Tuesdays with Dorie: Flip-Over Plum Cake

September 27, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in breakfast things, cakes & tortes, groups, simple cakes, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 11 Comments
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flip-over plum cake

Plums are one of the last tastes of summer fruit.  Let’s not be too sad to see the summer go…instead, let’s celebrate with plum cake– Flip-Over Plum Cake.  This is the world’s easier batter to throw together…a quick whisk and that’s it.  It doesn’t even have any eggs.  That was kind of a curveball, actually– I had to, like, quadruple check the recipe to make sure I wasn’t missing something.  Scatter the plums over top and toss it in the oven.  The plums magically turn into a sweet-tart jam layer on the bottom, and the bizarrely egg-less batter turns into delicious cake!

Dorie has this in the breakfast section, and it’s so tasty, I’m sure it would be a fabulous way to start the day, but a little whipped cream turns it into a perfectly lovely dessert, which is how we ate it over here.  I’m betting it would also be great with peaches or nectarines, although I am partial to that intense plum-red color bleeding though.

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan or read Project Domestication, as it was Becky’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie: Cornmeal and Fruit Loaf

August 30, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in breakfast things, groups, muffins & quick breads, tuesdays with dorie | 10 Comments
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cornmeal and fruit loaf

An earthquake and a hurricane in the span of a few days– what a weird weather week for New York City!  If it weren’t for Irene cancelling work this weekend and keeping me housebound, I would not have gotten to make this Cornmeal and Fruit Loaf.  Something about baking at home helps calm my nerves if I’m feeling anxious, and wondering if our house would make it through the big storm without any major damage was making me fret (more than just a bit).  Thankfully, a little water in the basement was the extent of it for us.  If you are on the East Coast, I hope you managed to stay safe.

Whether you are baking to take your mind off something, or just because you want a tasty breakfast treat, this loaf works.  It’s totally made by hand…theraputic, quiet and easy.  And it’s hearty and satisfying to eat…cornmeal and apples (fresh and dried) give it great texture.  It’s not too sweet, so it definitely leans more towards a comforting breakfast or snack than dessert.

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan or read the always enjoyable Engineer Baker, as it was Caitlin’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie: Carrot Spice Muffins (aka Morning Glories)

August 9, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in breakfast things, groups, muffins & quick breads, tuesdays with dorie | 9 Comments
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carrot spice muffins

“Muffin” is a weird word.  And I just realized that I totally spelled it wrong in the titles of my last two muffin posts.  How dumb, and obvious now that I look at those posts again.  (OK, I’ve just gone back and corrected that, so it’s as if it never happened).

These Carrot Spice Muffins are something of a substitute for when your tummy really wants a piece of Bill’s Big Carrot Cake (wow, that cake was awesome…I think about it all the time) for breakfast, but your head just won’t let you.  Like a good carrot cake, they have lots of add-ins beyond carrots…walnuts, coconut, raisins and, of course, a gentle amount of warm spices.  Unlike carrot cake, though, they are sans that decadent cream cheese frosting (but now that I think about it, a thinned out cream cheese glaze would have been fabulous!), and they are a bit dialed down in the oil department.  These seemed like they could be a vehicle for a little fiber boost as well, so I swapped about 25% of the flour with whole wheat.  I also used unsweetened desiccated coconut instead of the sweet stuff.  Then I ate two.

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan or read The Dogs Eat the Crumbs, as it was Nancy’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie: Cream Scones

July 12, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in biscuits & scones, breakfast things, groups, tuesdays with dorie | 9 Comments
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cream scones

It’s steamy hot out…hot and gross…but these Cream Scones were sooo worth turning the oven on for.  Butter and cream…they are a combo to be reckoned with.  I don’t know how two things that are so rich can make something that is so light, crumbly and almost melt-in-your-mouth, but there you have it.  I’ll be making these again when it’s cooler out and I can stand a proper cuppa to go along with them.

After many attempts at scones and biscuits that wound up looking annoyingly like pancakes (sad!), I think that with my last few batches, I’ve finally gotten it down.  I already told you all this stuff with the last one, but….now I grate my cold butter, and then pop it into the freezer while I assemble my dry ingredients.  Then I just give a quick, fingertippy toss of the butter and dry stuff.  I find that this way, I don’t have to do as much rubbing and working to get the two incorporated.  Also, I pat the scones out a little fatter than Dorie says to ensure a tall rise (which I don’t think the angle on this photo shows, but I assure you, they were nice and high).  Of course I get one or two fewer scones per batch, but that’s fine by me.

I skipped the currants here (I didn’t have any), but they aren’t really necessary anyway…especially when there’s jam.  Also not strictly necessary (but crazy delicious!), one of my favorite things about British-style tea service is the thick cream you spread on along with jam.  I found some of that Luxury Clotted Cream in a local shop, and shelled out for it in anticipation of these guys.

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan or read Cafe Lynnylu, as it was Patricia’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie: Chocolate-Chocolate Chunk Muffins

July 5, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in breakfast things, groups, muffins & quick breads, tuesdays with dorie | 12 Comments
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chocolate-chocolate chunk muffins

Will you think less of me if I admit to you that I don’t really “do” chocolate for breakfast?  I eat sweet stuff for brekkie all the time–usually pancakes or waffles drowned in syrup– but chocolate for some reason feels a bit too indulgent.  I made a little exception this past weekend (since it was a holiday and all) for these Chocolate-Chocolate Chunk Muffins.  OK, these  really are great with coffee.  They’re not too sweet at all, and I did follow suggestions to add more chocolate chunks by doubling the amount of chips I folded into the batter at the end.  Hey– if your gonna have chocolate for breakfast, you may as well really have chocolate for breakfast.

And, if chocolate in the a.m. isn’t really your thing either, I can assure you that they are also fab for dessert with a scoop of ice cream (may I suggest something like Strawberry- Sour Cream Ice Cream?).

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan (it’s also here on Epicurious) or read The Way the Cookie Crumbles, as Bridget got to pick again this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie: Blueberry-Brown Sugar Plain Cake

June 7, 2011 at 5:06 pm | Posted in breakfast things, cakes & tortes, groups, simple cakes, sweet things, tuesdays with dorie | 15 Comments
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blueberry-brown sugar plain cake

A trip to up Boston for my Wellesley reunion this past weekend meant that I wasn’t able to make this Blueberry-Brown Sugar Plain Cake until this morning.  Glad I got around to it though, because it is just plain good.  It has a hint of cinnamon, a kiss of brown sugar and a big whomp of blueberries.  With almost as much fruit as batter, I think it should stay moist for a good long time…although I won’t find out, because we’ll be polishing it off for breakfast tomorrow!  (Hey–don’t judge–I only made half a recipe…we can’t eat that much cake in two days!)

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan (it’s also here on Culinate) or read Everyday Insanity, as it was Cindy’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

P.S.: I forgot to mention that I swapped out some of the AP for spelt flour, one of my favorite flours to use in muffins and fruity cakes like this.  Also, I think this cake would be tasty with raspberries, and I may try that out later in the season.

Tuesdays with Dorie: Oatmeal Nutmeg Scones

May 24, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in biscuits & scones, breakfast things, groups, tuesdays with dorie | 13 Comments
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oatmeal nutmeg scones

I think I have finally found my scone mojo.  Maybe I shouldn’t speak too soon, but these Oatmeal Nutmeg Scones are the second batch to come out just as I’d hoped (now I need to revisit the Apple Cheddar ones to see if I can get something with a bit more height).  My two scone “secrets” (although I wouldn’t be surprised if these aren’t secrets at all, but just things I took forever to catch on to!)…first, I grate the cold butter into the dry ingredients.  I find that this way, I don’t have to do as much rubbing and working to get the two incorporated…just toss the butter around a bit with my fingertips.  Second, I pat the scones out a little fatter than I used to.  Tricky, right?  Of course I don’t get as many per batch, but that’s fine by me.

Yes, these scones have oatmeal in them, but they have a load of butter as well, so I’d be lying to you if I said they were a healthy breakfast.  I did try to up the whole-graininess a bit by swapping 2/3 cup of the AP flour for whole wheat pastry flour.  They are really hearty and good…only as sweet as they need to be and no more, which I appreciate in the morning…espeically when I’m slathering jam all over them anyway.

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan or read Life with a Whisk, as it was Patricia’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie: Maple-Cornmeal Drop Biscuits

May 17, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in biscuits & scones, breakfast things, groups, tuesdays with dorie | 14 Comments
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maple-cornmeal drop biscuits

The weekend before last, my husband and I managed to briefly (or should I say too briefly) escape Brooklyn to meet up with my parents in Santa Fe.  Lots of sun during the day, lots of stars out at night (wow–I forget how breathtaking a sky full of stars is), lots of enchiladas and tamales.  On Saturday, I insisted that we go to the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market to pick up some edible souvenirs.  In my suitcase, I brought back chile powder, honey and a bag of blue cornmeal.  Thankfully no glass broke and no bags burst…I would have had quite a mess!

That blue cornmeal is what gives the funky color to my Maple-Cornmeal Drop Biscuits.  These were easy to make for breakfast…even half asleep, like I was.  No rolling or cutting required, although I do think using an ice cream scoop to portion the sticky dough makes things easier than messy spoons.  And you can make bigger, rounder biscuits that way, too!  They are slightly sweet and have that nice little gritty corn crunch, especially on their crispy tops.  They were delish with strawberry jam (mine was NYC-made), and I’m sure would have been just as tasty with yellow cornmeal as with blue.

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan or read A Little Something….Sweet!, as it was Lindsay’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

Tuesdays with Dorie: Citrus-Currant Sunshine Muffins

March 15, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in breakfast things, groups, muffins & quick breads, tuesdays with dorie | 21 Comments
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citrus-currant sunshine muffins

Muffins– two weeks in a row!  I actually made and ate last week’s muffins two+ years ago, so I was glad to have another batch pop up this week.  These may look as sunny and yellow as last Tuesday’s, but that’s because of orange and lemon instead of corn.  A good citrus kick keeps these muffins from being too sweet, so you don’t feel so guilty having them for brekkie.  I swapped out spelt flour for about a third of the AP, just to health them up a bit more.  And if my currants look a little purple, it’s because they’re actually dried wild blueberries.  I would have used currants if I had them, but blueberries go well with the citrus anyway.

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan or read Bella Baker, as it was Lauryn’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

And, in case you missed it, Olive Oil Citrus Cake is another good way to brighten your day with Vitamin C.

Tuesdays with Dorie: Great Grains Muffins

February 1, 2011 at 12:01 am | Posted in breakfast things, groups, muffins & quick breads, tuesdays with dorie | 20 Comments
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great grains muffins

Usually, when I make muffins, I’m trying to sneak a little whole wheat flour into the mix and hoping my husband won’t care.  Well, here’s a muffin that’s supposed to be full of grains…whole wheat, corn and oats.  Good for you stuff, but with a little AP flour so it doesn’t feel like a brick.  I did sneak something else in, though….a tablespoon of ground flaxseed (although wheat germ would be good, too).  For dried fruit, I used blueberries and apricots.  These aren’t big, high-doming muffins, but I’d be happy to wake up to them anytime.  In the book, they’re pictured with a big hunk of cheese, but I think they’re pretty good with a little jam.

For the recipe, see Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan or read Happy Tummy, as it was Christine’s pick this week.  Don’t forget to check out the TWD Blogroll!

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