Archive for July, 2012

Bake 52 Week 30: Lattice-Top Peach Pie

July 25, 2012

I was bummed that this recipe didn’t come just a few weeks later than it did so that I could use fresh peaches from my tree, but was happy when I got just the perfect number of them in my Bountiful Basket the week before we were to bake this pie.  I still haven’t ventured much into pie-making and have never made a lattice-top pie, so I was excited for the chance to learn something new with this recipe.

I really should probably try the pie crust recipes in the book, but since I know that the Betty Crocker recipe Amanda uses is pretty much foolproof, I have just been sticking with that.  I made up a double batch so that I’d have enough for the top and the bottom.

My peaches were perfectly ripe and smelled so yummy while they sat in the sugar creating their juices.  In the meantime, my lattice strips were in the freezer and the pie crust in the fridge.

The assembly part of the pie wasn’t really hard, but I could definitely use some practice.  I found it funny that the recipe wanted the lattice strips frozen so they wouldn’t break….mine were VERY brittle after coming out of the freezer and I had to be really careful handling them.  Two of them snapped in half anyway.  Oh well.  And my edges….yikes!

(This post is lacking in pictures because my camera was still in the car after a quick pre-term labor trip we made to the hospital…and I was too lazy to go fetch it…so phone pics is all I’ve got.)

Thankfully, pie crust is somewhat forgiving after it bakes… pie is still not perfectly pretty, but it looks better than it did pre-baking!

The kids were very excited to dig into this one, but they were really naughty the day that I made it, so their punishment was having to wait until the next day to have a slice.  When it came time to eat, I really didn’t have the appetite for pie, but I did take a small bite and it was pretty yummy.  We didn’t finish the entire pie, so Joseph took the remainder to work.  I was worried that a two-day-old pie would be received with reluctance, but I received a text first thing that morning saying it was a big hit.  One co-worker said the only thing that would make it better would be a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.

Talesha was this week’s host…check out her blog for the recipe.  Thanks for picking something so fun!

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Bake 52 Week 29: Cinnamon Rolls

July 18, 2012

This was a yummy week.  While I never crave things like cake, or cookies, or pie, I do loooove bread-based baked goods.  I have yet to come across the perfect cinnamon roll recipe, but this one was close.  They were yummy!

A fun addition to the cinnamon/sugar mixture was cloves.  At first, I wasn’t quite sure how I felt about that.  The rolls smelled so different from traditional cinnamon rolls while they were baking and every so often I’d get a whiff of the cloves and realize that was the difference.  I was pleasantly surprised when I ate one though…the cloves were subtle, but just there enough to add a little extra punch to the flavor.  I’m not sure I’d add them every time, but it was a nice deviation from the norm.

I’ve grown tired of the amount of butter that all this baking we’ve been doing has used, so I decided to skip brushing the dough with butter before sprinkling the sugar on it….instead, I used the technique we learned with the cinnamon loaf and just sprayed it with water.

My roll turned out a little longer than the 18″ the recipe called for, and I wondered if I had maybe not made it fat enough when I wound up with three extra rolls and they still didn’t fill the pan.  They looked much better after rising, but there was still space to spare in the pan. And maybe it’s because I don’t have any good, sharp knives in my kitchen, but I don’t know why anybody would want to slice the rolls with a knife when we all know that using dental floss is such a slick little trick for slicing cinnamon rolls (we all know that, right?).

I know Amanda will probably drive all the way from California to throw tomatoes at me when I say this, but I REALLY don’t like cream cheese.  Nothing ruins frosting for me like cream cheese, and since the glaze for these cinnamon rolls called for cream cheese, I opted to use a different glaze recipe.  The end result was delicious and we all enjoyed a roll (or two) after lunch.

The recipe says to dump the rolls out of the pan to cool before adding the glaze. Unless I were going to serve these right away to enough people to eat them quickly, I’d leave them in the pan. We found that they dried out pretty fast just sitting on a cooling rack.

Valerie was this week’s host….check out her blog for this great recipe!


Bake 52 Week 28: Fresh Fruit Tart

July 11, 2012

We skipped last week due to the holiday.  A few die-hards made 4th of July desserts, but I enjoyed the week off :).

We’re picking back up this week with a fresh fruit tart, which looked sooooo yummy to me!  I’ve never made a tart before, so I was excited to try this recipe out.

The day I was planning to bake was HOT….triple digits hot…and my A/C froze up on us, so I couldn’t bear the thought of turning my oven on when my house was 85°.  I waited until late that night when it cooled down some to whip up the tart crust and get it in the fridge, hoping that the A/C would thaw out overnight and I’d be able to bake the next day.  Thankfully it did!

The recipe said to take the chilled dough out and let it sit for about 10 minutes before rolling it out.  I learned quickly that if you’re not fast with working with tart dough, it will make your life miserable.  After the 10 minutes were up, it was still a bit firm and difficult to roll….but less than a minute or two later, it was so soft that it kept cracking and tearing while I attempted to roll it out.

I did lots of patching to fill in the places where the dough had torn or pulled away.  I figured it wouldn’t be a big deal in the long run because it would be filled with yummy goodness after it’s baked anyway.  I didn’t get a picture of the unfilled, baked crust, but it turned out just fine.

Aside from my struggle with the crust, the remainder of the tart went together quite easily.  I was unable to find either apple or red currant jelly at the store, so I just used the raspberry preserves I already had in my fridge.  I think the point of the jelly is to give the fruit a nice sheen, so probably anything you have on hand would work.

This tart isn’t a quick dessert to make, due to various cooling/chilling times needed, but the end result is REALLY pretty!  And I’m sure glad that I bought an extra package of raspberries, because Emmy and I nearly consumed an entire one ourselves after assembling the tart!

If nothing but the presentation of this recipe counted, it would score a 10!  See what I mean?  PRETTY!

Since presentation isn’t everything, we of course had to dig in for a taste.  28 weeks into this project, and I think it’s probably one of my favorite dessert recipes yet!  It was SO yummy!  The crust was like a delicious, crispy sugar cookie….the cream filling was perfectly sweet….and the berries were divine!  I was pretty full after one piece, but Emmy gobbled up two big ones in no time flat!  Even Ryan, who has become my least willing to try new things, liked his (with the exception of the raspberries, which I knew he didn’t like anyway).

Amanda was this week’s host and she hit a homerun at our house….check out her blog for this awesome recipe!