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The Baking Bible

The Baking Bible

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DId You Know?

Oct 18, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Did You Know

Melting Chocolate Effortlessly

When melting a large block of dark chocolate, such as a 2-1/2 kilo/5.5 pound block, there's a much easier way to do it than chopping it first into small pieces with a chef's knife. The only draw back is that it will take several hours so I like to do it the night before. Simply place the chocolate in a pan and set it in an oven with a pilot light or oven light. Be sure to put a note on the oven door so that someone doesn't come along and turn up the oven! About four hours later the chocolate will have melted into an even liquid pool of shiny chocolate.

Chocolate should not exceed 122˚F/50˚C. At higher temperatures it will lose flavor. So be sure that your oven's pilot light does not register higher. This method works only for dark chocolate as chocolate containing milk solids requires frequent stirring to prevent seeding.

Tip for accentuating the flavor of chocolate:

Many ingredients enhance the flavor of chocolate. Coffee, raspberry, walnuts, for example, are known to be synergistic additions. But have you tried malt powder? Start by adding about 1.5% malt to the mixture. Ideally you should not be able to distinguish the flavor of malt but rather to achieve a more intense yet mellow chocolate flavor.

Conversations with Dede of Bakepedia Part 2 of 4

Oct 16, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Epicurious

Here's the part where Dede asks Woody to "tell on me!"

How Sweet It Is

Oct 15, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Book Review

to be included as one of the 11 "best new dessert cookbooks," featured on The Tasting Table site!

And 1 of 24 of "our favorite titles" on Food 52!

The Martha Stewart Living Magazine Baking Bible Review Now on Line

Oct 14, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Epicurious

I'm so delighted that the review is now on line as there is a link to one of the recipes and it's now easy to read on computer!

The Baking Bible E-Book

Oct 12, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Epicurious

This week the first rendition of the Baking Bible e-book arrived for download on my Ipad.


Woody and I immediately set to, flipping through the hard copy and scanning each page of the e-book to make sure there were no errors in electronic transition. Essentially, it's just the formatting that is different. To our delight, we discovered that in recent years technology has improved by leaps and bounds. The e-book very much looks like the hard copy. And although I wouldn't trade the pleasure of leafing through the actual book itself, touching the thick and satiny pages (it even smells good), I have to admit that the e-book is an excellent adjunct.

I enjoy using the Ipad when I bake because it doesn't risk getting butter, chocolate, or the like on the beautiful book pages. Of course searching through the book is a breeze. And I love that the index, instead of having page numbers, has direct links to each entry, and that there is an option to return to the page you were previously looking at. It's also great to be able to change the font size, even the style, and the brightness depending on the light.

I've been exploring all the various things the e-book can do and discovered how easy it is to highlight or make notes and then to find them when one needs them.

One of the features of an e-book dearest to my heart it that the author doesn't have to wait for the "next printing" to make modifications, changes or additions, in fact, better still, they are automatically downloaded onto the device.

If you are thinking of getting this e-book, I encourage you to get it now, before the publication date of October 28, as Amazon is offering it at half price. It will be delivered to your electronic device on the pub date!

The Baking Bible

: you don't need a Kindle to download a Kindle e-book to your Ipad. Just download the free Kind App available un the App store on your Ipad.

Even a Serrated Knives Can Be Sharpened!

Oct 11, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Equipment


I've been keeping my huge knife collection sharp using Chef's Choice Diamond-Hone Knife Sharpener for years, but always wished I could also sharpen my serrated knives. After using the long ones to level many a cake, and the small ones for all manner of culinary activities, I am delighted that the company has produced a model called Chef's Choice EdgeSelect 120 which sharpens serrated knives as well as the conventional straight edge knives. It also offers the option to create an edge for gourmet cutlery, butcher type knives, and sportsman's blades. There are excellent directions in the detailed instructional booklet that comes with it, and on line.

The serrated knife option creates what they refer to as an "the new astonishlingy sharp Trizor-Plus edge with secondary cutting microflutes. My serrated knives are virtually restored to new but actually they are even better than ever before.

Chef's Choice 120 Diamond Hone 3-Stage Professional Knife Sharpener, Chrome

Della Fattoria's Signature Bread

Oct 7, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Epicurious

The Meyer Lemon-Rosemary Campagne Boule from Kathleen Weber's New Book (My step by step photos will be at the end of this posting.)


Della Fattoria Bread: 63 Foolproof Recipes for Yeasted, Enriched & Naturally Leavened Breads

When I saw the photo of this bread and read the headnote, I knew I would have to make it even though it would mean waking up my sleeping beauty starter which I have been feeding faithfully since its creation over 12 years ago but, in recent years, only using to supplement commercial yeast in my breads. To my amazement, after the first feeding it doubled in just 5 hours rather than the expected 2 to 3 days.

Kathleen writes in the headnote that the lemon zest and finely chopped rosemary are mixed with olive oil to make a pesto-like slurry that appears as a bright and delicious swirl along the underside of the crust. When I asked her if this was her original concept, she said that she came up with the slurry just thinking of a pesto like thing to carry the flavors and that she didn't want it to mix in the dough, looking for something cleaner.

Sourdough, without any added commercial yeast whatsoever, is always a thrilling but scary proposition. Kathleen herself was reminded of when she rode a three wheel bicycle for the first time and her father let go of the seat, which feels like the perfect analogy to me as well. She also wrote that she never takes the power of sourdough starter for granted and it always seems like a miracle when the loaf comes out the oven.

Continue reading "Della Fattoria's Signature Bread" »

Speaking of Apples.....

Oct 5, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Epicurious

Here is a link to a delightful piece about apples on Food 52 in which I am happily included.

Apple Walnut Muffins: A Highlight of the Apple Season

Oct 4, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Epicurious


During our stay in August at the Maplestone Inn Bed and Breakfast, near New Paltz, New York, we enjoyed these marvelous muffins made by inn keeper Patte Roche. What we loved most about the muffins was the exceptionally large amount of diced apples suspended in them, in fact, there were more apples than batter. When Patty sent us the recipe, we were surprised to see that the apples supply the liquid in the batter. We adapted the recipe slightly to make 12 instead of the original 10 and we used clarified butter instead of oil as we love the flavor of butter. We clarified the butter to avoid adding extra moisture to the batter as the apples provide just the right amount. If you prefer to use oil, see note below.

Continue reading "Apple Walnut Muffins: A Highlight of the Apple Season" »

Conversations with Dede of Bakepedia Part 1 of 4

Oct 2, 2014 | From the kitchen of Rose in Epicurious

This is a link to Dede Wilson's terrific site Bakepedia on which she started a profile on me and my upcoming book The Baking Bible.

I've known and worked with Dede for 25 years and, as a result, you will get some unique and fun behind the scenes info never before available. Dede even interviewed Woody, asking him what it's like working with me. Stay tuned for this and the rest in the weeks to come.


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