Taste Test: Upside Down Banana Bread Cinnamon Rolls

This Friday’s Taste Test recipe is Tasty’s upside down banana bread cinnamon rolls. How could I NOT make these? *In my Chandler Bing voice. Banana bread is my freaking favorite. I could eat a whole loaf with no guilt, seriously.

You know what banana flavor is awful? Can you guess? I’ll tell you at the end, think about it 😉 Anyways, will I love the shit out of this recipe because I love banana bread so much? Scroll to see if it made the cut!

But first, a quick reminder I’m not a food blogger. There will be no flour-dusted cutting board photos in-between hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives. The word foodie sends an awful noise of nails on a chalkboard down my spine.

I only want to share the recipe and what I learned when baking or cooking it for the first time. The act of making food for others is how I show love, and it’s my fun time. Trying to make something for the first time is always exciting for me because you either nail it or you don’t.

Here we go:

THE RECIPE:

1 cup whole milk

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, 1/2 stick

¾ oz instant yeast, 1 packet

⅓ cup granulated sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

3 ripe bananas, mashed 

4 ½ cups all-purpose flour, divided

2 tablespoons oil

FILLING

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

¼ cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
CARAMEL SAUCE 

½ cup unsalted butter, 1 stick

1 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

¼ cup honey

1 cup walnuts, chopped
  1. In a large, microwave-proof bowl, combine the milk and melted butter. Microwave for 40 seconds, until the milk mixture reaches 110˚F (45˚C). Add the yeast, then let sit for 10 minutes.
  2. Add the granulated sugar, salt, mashed bananas, and stir.
  3. Add 3½ cups (435 g) of flour, ½ cup (60 g) at a time, stirring between each addition.
  4. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead for 3 minutes, adding more flour ¼ cup (30 g) at a time if the dough is sticking to your hands or the surface. Form the dough into a ball.
  5. Add the oil to clean large bowl and place the dough in the bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise for in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours, or overnight, until doubled in size.
  6. Once the dough has risen, roll it out to a ¼-inch-thick (6-mm) rectangle about 18×12 inches (20×30 cm).
  7. Make the filling by mixing the melted butter, granulated sugar, and cinnamon together in a small bowl.
  8. Spread the filling evenly over the dough. Roll up the dough and slice into 15 1½-inch (4-cm) thick slices (discard the ends).
  9. Make the caramel sauce: In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the butter, brown sugar, salt, vanilla, and honey. Keep stirring to prevent the sugar from sticking to the pan. Bring to a gentle boil, then remove the pan from the heat.
  10. Pour the caramel sauce into a 9×12-inch (23×30-cm) baking dish and sprinkle the walnuts on top of sauce. Arrange the rolls in the dish so there are 3 rows of 5 rolls.
  11. Cover with plastic wrap and let the rolls rise for 15 minutes, in a warm place.
  12. Preheat the oven to 350˚F (180˚C).
  13. Remove the plastic wrap and bake the cinnamon rolls for 40 minutes, or until light golden brown.
  14. Let cool for 20 minutes, then invert the rolls onto a serving platter. Leftover cinnamon rolls can be stored up to 5 days in the refrigerator. Reheat in the microwave or oven.

MY FINDINGS:

  1. I used all 4 1/2 cups of flour, the recipe calls to mix 3.5 and then add 1/4 cup as needed while kneading but it is the stickiest dough EVERRR so it took all 4.5 cups.
  2. The yeast

WOULD I MAKE IT AGAIN?

Maybe. The verdict is still out. Everyone BUT me was in love with them. 😂

Have you tried this recipe, too? What did you think about it? Tell in the comments, belowwwwwwww.

ps: It’s yogurt. Banana flavored yogurt taste like spoiled mayonnaise. Woof, just think I barfed a little…my bad!

pss: The original recipe can be found here.

banana bread quotes

 

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Taste Test: Baked Alaska

This Friday’s Taste Test is the Baked Alaska which is considered a unicorn in the dessert world because you don’t see it much anymore. What makes this recipe a challenge is the damn meringue.

Molding the layers of ice cream is the best part! You feel like a sculptor of foods and it’s satisfying to know you’re creating layers of goodness. An easy cheat to making the cake bit is using a white cake box mix. And you best believe I did this cheat 😉

I made this for Christmas at my Father In Law’s house, and I failed miserably. So miserably it’s comical. Never in my life had I ever made meringue and after 15-ish minutes of hand mixing the egg whites I called it good…big mistake.

As you can guess the meringue DRIPPED down the sides as everyone watched. You can’t win them all folks. Scroll to see if it made the cut and the photo proof evidence how terrible it came out.

But first, a quick reminder I’m not a food blogger. There will be no flour-dusted cutting board photos in-between hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives. The word foodie sends an awful noise of nails on a chalkboard down my spine.

I only want to share the recipe and what I learned when baking or cooking it for the first time. The act of making food for others is how I show love, and it’s my fun time. Trying to make something for the first time is always exciting for me because you either nail it or you don’t.

Here we go:

THE RECIPE:

2 quarts vanilla ice cream, softened
1 (18.25 ounce) package white cake mix
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
8 egg whites
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup white sugar
  1. Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch round mixing bowl or deep 8-inch square container with foil. Spread ice cream in container, packing firmly. Cover and freeze 8 hours or until firm.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour an 8×8 inch pan.
  3. Prepare cake mix with egg and almond extract. Pour into prepared pan.
  4. Bake in preheated oven according to package instructions, until the center of cake springs back when lightly touched.
  5. Beat egg whites with cream of tartar, salt, and sugar until stiff peaks form.
  6. Line a baking sheet with parchment or heavy brown paper. Place cake in the center. Turn molded ice cream out onto cake. Quickly and prettily spread meringue over cake and ice cream, all the way to paper to seal. Return to freezer 2 hours.
  7. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
  8. Bake the Alaska on the lowest shelf, 8 to 10 minutes, or until meringue is lightly browned. Serve at once.

MY FINDINGS:

  1. If using a hand mixer, whip the egg whites until you have carpal tunnel…seriously. My recommendation would be to only make meringue if you have a stand mixer because 1) easier on the wrists 2) it’s quieter, hand mixers are LOUD.

WOULD I MAKE IT AGAIN?

Yes, but not until my ego has healed. It was pretty delicious tasting, dripping meringue or not.

Have you tried this recipe, too? What did you think about it? Tell in the comments, belowwwwwwww.

pss: The original recipe can be found here.

 

baked alaska baking quote julia child

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Taste Test: Low Carb No-Bake​ Peanut Butter​ Coconut Cookies

This week’s #TasteTest recipe is a low carb no-bake peanut butter coconut cookie. I’m not on a diet but sometimes I like to try these low carb ‘treats’ just to see if they’re as good as they look. Do you think it’ll make the cut? Scroll to find out!

But first, a quick reminder I’m not a food blogger. There will be no flour-dusted cutting board photos in-between hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives. The word foodie sends an awful noise of nails on a chalkboard down my spine.

I only want to share the recipe and what I learned when baking or cooking it for the first time. The act of making food for others is how I show love, and it’s my fun time. Trying to make something for the first time is always exciting for me because you either nail it or you don’t.

Here we go:

THE RECIPE:

  • ⅔ cup natural peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut flake
  1. Place the peanut butter and coconut oil in a medium microwaveable bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds. Stir to combine. Add the vanilla and stir.
  2. Add the unsweetened shredded coconut flakes and mix until evenly coated.
  3. Dollop the mixture on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Each cookie should be around 1½ inches (4 cm) wide.
  4. Freeze until solid, about 15-20 minutes. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container or bag.

56.03g total carbs 37.5g dietary fiber 18.53g net carbs/per serving 18.53g/8 cookies = 2.31g net carbs per cookie

MY FINDINGS:

  1. It is goopy and will spread all over the place, don’t make your scoops too heaping because it WILL run all over the place, haha.
  2. My trick would be to accidentally put sweetened coconut flakes in instead of unsweetened. Just say ‘oops’ so it counts as accidental.

WOULD I MAKE IT AGAIN?

Not a chance in Hell. I would make these with Jiffy and sweetened coconut flakes though…

Have you tried this recipe, too? What did you think about it? Tell in the comments, belowwwwwwww.

ps: The original recipe can be found here.

no bake peanut butter coconut cookies

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Cheesy French Onion Chicken

This week’s taste test recipe is a cheesy French onion chicken recipe I found on Tasty. This recipe has minimal steps AND ingredients, it can all be done in one SINGLE  pan. If I could insert an Oprah gif (the one where she’s telling everyone they get a car) I would put it right here because one pan clean ups are my FAVORITE kinds of recipes…but will it make the cut?

In the honor of full disclosure I will tell you I’ve never been a fan of French onion soup…but my Hubs loves French onion so I made it knowing if I hated it he’d probably love it and would devour the leftovers.

But first, a quick reminder I’m not a food blogger. There will be no flour-dusted cutting board photos in-between hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives. The word foodie sends an awful noise of nails on a chalkboard down my spine.

I only want to share the recipe and what I learned when baking or cooking it for the first time. The act of making food for others is how I show love, and it’s my fun time. Trying to make something for the first time is always exciting for me because you either nail it or you don’t.

Here we go:

THE RECIPE:

6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

salt, to taste

pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon garlic, minced

1 tablespoon dried parsley

1 tablespoon butter

6 large onions, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon fresh thyme

1 cup beef stock

2 cups gruyère cheese, shredded

bread, sliced and toasted, to serve
  1. In a bowl, add the chicken thighs, salt, pepper, garlic, dried parsley, and olive oil, and toss until evenly coated.
  2. Add the chicken to a skillet on medium-high heat. Sear until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Flip and cook the other side of the chicken, 2 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
  3. Preheat oven to broil.
  4. Add the butter, sliced onions, salt, and pepper to the same pan, stirring occasionally until softened. Reduce heat to low and cook until they are deeply caramelized, about 1 hour.
  5. Add thyme and beef broth and bring the mixture to a simmer.
  6. Add the chicken on top of the onions, and sprinkle with Gruyère cheese.
  7. Broil for 5 minutes, until the cheese is melted and golden brown.
  8. Serve over bread.

MY FINDINGS:

  1. I didn’t have the time frame to reduce the onions down for an hour, it ended up being 30-ish minutes instead which was still flipping awesome.
  2. No parsley or thyme in my cabinet like I thought (wasn’t going back to the grocery store, again) so I found a spice blend floating around the pantry called “Pasta Sprinkle” and used it instead. It contained Mediterranean oregano, California basil, and minced garlic.
  3. If you’re curious about how much cheese I used, it was the e.n.t.i.r.e. block for good measure 🙂 My Hubs says you can never use enough cheese, haha.

WOULD I MAKE IT AGAIN?

 

HELL TO THE YES, IT WAS BOMB-DIGGITY! It is easy to make and packed full of flavor. It’s going in my rotation for dinners, for sure. Fun Fact: if you ditch the bread it’s Keto and/or low carb.

Have you tried this recipe, too? What did you think about it? Tell in the comments, belowwwwwwww.

ps: The original recipe can be found here.

Everything you have ever wanted, is sitting on the other side of fear.-14

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Poppy’s Creme Brûlée

Did you read today’s Taste Test recipe and tense up a little bit? I wonder why it’s made out to be such a difficult dessert to try, maybe it’s the fancy top hat above the ‘u’ that makes it seem way to fancy to try? Let me tell you, I’d rather make Creme Brûlée any day over that damn bread that gave me bruises!

I got this recipe from my Dad (aka Poppy). He made it on Paint maybe a decade ago and emailed it to me. I kid you not, he made it for me on Paint and it is carefully preserved in my cooking binder between two plastic sheets.

But first, let’s recap in case you don’t know my rules…

I’m not a food blogger. I share recipes I’ve tried and if I’d make them again. I hate the word foodie and hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives about the recipe, and photographs that have dusted flour and cutting boards.

You can expect the recipe I used, helpful tricks or what not to do and a couple (probably one) real shots of what it looked like when my bake came out of the oven.

The Recipe:

4 Tablespoons granulated sugar

2 1/2 cups heavy cream

6 egg yolks

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

What you need:

Mixing bowl, wire whip, ramekins, pyrex oven pan, heavy bottom saucepan, thermometer, torch spark, and wire sift.

  1. Gather supplies/ingredients. Get some water boiling and heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Heat 2 1/2 cups heavy cream in a heavy bottom saucepan until it reaches 175 – 180 degrees and remove from heat.
  3. Meanwhile place 6 egg yolks, 4 Tablespoons sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla in mixing bowl and whisk until frothy.
  4. Remove 1/4 cup of the hot heavy cream and slowly pour into egg mix while whipping vigorously to temper egg mix. Repeat with another 1/4 cup.
  5. Slowly pour entire tempered egg mix into heavy cream while whipping with might. Scrape bowl well with rubber spatula.
  6. The mixture will be frothy on top. Use a skimmer to remove the froth. Be sure to let liquids pass through simmer back into mix before dumping froth. Repeat until very little froth is left.
  7. Place 4 ramekins into your baking pan and fill pan with water until the water reaches halfway up ramekins. Pour approximately 2/3 cup of mix into each ramekin.
  8. Bake in over for 20 – 25 minutes. When sides are firm but the center is slightly jiggly the custard is done. Remove from oven and leave in water pan for 10 minutes. Place in fridge and chill for about 4 hours.

To Serve:

  • Sprinkle 2 teaspoon of sugar over top of the Brulee and lightly shake the ramekin back and forth to get an even coat.
  • Brown sugar with a torch. The tip of the flame that is yellow is the hottest part. Sugar should meet flame at top of the yellow tip. Use a right to left back and forth motion starting at the top and work your way down as sugar carmelizes.
  • Note: I like to serve it with a whipped cream rose and strawberry fan on the side or on a plate with a spoon. You can also serve whipped cream on top of Brulee wit
  • h a sprinkle of raspberries, too.

My Findings:

  1. Do not dump all of the hot heavy cream into the egg mixture, it will curdle the eggs. You need to have patience and not rush the tempering.
  2. If you don’t have a small wire sift to skim the top, use a spoon and carefully de-froth the top.
  3. The boiling water is for the water surrounding the ramekins before it enters the oven. I think the boiling water help keep it at an even temp. in the oven and it takes longer to bake if you don’t use heated water, don’t quote me but that sounds right.

Would I Make It Again?

Hell yes. It’s easier than it looks (and sounds). I remember being so nervous I was going to fuck up the tempering I was SUPER and ridiculously slow at it. I never thought the mixtures would ever be melded as one…so find a happy medium, you don’t have to be a psycho like I was the first go around and you can’t dump half or all of it in one or two shots.

Have you ever tried to make Creme Brûlée? How’d it turn out? Tell me in the comments.

Creme Brûlée quotes or sayings

Come be my friend on Instagram. I’m hilarious.
This is my Dad’s recipe that he wrote up on Paint for me some 10 years ago. I have no idea where it came from or if it has his own tweaks.

 

 

Povitica – A Croatian Sweet(ish) Bread

Have you ever made Povitica? If you’ve watched a few episodes of The Great British Baking Show you may have seen it during one of the technical challenges. It’s a “sweet’ (not if your American) dessert bread filled with a boozy, walnut, and cocoa filling.

During a Christmas gingerbread making house party, my MIL’s friend was talking about a recipe her Mom used to make when she was a kid but couldn’t remember the name, so I asked her to tell me how it tasted and the main ingredients she remembered.

It sounded a lot like the Croatian bread, Povitica. Her mother had been long gone and missed the Christmas memory, so I decided to see if this recipe was THE one with a small hope it would give her a little taste of home.

Fair warning, this isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s a pain in the ass to make, strictly based off what goes in to stretching the bread, but if you like a challenge…do it.

But first, let’s recap in case you don’t know my rules…

I’m not a food blogger. I share recipes I’ve tried and if I’d make them again. The word foodie and hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives about the recipe annoy me. Oh, and photographs that have dusted flour and cutting boards.

You can expect the recipe I used, helpful tricks or what not to do and a couple (probably one) real shots of what it looked like when my bake came out of the oven.

The Recipe:

For the dough:

300g (10½ oz) plain flour, plus extra for dusting

40g (1½ oz) caster sugar

7g salt

10g (⅓ oz) fast-action yeast

30g (1oz) unsalted butter, melted

1 large free-range egg, beaten

½ vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped out

150ml (5½ fl oz) whole milk, warmed

For the filling:

60g (2¼ oz) unsalted butter

4 tbsp whole milk

280g (10 oz) walnut pieces

½ vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped out

100g (3½ oz) caster sugar

2 tbsp cocoa powder

1 free-range egg yolk, beaten

To assemble:

15g (½ oz) butter, melted

1 free-range egg white, beaten

100g (3½ oz) icing sugar

Directions

  1. For the dough, tip the flour and sugar into the bowl of a freestanding mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the salt into one side of the bowl and the yeast to the other. Add the melted butter, egg, vanilla seeds and warm milk and begin mixing on a slow speed. When the dough starts to come together, mix for a further 5-8 minutes on a medium speed until the dough is soft, smooth and stretchy.
  2. Tip the dough into a lightly oiled mixing bowl, cover with cling film and leave to rise until at least doubled in size – about one hour. Butter a 1kg (2lb) loaf tin.
  3. For the filling, place the butter and milk in a small pan and heat gently until the butter has melted. Remove from the heat.
  4. Place the walnuts, vanilla seeds, sugar and cocoa powder into the bowl of a food processor and blend to a sandy powder. Add the egg yolk, milk and butter mixture and pulse to combine. Set aside.
  5. To assemble, spread a clean bed sheet over a kitchen table and dust with flour. Turn the risen dough out onto the sheet and roll out the dough into a large 50x30cm (20x12in) rectangle. Brush the surface with 15g (½oz) melted butter.
  6. Dust your hands with flour and ease them underneath the dough. Using the backs of your hands, stretch the dough out from the centre until very thin and translucent (you should be able to see the sheet through the dough). The rectangle should measure approximately 1metrex60cm (40x24in).
  7. Taking care not to tear the dough, spread the filling over the dough until evenly covered. If the filling has been standing for a long time and is too thick, add a little warm milk to loosen it.
  8. Starting at the long edge of the dough, lift the sheet and gently roll the dough up tightly, like a Swiss roll.
  9. Carefully lift the dough and place one end in the bottom corner of the greased loaf tin. Ease the roll into the base of the tin to form a long ‘U’ shape, then double back laying the roll over the first ‘U’ shape to form a second ‘U’ shape on top.
  10. Place the loaf tin inside a clean plastic bag and leave to rise for one hour.
  11. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C(fan)/ 350F/Gas 4.
  12. Brush the dough with beaten egg white and bake for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 150C/130C(fan)/300F/Gas 3 and bake for a further 45 minutes, or until golden-brown. Cover with foil if the top begins to darken too much.
  13. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 30 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  14. Mix the icing sugar with a few drops of cold water to make a runny icing and drizzle it over the povitica. Slice and enjoy.

My Findings:

  1. May the odds be ever in your favor when converting from metric to standard. I would give you my exact measurements but the piece of paper I flipping wrote it on disappeared (I’m looking at you, Hubs!).
  2. ps: Just get a scale to weigh it out on, I had to remake the dough THREE times. Save yourself the hassle (and two or maybe three – dear Zeus – hours) and spend the $10.
  3. I used the rolling pin as long as I possibly could before I started to stretch with my palms and fingers, not back of the hands as suggested because I’m pretty sure I would still be there trying to stretch it.
  4. I think adding some cinnamon in the filling and cutting the cocoa in half might be good. Oh! And some chopped walnuts sprinkled throughout, too.
  5. Needs to be eaten with coffee or tea. It was lighter tasting than I expected which I assume is due to all the layers, but I wouldn’t consider it sweet like a Cinnabon roll. So if you’re worried it is a true (American) dessert bread, it’s not.

Would I Make It Again?

Fuck no. I’d rather make a cinnamon roll, but I would absolutely make it again if my MIL’s friend specifically asked for it next Christmas.

I made four other people taste a slice before giving it away and got no complaints, but all agreed it wasn’t as sweet as they were expecting considering it was iced.

 

Povitica Quote on Taste Testing Friday post on RamblinRandol

Come be my friend on Instagram. I’m hilarious.
Originally recipe found, here.

Jiggly Japanese Cheesecake by McCormick

Another Friday, another opportunity to bake something new this weekend. Last weekend I made an attempt to make the jiggle cheesecake GIFs were made for…but let’s recap last weeks post about cannolis just in case you weren’t here.

I’m not a food blogger. I share recipes I’ve tried and if I’d make them again. I hate the word foodie and hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives about the recipe, and photographs that have dusted flour and cutting boards.

You can expect the recipe I used, helpful tricks or what not to do and a couple (probably one) real shots of what it looked like when my bake came out of the oven.

Here’s the recipe I tried by McCormick:

The Recipe:

Servings
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 12 large egg whites
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 320°F. Line bottom of 9×3-inch round cake pan with parchment paper. Line sides of pan with a 4-inch wide strip of parchment. (You should have about 1 inch of paper extending above the top of the pan.) Set aside.

  2. Test Kitchen Tip: To prepare using a 9-inch springform pan, line with parchment as directed in Step 1. Place pan in center of large sheet of heavy-duty foil. Wrap, making sure bottom and sides are completely covered, to keep water from soaking into cake batter.

  3. Beat egg yolks in large bowl with wire whisk; set aside. Mix cream cheese, butter and milk in small saucepan on medium heat until melted and smooth; remove from heat. Gradually add cream cheese mixture to egg yolks, stirring constantly with wire whisk. Stir in extract until completely smooth.

  4. Sift flour and cornstarch into batter mixture, stirring constantly with wire whisk until well blended.

  5. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar in separate large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form. (If using a freestanding mixer, use wire whisk attachment.) Increase speed to medium-high. Gradually add sugar, beating until sugar is dissolved and stiff peaks form.

  6. Gently stir in 1/4 of the egg white mixture into the batter mixture; repeat until fully incorporated. Pour batter into prepared pan and gently tap pan on the counter to remove any large air bubbles.

  7. Place pan in large roasting pan or dish. Pour enough hot water into roasting pan to cover about 1 inch from bottom of cake pan. Bake 25 minutes. Reduce heat to 280°F. Bake 55 minutes longer or until cake has risen and the top is golden brown.

  8. Remove from oven. Let stand in water bath until cool enough to handle. Remove from water bath. Invert cake onto large plate or cutting board to remove parchment paper. Carefully flip cake onto serving platter. Sprinkle top with powdered sugar and serve warm with fresh berries and whipped cream, if desired.

  9.  

My Findings:

  1. I think a Slow Cooker Liner by Reynolds wrap would work better than aluminum foil. I didn’t have any on hand so I used foil but remember hearing this trick from a friend.
  2. My cake rose quite a bit, and I think it’s because I overwhipped the egg whites…maybe. So be careful you don’t overwhip, it’s easy to do in a freestanding mixer.
  3. I did use the McCormick pure vanilla extract and I think it really did make a difference in taste (especially since I didn’t have any whipped cream or berries during my taste test.

Would I Make It Again?

Only if someone requested the jiggle. The cheesecake was good, but my taste prefers the good old dense New York style cheesecake. I missed having crust, but spending 10-minutes jiggle testing it was fun.

McCormick Jiggly Japanese Cheesecake

PS: I didn’t have a roasting pan or pyrex dish big enough to dunk my springform pan in so I used my cast iron skillet and kept my oven temp a little hotter than suggested.

Cheesecake Recipe quote
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Chevron Cannolis For Cousin Kayla’s Thirtieth​

Have you ever tried to make a cannoli? The dough is held together by wine…those damn Italians are flipping geniuses.

But first, let’s manage some expectations. I’m not a food blogger, I didn’t go to school to become a chef or baker (even though ironically my maiden name IS Baker). My father went to school to be a chef, so I learned from him. My mother liked to bake, so I learned from her.

You’ll never hear me call myself a foodie (because I find that word annoying, everyone’s a foodie these days). I just enjoy cooking (and eating) new recipes and finding ones worth making more than once.

I promise to not share hefty paragraphs filled with adjectives about the recipe and only share helpful tricks I learned during the first make. Oh, and don’t expect to see artistic food shots, if I have to see sprinklings of flour and eggs on a cutting board ONE MORE TIME…I’m going to make a meme with Samuel L. Jackson.

You can expect a couple (probably one) real shots of the food because your girl does not have the patience to make everything look perfect for one photo and let’s be honest, how many times does that burger ACTUALLY look like the burger you get?

The cannoli recipe came from Chevron’s Adventures in Italian Cooking which was printed in 1980.

Chevron cookbook

Here’s the recipe:

Dough:
4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoons salt
3 Tablespoons butter
2 egg yolks
Approx. 1/2 cup white wine
Shortening or vegetable oil for frying.

  1. 1. Mix flour, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Cut in butter, then add egg yolks. With a fork, stir in wine, 1 Tablespoon at a time, until dough clings together. Form a ball, cover, and let stand about 30 minutes.
  2. 2. Roll dough paper thin on floured board and cut 4-inch circles. Wrap circles around metal cannoli tubes, turning each end back to flare slightly. Fry a few at a time in deep fat until golden, about 1 minute. Remove with tongs and drain on paper towels. Carefully slip out tubes after about 5 seconds. Cool shells.
  3. Before serving. force filling into cannoli shell through a large pastry tube. Sift powdered sugar over pastry shell and garnish filled ends with chopped candied fruits, grated chocolate or chopped nuts.

*makes about 24 pastries.

Note. Shells may be stored in airtight containers for several days prior to filling.

Traditional Ricotta Filling:
4 cups ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup heavy cream, whipped to form stiff peaks (optional)
1/4 cup coarsely chopped chocolate
1/3 cup finely chopped mixed candied fruits

  1. Press ricotta cheese through a wire sieve or blend until smooth in food processor or blender. Mix with powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Add finely chopped candied fruits and shaved chocolate. Chill before using. For a lighter filling, fold in whipped heavy cream.

My Findings:

  1. After wrapping dough around the cylinder for frying, seal the edges with egg wash. Otherwise, it’s a cannoli roulette as to if the cannoli will stay wrapped while frying, and will be a maddening game of chicken.
  2. If the cannoli is stuck to the cylinder after frying, pop it in the freezer for a few minutes. Metal shrinks in cold and will help knock the shell off if it’s stuck.
  3. Golden brown is pretty but dark brown is better. It’s important to get the crisp crunch when you bite into them so don’t be afraid to ‘overcook’ them.
  4. I used more wine than 1/2 cup, just add a little bit at a time and work the dough.

Would I Make Them Again?

Hell. Yes. Cannolis are my favorite.

Cannoli recipe

Oh, also, I didn’t do candied fruits that sounded disgusting. I did chocolate chip chunks. I used a large freezer Ziploc bag as my ‘pastry bag’ and added the optional heavy whipped cream to make it lighter which was good and airer. If you want a dense and strong filling, skip the heavy whipping cream.

Godfather quote about Cannolis

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