Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Best of the Best ...

Sandra over at Un Tocco de Zenzero and Zora of 1x umruhren bitte are hosting the Best of 2007 recipe collection. We had a very hard time deciding on the one recipe that we felt was the best but we think we nailed it down to the most requested dish at our home - "The Grilled Veggie Lasagna".

We are going Nuts ...

about the Click Photo Event! This month's theme is all about Nuts. We had some extra Cranberries and Pistachios and since I wanted it to be somewhat "holiday" like, I mixed them up and recreated a favorite dish of ours, Sticky Buns for our friend, S. who was out visiting from Boston, we think he loved them! Back to photography .... we thought the color of the nuts worked nicely with the crannberries, so we shot away. As well, the buns were FANTASTIC!


Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Happy Holidays & Merry Christmas from Boston!

We wanted to take a moment to thank you for your readership the past few months, we could not have done it without you! We wish each and everyone of you a fantastic holiday season and we look forward to sharing our cooking with you in 2008! Come dine with us soon!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Buches de Noel

This is quick - as we are jumping on a flight soon. Wanted to share our December Challenge with the Daring Bakers - one of my favorite holiday desserts that I have not had in a while, Buches de Noel or otherwise known as the Yule Log.

I have more to write about this challenge and the comedy that took place making it but I will have to write more this week. In the meantime - Happy Holidays to each and everyone of you!

If you are inclined to make this for the holidays, here is the recipe (a little secret, it is very easy!!)!

Well, here I am as promised to write about the Challenge of the Yule Log. Now, I love Yule Logs but do not think I have had one in years let alone attempted to bake one. Remember ... I do not consider myself a "baker". Anyhow, I am definitely more comfortable behind my trusty and much loved kitchen aid lately and have been embracing the challenges. Unfortunately, I did not get to put the love I wanted into the Buches de Noel. I had all these visions of making a deep chocolate filling, or maybe one made of burnt caramel and bergamont or maybe a nice deep blood orange one, etc... then time took over our or my life. So, I followed the recipe, which is fine but I always like to add a twist when I am allowed.

The next part of the challenge for me was to do it at my sister's house. You say to yourself, what is that problem? Well, my sister D. does not cook, let alone bake, so I had to bring along pans, parchment paper, etc....and keep this a secret. You see we have been keeping this little blog a secret from our families and friends, and were waiting to do the unveiling over the holidays. So, my family could not understand my obsession with this Yule Log. I kept saying I joined this group and had to test the recipe - they went along with it as they are always eager to eat whatever I whip up.

The recipe was going along nicely ... batter was mixing up perfectly, tasted marvelous, I was super excited! Put it in the oven and forgot about high altitude. Fortunately, I remembered towards the end and got it out just in time. A bit crunchy but soft enough to roll - there is a god! The butter cream was Divine - could not keep the fingers out of the bowl - L. was yucked out about this! While, everything was chilling, I poured myself a glass of Christmas Vino and started on my marzipan mushrooms. I have to say - I was NOT happy about doing these, how the heck am I going to make this blob of stuff look like a mushroom. Well, it worked out fantastically! I was super excited, they looked great! Maybe a little to brown but they looked damn good! So, I set everything aside to put the log together in the morning for the big photo shoot - my family would clearly find me crazy once I started shooing pictures of a Yule Log!

Next morning I woke up, put the coffee on, laid out the rolled up cake and took the extra butter cream out of the fridge. Ahh, a hot cup of coffee and enough time to put this project together and just in time for the wonderful morning light to shine through for the photo shoot! "WHERE ARE THE MUSHROOMS?" I ask a few times. My sisters standing there - "I did not do anything with them." I am going crazy by now! Then my sister D. says, "the ones on the plate last night; I threw them away, why would you want old mushrooms for a cake?" Needless to say, it was back to the drawing board and time to make the marzipan over and make new mushrooms - at least I had that practice run! As L. said, "I guess we can tell who does not get enough time in the kitchen, to be able to tell a real one from a fake" (hee hee ha ha).

So, we came clean and shared our little blog with everyone. I told the passionate story of the Daring Bakers and how I have come to love this group of talented bakers and welcome and grasp every new challenge with eagerness! That is our story of how the log became the Christmas Yule Log!