RLB Coconut Crisps

This recipe truly lived up to its Quick and Easy billing. I was finished almost before I started, it felt like! Which was a delightful change of pace from the other recipes in the Baking Bible which while delicious, often take a day or more from start to finish.

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Here are the dry ingredients in the food processor,

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here everything is chopped up,

dough flattened

This is one of the flattened dough disks ready to be rolled out

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now they’re ready to go into the oven (short pause to admire my new sheet pan)

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Ta-da! Cookie perfection. Or that’s what Phoebe seemed to think. She made short work of them.

 

RLB Frozen Lime Meringue Pie

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You can perhaps tell that I used the broiler to brown the meringue on this pie. 😉 That was the most serious oopsie in today’s baking odyssey, so I really have nothing major to complain about. The blackened bits of topping peeled off easily without affecting the taste of the pie.

While this pie took a while to make, it wasn’t particularly difficult. Grinding vanilla wafers, making (another) citrus curd, and whipping egg whites are old hat by now.

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In summary, eggs, sugar, add ingredients on the scale, cook, cook, see how thick! I finally threw my old Thermapen in the garbage, after it kept registering the same temperature while I watched the curd thicken. I finally took the bowl off the heated and checked the temperature of the boiling water. When it registered 97 degrees Celcius here, maybe 20 feet above sea level, I decided to thank the thermometer for its many years of faithful service and bid it a fond farewell. I bought a new Thermapen when the old one had a temporary nervous breakdown a few months ago, so all should be well. I’m glad this happened late in the citrus curd-making cycle though, because I might not have caught the problem earlier.

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All’s well that ends well, and the lime curd was cooked to the right temperature, despite a few clumps of egg that I left in the strainer. The meringue whipped up nicely and looked good on the frozen pie,

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although I may have to go back on my no new kitchen gadgets pledge and buy a torch the next time I need to brown something. We’ll see. In any case, the soft, sweet meringue, the tart, firm lime curd and the sweet vanilla crumb crust combined to make a spectacular dessert!

pic of pie that sucks least

 

RLB Coffee Cake Muffins

three finished muffins

I seem to be on a roll  lately where I believe I’ve thoroughly vetted a recipe and I have all the ingredients/tools I need, only to discover, as I stand in the middle of my kitchen with the oven on, that I’ve forgotten an ingredient or misread a point of preparation. Today I forgot the sour cream and the large muffin liners. I substituted banilla yogurt and non-stick spray and produced  a tasty muffin anyway, but my muffins did suffer from dome-and-collapse syndrome as Rose predicted.

The crumb topping was yummy. The reason it’s so good should be clear from the photograph below.

topping pre grinding

Walnuts, brown sugar and cinnamon, bound together with flour and butter, need I say more?

crumbs in bowl
topping ready to be sprinkled on batter

It’s definitely not apple season here, but I found Granny Smith apples in a corner of the produce section, waiting for the diehard apple fans unimpressed with the stone fruit and berries occupying center stage right now.

apple and peeler
ready to be peeled
sliced apple
ready for muffinizing!

The batter wasn’t difficult, although I had detached the bowl from the mixer and was walking towards the custard cups when I saw the egg mixture waiting to be added.

mixing in eggs

Fortunately I had only started to walk towards the muffin cups, so I pivoted towards the mixer and fixed my oversight. I’m working on a better way to integrate recipe reading, baking and photography. I’m moving in the right direction I think, but there’s some room for improvement. 😉

dough with mixed in topping
batter with crumbs mixed in, apple peeking out at 4 o’clock

 

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Here’s a muffin ready to go into the oven sitting on my deck railing

I ate the mini muffin I made with the leftover crumbs and batter. It was superb. I’m planning to save the rest of the muffins for the first week of school, so my kids have something to look forward to as a reward for getting up so much earlier than they did for the past two months.

 

RLB Gooseberry Crisp with cranberries

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I’m just a substituting fool lately. But in my own defense, I looked for gooseberries, truly I did! There were none to be found. And I had a big container of cranberries that I froze way back in November that needed to be used up anyway. So, cranberry crisp for us even though it’s not a summery flavor.

The heat broke the day before I made this which helped with the whole cranberries-in-August issue. I pretended it was actually a warm fall day. 🙂

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They look pretty good for 9 month old berries!
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cooking with sugar and water
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drained, cooked berries + cornstarch
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adding reduced syrup back in
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Ready for topping!

I halved the recipe because I didn’t have enough cranberries for a full one, so I made three mini crisps. The cranberry mixture was tasty, now I needed topping.

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Brown and white sugar, oats, and salt went into the food processor, to be joined by butter and related ingredients until a crumble formed:

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which then went over the cranberries:

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This looks a lot like the photo at the top, but look closely at the edges of the bowl

Finally, some vanilla ice cream went over the whole shebang;

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RLB Fudgy Chocolate Sandwich Cookies

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These were easily the most colorful dessert I’ve made from The Baking Bible. The supermarket had Banana Split ice cream on sale when I went looking for sandwich filling, so I made strawberry pineapple, chocolate walnut, and fudge ripple ice cream sandwiches. After I made the fudgy cookies to surround the filling, of course.

That process started naturally enough, with chocolate.

melted chocolate

Lovely chocolate melted in the microwave, then left to cool while I prepared the batter to welcome it.

sifted dry ingredients
Flour, cocoa, salt etc. sifted into a bowl

 

butter and sugar
butter and sugar ready for creaming.

creamed butter and sugar

Here’s the butter/sugar mixture post mixing. Note the vertical lines, and what happens next

butter and sugar and chocolate maybe also flour

Once the flour mixture and the chocolate are beaten in there are still lines, but they’re wider and a on a slight diagonal. I think it’s because the batter is heavier now. Also, chocolatey-er. So, on to refrigerating the dough;

dough wrapped in plastic

This is the packet I made up to refrigerate overnight. It is the essence of chocolate cookie dough.

The next morning I split it into four rolls. I had only full rolls of paper towels, so the cylinders weren’t quite uniform, but they were close enough.

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Flour-coated cylinder is far more edible than it looks!
dough on parchment
cookie dough with and without flour coating

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cookies on parchment
cookies ready to be sandwiched!

I should note that I made two batches on two separate days. The flour-coated batch, which I think I cut slightly thicker and baked a little less, produced the crispy-edged, chewy-centered cookie I was expecting. The other batch was more like a chocolate snap, excellent in its own way, but more of a standalone than a sandwich cookie. Either way though, they were wonderful treats for a hot July day.

 

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