Monthly Archives: September 2013

Dan Lepard’s Peanut Chilli Bread

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Social media can be fantastic in how they bring you into communities with a couple of clicks. I am member of Meetup.com, joined out of boredom, joined in search of fellow stay at home mothers. Then, I got curious. I joined this group called Baking Entrepreneurs. And because of this group, I chanced upon this recipe. The theme for the first meetup of this group was to bring something baked that contains chilli. The standard combination that you can find on Google would be the chocolate-chilli combo. I wasn’t keen about it at all. Try eating chilli flavoured gummibears and then think about having a spicy dessert. I can’t. I am simply not gourmet enough to be up to it.

Luckily, a deeper search with Google had led me to The Guardian’s site and to this man, Dan Lepard and his column (HERE). Yes, it sounded yummy enough and intriguing enough to get me off my chair! And yes, I don’t have to do a chocolate-chilli combo! Looking through the recipe, the flavours, somehow, reminded me of satay sauce.

Needless to say, I got my hands dirty and was awarded with my first loaf of bread that I was fully satisfied with. Do I want to share it with everyone? Definitely.

Here are the results:

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The afterthought would be to chop up the peanuts since they were dropping out quite easily due to their massive size. But paired with some salami, it was a very yummy dinner. And oh, I didn’t end up at the meetup event because the administrators said there was none at the last moment. I had RSVP-ed and baked for a cancelled event. That said, more bread for us!

p/s:  For the recipe, please click the “HERE” in red, above. It will bring you to Dan’s column at the Guardian and his recipe. By the length of the recipe, you might be able to guess that it’s pretty straightforward and doable. It is true.

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Martha Stewart’s Rustic Apple Tart

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Hi, I am back from hibernating. While I have not been actively blogging, I have not stopped cooking or baking. The long absence was due to shortage of time and me disappearing for one month to Germany with Soenke and Mika. I still have to figure out how to manage my time better as it will be harder now that we are preparing to relocate.

Anyway, this attempt here with puff pastry started with a package of store bought puff pastry that has been sitting in my freezer for months. I had been wanting to do something with puff pastry. However, all the dimensions involved in the rolling and cutting of the pastry was a hassle. Mind block, one can say. Oh well, after months of self nagging to get it over with, I have finally done it. It definitely was not perfect. I had problems rolling the pastry to a rectangle. My mandolin cuts funny. You will see the strange cut marks on the apple slices. And, I skipped the glaze. Soenke was not so keen to have apricot jam painted all over his precious apples. I was able to save some washing up. Heh, why not?

Aye, the apple tart turned out to be rather yummy except for the bottom part of the puff pastry where it was a bit hard to bite into. I guess it is just a matter of practice, practice, practice!

Ingredients

1 sheet frozen puff pastry (from a standard 17.3-ounce package), thawed
Flour, for work surface
3 Granny Smith apples
1/3 cup sugar
1 large egg yolk, beaten with 1 teaspoon water, for egg wash
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons apple jelly, or apricot jam

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Open pastry sheet and remove paper. Fold sheet back up. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out pastry sheet (still folded) to an 8-by-14-inch rectangle. Trim edges with a pizza cutter or sharp paring knife. Transfer to a baking sheet; place in freezer. Peel, core, and slice apples 1/4 inch thick. Toss in a large bowl with sugar.

Brush pastry with egg wash, avoiding edges. Use a sharp paring knife to score a 3/4-inch border around pastry (do not cut all the way through). Place apples inside border, and dot with butter. Bake until pastry is golden and apples are tender, 30 to 35 minutes.

In the microwave or a small saucepan, heat jelly with 1 tablespoon water until melted. Brush apples with glaze. Serve tart warm or at room temperature, cutting into pieces with a serrated knife.

As mentioned previously, I have skipped the glazing part (last step of the recipe). Now that you are warned, do not be alarmed that the tart in the pictures is not shiny and glistening. And I am not joking, tastewise, it is still good! Here have a look and see if you can spot the strange marks on the apple slices from the mandolin.

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