, cut and wrap with waxed paper squares. Store in the refrigerator (or freezer, if you like a shatter-y caramel).

 

Rando Tuesdays: Leftovers, Wedding Edition

This is what happens with leftover wedding cakes. Cake of any sort makes for happy co-workers. Using up leftover fillings makes for happy Lauren. One of my biggest issues with these cakes was figuring out how much filling to use. When it was all said and done, there was much to use up. Heaven knows I could not eat all of it by myself, especially since my family was like, “Lauren, what do you expect us to do? Funnel it into our mouths like water?” Why yes, family, yes I do.

You can find the scaled-down recipes below. The whipped chocolate ganache was especially amazing.

Happy trails,

L

Whipped Chocolate Ganache

Adapted from The Kitchn

This is useful for filling, piping or spooning. For additional tips, read my how-to post.

1 pound bittersweet or dark chocolate, chopped roughly
3 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream (I used maybe two cups)
Pinch salt
1 tablespoon brandy, rum, vanilla, or another flavoring (optional)

Put the chocolate in a large, heatproof bowl — ideally the bowl of a stand mixer. Heat the cream to boiling and pour over the chocolate. Let it sit for about ten minutes, then add the salt and flavoring, if desired, and blend with the whisk attachment of a stand mixer or just stir by hand with a spatula.

Refrigerate for about two hours, or until firm all the way through. Whip with a stand mixer or beaters until soft, whipped, and slightly lightened in color.

Raspberry Pastry Cream

2 cups milk
1/4 cup white sugar2 egg yolks
1 egg
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/3 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (I omitted this and stuck with 1/4 cup of raspberry puree, or a little more)

In a heavy saucepan, stir together the milk and 1/4 cup of sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and egg. Stir together the remaining sugar and cornstarch; then stir them into the egg until smooth.

When the milk comes to a boil, drizzle it into the bowl in a thin stream while mixing so that you do not cook the eggs. Return the mixture to the saucepan, and slowly bring to a boil, stirring constantly so the eggs don’t curdle or scorch on the bottom. When the mixture comes to a boil and thickens, remove from the heat. Stir in the butter and vanilla, mixing until the butter is completely blended in. Stir in 1/4 cup of strained raspberry puree, or to taste.

Pour into a heat-proof container and place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until chilled before using.

Pipe Dream #116: To Pick Right – Truffled Parmesan Biscuits with Ham, Asparagus and Pesto

It just so happened that I celebrated my birthday when I visited Nice this last April (pictures to come this week). Clearly, I’ve never had it so good. I didn’t make myself a cake, I didn’t plan my own party. I just had to choose the restaurant, which is actually kind of a big deal if you are on vacation with your friends. I mean, if the biggest thing you have to worry about is which fabulous restaurant to pick among hundreds, I’d say you’re doing pretty well, but it’s still a lot of pressure, trying to make everyone happy and all that. But I didn’t worry too much. It was my birthday.

Anyway, we went to this place called Terre de Truffes (Earth of Truffles, I think) that was totally dead (it was a Wednesday night). After debating outside for a few minutes, we decided to chance it and walked in. And we were glad.

I’ll just say this. After a full thirty minutes of poring over the menu and exclaiming over the food and gasping repeatedly at the bountiful subtler-than-garlic-but-better-than-garlic-if-you-can-believe-that offerings (things like fresh sea scallops with shaved truffles, truffle saffron reduction and truffled romano potatoes and truffled caramel baba au rhum), we finally decided. And really, there was no way we could have gone wrong. I had never had truffles before, and it is likely that I will never have such a truffle experience ever again. Especially considering the bill for three…but it was totally worth it.

So imagine my surprise when I got home. My mother had bough a whole bottle of truffle oil without even knowing my newfound truffle love! Needless to say, I was very pleased and even more pleased when I found this truffle biscuit recipe.

These biscuits are easy to prepare and turn out very flaky. Make sure your biscuit dough is cold, and you’re golden. Add some accompanying flavors and you have a whole meal deal. Plus the experience of a truffle lifetime. I’m sure you could make them with regular olive oil too, but really, just get some truffle oil. It will change you for the better.

OH,

L

Truffled Parmesan Biscuits with Ham, Asparagus and Pesto

Adapted from aspicyperspective

For the biscuits:

2 cups  all-purpose flour
1-½ tablespoons baking powder
½ teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to sprinkle on top
4 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into cubes
4 tablespoons vegetable shortening, cut into cubes
¾ cups buttermilk
1 tablespoon shaved truffle (or 1 teaspoon truffle oil)
⅓ cup parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons melted butter, or egg wash

For the rest of it:

1 cup pesto, fresh or jarred (I used a dehydrated sundried tomato pesto)

12 slices ham, proscuitto, or whatever else you have around

4 or 5 asparagus spears, cut into 2 inch pieces

Heat oven to 450ºF with the rack in the center.

Using a food processor, pulse all the dry ingredients together. Add the butter and shortening, then pulse until it resembles course chopped nuts. Add the buttermilk, truffles and Parmesan, then pulse again until it forms moist clumps.

Dump the wet dough onto a well floured surface. Flour your hands and press the dough into an even rectangle, 1 1/4 inch high. Use a 2-inch cutter to cut the biscuits. Gather the scraps, press and cut again; you should have 12 biscuits all together. (Try to cut as many in the first round as possible. The second batch will be slightly tougher.)

Using the melted butter or egg wash, brush the top of each biscuits and place them on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Lightly sprinkle them with sea salt and bake for 10-12 minutes.

While the biscuits are baking, heat a tablespoon of olive oil (or truffle oil) in a frying pan over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, chuck in the asparagus and season with salt and pepper, stirring occasionally until the spears have turned bright green and are slightly tender. They should not be super soft.

While the biscuits are warm, crack them open and smear them with pesto. Then layer a piece of prosciutto and three asparagus chunks on each biscuit and place the top back on.

Pipe Dream #40: To Use Up Leftovers

For some reason, whenever I make chocolate cupcakes, I always have leftover batter. In some cases, I end up filling the liners too full because I don’t want any batter to go to waste, and then they overflow.

Ahem. Exhibit A:

The rest of them were prettier. But see how there was a good quarter inch of overflow that I picked off before frosting? Yep.

Sew anyway, I often use up leftover batter by making mini cupcakes. They are small, meaning they are simpler to decorate, and I can make a full batch of them to give away. Here is another example.

Also b0nus, this is me endeavoring to be a good steward. Yes!


For cute!

L


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