Monday, May 31, 2010
Our Summer "Cooking School": Momofuku, Mastering the Art of Chinese Cooking, Zuni Cafe Cookbook and Thomas Keller Galore
Friday, May 28, 2010
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Friday, May 21, 2010
For better or worse, these days baking has become my respite. And that means that on weekends I bake bread and during the week I often find myself cooking sweet breads and cakes. I try to keep the amount of sugar that my kids eat and the amount of fat to a minimum. So, buttermilk has become an essential ingredient for adding moistness without too much fat. One night last week I just HAD to have chocolate cake. I found the recipe below and literally made it in minutes. Other websites note that you can even make this cake directly in your cake pan for minimal clean up. The end result: a moist, chocolate cake that wasn't too sweet or too rich. More importantly, it was so quick and easy that this will be my new go-to recipe for potlucks, birthdays and nights that chocolate cravings strike.
Chocolate Buttermilk Cake (adapted from the Fannie Farmer Cookbook)
1 2/3 cup flour (I suspect you could use white whole wheat flour here, too. I love the King Arthur brand)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup cocoa (the better the cocoa, the better the cake)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk, well-shaken
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla
(walnuts, toasted and cooled or chocolate chips, optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Butter and lightly flour two 8 inch round cake pans or one 9 x 13 baking dish. Mix the dry ingredients in one bowl. Mix the buttermilk, oil, and vanilla in another bowl. Mix the dry and liquid ingredients together until smooth. Add in the optional nuts or chocolate chips. Spread in the pans.
Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes for the small round pans, and about 35 to 45 minutes if using the large pan. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes in the pan before turning out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed (or frozen bananas, defrosted)
1/3 cup melted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 Tbsp espresso or strong coffee (optional)
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
2 1/2 cups of either King Arthur's White Whole Wheat Flour (OR 1 1/2 cups of white flour and 1 cup of wheat flour, mixed)
1 Preheat the oven to 350°F. With a wooden spoon, mix butter into the mashed bananas in a large mixing bowl.
2 Mix in the sugar, egg, espresso and vanilla.
3 Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in.
4 Add the flour, mix until it is just incorporated.
5 Pour mixture into a prepared muffin tin. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin. If it comes out clean, it's done. Cool on a rack.
Makes 12 muffins.