Monday, November 21, 2011

Peach Walnut Galette

As the earlier posting promised!

I tried something new. It's just me, something different all the time. I love getting feedbacks so that I could learn the interest and likings of the people.

I love tarts but when I came around the Galette recipe, I get so excited.

I made these galettes miniature of course, but you could also use this to make one big galette, for a fairly quick and quite easy dessert. Little are always cute and it serves anyone who just want a bite of it.

White Peach Fruit with Walnuts Galettes 
makes 20 galettes

1/2 batch Pate Brisee (sweet shortcrust pastry), rolled out to two 1/8 inch thick discs and chilled (see recipe )  

¼ cup sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large peaches or 8 small peaches, pitted, and sliced
2 teaspoons lemon juice
zest of one lemon
1/4 cup walnuts chopped  finely

1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water ( for brushing )

Maple syrup for brushing ( optional, I omit this out and replaced a dallop of butter for a more buttery flakiness )

Sugar for sprinkling

In a medium bowl, mix together your fruit, 1/4 cup of sugar, flour, vanilla, ground cinnamon , lemon juice and lemon zest. Let the flavors mingle for at least an hour in the fridge. Meanwhile, remove one disc of dough from the fridge and use a 4.5-inch round cutter to cut 10 circles. (you may fit more, I got 12 out of some of my dough). Place circles back in fridge, and repeat with the other disc.

Pour fruit mixture into a sieve and set over a large bowl. Let as much liquid drain off as possible so your galettes don't get soggy.

Working with 6-7 discs at a time (if you can fit all 20 of these onto two baking sheets, go for it, I chose to work in smaller batches) re-roll each disc if needed, and space evenly on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Place about a teaspoon of chopped walnuts in the center of each round, and top nuts with about 1-2 tablespoons of your fruit mixture.

 Chill assembled galettes for at least 20 minutes before baking. This will also help them stay together in the oven, and encourage the flaky dough to develop properly.

Gently fold dough up around the fruit, crimping and pinching it together every so often. A trick here is to dip your crimping finger into your egg wash before each pinch, this way, they won't unfold and fall apart in the oven, as the egg acts as a glue. Brush some more egg wash over all the exposed dough (I just used my finger) and sprinkle about a teaspoon of turbiando sugar over dough and fruit. Repeat with remaining dough.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Bake on middle racks for 25-30 minutes, depending on how big your galettes are, and how thick the dough is, until the fruit is a little bubbly and the crust is a deep golden brown, switching pans top to bottom, and front to back halfway through baking time. Let cool completely on a baking rack, and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator if you are able not to eat them all straight from the oven.  

 These are delicious served warm, but were really really good served the next day at room temperature. Three days later, they are still wonderful straight out of the fridge.

Happy trying!

Pate Brisee ( Sweet Shortcrust )

Do you have a shortcrust pastry which you always go back to. I used to. I always refer to the Basic bakings of Rachell Allen's. It is buttery and simple. It's different now. Sorry Rachel, no offense.

I will say though that I tried a new pate brisee (sweet shortcrust) recipe, and I won't be going back to the old one. Ever. The last one I used from Rachel Allen was good, almost perfect in taste and texture,  but this one, oh my god, this one turned out flaky, buttery, and almost like a dense puff pastry. My friends widened their eyes in just 1 bite, already awe-ing for 1 more.. It's that good!

Take that crust and fill it with fresh stone fruit and ground nuts, and you have a winner. This is my kind of dessert, lots of butter, not too sweet, and comes in a compact size.

Pate Brisee ( Bourke Street Bakery Cookbook )

400 grams (14 oz) unsalted butter, chilled, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 tablespoon white distilled vinegar
100 grams (3 1/2 oz) granulated sugar
2/3 cup water, chilled
665 grams (1 lb 7 1/2 oz) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt

Remove butter from fridge 20 minutes before mixing.

In a small bowl, combine sugar, water, and vinegar, stir to aid the dissolving of the sugar. Set aside in refrigerator for 10 minutes. Then, stir again to completely dissolve sugar.

In a food processor, pulse the flour and salt together a few times to combine. Add the butter, and pulse in one second bursts about 3-4 times until butter is cut in and evenly dispersed. You should have visible chunks of butter in your flour mixture, this is where the flakiness comes from.
Pour mixture into a large bowl and make a little well in the middle of the flour. Pour the vinegar water mixture into the well and gently mix liquids into the flour with a fork. When liquid is evenly dispersed, dump dough out onto a clean surface and knead gently a few times, just until dough comes together in one cohesive ball. It may be a bit shaggy or falling apart, but that's okay, while it is resting the moisture will bind everything together.

See - Visible chunks of butter
Cut ball of dough in 2 then in half and shape each half into a disc about 1/2 - 3/4 inch thick. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least two hours, or overnight. Take dough out of fridge about 30 minutes before you roll it out. Place dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll out to a 1/8 inch flat disc. Always start in the center of the disc and roll outward, turning the disc 30 degrees after each roll to get an even thickness throughout.  You are now ready to cut dough into circles for the galettes. Place thin discs on a flat platter or pan, and chill for two hours to let the gluten relax.

You may keep left over dough for up to 2 weeks in the freezer. Just remember to place it down to the refrigerator 24 hours before you decide to use it again.


Peach Walnut Galette.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Muffins

Hubby told me on short notice, about 1 and half hour before he goes to work that he wanted me to bake a goodbye treat for his Starhub colleagues. He has been working there for 5 years and he wanted to take a 1 month break before he started a new career.

My mind rushed and was thinking of the easiest and fastest treat to make. I was thinking brownies when Nigella's muffins came to my mind. That was just irresistable!

And so I gathered the ingredient and all was ready in 45 mins including packing time. hahah

These muffins a best made fresh and eaten warm. And i got a 2 thumbs up for the chocolatey awesomeness! I am NOT a chocolate person but this was an exception. I ate 3 of these and then it made me guilty.

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins ( Nigella Lawson )
 ( make 12 regular size or 25 minis )

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons best quality cocoa powder
3/4 cup superfine sugar
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips, plus 1/4 cup for sprinkling
1 cup milk
1/3 cup plus 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Special equipment: 38/38 paper muffin cases
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F or 200 degrees.
Put the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa, sugar, and 3/4 cup of the chocolate chips into a large bowl.

I seriously do not know why I cant rotate this pic - Sorry!
Pour all the liquid ingredients into a measuring jug.

I hate blogger now!
Mix the dry and wet ingredients together, remembering that a lumpy batter makes the best muffins. Spoon into the prepared muffin cases. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips on top and then bake for 20 minutes or until the muffins are dark, risen and springy.
And the result , I had to bake a 2nd batch as per their request!

Cheddar Petals

I took cheddar to the next level. I was just using it on pizzas, pastas and quiches. I wanted cheddar cheese as a cookie.

I was doing my cheddar research when I found this recipe which is healthy and especially good for kids snacks as it contains a lot of calcium.

Baby Hadya is going to snack on these in the future. :)


I like this recipe because it doesn't contain any salt - the grated cheddar cheese is already salty in itself, and the baked cheese flakes gives the biscuits a nice crunch. I chose my lovely petal molds.

200 gm butter
1 egg
325 gm of flour (sifted)
40 gm of corn flour (sifted)
150 gm of grated cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence

1. Beat butter and egg in a mixer till creamy, then add in the vanilla essence, the flour and the cornflour. Mix well.

2. Add in the grated cheese and continue mixing till all are evenly mixed.

3. Roll out the dough and press petal molds and place it onto a baking tray lined with baking paper.

4. Prepare an egg wash of 1 egg+1/4 tsp yellow colouring. Coat all the strips with the egg wash. (You can omit the yellow colouring, but the petals will look a little pale.)

5. Grate more cheddar cheese and sprinkle over the strips.

6. Bake in a preheated oven of 180 deg Celsius for 18-20 minutes.

The cheese biscuit dough can actually be made into any shapes according to the fancy of the baker. It is recommended using a cookie cutter to shape it. I suppose this is one recipe that can be versatile for many occasions, and is certainly a very kid-friendly project to do. The dough is malleable enough for smaller hands to get involved without creating too much of a mess. And the result is a biscuit packed with calci-yum for those growing bones.

Italian Cheese Cookies

I love butter. I just prefer using lots of butter on special occasions or on any occasion!

The second ingredient would be cheese and when I started searching for something cheesy, I found this great recipe at Kayotic that could cure my buttery, savoury palette.

Something new right?

Tasty, savory biscuits with lots of cheese, rosemary and sun-dried tomatoes on which I omitted out the sun dried tomatoes as the ones we have here is Singapore lacks freshness. I bought it once at Phoon huat at it was squashed and smelly!
I always try to keep the ingredients I use simple – things most people have stored in their kitchen cabinets or can easily buy at our local supermarket. I personally prefer using fresh herbs, but this also works very well with dried rosemary! You can choose between grating your own Parmesan or using pre-grated. I always go for the easy way out as time is of an essence. I do what is the most practical for me,

Italian Cheese Cookies
by Kayotic
1 cup flour
1 cup Parmesan, grated (100 gr)
120 grams unsalted, cold butter, diced

Fresh Rosemary, minced or dried
Dash cayenne
1/2 tsp salt

This all there is to it.

Using a hand mixer or your hands, as well. Combine flour, cheese, butter, rosemary (I roughly used 1 sprig) cayenne and salt.

Mix until the dough forms a ball, take it out of the food processor and place it on your kitchen counter or cutting board.
Add the minced sun-dried tomatoes or in my case, no need and knead until it’s a supple dough. Sprinkle sugar if you like where in this case I wanted the sides with a little sweet crunch. Shape the dough into a log and place it on top of a piece of foil or wax paper. Wrap tightly.

Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes

Preheat your oven to 400F (200c). Use a really sharp knife and slice the dough in fairly thin slices. Don’t be fussy about it -they’re home made cookies and there’s simply no need for them to be absolutely, perfectly round! Part of their charm is the imperfection and the huge amounts of love you put into making them!

Bake the cookies for 10 to 15 minutes, until lightly golden brown. Let them cool on the rack

And enjoy your not normal tea time with these savouries.