Friday, September 18, 2009
Here's a description of the syllabus items scheduled during Weeks III and and IV of Pro Kosher Baking and Pastry. It's not too late too sign up, there are a few spots left! Classes start October 13 right after Sukkot. Call Jesse asap to request your application at 718-758-1339. You can also email him at email@example.com.
Molded Desserts and Bavarians (pictured)
Pies and Tarts
Tarts and Cookies
Yeast Breads (Lean)
Yeast Breads (Rich)
Pate a Choux: Eclairs
Pate a Choux & Phyllo
Posted by kosherliz at 2:15 PM
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Here's a description of the syllabus items scheduled during Week I and II of Pro Kosher Baking and Pastry. It's not too late too sign up, there are a few spots left! Classes start October 13 right after Sukkot. Call Jesse asap to request your application at 718-758-1339. You can also email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tools, Equipment. Knife Skills; Recipe Conversion and Measurements.
Sponge Method: Mousse, Meringues
Recipe Conversion and Measurements,
Sponge: Macaroons, Vacherin (pictured above!)
Creaming Method Pound Cake, Cookies
Biscuit Method: Biscuits, Scones
Fruit cookery (& Swiss Roll)
Muffin Method & Pie Dough
Posted by kosherliz at 12:27 PM
Friday, September 11, 2009
CKCA had an article posted today about the art and science of honey cake. It's part of a new column called Kosher Baking A-Z. Click here to read it.
The article is reprinted below:
The Art and Science of Honey Cake
At this time of the year, ovens the world over are being fired up, and would-be pastry chefs are baking batch after batch of delectable, moist honey cake, the traditional dessert of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year.
Most bakers have a love/hate relationship with honey cake. They either have an amazing recipe that works out fantastically well every time, or they slave for hours and come up only with a tough, dry mess. My job today is to give you that ideal recipe—coupled with an understanding of the science that backs it up—that will turn out that "perfect" honey cake every time you make it.
The main problem people experience with honey cake is toughness, but luckily, it's a very easy problem to solve. What makes honey cake tough is overbeating and over mixing. Honey cake is not made by the “creaming method”; the method by which most cakes with shortening or butter/margarine are made. Instead, honey cake is meant to be made with the “combining method,” which is very simple and straightforward. The key to this technique is to incorporate the flour only enough so that there aren't any lumps. Otherwise, you run the risk of developing the gluten.
Bakers know that gluten is a protein. It is the rubbery, strand like substance that gives chewiness to bread. It is a natural by-product of the combination of wheat flour and water. Gluten, above most things, is what gives texture, volume and depth to baked goods. If you want the gluten to develop, which you would certainly want if you were baking challah, bread or especially chewy bagels, it is important above all to mix and knead the dough extensively. For bread recipes, you can also purchase high-gluten flour, which has more protein and therefore more gluten-forming potential. Only extreme over mixing of these kinds of flours would break down the gluten structure. But for honey cake, all-purpose flour is best, though cake or pastry flour would work just as well.
For honey cake, your goal is simply to combine the ingredients until you have a uniform mixture, but no more. You now know what happens when the gluten is developed, so now you understand that the less developed the gluten, the lighter and more delectable your honey cake will be.
The order in which you add your ingredients is also vital with honey cake. You want to first beat the eggs well, because any moist cake is built, first and foremost, upon well-beaten eggs. After the eggs, add the sugar, oil and finally, your honey, because the measured oil helps coat the cup so that the honey will slip out easily. Since the honey is the most expensive, and arguably the most important part of the recipe, it's important to use just the right amount.
And most importantly, mix your dry ingredients separately before adding them to your wet ingredients. This will ensure even mixing, and remember only to mix until the flour is incorporated.
Perfect Honey Cake:
1 cup sugar
¾ cup canola oil
¾ cup honey
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp unsweetened cocoa
1 tsp cinnamon
2 cups flour
1 cup strong brewed decaf or regular coffee
½ cup golden raisins (coated first in flour) (optional)
Sift dry ingredients and set aside. Beat eggs in mixing bowl. Combine slowly with sugar, oil and then honey. Add coffee alternating with your dry ingredients, taking care to mix only until the dry ingredients are combined. Sprinkle in the flour covered raisins at the end, by hand.
The mixture can be poured into one 9 by 12 cake pan, or two loaf pans, or in mini-loaf or cupcake pans. Fill the pans halfway or a little more. Bake at 375 degrees. The baking time can be anywhere from 15 to 35 or 40 minutes, depending on the depth of your pan. Test for doneness by piercing with a toothpick; If the toothpick comes away clean, the cake is done. If you don't have a toothpick, just wait until the middle of the cake doesn't jiggle when you move the oven rack. The recipe doubles well and freezes well.
Posted by kosherliz at 6:36 AM
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Here's an example of some of Chef Hellermann's artisan breads, that you can look forward to in your kosher baking and pastry course. Yum Yum!
Some examples of the artisan breads you will most likely learn to make are focaccia, challah, sourdough, seven grain, whole wheat, rustic loaves and french baguettes.
The class will focus not only on the recipes for such items, but also on the classic techniques and methods of breadmaking.
Posted by kosherliz at 2:37 PM