One of Jim’s biggest complaints about the baking I do is rooted in my biggest thrill– variety. “Once you fine-tune something, I never taste it again because you’re off to the next thing.” But there is so much to do, flavors to try, textures to taste. I can’t help myself! Sure, I love to revisit old friends, but I also love to try new things and experiment and I only have so much time to bake. Alas, I continue to experiment.
Here are two recipes in process. They have some good things going, but I’m still working out some kinks.
Lemon Almond Bread
Problems: baking anything with slices of fruit on top creates uneven areas of moisture which makes it harder to test for doneness. Also, I can’t decide if it tastes almondy enough. I may add extract, combined with almond meal. Things that work: the flavor combo and a nice texture.
Semolina Maple Cakes with Caramelized Pineapple and Lime Cream Sauce
Woo– that is a mouthful, literally and figuratively. Problems: my pineapple didn’t caramelize! Perhaps the pineapple will be cooked separately. Also, I didn’t like the texture of the cream. I used silken tofu, which I can be quite fickle with. I love it in some situations and hate it in others. Peanut Butter Chocolate Silk Pie, love it. Lime Cream Sauce, hate it. I’m thinking maybe a cashew base? What worked: the cake had an awesome texture, I could have eaten my way through a full size cake, moist, perfect amount of sweetness with a thin crunch on the top (bottom in this case) of the crust.
Here is a recipe in process that isn’t mine:
Apricot Tart from Orangette. I stumbled across an image of a French bakery with an apricot tart in it’s case a few days ago and was delighted by the inspiration because I had a container of apricots sitting in my fridge. “Yay, apricots!” I had exclaimed when I saw them at the store, greedily snatching them up and placing them in the safety of my cart. Days later, they were languishing in the back of my fridge, forgotten. This recipe was vegan in the blink of an eye.
Apricots are really a special fruit, probably second only to nectarines in the stone fruit family, in my book. They have an intoxicating scent, filling your sinuses and clouding your mind, an aphrodisiac of sorts. This simple tart is a palette for sharing that essence without fancying it up unnecessarily. The only problem that I had was that my sugar in the filling never firmed up, staying liquid. I sopped up a bit of it and let some of it soak into the buttery crust, but I wanted that gel. I had to use a slightly smaller tart pan, so perhaps I had more apricots in a smaller space than she did. I will definitely revisit this recipe, though. Tangy, complicated and fresh.
So does Jim have room to complain? Not so much. Especially because I still make him classics, like the Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies from Damn Tasty, minus the pecans, add raisins. Okay, fine, so I played with the recipe… but you cannot dampen the creative spirit!
Squirrel’s Vegan KitchenGo back in time to my original blog: Squirrel’s Vegan Kitchen!
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