Thursday, January 28, 2010

my new favorite taste...

this past weekend, I made something completely new ( of course it was new for me). I never tried adding the caramel taste into my cakes before. and let me tell you something it is something beyond good..!
I am in love with the taste of werther's original caramel candy or the softer ones, but always had problem with them when they stick to my teeth. but by having the same taste in a cake now, the problem is solved :)
so here is the recipe,  it  is taken from "sweet cakes" magazine which I received as a gift.

Triple caramel cake
2 cups of heavy cream
2 1/2 cup sugar
6 oz. ( 12 Tbs.) unsalted butter at room temperature
4 large eggs (at room temperature)
2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 cup of roasted , crushed walnuts ( this is my own addition to the recipe)

Making the caramel sauce
pour 2 cups of cream in a saucepan and slowly bring it to boil then lower the heat and keep it at a bare simmer.
put 1 cup of sugar in another saucepan and put it on the medium heat. do not disturb the sugar till it starts to melt and darken. at that point start to gently shake the pan to avoid the sugar from burning.
when all the sugar has melted and caramel getting a dark amber color, remove the pan from heat. add the cream carefully and stir constantly with a wooden spoon. if the caramel is harden, it's ok ,it will melt at the next stage.
put the pan on the medium heat and for about 5-7 minutes keep stirring. then remove it from heat and put aside to to cool it down for about 30 minutes, stir often.
after the caramel is ready measure 1 cup of it and use it in the cake.

Making the cake
heat your oven to 325C. grease and flour your pan ( I used Bundt pan).
cream the butter and 1 1/2 cup of sugar with an electrical mixer until it's fluffy.add the eggs one at a time, mix each well before adding the next one. mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. gently add the dry ingredients into the butter and egg mixture alternately with the reserved caramel, beginning and ending with dry ingredients ( here I added the roasted walnuts). and pour into the prepared pan. and bake for abour 40-45 minutes.
then cool it completely . then pour  the remaining  caramel sauce on it and serve it with ice-cream or everything else you are in mood for.
the roasted walnut actually went very well with caramel taste, highly recommended. next time I will add more.
my caramel sauce was a little bit soft. next time I put it on the oven for longer period ( more than 5-7 minutes) so when I pour it on the cake it does not absorb in it.

Monday, January 25, 2010


it's been more than 2 weeks that we cut off our cable, so we are officially TV-less. the cut back was necessary because we felt we are watching TV a lot even when there was nothing on. of course I miss some of it like HBO, food network but I'm ok now ;)
I'm still watching and following my shows but online and the new thing that we tried is that we started to rent dvd from our library ( we did that before but now is more often ) and we watch them whenever we want . so we now are at  the end of 30 Rock , season 1 ( which is  so funny by the way and  we loved it , I know a lot of people do ) and next week will be big love :). I watched 2-3 eposides of the last season when we had HBO and I really liked this show, it is one of the best. so I decided to watch them all.
I watched some of heroes but not from beginning, in the middle.   I don't know I'll start from the beginning maybe I just follow it from now on .though  I  have to find out what season is on now.
so here is the list of the shows that I choose to watch from now : Dexter, bored to death, hunk,  the adventures of old Christine ( I followed it before till season 2).and I am more tv person compared to my husband, I don't know he is gonna follow them with me hope he does.
 less TV ( or manageable TV ) means me-time which I used for reading, painting and things that I like.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Pumkin cake with orange syrup

one of my dear friends gave me a baking cook called "the best of fine cooking, sweet cakes". I love it. one of most intresting feature is that each cake has at least a picture  or if it is necessary more photos of its baking steps. I like cooking books that have final photo of the cooking results, it is a kind of motivation for me.
well ,this weekend I baked a new cake from that book. here is the recipe:

1 cup of unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup of sugar
1 Tbs. orange zest
1 egg
2 eggs, separated
1 cup of pumpkin pure ( I used canned pure pumpkin)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup fine-ground yellow cornmeal
3/4 cup of toasted crushed walnuts and raisin ( this is my own addition)

1/2 cup fresh orange juice ( I used Tropicana orange juice with pulp)
1/2 cup sugar

heat the oven to 350 F.beat the softened butter and sugar and orange zest till light and fluffy with a mixer. one at a time, add the eggs and egg yolks ( keep the whites) . add the pumpkin and vanilla.
mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and cornmeal. add this mixture to the pumpkin batter at 3 stages and stir gently.then I add my walnuts and raisin mix.
in another clean bowel, whip the egg whites till they hold soft peaks ( with very clean whisk). very gently fold the egg whites in the batter and then pour the batter in your prepared pan; smooth the surface and bake about 40-50 minutes ( check with wooden skewer)
let it cool then dust it with sugar if you like ( I didn't do that)


in a saucepan  over low heat. combine the orange juice and sugar and mix till the sugar is dissolved. increase the heat a little and put it for 2 minutes without stirring. then when it was still warm I pour it on the cooled cake; and served it with caramel ice cream .

say cheeeeeeeeese...:)

as I discussed it in my last post, I baked my first cheese cake. I liked it :) and of course it need so much improvements, it was not bad for the first time.
I got the recipe from my friend, she lives in Toronto ( she makes one of the best cheesecakes I ever had ), so here is her reciepe and at the ened I got the comments I gathered from my friends and my dear husband..

Classic creamy cheesecake:
1 1/4 cup honey Graham crackers
1/3 cup melted butter
2 egg separated
1 egg white
500 gr cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup sugar
1 Tbs. orange zest ( this was not in the original recipe, my own addition)

Heat the oven to 350 C. grease the bottom of your pan.
mix the graham crackers with the melted butter and press the mixture in the base and the wall of the pan with your fingers or back of a spoon. make sure that the crumbs are evenly distributed. put it in the oven for about 3-4 min.
beat the softened cream cheese and sugar with mixer and add the eggs one by one till the batter is smooth. at the end add orange zest and vanilla.
pour the batter into the cooled crust and bake in for about 40 minutes. if it is necessary bake for another 5 min. after that transfer it to a cold place and let it cool down. set in the fridge for a minimum of 5 hour or over night.
for its topping you could buy ready topping from your grocery store.
1- I think my cheese cake was a little bit overcooked so it wasn't that creamy when I served it . because when I cut it it wasn't going smoothly. it is clear from the picture. so next time I bake it for 35 minutes ( and that is all because of my oven ) 

2- again because of my oven ( the heat is not distributed evenly and I have this problem all the time ) the top of the cake cracked . I read that in a cook book they put the pan in a larger pan surrounded by hot water for a same amount of time (40 min), I will try this method next time!
3- this amount of sugar won't give you very sweet cheesecake, so if you like the sweet ones add 1 cup of sugar instead of 3/4 cup.
4-for the topping I like to use fresh fruit next time. it will look and of course taste much better.
so  here is the recipe, Enjoy!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

I'm back

after a long absence I'm back ..
I was looking to my post and when I saw the last post was on 13 Dec . I shocked, I didn't realize that it's been so long , time passes very quickly
the reason for this absence was that I had a deadline to make and I was working and working even throughout the holidays and after that I took a week off ,going to vacation which was very fun
at the last day of our vacation I caught a cold and I'm still sick. I think my head is exploding .
I had so much plans for my off times: baking , cooking ,cleaning .. which I didn't do . I only baked a few cakes , I didn't cook ( just for one occasion :our Christmas gathering ). I didn't take photo form my cooking results but I'm going to post the recipes here. during our vacation I had the best cheesecake ever and I'm motivated to make one myself. I prepared everything and I'm going to bake my first cheesecake this weekend. hope it wont become a disaster !
tonight is my fist vist at a gym after a week of eating and sleeping. I know it'll be a little hard .
so till next time with a new cheesecake, bye