Sometimes I am not the best planner when it comes to baking. I can plan out my life for weeks in advance, but time in the kitchen? Not so much. Often on a whim, I’ll decide I need something sweet immediately, so I’ll rummage through the pantry and throw something together. In those instances, I am limited by what I have on hand, but usually I can come up with something plenty delicious. It’s much less frequently that I actually plan ahead of time to make something specific, though I do have my monthly Secret Recipe Club challenge to keep my on track. Or at least I should… (more…)
A couple of weeks ago, Kevin and I were craving pizza, so I went in search of a good gluten-free pizza dough recipe. I’ve made gluten-free pizza dough once before, and it actually tasted pretty decent, but it didn’t even slightly resemble regular pizza dough. This time, I wanted to find something that would fool me into thinking it just might have gluten in it. I know gluten-free baking is just so vastly different from regular gluten baking that I should accept the differences and move on, but I’ve come to find that I really enjoy the challenge of making something gluten-free, that doesn’t look like it. (more…)
May’s Daring Bakers’ Challenge was pretty twisted – Ruth from The Crafts of Mommyhood challenged us to make challah! Using recipes from all over, and tips from “A Taste of Challah,” by Tamar Ansh, she encouraged us to bake beautifully braided breads. Since I’m still not having gluten, this month’s challenge was a bit bittersweet. I absolutely love challah, and find it to be one of the most beautiful breads with it’s pretty braid, and the lovely golden sheen it develops when baking. But after a quick bit of research, I found that gluten-free challah is a whole different beast (as is the case with most gluten-free adaptations), and would probably not resemble normal challah. Still, I was happy to find a Gluten-Free Challah recipe on Epicurious, provided as an alternative to this month’s challenge, that had a couple of rave reviews. After all, if someone else has executed this recipe and loved it, what’s to say I won’t love it too?
Yet another month has come for the Secret Recipe Club, and another great recipe discovery. This month I was assigned a great blog called Gastronomical Sovereignty, written by Kristy, who says through her blog she’s “blindly stumbling through the ethical considerations of culinary deliciousness.” Pretty neat huh? It took me a while to settle on just one of her many recipes, but once I came across these brioche buns it was settled. I love brioche, and her rolls looked fantastic!
In my family, we’re all about trying new things with food — my mother is a (closet) master cook, with a serious knack for throwing a bit of this and a pinch of that together to create a surprisingly delicious dish. She rarely follows recipes, and yet still manages to create masterpieces. I stick with my recipes because I know them, and they rarely let me down, but even still I’m always trying new ones and pushing the boundaries as much and as often as I can. But also in my family, we’ve got some old stand-by’s, the treats that have stood the test of time that we know we’ll keep making forever and the day after too. These sticky buns are one of them — they take some effort, but they would never EVER betray our greedy taste buds. Given that this past weekend was our last in my childhood home, the place that has spawned many of tray of these gooey, decadent buns, I figured why not one last hurrah? (more…)
I bought several packets of yeast a while back, with hopes that having it in my possession would encourage me to make some homemade bread. I bought all kinds of flour, and a new cookbook, so I really had no excuse not to. Last week, I decided to give it a go, and I was pleasantly surprised! It’s such a novel idea to me, to be able to make your own bread for any occasion that may arise. I envision myself making bread for sandwiches, and bread for toast, and sweetbread for breakfast, and egg bread for sticky buns. I hope that someday this one loaf of bread will inspire me to make every kind of bread that I can ever imagine, but for now, I’ll just tell you about the one loaf that (hopefully) started it all. (more…)
The very first recipe I really ever crafted to call my own was for sticky buns. It was derived from a maple sticky bun recipe in an old issue of Bon Appetit, but I made some significant alterations, and it became my signature masterpiece. But sticky buns aren’t something you can just whip up anytime you’d like, so I reserve that recipe for special occasions. (more…)