Tuesday, February 21, 2012

TWD-BWJ Chocolate Truffle Tartlets

It's February, and that means one thing, CHOCOLATE! These chocolate tartlets have a buttery cocoa fluted shell and rich, decadent dark chocolate truffle filling with milk chocolate, white chocolate and biscotti chunks mixed in. I was excited to use my little fluted tart pans since I purchased them in 2009 for Tuesday with Dorie's poached pear tartlets.

The chocolate truffle tartlet recipe was surprisingly simple though it had several steps and required refrigeration between them but it went fast and I was able to knock these out during my kiddos nap. I took four tarts to a ladies game night, left one for the hubs and the monkey to share on their "daddy/daughter Valentine movie night" and took one to my boss. (I am such a kiss up!)

I had so much fun making these and I kept meaning to take photos, I really did. But, I was in a rush and couldn't find my camera. Then someone at game night promised to send me a photo and yet, I still don't have one. See my best replacement effort below.

Game night ladies, the hubby, the munchkin, and my boss all loved this dessert. I really liked it, too and (don't tell anyone) I'm not a huge chocolate fan.

I have really missed baking and am so thankful to be back in TWD. It feels great to spend some time creating something I can share with others. It is a much more productive activity than watching Real Housewives of Orange County and playing Word with Friends. (I'm tangerinetart on WWF, play me!)

This week's Tuesday's with Dorie - Baking with Julia is hosted by Jessica, Spike, Jaime, and Steph. You can find the recipe and some really impressive photography on their amazing blogs. See you next time as we tackle Rugelach.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

TWD - White Loaves

Wow! It has been a while since I blogged something I baked or cooked. But I am happy to be back on the bandwagon, baking, blogging and stuffing my face!

This week, Tuesday's with Dorie (the online baking group I joined in Feb 2008 and quit mid 2009) is starting over with a new cook book, Baking with Julia by Dorie Greenspan. The recipes in this book range from moderate to are-you-kidding-me difficult. But, as with all Ms. Greenspan's recipes, they are clear, concise and full of helpful tips. It really as if Dorie is in the kitchen guiding you each step of the way. I'm looking forward to tackling the recipes twice a month and sharing the results with you.

Up first, White Loaves.

This is the first time I made a real loaf of bread. Sure, I've made sweet breads, quick breads, biscuits and even brioche in my last go-round of TWD. But, this was the first "slice off a piece or two and make a sandwich" bread and it was delicious, but I'll get to that in a minute. First, it was easy. Really easy. I kept double checking the recipe to make sure I hadn't forgotten some key step. But, nope. I had it down. The toughest part was holding my mixer down so it didn't jump off the counter while beating/kneading the dough. My little mixer sure got a workout!

The first rise went exactly as described in the book. I was worried about the second rise since I only have one loaf pan and it was not the recommended 8.5x4.5 size. My pan is 9x5 so I used that and then another random sized Pyrex dish that was slightly smaller and more square than a loaf pan. I split the dough 1/3 and 2/3 and forged on as directed. The second rise went just fine so into the oven they went!

The smaller loaf baked for 35 minutes and the larger loaf for 45. I wish I had taken the smaller loaf out of the pan to let the sides brown up a bit but I'd forgotten to set a timer and was worried I'd overdone it so I just let it be as it was. The larger loaf received the benefit of a little extra tanning time and the crust was just perfect (if I do say so myself!).

Overall, this bread was easy, inexpensive to make , made the MOST delicious toast and would the perfect partner to a fully loaded BLT. My little monkey even loved it, though she skipped the crusts. What is up with all kids not eating the crusts?! I NEVER cut them off for her. How did she get the idea to not eat them?

Anyway, first week down, lots more to go. I can't wait to grow as a baker with all my TWD friends. Head over to www.tuesdayswithdorie.com to find a link to the recipe and to see what all the other bakers made. I hear some made their bread fancy!

Until next time...

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Is this thing on??

Hello, is anybody out there? This is my first post in over 2.5 years. Do you think that has anything to do with the fact that my daughter is now 2.4 years old? Hmmmm.

Anyway, Tuesdays with Dorie is heating up and diving into Baking with Julia, another one of Dorie Greenspan's collections of amazing recipes. I have really missed blogging with the group so I decided to jump in again. Stay tuned for bi-weekly posts featuring my wins and losses while I bake with Julia (and Dorie).

I hope to throw in some other topics about my life since so much has changed since 2009 and I need a place to lay it all out there.

All the best to you all and thanks for reading!