Recently in dessert Category

Rhubarb sorbet

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I got some rhubarb in CSA Week #1 so I set out to find some recipes other than strawberry rhubarb pie, because the last thing I need to do is eat a whole pie. I love the CSA because it challenges me with situations like, "What the heck am I going to do with rhubarb?"

Rhubarb sorbet sounded interesting and I had all of the ingredients and equipment, so I gave it a try, with a half recipe of this recipe, more or less. I don't have much of a sweet tooth, and am possibly slightly lactose intolerant, so this was a really good possibility.

10 oz. rhubarb
16 oz. water
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed

Cut the rhubarb into 1/2" wide slices.

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In a sauce pan, add 16 oz. water and the rhubarb. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to simmer, and simmer for 10 minutes.

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The original recipe called for squishing the rhubarb through a sieve which is a ridiculously low-tech approach. I used my food mill with the fine screen.

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Remember the liquid is the part you want to keep. :-) There was a bowl under the food mill. Add the sugar and brown sugar and dissolve. The liquid was hot enough that I didn't need to put it back on the stove.

Add the lemon juice. I used the juice of a half of a slightly-old lemon. Chill. I put the bowl of liquid in a sink of cold water for 10 minutes.

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I also added a splash of vodka because I've heard it help prevent gelato and sorbet from freezing as hard in a regular freezer. And, well, everything is better with vodka, right?

While the liquid was chilling I started my ice cream maker chilling. It's a self-chilling model so it cools down quite quickly. Incidentally, my Musso Lussino 4080 is an impressive machine, but is the least used appliance in my kitchen. Lesson learned.

Though without it I wouldn't be making rhubarb sorbet, chocolate raspberry truffle ice cream or lemon gelato, so there is that.

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It really was delicious! I wanted to have more, but this is what I ate for dessert.

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What I ate: June 16, 2011

Breakfast: Pancakes and bacon (both previously frozen).

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Lunch: Getting my car serviced took longer than I was expecting and I was starving so I stopped at McDonalds for a quarter pounder with cheese. I forgot to take a picture.

Dinner: Filet Mignon steak, baked potato with butter and sour cream and broccoli. And 2 glasses of Cholila Ranch Malbec.

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Dessert: A little Green and Black's cherry dark chocolate bar, which isn't nearly as satisfying at Lake Champlain chocolate raspberry truffle.

Snack: 0.7 oz. peanuts.


Weight at beginning of the day: 108.8 lbs.
Weight at the beginning of the next day: 108.4 lbs.


Key lime pie

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I wasn't actually planning on making pie, but since I was throwing caution to the wind with the fat and calories for my birthday, I decided I'd go ahead and make one. I should also point out that since it was my birthday, I'd been drinking for a while before deciding to make a Key lime pie from scratch...

Crust

5.1 oz. graham crackers, crumbed (1 of the 3 sleeves in a 14.4 oz. package of New Morning organic Honey Grahams)
2 oz. sugar (1/4 cup)
2 oz. butter, melted (half stick)

Pulverize the graham crackers in the food processor. Add the sugar and pulse. Add the melted butter and blend until combined.

Pour the graham cracker mixture into a 9" pie pan and press up along the edges. Put in the freezer for a few minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Filling

Wait a few minutes so the crust can set up before making the filling and also for the oven to preheat. Combine in the food processor:

3 oz. egg yolks
14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
4 oz. Nellie and Joe's key lime juice (in a jar)

Blend the filling together and add to the chilled graham cracker crust.

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Bake for 15 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack, then refrigerate.

Whipped Cream

8 oz. heavy whipping cream
2 tbsp. sugar

Whip the cream and sugar together. I cheat and use the whipping attachment in my KitchenAid mixer, but you could use a bowl and a whisk.

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Completed pie. I really can make a better looking pie than this. But, as you may recall, I had been drinking.

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Chocolate chip cookies #2

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I almost never crave sweet foods; I'm not sure what's going on here. But in any case, I was in the mood for a chocolate chip cookie so I had to bake one. Or a dozen.

In the past I'd use the Nestlé Toll House recipe, but I thought I'd try something else. This one looked good.

My recipe is for 1 dozen cookies, converted to weighed measure. Multiply as necessary.

4 oz. butter, softened (1/2 cup, or 1 stick)
3.6 oz. granulated (white) sugar (1/2 cup)
3.2 oz. brown sugar (1/2 cup, packed)

1.9 oz. egg (1 large)
0.130 oz. vanilla extract (1 tsp.)

7.5 oz. all-purpose flour (1 1/2 cups)
0.100 oz. baking soda (1/2 tsp.)
0.035 oz. salt (1/4 tsp)

5.6 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips (1 cup)
2.0 oz. chopped walnuts (1/2 cup)

Cream together the butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Add the egg and vanilla extract.

Mix together the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda and salt) and mix into the batter.

Add the chocolate chips and walnuts.

The original recipe said 10 minutes at 350°F, but I cooked mine on a silpat on a shiny aluminum sheet pan and it took 15 minutes.

It's partly the function of using a silpat and a shiny pan, but these turned out thick and chewy. And they were quite delicious.

Danish butter cookies

buttercookie.jpgI have a weakness for Danish butter cookies. Also potato chips and dip. But in any case, the only time I dare to buy Danish butter cookies in the tin in the supermarket is at Christmas time, because I know I will eat them all. Quickly. And I'd feel bad about it.

One problem about liking to cook and having a well-equipped kitchen is that when you think to yourself, "I'd like a Danish butter cookie," after having several adult beverages you can just make Danish butter cookies.

(Okay, technically I could have walked to the store, and I walk to grocery stores 3 to 5 times a week, but it's really cold outside right now. It's 7°F!)

This recipe looked reasonable and I had all of the ingredients.

They turned out okay. I know they look more like peanut butter cookies but (1) I didn't feel like trying to make that crazy pretzel shaped butter cookie shape (2) I didn't have that coarse sugar and (3) I had those previously mentioned adult beverages.

I had three of them and they were not a bad cookie. They didn't taste like the cookies in the tins, possibly because they were fresh, moist and hot from the oven. They were also devoid of chemicals and preservatives. And I made them from King Arthur white whole wheat flour, so, in a crazy way, they were sort of healthy. Well, except for the two sticks of butter and cup of sugar...


Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Ice Cream

ic6.jpgI was sitting at home, minding my own business, when a bad thought crossed my mind: chocolate raspberry truffle ice cream.

I've never had this before, but in my slightly wine and beer addled brain, I dreamed up this recipe:

4 oz. Scharffen Berger 62 % semisweet chocolate, chopped
2.5 oz. heavy cream (by weight)
0.75 fl. oz. Chambord (black raspberry liquor)

Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until it begins to boil. Remove from the heat, pour into a Pyrex measuring cup, and allow to cool to about 115°F. I put it in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes.

Melt the chocolate in a large bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water. The chocolate should be heated to about 120°F.
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(In actuality, my chocolate tempering skills when under the influence of alcohol are less than stellar despite the fancy thermometer and I exceeded 120°F by a good amount. I didn't break it, however.)

Pour the cream into the melted chocolate, stirring continuously with a whisk or rubber spatula until the cream is completely incorporated. This mixture should be smooth and shiny.

Add the chambord. Pour onto a small plate and freeze.
ic3.jpgChop the frozen ganache into 1/4" chunks once frozen solid.

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Custard base:

2 egg yolks
3 oz. granulated sugar
4 oz. heavy cream (35 % milk fat)
8 oz. whole milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 oz. chambord

Mix the egg yolk and sugar, then add the cream, vanilla extract, and chambord. Put all of the ingredients in a vacuum bag, and sous vide them for 15 minutes at 149°F.

Start the ice cream maker chilling.

Chill the custard base in an ice bath.

Put the custard base into the chilled ice cream maker and beat for 6 - 8 minutes until it falls below 32°F. Add the frozen truffle chunks. The theory was for some of the chocolate to melt into the custard base, but for there to still be chunks.
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Freeze and beat until it reaches ice cream consistency.

It's actually black raspberry frozen custard with chocolate black raspberry truffle chunks. And ridiculously delicious.

Lemon Gelato

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I was looking for a light and refreshing dessert to go with my duck pizza and decided to try making lemon gelato. I happened to have all of the ingredients in my refrigerator, and I thought my ice cream maker might be feeling lonely since I haven't used it in months.

Gelato does not keep well - even under ideal conditions it's best only for a couple days in the freezer due to it's significantly lower fat content than ice cream. And I'd never made it before, so I didn't know if it would work. So this is a very small recipe, more of a tester. It's probably 1 to 1.5 servings; I ate the whole thing because it was so good.

1 egg yolk
1.5 oz. granulated sugar
2 oz. heavy cream (35 % milk fat)
4 oz. whole milk
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

zest and juice of 1 lemon

One of the annoying things about making gelato and frozen custard is that you have to carefully heat the milk, sugar, and eggs. Fortunately, I can take the lazy route: mix the egg yolk and sugar, then add the cream, milk, and vanilla extract. Put all of the ingredients in a vacuum bag, and sous vide them for 20 minutes at 149°F. It should be possible to prepare multiple servings of this gelato custard base ahead of time, which I will investigate further in the future.
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When almost done, start the ice cream maker compressor to chill it.

When cooked, immediately cool the custard mixture in an ice bath.
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Zest the lemon peel. Mince the zest to avoid getting long strands of zest in the ice cream, a step that I did not know to do when I made this the first time.

Juice the lemon. Add the chilled custard mixture.

Transfer to the ice cream maker, turn on the beater, and make gelato! For this tiny batch it should only take 10 to 15 minutes.
gelato4.jpgMakes 8 fl. oz. (a half pint) of delicious lemon gelato. 1 to 1.5 servings.