Category Archives: Pastry

Strawberry Lemon Beignets

 

 

Beignet – n – [been-yay]
1. pillowy, doughy goodness with a crispy exterior. especially good when drizzled with strawberry sauce. 
2. a type of food that teenage brothers eat, I mean INHALE, in under 30.58 seconds.

My brother has been asking me to make him his favourite donuts for about a couple years now (ever since I first made them back in 2010). See normally I love it when any of my siblings ask me to make dessert for them, the opportunity doesn’t present itself very often since they’re both savoury people. Freaks. 😛

If my bro had asked me to make a cake or cookies, then SURE I would’ve jumped on that immediately because those things are easy to make. But nooo, he wants donuts. Do you know how long it takes to make donuts?! The first time I made them took me about 6 hours. Not funnn. Plus, I just don’t have the patience to wait for yeast dough to rise.

As a substitute I decided to make my brother some beignets instead. No yeast, no rising time, no fuss. 😀

I’ve actually never tried a beignet before, so I didn’t know what to expect in terms of the taste and texture. They turned out really nicely with a fluffy interior and slighty crisp outer shell. They were kind of like donuts but much less dense. Even my mom liked them and she’s always been my biggest critic!! I thought that the beignets themselves were a little bland, next time I’ll definitely make sure to double the lemon zest. So to boost up the flavour, I made a lemon strawberry sauce for dipping. The sauce was soooo good that I wanted to drink all of it! 

This recipe made about 2 dozen donuts but I only got to eat 3 of them. My brother ate the rest. In under 3 mins. He inhales anything and everything that is lemon and strawberry flavoured. Next time I’ll be sure to keep a secret stash under my bed 😉

Lemon Beignets

Ingredients

1 cup water
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon (1 gram) salt
1/2 tsp (4 grams) sugar
1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
Zest of one lemon (I suggest 2 lemons)
4 large eggs
Quart vegetable oil, for frying
Powdered sugar, for dusting

1. In a small saucepan, combine the water, butter, and sugar. Bring to a boil, stirring until the butter is completely melted. Remove from heat, add the flour, salt, and lemon zest and stir until combined. Place over medium heat and stir until dough becomes slightly dry and leaves a film on the bottom of the pan.

2. Scoop the dough into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and let cool for 5-7 minutes. Beat the mixture on low speed, allowing it to cool some more, for a few minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Let the dough rest for 1 hour. (I skipped the resting step)

3. Pour the oil into a heavy bottomed saucepan and heat over medium high heat to 365 degrees F. (Do not need to measure temperature of oil, I fried mine in medium-low heat) Fry the beignets by the tablespoon a few at a time. Cook them until golden and puffed.

4. Remove the beignets and let drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve immediately.

Strawberry Lemon Sauce

note: no measurements, I just made the sauce to my liking. You can add as many strawberries and as much sugar as you like.

Strawberries
juice from 1/2 lemon
Sugar 
Warm water 

1. Stir warm water and sugar together til sugar is melted.

2. Wash and chop strawberries. Place strawberries in a blender to make a puree. 

3. Strain the puree to remove seeds and pulp.

4. Stir strawberry puree and sugar water together.

5. Add lemon juice to the mixture. This is my favourite part! The acid of the lemon juice intensifies the red colour of the strawberries, turning it from a deep pinkish red to a bright orangey-red.

6. Drizzle over beignets and reserve some for dipping.

Source: Beignets from Completely Delicious

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Caramel Pastry Cream Cake

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Last Thursday I forgot to record Bake with Anna Olsen. Dun dun dunnnn.

Something must’ve been really wrong with me because I NEVER forget about my favourite Thursday show. I can bet all my chocolate that I was abducted by brainwashing aliens. 

I usually set the recording the night before so that when I come home tired from work, I can sit back, relax and watch desserts be made. 

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I didn’t realize that I had forgotten until the second I got home. Right when I opened the door, I screamed, “OH NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.” It was a horrible horrible feeling.

My sister came running down the stairs and asked, “Oh my gosh, what happened?!?!”

I stared blankly into her face and tried to speak as calmly as I could, “I forgot to record Anna Olsen.”

My sister finally relaxed and said, “Geez, I thought it was something serious.” Then she started up the stairs again, leaving me in shock still.

“IT IS SERIOUS, BECKS!” I screamed after her. 

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Even though I couldn’t watch the new episodes, I needed my fix of desserts! So I watched a previous recording whilst eating an entire tub of ice cream! I wish I was kidding about the ice cream part.

I watched the pastry cream episode because it is one of my favourite ones! Anna made cakes and souffles with pastry cream which surprised me because my limited creativity only allows me to relate pastry cream with cream puffs. 

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This cake is the exact same one that she made on her show except I had mess ups and Anna didn’t 😛

My pastry cream wouldn’t thicken and my caramel was wayyyy too thick. Luckily my friends didn’t seem to care or notice. The caramel pastry cream filling was everyone’s favourite part of the cake! 

If you’re a caramel fan like I am, you must must make this cake! Just a warning though, this is a super long recipe with lots of different steps to make!

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Caramel Pastry Cream Cake

Vanilla Cake

 3/4 cup butter
1 1/3 cup sugar
3 whole eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cup cake and pastry flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk

1. Preheat oven to 350F

2. Cream butter and sugar together until light in colour and fluffy.

3. Add in the eggs one at a time, beat until increased in volume.

4. Add in vanilla.

5. Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

6. Alternate adding flour and buttermilk into the butter mixture. Begin and end with flour.

7. Bake in 8in pans for 25-35 mins. Allow cake to cool in pans for 20 mins. Then remove cake from pans to complete the cooling.

Pastry Cream

1 cup milk (not skim)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste (I left this out because I couldn’t find any, but I highly recommend that this be added!)
3 egg yolks
2 tbsp cornstarch
3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp butter 

1. Bring milk and vanilla paste to a simmer in a pot.

2. In bowl, whisk egg yolks, cornstarch and sugar together.

3. Gradually add the hot milk to the egg mixture and whisk constantly to prevent cooking of the eggs.

4.  Add the entire mixture back into the pot over medium heat. Whisk constantly until thickened to get pastry cream.

5. Place 2 tbsp butter into a bowl. Strain the pastry cream into the bowl. Stir until butter is melted and place saran wrap directly on surface of pastry cream to prevent a skin from forming.

6. Allow to cool at room temperature.

Vanilla Buttercream

3/4 cup butter
4 cups icing sugar, divided
6 tbsp milk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

1. Cream butter and 2 cups of icing sugar together

2. Add milk and vanilla. Beat in the rest of the icing sugar 

Caramel Sauce

1 cup cream
3 tbsp water
1 cup sugar
1 tbsp corn syrup

1. In a pot, add in water, sugar and corn syrup. Cook over med-high heat.

2. Do not stir !!! Let the mixture just cook until it reaches a nice amber colour.

3. Add cream and using a LONG handled whisk, stir to combine.

4. Set off heat to cool at room temperature.

Assembly 

1. Level off cakes if there are uneven surfaces.

2. Combine some caramel sauce into the pastry. I can’t give  you exact measurements, just make sure the mixture doesn’t get too runny, you need structure in your caramel pastry cream.

3. Place one layer of cake on a cake board. Pipe a ring of buttercream along the outside edge to create a dam.

4. Fill the space inside the buttercream ring with caramel pastry cream. 

5. Place the next cake layer on top. Pipe a buttercream dam again. Fill with caramel pastry cream. You should still have some caramel pastry cream left.

6. Place final cake layer on top. 

7. Spread buttercream on all surfaces of the cake. 

8. Pipe a decorative border on the top which is supposed to act as a dam as well.

9. Combine the rest of the caramel and caramel pastry cream and pour on the top. Ta-da! Now that wasn’t too bad was it 😉

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Miniature Tarts

deeee-lish

look at how cute they are!
Dorie’s Berry Tart

Dorie's berry tart

mmmmmm

Sorry for the delay folks! I’ve been super duper busy lately. So busy that right now, I should be studying for my upcoming midterm. But after weighing the importance of blogging and studying, blogging won over 🙂

I made these tarts for the two dinner parties I went to last week. I already posted about one of the dinners, read about it here if you missed it !

I also made a triple chocolate mousse cake. Sigh, I had such high hopes for that one. It didn’t turn out well at all. The middle layer just wouldn’t soldify! So the bottom and top layer had the mousse texture and they held their shape, but the middle white chocolate layer wasn’t cooperating attt allllll. In the end I just decided to put it into the freezer. So that worked in soldifying all the layers, but the whole cake turned so hard it became ice cream =.= Maybe I should just call it an ice cream cake instead of the mousse cake that failed.

Why is it that whenever I bake, something has to go wrong?! I honestly should rethink this whole “being a baker” thing.

Not only did the mousse cake go wrong, but the tart dough didn’t turn out fantastical either. It was too dry when I was making it and after I baked it it was super hard. Maybe I mixed it too much.

Alright, let’s not talk about my kitchen failures anymore.

Something did go well though, EXTREMELY well! The lemon cream. OH. MY. GOODNESS.

IT WAS FREAKING ORGASMIC! Seriously it was sooo goood. I followed the directions to a t and got the creamiest and lemoniest french lemon cream ever!!! Best part: I had 3/4 of the cream leftover so I just spooned it straight into my mouth to recuperate from the failed mousse cake.

The tart dough gave me exactly 24 mini tarts and the 1/4 of the cream was enough for all the tarts. This may vary for you.

If you’re ever heading to a fancy dinner and need to make  dessert that will rock everyone’s socks off, make these! They’re appealing to the eyes, and if done correctly, they’re also super delectable 🙂

For the recipe and detailed instructions, head on over to Two Peas and Their Pod.

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