Thursday, January 29, 2009

[Daring Bakers] Tuiles paired with apple compote

Note: French version is on my other blog: La cuisine de Babeth
Rare cancer awareness: don't forget to check: Help beat sarcoma

Previously featured on La vie in English: Puffy cumin gougères

Today is the day millions (may be only hundreds ;-)) reveal the monthly Daring Bakers challenge. This month's challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from The Chocolate Book by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux.

This challenge was fun and thanks God! light. Isn't that great to still be able to satisfy ones sweet tooth and still stay away from rich food after Holidays extravaganza. Plus we were ask to think outside the recipe, we could pair the tuiles with whatever we wanted.

I picked a simple apple and cinnamon compote (peel cut the apples, bake them for 15 min in boiling water, drain and puree them in a blender, add grounded cinnamon to serve).

Note: compote means sauce in French.

Tuiles recipe:

Recipe:
Yields: 20 small butterflies/6 large (butterflies are just an example)
Preparation time batter 10 minutes, waiting time 30 minutes, baking time: 5-10 minutes per batch

65 grams / ¼ cup / 2.3 ounces softened butter (not melted but soft)
60 grams / ½ cup / 2.1 ounces sifted confectioner’s sugar
1 sachet vanilla sugar (7 grams or substitute with a dash of vanilla extract)
2 large egg whites (slightly whisked with a fork)
65 grams / 1/2 cup / 2.3 ounces sifted all purpose flour
sliced almonds for decoration
Butter/spray to grease baking sheet

Oven: 180C / 350F

Using a hand whisk or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle (low speed) and cream butter, sugar and vanilla to a paste. Keep stirring while you gradually add the egg whites. Continue to add the flour in small batches and stir to achieve a homogeneous and smooth batter/paste. Be careful to not overmix.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to firm up. (This batter will keep in the fridge for up to a week, take it out 30 minutes before you plan to use it).

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or grease with either butter/spray and chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes. This will help spread the batter more easily if using a stencil/cardboard template such as the butterfly. Press the stencil on the bakingsheet and use an off sided spatula to spread batter. Leave some room in between your shapes. Sprinkle sliced almonds on them.

Bake butterflies in a preheated oven (180C/350F) for about 5-10 minutes or until the edges turn golden brown. Immediately release from bakingsheet and proceed to shape/bend the cookies in the desired shape. These cookies have to be shaped when still warm, you might want to bake a small amount at a time or maybe put them in the oven to warm them up again. (Haven’t tried that). Or: place a bakingsheet toward the front of the warm oven, leaving the door half open. The warmth will keep the cookies malleable.

If you don’t want to do stencil shapes, you might want to transfer the batter into a piping bag fitted with a small plain tip. Pipe the desired shapes and bake. Shape immediately after baking using for instance a rolling pin, a broom handle, cups, cones….

Alternative baking: Nougatine:
From Michel Roux: Finest Desserts

5.1/4 cups / 500 grams sliced almonds
(or 4.1/3 cups/500 grams slivered almonds)
3.1/3 cups / 660 grams sugar
4 tbs / 60 grams butter (optional)
2 tbs oil (vegetable, sunflower, peanut)

Makes 2.3/4 lbs/1.2 kgs! (This is the yield of the recipe given in the book, feel free to downsize!)
Preparation time: 25 minutes
Preheat oven: 180C/350F

Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and toast in the oven until lightly browned. Cook the sugar in a heavy based saucepan over low heat, stirring gently and continuously with a spatula, until it melts to a light golden caramel. Add the almonds and stir over low heat for 1 minute, then stir in the butter until completely absorbed. (This is not essential, but will give the nougat an added sheen) Pour the nougatine onto an oiled baking sheet.

Shaping: place a bakingsheet toward the front of the warm oven, leaving the door half open. The warmth will keep the cookies malleable. Work with one piece at a time, of a size appropriate to the shape you want. Roll out each piece on a warm, lightly oiled baking sheet or lightly oiled marbled surface. It is essential to work quickly, since the nougatine rapidly becomes brittle. Heat the nougatine in a microwave oven for a few seconds only to soften it if needed.

Roll the nougatine into the appropriate thickness for your desired shape, but never thicker than 1/8 inch or 3 mm. Quickly cut out your chosen shapes using cookie cutters, or the blade or heel of a chef’s knife. To mold the nougatine, drape it very rapidly over the mold so that it follows the shape and contours. Leave until completely cold before removing from the mold.
Or, cut out and using your fingers or a knife, push into folds or pleats… use as a basket, twirl round a knitting needle..

Nougatine based shapes can be made two or three days in advance, Keep them in a very dry place and do not fill with something like a mousse more than 2 hours prior to serving.

Other DB challenges:

French chocolate yule log

caramel cupcakes

pizza

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Puffy cumin gougères!

Note: French version is on my other blog: La cuisine de Babeth
Rare cancer awareness: don't forget to check: Help beat sarcoma



Have you ever read French cheese puffs, aka gougères, recipes? Most of them seem really complicated and surrounded by an urban legend: leave them sit in the turned off oven for 10 minutes at the end of cooking time. And like any of those urban legends they spread like butter! The vector here: internet. The curse is: your gougères would go flat.

No way!

I'm more a type of girl who takes shortcuts and does experiments. I did remove my gougères at the end of cooking (few times already, I'm scientist afterward), bad girl! I know :-) But I proved what I wanted to demonstrate, urban legend: My gougères were plumpy and puffy.

I even checked with the Boss and it's not in his book either.

Their puffiness is as magic as the madeleines roundness.

Emmental and cumin French cheese puffs:
Ingredients: (for about 30 gougères)
-1 cup of grated emmental (or Swiss cheese)
-1/3 of a cup of milk
-1/3 of a cup of water
-4 eggs
-3/4 of a stick of butter
-3/4 cup of all-purposed flour, sifted
-1/2 teaspoon of grounded cumin
-1 pinch of Guérande fleur de sel (substitution:Kosher salt)

Directions:
1- Pre-heat the oven at 350F.
2- Combine the milk, water and butter in a saucepan, bring them to boil.
3- Remove from heat, add flour, cumin and salt all at once. Stir quickly with a wooden spoon.
4- Return the saucepan to heat for few minutes, the ball of dough will separate from the sides. (It will dehydrate the dough a bit)
5- Remove from heat and add one by one the eggs, stir well after each one.
6- Add the cheese, keep stirring.
7- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (find some eco-friendly, unbleached, ones at your favorite organic store, or reusable silicon one). With 2 tablespoons make small balls ( as big as a walnut).
8- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden.
-> keep them up to a week in the fridge, up to a month in the freezer.

Note: you may have notice the cool Polaroid vintage look of my picture? I've been playing for a while with a cool (and free!) software called poladroid.

Cool as my childhood magic tree toy.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

2009 Chinese New Year! 红红热闹闹

Note: French version is on my other blog: La cuisine de Babeth
Rare cancer awareness: don't forget to check: Help beat sarcoma

xīn nián hǎo or what I believe to be Happy New Year in Chinese! 2009 is the year of the Earth Ox. Not sure what ins tore for a Fire Dragon like me, wait and see :-)

Enjoy this Chinese themed post.

Grilled curcuma Jumbo shrimps.

Chicken ginger wok stir-fry.

Grilled marinated shrimps.

Won-ton crackers.




Saturday, January 24, 2009

3rd help-beat-sarcoma entry!

Note: French version is on my other food blog: La cuisine de Babeth
Rare cancer awareness: don't forget to check: Help beat sarcoma



I proud to introduce the 3rd help-beat-sarcoma-a-thon entry: milk jam with a touch of coconut milk from Nilufer. It's the 3rd (of a long list I hope!) after delicious pink pralines brownie. Read her participation here and a quiche directly from Quebec.
Right now brunch donations are coming from the French food blogs, I would LOVE to feature entries in English! (rules here)

One of my friend Nathalie was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer: sarcoma. A cancer that doesn't get much public attention. With her support I launched help-beat-sarcoma-a-thon or how to share your Sunday brunch for a good cause. The idea is to raise awareness, and why not also donations, about this cause on internet, but a joyous way. And what more joyous than sharing a good meal! To participate don't forget to check here the rules here.
After weeks of uncertainty: nobody shared anything on help-beat-sarcoma-a-thon, I proud to let you know that Marie from Yummy!! is the first one to participate with a delicious pink pralines brownie. Read her participation here. Thanks Marie :-)

Who's next? Waiting for your delicious entries!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Yamayu Santatsu, Luxembourg

Note: Read me in French on my other (food) blog: La cuisine de Babeth
Rare cancer awareness: don't forget to check: Help beat sarcoma



Recently I was starved for ... sushis, and I needed relief.

Sushi is an art we don't practice at home, we tried but it almost ended up in a messy divorce :-)
As you may know we moved in Luxembourg area in August 2008, we met new friends and tried to go out but we're still not aware of all the hot spots of Luxembourg.
We did some researches before landing in the Grand Duchy area. We owned 2 handful books: Living in Luxembourg, edited by the American Women Society in Luxembourg (Thanks Nury for the gift) and just arrived in Luxembourg. according to the second one Yamayu Santatsu was THE sushi place / Japanese restaurant in Luxembourg. We did tried this address back in 2008 fall when a dear Californian friend of mine visited us (2 generations back her family was already Californian, rare in such an immigration land). Back then we were already dissapointed: service was cold, almost rude and sushi-wise it was decent.

Last week I was in desperate need for sushis and didn't know any others addresses in Luxembourg to calm my addiction.
You may think, well why she's complaining? wasn't she warned? As I'm well aware that Luxembourg is a tiny country far from any seas or oceans and with more cows on its soil that banks (yes it's possible), I wanted to give an other chance to Yamayu Santatsu. And again we were deeply disappointed.
Waiters are unpleasant, haughty and ill-mannered. Don't even dare to ask questions about your order, at your own risk. It's so slow to get food on the table that I was thinking they may send the sushis to Fuji mount to have them blessed or something ...
Plates are chipped! With the prices they are charging they may invest in new ones.
Decoration is minimalist, worthy of the best of Brezhnev era, nothing look like Japanese.

The "best" for the end, let's talk about the food. Sushis quality is very poor, sushis and makis arrived on lukewarm rice !!

Price: expensive.

We won't be back!

Now we are in the look for a great sushi joint in Luxembourg, any good address to share?

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Menu for Hope V, raffle results


Menu for Hope V, raffle results were announced by the lovely Pim this Thursday.
Thanks to you the campaign raised a bit more than US$ 62,ooo in support of the UN World Food Program.
So are you a lucky winner? Check Pim's post here.
If you won the prize I was giving away, code:EU20, please contact me (cuisinedebabeth{at}gmail{dot}com) so I can send it to you promptly :-)

Previously on La vie in English: don't miss my latest cooking video! Check here for more about it, and for the video itself here.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Who's that guy with me?

Note: Read me in French on my other (food) blog: La cuisine de Babeth
Rare cancer awareness: don't forget to check: Help beat sarcoma



Who's that guy near the new cooking video star: Babeth? Ok I must admit I'm only a star in my own kitchen. If I'm not giving myself a thumb up, who will?

Care watching the video? Click here.

Let's be more serious, in October some French food bloggers and me were invited to shot some cooking videos in Paris. Do you remember the making-off? Click here. Recipe of Cyril Lignac's calamari a la plancha can be found at the end of that post.

This video is the 3rd one for me, and I still have a lot of fun shooting them! For 3 minutes of internet fame for the shrimps, beets and myself a lot of workers are active behind the scene. You know I don't look that good in the morning :-)

The first one, hope the first of a long long series, grilled marinated shrimps (here).
The second one: beet mousse (here).

Friday, January 9, 2009

Au revoir Gaston!

Note: Read me in French on my other blog: La cuisine de Babeth
Rare cancer awareness: don't forget to check: Help beat sarcoma


Photo AFP

Yesterday, the best French pastry chef ever passed away. Gaston Lenôtre was the greatest pastry chef and the teacher of many of today pastry stars, Pierre Hermé to name only one.

Gaston Lenôtre was a great teacher, he opened his school in 1971 and his next step was to open "écoles gourmandes" in most of his pastry shops where any of us can get pastry or cooking classes. And I was lucky enough to have few classes at Cannes' Lenôtre école gourmande. Where I learnt how to make macarons and also holidays dishes. Teachers are chefs and they follow one of Gaston Lenôtre rule: always be explain and give all the ingredients and steps of any recipes. Cannot be said for all the chefs or cookbooks writers out there ...

Twist of faith, yesterday I became the happy owner of: faites votre pâtisserie comme Lenôtre (ebay treasures). My Mum has it since the 70s and I grew up with her making delicious Lenôtre desserts.


Au revoir Gaston!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

help-beat-sarcoma-a-thon: first entry: Marie's brownie

Note: French version is on my other blog: La cuisine de Babeth
Rare cancer awareness: don't forget to check: Help beat sarcoma



May be you recall reading the launching of help-beat-sarcoma-a-thon on November 18th 2008?
For those who don't, here a little summary: One of my friend Nathalie was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer: sarcoma. A cancer that doesn't get much public attention. With her support I launched help-beat-sarcoma-a-thon or how to share your Sunday brunch for a good cause. The idea is to raise awareness, and why not also donations, about this cause on internet, but a joyous way. And what more joyous than sharing a good meal! To participate don't forget to check here the rules here.
After weeks of uncertainty: nobody shared anything on help-beat-sarcoma-a-thon, I proud to let you know that Marie from Yummy!! is the first one to participate with a delicious pink pralines brownie. Read her participation here. Thanks Marie :-)

Who's next? Waiting for your delicious entries!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Bonjour 2009! and a 2008 best of

Note: French version is on my other blog: La cuisine de Babeth

I wish you a wonderful and delicious new year!


I wanted to put together a little summary and best of before the end of 2008, but life happens and I didn't get a chance to finish.


But hey it's never to late for a little round up, isn't it? 2008 had ups and downs.

February 2008 was sad, my grand-mother from whom I inherited her vibrant ginger hair color as well as a delicious madeleine recipe, passed away.


We were really unlucky in our last days before moving away from Antibes:
Zoe, our fury friend, escaped and like in a movie she found her way back to "la gendarmerie" :-)
Our apartment got visited. Even if the intruders took only electronics, we felt physically attacked. In this rough time I met true angels.

Our new home sweet home is between Lorraine and Luxembourg, at least for now.


Before jumping to the food posts awards, let me talk about a cause I cherish: help beat sarcoma, an unknown cancer. For that matter I created a blog:
http://help-beat-sarcoma-a-thon.blogspot.com , where I'm asking people to help raising awareness about this type of cancer while sharing a memorable edible brunch moment. I'm sad because nobody is participating. Please come and join me!

Here the others causes I supported: here, here , here and here.

2 rant posts: the mailman doesn't like me much and ranting and raving about the pink
atmosphere
Few trips in 2008: London, New-York, The Netherlands, Venice, Munchen, La Mancha and Portugal.

And now the best food related posts:

In 2008 I shot my second and third cooking video.

Best crackers recipe: Heidi's crackers

Best savory dish: 2-gingers maple-glazed salmon

Best soup: soup at Tiffany

Best surprisingly easy recipe: no brainers citrus asparagus

Best of the husband in the kitchen: tarte tatin

Best muffins: mixed berry quinoa muffins

Best restaurant in Antibes: Mamalu

2 best regional recipes tested and approved by Babeth: mochis and flammenkueche





















Share on Facebook