I've done all the recipes from Vovoi's book, at least, those working :) I'm back in my cookbooks !
"Exquises pâtisseries pour les Fêtes" de Christophe Felder,
Choice was rather hard, because all the recipes seem delicious... My first pick is the marbled cake chocolate & vanilla.
I've done this one for a few years now, it must figure on my blog.
To be sure I haven't changed anything in the recipe since I've been using it, I've checked everything one more time. I hadn't changed a thing !
As good as usual, I can eat humongous piece of it !
- Creamcheese and chocolate icing -
For 1 big cake, or 2 middle sized cake (8inch by 4)
You will need :
for the batter
2cup and 1tbsp of flour (9.7 oz / 275gr)
6.1 oz of unsalted, softened butter (16tbsp / 175gr)
- sout of the fridge 1hour in advance -
1 cup 1/2 granulated sugar (13.2 oz / 375gr )
8.5 fl.oz half & half (25cL)
1tsp of baking powder (0.2 oz/5gr)
4tsp unsweetened cocoa (0.9oz/25gr) de cacao amer en poudre
1tbsp vanilla extract
Turn your oven on at 375°C
In his recipe, Christophe Felder says to mix everything in a robot with a tool for working dough...
I don't have any, so here is what I've done :
Stir by hand, with a wooden spoon doing fluid but quick moves, rising the dough. the butter with sugar and salt to have a creamy batter
Add the eggs and stir until homogeneous
Finally stir in the flour with the baking powder
You have a soft and homogeneous batter
Divide it in two equal halves, in the first one, whisk in the cocoa.
In the other one, whisk in the vanilla
Use a whisk or a spatula by doing quick moves : cut and rise the batterMélangez au fouet ou par mouvement rapide en coupant/soulevant avec une spatule
Butter and flour your cakepan
- Christophe Felder says to spread melted butter on it and cover them with a parchment paper -
Start by pouring a thin layer with the cocoa batter (1/2inch) Do the same with the vanilla one etc...
Don't go further than 2/3 of your cakepan, it will rise a lot during baking :)
Bake it 40 minutes, without opening the oven. Depending on your cakepan, it often goes to 50 minutes.
Check the cooking by inserting a pick or a clean smooth knife in the center,
if it comes out clean, it's baked !
Let it cool down at room temperature before turning out.
Christophe Felder gives the recipe for a chocolate icing made of "vegetaline" since I don't have any and I don't even know where to buy it in California, I will explain a Chocolate & creamcheese icing.
Chocolate & creamcheese icing
You will need :
1oz unsweetened chocolate
0.75 oz unsweetened cocoa
2.8 oz creamcheese
3.5oz powdered sugar
2tsp vanilla extract
3tbsp half & half or water
2 pinch of salt
Melt the chocolate in the microwave with 2tbsp of water
Soften the creamcheese with an electric beater for 2 minutes, mix in the cocoa, the vanilla and the melted chocolate at medium speed
Mix in the sugar and the salt little by little, go on medieum/high speed.
Add in some water or half and half to obtain the perfect consistancy
I'm back at my parent's place for Christmas and when I got back, my mom wanted a Tarte Tatin really badly, she had already bought apples and looked through recipes !
We went through more recipes to compare and chose the best way to bake it. It was a nice teamwork.
~~ The result was a bit too good for our bodyline ~~
We looked in "Le Larousse de la cuisine" which is like an encyclopedia about cooking,
all the famous recipe... it's a dictionnary. Then we checked the recipe of Christophe Féron
in Christophe Felder's book : "Exquises Pâtisseries pour les fêtes".
We've also checked the recipe of Guy Savoy... etc. To conclude, there is many way to proceed.
Finally we did not pick the easy one,
but the most interesting one.
So we made a mix of those recipes.
Not too much butter, a home made shortcrust dough, vanilla flavoured (or cinnamon)
Baked on the stove and in the oven.
Add 1/2tbsp of vanilla extract stirred in 1/2tbsp of sugar in the water
Allumer le four à 200°C
Prepare the apple
Rinse and peel the apples, cut them in half and remove the seeds
- you can remove the seeds after cutting them if you prefer -
Depending on their size, cut these halves in 3 or 4 slices
- 1 apple is cut in 6 pieces or 8 if it's a big apple
Pick a mold that goes on the stove and in the oven.
Place it on your stove at low heat, and melt the butter in it. Add the apple in and stir delicately
so they get fully covered of butter.
Leave them 3 to 5 minutes to get buttery and a bit yellowish and remove them from the mold,
they must not cook too much, they are still firm
- some butter is left in the mold, that's good -
Faire un caramel
Pour sugar in the buttered mold, add 1tbsp of water and 1pinch of salt
Put it on high/medium heat to make a caramel (toffee)
Stir with a wooden spoon so it won't burn
It must have a really dark caramel shade and be liquid
Turn off the fire, take the mold in hands > with gloves
and do a circular move so the caramel gets everywhere in the mold
By getting cooler, it gets harder and will stay in place
When the caramel is still soft but sticky enough to stop moving,
place the apples as flower petals, close from each other,
press on the mold when placing them to get the caramel going in between.
Start by the outter circle with the biggest slices, then the inner circle.
You have extra apple left, use them in smal pieces to fill in the holes.
- about a half apple is enough -
Spread some cinnamon on the apple if you like it :)
Making the Tatin
Flatten your dough on a floured table, fold it delicately in half, then in 4. Carry it carefully on your apples, folds in the center. Unfold it to cover the pie.
Make the dough stick on the edges toward the apples. Don't use a fork to stab it.
Bake 40 minutes or so.
The dough must be real golden.
Turn out when tepid :)
- afer 15 minutes out of the oven -
Serve tepid with a vanilla ice cream or table cream !
My brother works on his exams, I am working on my basics recipes ;)
During our Thanksgiving trip, we stopped at a few different places that I will talk about in another post.
Christmas is coming and we found that delicate Dessert wine that would go very well with Foie gras or with dessert :)
Let me tell you the story... We were in Carmel, had spent the day wandering in the town (really cute town) and we had found cheese in the cutest listtle shop, that did cheese tasting :-) As french people, we bought a few cheese and decided to have a dinner made of cheese, bread and wine.
After a long walk, we finally found some bread in a bakery, but we were out of wine. It was already 7pm, dark, cold, and it had started raining. On our way back to the Inn, we passed by "The Bountiful Basket" it seemed cute, cosy and another couple was already in. It was a wine and olive oil shop.
And they did wine tasting ! So we went in, sat, and did the wine tasting :)
The owner was friendly, we didn't learn a lot on the wine itself but on the business.
So we trusted our guts on the wines.
We had a few reds and whites from Joyce winery, not great ones... and rather expensive ! There was 3 dessert wines, the first one is our favorite, it reminded us of the Sauternes (the foie gras wine, really sweet) his name is Angelica. We were seduced by its frutty taste, but still pretty strong. We could almost drink it with appetizers. So we bought some :)
19% alcohol), they have 4 or 5 different flavors
Its name is PasoPort, they have worked on labels with a designer, I kinda like them... old school :)
We also bought 2 other bottles for gifts, and a bad red wine for our cheese of course.
If you go there, try to avoid the Joyce wines :)
But if you really love Zinfandel wines, I guess they are ok.
texture is lighter, less toffee than the previous one. Less butter, less sugar.
For 25 cookies or a monster big cookie cake :)
you will need :
1cup 1/2 of chocolate chip (6,1oz / 175gr)
- or dark chocolate chunk -
1.8 oz of unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 stick of butter
- out 1 hour before use -
1 cup and 1tbsp of flour
1/2 cup of brown sugar
2 eggs at room temperature
1tbsp fine grounded coffee
- I emptied a Nespresso -
1tsp vanilla extract
1/4tsp of salt
4 pinch baking soda
2 pinch baking powder
Turn on the oven at 375°F
Melt the unsweetened chocolate with 1 cup of chocolate chip and 2tbsp of water in a pan at low heat, stir until smooth
In a bowl, mix your butter with the sugar, use an electric beater at high speed for 2 minutes, set aside
- if your butter is too hard, put it in a mold a fewminutes in the pre-heating oven to soften ir -
Beat the eggs with the coffee with the eletric beater for 1 minute, stir them in the previous batter, and stir in the melted chocolate. Then pour in the flour, baking soda and bowder, stir until smooth and homogeneous Then, add the half cup of chocolate chips left.
On a cooking tray, do golf-ball size heap with the batter, spaced of 2 inch, Flatten them a little
Bake 10 to 12 minutes, the top must be a bit cracked !