A Day of Baking

Saturday was the most I’ve baked in one day;

Blueberry muffins
Mushroom spinach quiche – crust and filling
Blackout cake – filling/icing and cake;

and it wasn’t without missteps along the way (with all the recipes tried for the first time). . .

Blueberry Muffins

Source: The Bread Bible
Misstep: Slightly overbaked because I was distracted after testing them once, rotating, and leaving them to bake for a little longer, oops.*

I woke up early to bake these for a brunch and then discovered that I had switched the days. Grrr.

I can’t remember the last time I had a muffin. I haven’t baked or eaten muffins in years. The last time I did was from the days when my baking was limited to baking from a box – and it was always blueberry muffins. Normally, I strongly dislike sweet breakfasts and muffins tend too be way too sweet for my taste. However, I was curious to try the recipe from The Bread Bible. Besides, I always cut the sugar in recipes and it was mostly for my friends anyhow, plus it was quicker and easier than bread.

Good recipe. I’ll be baking this again.

And I did, the very next day. Unfortunately, the brunch was cancelled and I didn’t find out until after I baked another batch. *What I had originally thought was a misstep wasn’t so bad. In fact, my DH preferred it with a nice brown crunchy crust and it was still moist.

Mushroom Spinach Quiche

It wasn't pretty, but it sure was tasty.

Source: crust – The Best Recipes from the World; filling: Vegetarian Times
Misstep: On the initial brief bake to melt the first layer of cheese, the crust slid down into the pan loosing the nice crust  edge.

The original recipe called for an oil-based crust, but butter has so much more flavor that I chose to use the pastry for savory dishes from Mark Bittman’s “The Best Recipes from the World”.

The cheese give this dish a nice brown crust. The next time I bake this dish, there are a few things that I would alter. Once I’ve adapted this recipe to my liking, I will post it here.

  • Was some excess liquid after baking. Had to drain to prevent the dough from getting soggy
  • When the first layer of cheese which was briefly baked, the crust slid down and lost it’s lip. I may eliminate this step; however, the bits of crust that partially cooked was light and flaky, so maybe it would be best to partially bake the crust with weights.
  • Grated the cheese too finely, but had no other choice because it’s my only grater. Had a hand cranked one with different levels of coarseness, but it’s broken.

Mini Blackout Cake

Source: Cook’s Illustrated Holiday Baking, 2010
Misstep: It’s not my fault. It’s the pan’s. Really. Stupid leaky pan.

I stumbled on this while searching for a cake to bake for a friend’s birthday, who devours chocolate, both literally and figuratively. Initially, I was unsure because the cake looks a bit messy, but the rave reviews, interesting backstory, and ingredients (pudding with cake layers) made it an easy choice.

I don’t normally eat pudding and have maybe made it once from the box ages ago. Now that I have, I’m surprised that people make pudding from the box. I’m sure they’d tell you because it’s quick and easy, but making it from scratch is also quick and easy.

I halved the recipe for 6″ pans (knowing that it wouldn’t be enough but you can’t halve an egg). The batter was not as thick as I would have thought and exasperated the issue with one of my pans. It has one of those removable bottoms and the damn thing leaks every time I use it. The only upside to it is that I can easily cut a parchment paper liner by placing the paper under the pan bottom and tearing the paper around it by hand. The cake was not assembled until the next day.

Final Dish – Bubbles and Squeak

I had ambitions to make some bread as well, but by the time I selected which one, it was too late to start after taking into account the time for all the rises. Besides, I was pretty exhausted by the end of the day. Because in addition to all the baking, I cooked up some Bubble and Squeak with sausages for dinner. By coincidence, it also happened to be St. Patrick’s Day when I cooked up this twist on bangers and mash.


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